Etihad is offering a 20% bonus when you convert hotel points into Etihad Guest miles until 31 March 2018 inclusive. There’s no limit to how many bonus miles you can earn, and the bonus miles should credit within 15 days of the end of the promotion.
These are the loyalty programs relevant to us in this part of the world:
|Partner||Transfer Rate||Minimum Transfer||Bonus Miles on Minimum Transfer||Total Miles|
|IHG Rewards Club||5:1||10,000||400||2,400|
|Le Club AccorHotels||2:1||4,000||400||2,400|
|Shangri-La Golden Circle||1:1||2,500||500||3,000|
|World of Hyatt||2.5:1|
A transfer of 50,000 points will give you 5,000 bonus miles, for a total of 29,000 miles under this promotion.
I think it is usually poor value to convert hotel points into airline miles. If you stay at hotels regularly, you’re generally better off maintaining your points balance to redeem on free nights. However, some may find use for this if they’re just short of an award with Etihad or one of their partners, so it’s worth knowing about the offer if you were looking to convert anyway.
Point Hacks have a guide on the best uses of Etihad Guest miles for travellers in New Zealand. While they don’t fly to New Zealand, they have a great range of partners including Air New Zealand and Virgin Australia.
We also have a guide on how you can buy Etihad Guest Miles for USD $0.02 per mile. I have checked the points purchase rates for the different hotel programs, and nothing comes in cheaper than this even with the bonus, so there is no way to game the offer to ‘buy’ some cheap miles, unfortunately!
There’s no registration required for this promotion, so as long as you have a qualifying transaction you should earn the bonus points.
Could I transfer my Amex Membership Rewards Points to Hilton Honors, and then to Etihad Guest?
While the answer is yes, you’ll be losing out on the value that you’d otherwise receive by converting Membership Rewards Points (MRP) to SPG Starpoints instead, with their leading minimum 1:1 transfer rate.
E.g. 20,000 MRP will give you 20,000 Hilton Honors points, which will in turn give you 2,400 Etihad Guest miles, bonus included.
The same number of MRP will give you 6,600 Starpoints, which in turn converts to 6,600 Etihad Guest miles.
On top of this, a 20,000 point transfer to Etihad Guest from SPG will also earn an additional 5,000 bonus miles – like with Starwood’s many other frequent flyer partners.
Therefore, 61,000 MRP would give you 25,000 miles. The same number of MRP transferred through Hilton would only give you a meagre 7,200 miles, even with the bonus.
Therefore, common sense says, don’t do it!
As always, in this points game, point devaluations can be introduced with or without notice, so you should only transfer your points from hotel rewards programs to a specific frequent flyer program like Etihad Guest if you have a redemption in mind in the near future.
Note that Etihad Guest miles expire after 24 months.