Ability to transfer Membership Rewards points to other people ending (ended?)

One of the most interesting and least known features of the American Express Membership Rewards programme is the ability to transfer your points to another person, subject to a flat fee of £15.

There were many potential uses of this, but one of the best was being able to transfer your points to your partner in order to empty your account, allowing you to cancel your card.

I have written about this before.  On Sunday, a Head for Points reader rang up to do it.  He was allowed to, but was told that Amex is in the process of withdrawing the option.

Then, last night, another HFP reader emailed me to say that a friend of hers had tried to do it and was told that transfers between accounts had already been stopped.

Amex card

Now, Amex telephone agents are often not 100% up to speed with what is happening.  However, if you were planning to transfer your Membership Rewards points to someone else, you should try to do it now.  A good agent may still be willing to do it for you, especially if you tell them that the Amex website is still offering this.

The webpage advertising this option is here (deleted as now dead).  However, this is a very old page as you can see from the layout, and I’m not sure if you can even access it via the main Amex website (I find it via Google when I need it).

It would be a real shame if this option was biting the dust, as it was a good way for couples to churn cards on a regular basis whilst keeping their Membership Rewards collection intact.

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Bonus Clubcard points (= bonus Avios) for Tesco pre-orders are back
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  1. Polly says:

    Hi raffles, an SPG query please. Is there an actual cut off date for applying for the current bonus offer? I know you mentioned end of july. Can’t find it on the SPG page. My OH will be applying for his BAPP card near end of July, but don’t want to apply for both cards at the same time.. Is there anywhere else I should look to find end of promo date? Be nice if we could space them out . Thanks

  2. Rachel says:

    I am the friend of Amy’s who wanted to transfer last night and was told it isn’t possible. I just contacted MR again and spoke to a very helpful agent who said that the cut off date was WEDNESDAY 19th JUNE and as such the transfer can be made! So anyone who wishes to do this, do it today! The agent was Julie Brown if anyone wishes to speak to her and she is there until 2pm.

    She also issued a £10 credit to my account to cover the telephone calls where I had been misadvised. So effectively my transfer is costing me £5!!

  3. taff_2003 says:

    My wife is on the phone transferring our Membership Rewards to me as we speak. The information she was given was that today is the LAST DAY for transferring MR points! Good luck, all.

  4. Gadgeteer1066 says:

    I am wondering how this will affect household accounts with Avios.

    At the moment, my wife has a Tesco Mastercard, with me as a second card holder. We use this for everyday spend where we can’t use an AmEx. It is also our Tesco clubcard. We only have one clubcard account between us as we must have merged them many years ago. All our clubcard points get converted to Avios.

    The Avios account is in my name, although today my wife has opened an Avios account and we intend to link them as a household account.

    I have a Lloyds TSB AmEx combo and my wife is a second card holder on this. Until recently, this was our card of choice for everything. All the points from this goes into our/my Avios account. We will close this card once we have achieved the current three month bonus promotion.

    Recently, I took out the SPG AmEx. I have met the criteria for the joining bonus, or will do when the next month’s bill goes through. When it comes, we will send the points over to our Avios account.

    I also have a SAGA credit card (not AmEx) which we only use for foreign currency transactions abroad.

    We are looking at taking out the BA AmEx and, because my wife only has one card, we were going to do it in her name and add me as a second card holder. I am already a (new) member of the BA Exec Club and my wife is joining today. We will link the BA Exec Avios accounts together as a household account.

    Am I right in thinking that as we live together in one household, all our spending on any of these cards can go into the Avios or the BA Exec Avios accounts without any trouble and the sharing points thing is for people who do not live together?

    Any observations on how we are going about collecting and our cards?

    By the way, the BA Amex site is today still saying you can share 9at a price) with other people at other addresses.

    • BA Amex is different than MR Amex, as the BA miles go straight into the BAEC account. You’re talking about the BA Household account, which is not affected by this article.

  5. Ben E says:

    I’ve got my fingers crossed for an airline transfer bonus before October

  6. Louie says:

    Oh humph. The plan was hubby would open a Gold account next month just before my card anniversary is up and then we’d transfer my points to him. Nothing I can do about it now even though you’ve tipped us off that this option is closing as I’ve got nowhere to transfer my points at the moment….

    • Polly says:

      Open an avios account now, then call amex to transfer them across afterwards!

      • Louie says:

        But the plan was to transfer to hubby’s (future) membership rewards account. Even if he applies for the Gold Amex today, his MR account won’t be set up for a week or so, which will be too late. I’ll probably transfer to Avios before closing down the account, but I was hoping for the flexibility of keeping them with Amex in case they were more useful being transferred somewhere else – or an Avios bonus came along!

  7. AvioNewbie says:

    My first free year with the gold card ends this month – so I assume I will get charged with the £125 fee next month unless I cancel. So should I wait for a transfer bonus offer or just move my MR to BAEC and cancel the card? i’ve been waiting for a transfer offer for the last 6 months, but Amex hasn’t come out with anything 🙁

    • Have you spent £15k to earn the 7500 point renewal bonus? If so, renew anyway. If not, you could renew and cancel later for a prorata fee refund – you would effectively be paying £10 per month whilst waiting for a bonus.

      You could downgrade to Green but I think that has a fee, plus possibly a fee for joining MR as well.

      • Ben E says:

        I’m guessing you can’t keep your MR membership without a credit card associated?

        • If you have another Amex card which does NOT give MR points, eg a BA Amex, you can get back any lost MR points if you get another Amex MR card within 6 months.


          Cancel Amex Gold with no other Amex-issued Amex card = you lose all your points

          Cancel Amex Gold but you have another Amex-issued Amex card, albeit not one that earns MR points = you lose all your MR points, but if you take out another MR earning card within 6 months Amex gives you your points back

      • AvioNewbie says:

        Nope – I haven’t spent £15k for the renewal bonus. I got the initial bonus, then moved to SPG, got their 20k points, and then on to BAEC for the companion voucher.

        Currently, I am spending towards MBNA AA’s 35k bonus. So very unlikely I’ll actually use my Amex gold for spends in the next 6 months.

        So what do you suggest? Transfer MR to BAEC and cancel? Or renew and hope for a transfer bonus?

  8. 1. I had the gold card which I cancelled and transferred my points to hubby’s account. I wanted to apply for SPG then refer him for it for the bonuses. He is unhappy with my plans as he thinks too many cards will ruin our credit report. I was planning for him to cancel his gold card towards its anniversary then I apply. How will amex view this card “recycling” between couples to avoid the £125 fee? how long can we keep doing it?

    2. Will applying for an SPG card to get bonus for both of us be a bad idea? We have no loans and good salaries at the moment and normally get accepted instantly.

    3. Also as a side note, what do people think is a non amex card to keep for those shops that dont accept amex? I have the HHonors platinum visa ( I have already spent £300 in the first week and will spend £390 next week so the £750 in 3 months will be reached very quickly) but read Raffles recent post that he doesnt think it is good card in the long term. We obviously do most of our spending on amex except in those transactions that dont accept it.

    thanks for reading.

    • AvioNewbie says:

      BMI MBNA Visa is the best non-Amex card in my opinion – but sadly you can no longer apply for it if you don’t have it already.

      Try the MBNA AA or Lloyds Duo otherwise..

    • He should refer you to get the referral bonus, at least.

      • Thank you all for your replies. it is reassuring to know our credit rating will be intact!

      • He has the gold card…will he still get the bonus to refer me to SPG?

        • ps refer me but will apply next week after we hit the 2k spend on his card….

    • You won’t hurt your credit by having too many cards, as long as you keep the limits manageable and cancel ones you don’t need. If your salaries are decent there is nothing to worry about.

      I am not desperately excited by any of the Visa or MC loyalty cards. I tend to churn them as the sign up deals can be OK. The Amazon MasterCard gets you 1 per cent back in Amazon vouchers, for eg – not many points cards give better than 1p in points per £1.

  9. If the Plat Business card feeds into the same MR account, you have nothing to worry about. Your MR account remains open and all points are safe.

    Not much more to say – you need to decide before you call if you are willing to accept any ‘deal’ they offer you to stay, although these seem few and far between.

    • Before I call to cancel, any idea what they offer as incentives to stay? Thx

      • Double points for x months, a few thousand points if you spend £x in y months …. Won’t be a fee reduction.

        They will also try to make you downgrade to the ‘secret’ Gold card, which is the normal Gold with the Plat insurance, for a pointless fee of almost £300.

  10. So my MR points were finally transferred from my Plat account to my partners Gold card.
    It took 3 calls and a an email complaint to get this actioned. 1st request t transfer was made on 18 Jun (last day before this option was seized).

    I received a call from the manager this afternoon (who was very apologetic). The transfer was made immediately. It was done free of charge and as a good will gesture he credited 10,000 points. Also £10 was credit to my card for the phone expense. Well chuffed!