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NEW: 50% bonus on Emirates Skywards conversions to Heathrow Rewards – worth it?

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Heathrow Rewards is launching an interesting promotion – a 50% bonus when you convert your Emirates Skywards miles INTO Heathrow Rewards points.

This deal launches today and runs until 31st July.  If it isn’t already showing on their website, check back later.

Emirates Skywards joined Heathrow Rewards as a ‘transfer out’ partner back in May 2015see here.   As British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Lufthansa and Etihad were already transfer partners, it was not a surprising addition.  The transfer rate is the same as the other airline partners.  250 Heathrow Rewards points gets you 250 miles.

What WAS surprising is that you were also allowed to transfer Emirates Skywards miles INTO Heathrow Rewards. The details are here.


Here are the rules when no bonus is running:

The minimum Emirates transfer into Heathrow Rewards is 6,000 miles.

The conversion rate is 3:1 so 6,000 miles gets you 2,000 Heathrow Rewards points

The maximum conversion per transaction is 54,000 Emirates Skywards miles

As 2,000 Heathrow Rewards points gets you a £20 shopping or Heathrow Express voucher, you are getting 0.33p per mile

Alternatively, 2,000 Heathrow Rewards points gets you a £40 Official Heathrow Parking voucher, so you are getting 0.66p per mile

You CANNOT convert Heathrow Rewards points gained via Emirates into airline miles

The final point above is very important.  The ONLY things you can do with Heathrow Rewards points generated from a Heathrow Rewards conversion are:

to redeem for a Heathrow shopping voucher

to redeem for Heathrow Express vouchers

to redeem for discounts on Official Heathrow Parking 

I tried this out when the feature was first launched.  I moved 6,000 Emirates Skywards miles across.  The transfer was INSTANT.  I logged out of my Heathrow Rewards account, logged back in and the 2,000 points were there.

Next to your points total online is a little question mark.  Click on this and a box pops up which says:

Heathrow points:  xxx

Emirates converted points: xxx

I went over to the Avios conversion page.  I got a message “You do not have enough points to redeem for this reward” – which was true, excluding the Emirates miles.

I then went to the shopping vouchers page and WAS able to redeem for £20 of shopping vouchers without any problems.

Emirates A380

With a 50% bonus, you will receive a £30 Heathrow shopping voucher or Heathrow Express voucher for every 6,000 Skywards miles you convert.

This is still not an outstanding deal by any means.  It is pointless (sic) converting American Express Membership Rewards points to Emirates Skywards to Heathrow Rewards just to get 0.5p per mile – there are plenty of Amex redemptions which offer better value than that.

However, this IS an excellent way of using up some spare Emirates Skywards miles (minimum 6,000) if they are about to expire.

Official Heathrow Parking DOES offer good value.  You get double value when you redeem for this, ie 2,000 Heathrow Rewards points gets you a £40 voucher.  This means that you are getting 1p per Emirates Skywards mile or, if you convert from Amex Membership Rewards to Emirates Skywards to Heathrow Rewards, 1p per American Express Membership Rewards point.  That is very good.

Don’t forget the other two ways of using up small amounts of Emirates Skywards miles though – Arsenal football tickets and redeeming for easyJet flights.

Remember that you CANNOT use this as a method of converting Skywards miles into Avios by laundering them through Heathrow Rewards – their IT works and those redemptions are blocked off.

How to earn Emirates Skywards miles via UK credit cards

As a reminder, Emirates no longer has its own UK credit card.  However, you can earn Emirates Skywards points by converting Membership Rewards points earned from selected UK American Express cards.  These are:

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold – 10,000 Membership Rewards points sign-up bonus

The Platinum Card from American Express – 30,000 Membership Rewards points sign-up bonus

American Express Rewards credit card – up to 5,000 Membership Rewards points sign-up bonus

Membership Rewards points convert at 1:1 into Emirates Skywards miles.  The cards above all earn 1 Membership Rewards point per £1 spent on your card, which converts to 1 Emirates Skywards miles.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for the latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios from current offers and promotions.)

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  1. With 18, 500 each this might be an option for my wife and I.

    Can’t see us ever having enough for a flight.

  2. Nigel the pensioner says:

    Perhaps another false economy re heathrow parking…… There is far far cheaper parking to be had at LHR other than using “the official” LHR rack rate. ABC holiday extras will give you significantly discounted parking and if you enter their website via the website, you get an extra 5% discount, without having to enter your dob!!

    • There are plenty of stories of 2nd tier parking suppliers going bust (Purple Parking went bust this year), leaving cars in unsecured locations or even renting out your car (either via a web service or just letting staff take them if they need a ride, plus the extra bother of getting to the termimals. You get what you pay for.

      The sensible route is to use goodtogo parking which is Heathrow ‘in disguise’, priced to match the cowboys but letting you use the official car parks.

      • johnny_c-l says:

        I don’t even trust the official parking anymore since the drop-off service at STN managed to temporarily lose my car a couple of years ago.

      • Radiata says:

        I once used third party parking for a weekend away to Berlin from LCY – car picked up on departure and returned on arrival.

        After my return a few engine management lights led to a visit to the garage. It appears a squirrel or similar found the warm engine delightful and took to gnawing wires whilst there…

        Garage owner stated that this far from the first time he had seen this and warned such companies occasionally park one’s car in a field.

  3. Boi Masake says:

    When buying marrioott travel package how long do the miles take to reach japan air milleage programme?

    • Boi Masake says:

      Also, given the choice would you use 90K SPG>>>7 days hotel & 85K Japan airline miles
      100K SPG for 125K Japan miles without hotel?
      I need 126K Japan miles but happy to settle for Marriott package if that’s better value.

      • Alex W says:

        Depends whether you use the 7 night voucher for a decent hotel redemption.

        JAL gives you fewer miles for travel packages than other airlines, e.g. BA or Virgin would get you 120,000 miles instead of 85k.
        If you went for BA Avios you can use them on JAL because they are oneworld. Whether that would work out better value, I don’t know.

        • Andrew M says:

          Taking Alaska miles with a Marriott travel package might be a better option if you want to travel on JAL.

  4. Tilly says:

    Sorry for early O/T – have just over 112k MR points but want to close my plat card. Will leave for 6 months then reapply. Trying to decide whether to transfer to BAEC or Hilton. Which would you transfer to? Or split between the two?

    • Genghis says:

      Think about what use you would have for them. What are your balances already etc? Under normal circumstances, I’d choose BAEC. But are you aiming for a Rangali redemption etc?

    • Alex W says:

      @tilly consider MR -> SPG as this retains some flexibility. You could go for Marriott travel package which in my view is the best use of MR points.

      You could transfer them to Virgin. Can then transfer to IHG to get Spire for the 25k bonus if you like , or you could even transfer to Hilton if you decide later. However the latter is worse value at 2:3 compared to MR directly to Hilton at 1:2.

      Finally you could keep your MR alive by transferring them to an international dollar card. However the $ exchange rate is pants currently (thanks Brexit).

    • For the last 2-3 years I’ve been transferring our MR pts to Hilton to save for a future trip to Hawaii. I’ve just booked our next USA road trip for 2019 but I have my sights set on 10 days in Hawaii plus some of the north western USA states for 2020. I now have enough Hilton pts for 5 nights each on 2 islands. I also save some e Rewards to HH so none of these pts have cost me hard cash. By doing 5 nights in each place you get 5 nights for the price of 4. Also saving erewards for 15k AA miles to get us an almost free flight between the islands. Depends if you need the Avios but I get them from elsewhere so decided to go with HH. I had a plan to save for Hawaii and I stuck to it.

    • Tilly says:

      Thanks everyone. We currently have approx 125k avios in BAEC and not a lot in Hilton as wiped that out for our 5 nights in Toronto. Realistically we’re unlikely now to use reward flight (with 241 voucher) or reward nights until mid – late 2019 ………… baby due in January, if everything is ok with that.

      Get avios mainly from BA card spend and Hilton points from hilton visa.

  5. Metopes says:

    This looks like a good idea for some expiring points I have. Does anyone know how the vouchers are issued? Wondering if I can create a Heathrow Rewards account and use the vouchers by Wednesday when I’ll be flying out of Heathrow. Thanks

  6. Rob, have you ever attempted to work out a value for a Heathrow Rewards point?

    • Assuming you don’t use Official Heathrow Parking, you’re looking at a floor of 1p (Heathrow shopping voucher) and a high end of whatever value you put on an airline mile. You can then add a bit extra because of the occasional transfer bonuses which means you might do better – eg 1000 Avios is worth less than 1000 HR points, because of the possibility of an HR to Avios transfer bonus, a bonus to another HR partner and the added value from having more flexibility on how to use them (eg you are protected if Avios devalues).

      I’d be tempted to value them at around 1.5p as long as 50% transfer bonuses keep coming along.

      • Genghis says:

        There was the x2 Heathrow Shopping offer last year too (or was it the year before?) but who knows whether we’ll see that again.

        • Offers seem to be double tier now, so if you’re not Heathrow Premium you won’t be getting the best offer.

  7. Nick Burch says:

    OT – Boingo seem to have expanded their free offering to some Mastercards (Amex Plat has got it for a while now). The new Virgin Atlantic cards from Virgin Money seem to be covered, so that ought to cover a lot of H4P folks! has the details and the signup for the free account

  8. I’ve just converted 6,000 Emirates Skywards miles to Heathrow Rewards points but I have only been given 2,000 HR points. No sign of the extra 50%. I thought maybe the extra will appear if I try to convert to shopping vouchers but, no, it doesn’t. It is only offering me £20 worth of vouchers for my 2,000 points. I presume the 50% bonus will be credited to my account later, especially as, having done the same on my partner’s Emirates and Heathrow Rewards accounts, she, too, has only been given 2,000 points.

    • Not great value, since the lowest redemption for MR points is £0.004 per point anyway IMO.
      Theres a risk that the 50% doesnt go through and your left with £0.002 per point

      • Peter K says:

        But it’s Emirates miles we are on about here, not MR points.

        • You’ll get the 50%, that’s not an issue. The guy who runs HR is a mate of ours.

        • MR points valuation is a good benchmark to start with, SW point valuation would be worse off. Best use is for upgrades/redemptions with EK directly

  9. gill88 says:

    Looking to book the return on a BA 241 Dubai to Belfast with a stopover in London. How long can the stopover be? A month, 2 months ???? Any help greatly appreciated.

    • As long as you want, within the current booking window. A stopover longer than 24 hours will trigger APD on the final leg though.

      • wont it have to be belfast to dubai return? I thought 241 needed to originate in the UK.

  10. Kevin says:

    Took the family away this last weekend. I suspect going in the pods was the kids’ favourite part of the whole trip. Doubt they will ever agree again to any other parking option.

  11. Kevin Dawson says:

    Easy enough to transfer 6,000 miles and 2,000 points duly appeared but a couple of observations – couldn’t find a way to transfer any different number of points (I had 11,000 so am left with 5,000 over there) and whilst you can buy extra miles to top a balance up at $30 per thousand the minimum quantity is 2,000. If I could have paid $30 for the extra 1,000 and then transferred a second 6,000 over to get £30 worth of rewards value it would been worth it, but spending £46 to make £30 wasn’t such a great idea.

    • lblace says:

      I believe you need multiples of 6000 Skywards miles to transfer – I have 3500 left for the same reason. Good job they expire in 2021!

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