How to cash out your Amex MR points or Emirates miles for 1p each this week

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(EDIT: Whilst I mention a few risk factors in this article, it seems I was being overcautious.  Based on comments below, eg

“Just did this having not even created an Emirates account before. MR to Emirates, Emirates to Heathrow and Heathrow to redeemed shopping vouchers all went off without a hitch. The bonus Heathrow points from the Emirates transfer posted instantly too!”

…… everything is instant and the 50% bonus from Emirates also posts immediately.)

In our main article today I wrote about the very generous ‘double up’ bonus which Heathrow Rewards is running from today, 24th July, to Monday 30th July.  During this period, every 250 Heathrow Rewards points you convert will get you a £5 Heathrow shopping voucher instead of a £2.50 voucher.

There is an ‘advanced’ way to work this offer.  I have put it into this separate article in order to not dilute the main message of the ‘double up’ deal for those readers who are less keen on the sort of creativity I am about to outline.

Regular readers of Head for Points will know that there is a second Heathrow Rewards bonus running at the moment.  You receive a 50% bonus when you transfer Emirates Skywards miles into Heathrow Rewards.  This offer runs until 31st July.  Full details are in this article.

You should also remember that American Express Membership Rewards points convert to Emirates Skywards miles at a rate of 1:1.  This transfer is instant as long as your accounts are already linked and should be done within a day if they are not.

This means you can get creative …..

It is possible, for the next seven days only, to get 1p of Heathrow Airport shopping vouchers per American Express Membership Rewards point or Emirates Skywards mile you have.

This is how:

Step 1:  Transfer your American Express Membership Rewards points to Emirates Skywards via this page of the Amex website 

The transfer is instant if your accounts are already linked and should be fairly quick even if they are not – although there is a risk.  You need to transfer in chunks of 500 American Express points with a minimum of 1,000.

Step 2:  Transfer your Emirates Skywards miles into Heathrow Rewards points via this page of the Emirates website 

You need to convert at least 6,000 Emirates Skywards miles which, under this offer, will get you 3,000 Heathrow Rewards points instead of the usual 2,000.  Larger transfers must be in multiples of 2,000 miles.  The transfer was instant when I did this a couple of years ago.  The risk here is that the bonus does not post immediately.

IMPORTANT:  Heathrow Rewards points transferred from Emirates can only be used for shopping vouchers, Heathrow Express tickets or airport parking.  They cannot be transferred out to another airline scheme.

Step 3:  Redeem your Heathrow Rewards points for Heathrow shopping vouchers via the Heathrow Rewards website 

As long as you order your vouchers by 30th July, you will receive 2p per point instead of the usual 1p.  You need to redeem in multiples of 250 Heathrow Rewards points.

So ….

6,000 American Express Membership Rewards points converts into

6,000 Emirates Skywards miles which converts into

3,000 Heathrow Rewards points (with the 50% bonus until 31st July) which converts into

£60 of Heathrow Airport shopping vouchers (with the 100% bonus until 30th July) which are valid for 12 months

That is 1p per American Express Membership Rewards point or Emirates Skywards mile.

There is, of course, some risk here and if it all goes goes wrong, don’t blame us!:

Emirates Skywards transfers from Amex are instant but if your accounts are not linked it may take a day

The one time I did a transfer from Emirates Skywards into Heathrow Rewards it was also instant, but that was two years ago – I don’t have any recent experience

I’m not sure if the 50% Heathrow Rewards bonus posts immediately or not

As you have a full week from today to order the vouchers from Heathrow Rewards, the risk is manageable in my view.  1p per American Express Membership Rewards points is a good return although, of course, you should really have something in mind to buy and be planning a visit to the airport.

Heathrow Rewards is expecting high demand during this promotion and is warning that it could take 28 days for your shopping vouchers to arrive in the post.  Do not order if you must have them sooner, although it may well happen.

(Want to earn more miles and points from credit cards?  Click here to visit our dedicated airline and hotel travel credit cards page or use the ‘Credit Cards Update’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

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Comments

  1. Charlie T. says:

    O/T as no bits today.
    I have an AMEX 2-4-1 that is about to die and am making a redemption booking for me + a lap infant. Is there any way to use the voucher to get them a seat? Thanks!

    • the real harry1 says:

      Sure, I think airlines always allow you to buy a full seat for infants – so this should be fine

  2. RIccatti says:

    Has anyone tried purchasing M&S giftcard and apply Heathrow Rewards landside (before security)?

    • Mr Dee says:

      Interested to know if there are any gift cards available to purchase, I know it mentions not buying own store ones but there might be other companies gift cards?

      • Mark2 says:

        Many WH Smith branches sell gift cards, but don’t know about Heathrow.

        • Done it in Heathrow ok.

        • Mr Dee says:

          Nice way to get some better value from the MR points if they have a good selection, anyone know what gift cards WH Smith stock?

        • Might work. Do NOT buy M&S gift cards in M&S though, this definitely does not work. 3rd party gift cards in WHS are more likely.

    • Doesn’t work, friend of mine tried it.

  3. KBuffett says:

    OT – I forgot to hit my £1000 spend on my SPG Amex (was deadline was 16th July). Do you think they will extend this if I call them?

    • Genghis says:

      Only one way to find out…

      • KBuffett says:

        False alarm. I logged into the website and it states I have until 24th August to hit the £1000 spend and get 10000 bonus points (I’m sure it was supposed to be 11000)?

  4. KBuffett says:

    A quick report that I’ve done AMEX MR —>Emirates—>Heathrow Rewards—>Request for vouchers.
    Everything was instant even though my Emirates account had not been linked to my Amex account and my Heathrow Rewards had not been linked to my Emirates account. Ordered 64 vouchers – awesome result.

    Thanks Rob!

  5. TGLoyalty says:

    Thanks Rob. managed to cash out 5k skywards points i had which were about to expire and 472 left now have an extra 3 years expiry.

    7k MR to emirates – instant.
    12k Skywards to 6k HR – instant
    6.5k HR ordered 26 vouchers so £130

    Way I see it result is 7k MR = £120 as the 5k skywards were going to waste anyway.

  6. Keith Taylor says:

    Both me and my wife had 25000 Emirates points and yesterday we opened 2 Heathrow Rewards accounts. We transferred 24000 each for 12000 Heathrow points which we then immediately converted on the 2 for 1 shopping vouchers. It all worked like a dream, effectively converting 48000 Emirates points we weren’t going to use into £480 in vouchers which Mrs T undoubtedly will. Thanks Rob – I read the site every single day and whilst most days aren’t too relevant for me these little gems make it all worthwhile.

  7. Stephen C says:

    228 vouchers ordered 🙂 68k Amex points and 36k Skywards miles. Didn’t think I’d ever beat the 196 vouchers last year (which started life as 98k Skywards miles), but there you go.

  8. AlcherBlack says:

    Thank you Rob, this is great! 12k worthless (to me) expiring miles went into vouchers. Some nice champagne for my mom, perhaps.

    I now have left 2k miles in my and 4k miles in my wife’s account, which are below the 6k threshold to convert into vouchers. I guess the only thing to do is to pay up 30 USD to transfer the 2k miles to my wife’s account, I still should come out ahead.

    Maybe there’s some magic that can be done with the family group account to spend them without transferring? Just creating one didn’t work (it didn’t combine miles earned in the past).

  9. Pablo says:

    Any options for us Northerners who don’t use Heathrow airport, i.e. can the ‘Instant rewards’ vouchers be somehow use in other airports / non airport stores?

  10. MB_again says:

    “Larger transfers must be in multiples of 2,000 miles.”

    I had just over 8,000 miles (probably doomed for expiry) but the Emirates website wouldn’t let me increase the selection from the default 6,000 miles up to 8,000 miles, so I think it might be multiples of 6,000 miles.

    Anyway, nice £60 to spend pre-holiday now – now to find out what’s good value at Heathrow to spend it on, only thing I know of is Boots’ meal deal 🙂

  11. James Carp says:

    Is transferring to LHR rewards the way forward and not use the Emirates Miles towards an upgrade from economy to Business?
    I have 16,000 emirates miles and only 30,000 needed for an upgrade from SIN-BNE in business.
    is it worth transferring over for just over £100 LHR vouchers?

    • Who buys your tickets? I thought that cheap Eco tickets could not be upgraded?

      I tend to use Emirates miles for Arsenal corporate hospitality packages but I am not necessarily typical …..

      • James carp says:

        Last year I used a 241 to Singapore first class then bought 2 economy flex saver tickets on emirates SIN to BNE and then upgraded with 30,000 points to business. £480 for economy flex as opposed to £280 for economy basic fare. Thought it was a good use but with this latest offering of points wasn’t sure whether to keep saving for more emirates miles as another 3years until expiry or convert to LHR rewards.

        • Eugene says:

          If you fly Emirates occasionally and you can amass at least 30-40k points-= or use MR points, then its a no brainer to go up from Basic to flex fare then upgrade. Your £480 plus say £300 (30,000 skywards at 1p) is well under half the business fare. Beats any HR points by a long long way.

  12. Eli Gold says:

    really struggling to get my emirates account to join MR account. any simple reason why it won’t work? it keeps telling me:

    Sorry, there has been an error!
    We regret that an error has occurred and we are unable to process your request at this time. Please try to transfer points to a registered participant at another time or call Customer Service on 0800 917 8053 for assistance

    • The call centre can do it. There is probably some quirk (add zeros, take away zeros, ignore the first 1/2/3/4 digits etc) required.

    • Eli Gold says:

      got it sorted on amex chat.

      all worked a treat

      thanks!

  13. Hi guys, I have 20000 Amex points I want to convert to 20000 Emirates Skywards miles. I’m sure I read on HFP that if you convert 20000 Amex points in one go, you also receive an extra 5000.
    Is that right? So would it convert to 25000 skywards miles? Thanks

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