Once upon a time, it was not unusual for airlines to offer transfer options out of their frequent flyer miles and into hotel schemes.
Over the years this changed, creating a pyramid of sorts:
- Hertz would let you transfer into hotel and airline schemes (although this is currently suspended following the bankruptcy filing during the pandemic)
- hotel schemes would let you transfer into airline schemes, but not car schemes
- airlines schemes wouldn’t let you transfer to anyone
There are some exceptions. In the UK, Virgin Atlantic lets you transfer into Hilton Honors and IHG One Rewards. In Europe, Finnair has a partnership with IHG.
That’s about it though. Or, at least, it was.
Accor has been striking multiple airline deals
Accor Live Limitless is the loyalty scheme for Novotel, ibis, Raffles, Swissotel, Mercure, Sofitel, Fairmont etc.
You can learn more on the Accor website here.
In recent years, Accor has been working hard to agree two-way transfer deals with airlines. As well as the industry-standard transfer out option, Accor also allows many airline miles to be transferred IN.
This isn’t as great as it sounds
The one snag is that Accor Live Limitless has revenue-based redemptions. In plain English, each point is worth 2 Eurocents. Our article on what we think Accor Live Limitless points are worth is here.
It doesn’t matter if you want New York on New Year’s Eve or a wet January Wednesday in Walsall, you get 2 Eurocents per point. There is NO opportunity for arbitrage, unless you redeem for tickets for a VIP Accor Experiences event which can be good value.
Fixed value means that a transfer into Accor is a bad deal, because it puts a firm – low – value on your airline miles.
However, this is not always an issue. If you have 2,000 Aegean Miles+Bonus miles, you can’t do much with them. Move them into 500 Accor Live Limitless points and they are good for €10 off a room (albeit you need to redeem in chunks of €40) or to be transferred on into 500 Avios in Iberia Plus.
You can now convert Avios to Accor Live Limitless
When Qatar Privilege Club changed its loyalty currency to Avios earlier this year, it opened up the opportunity to transfer Avios to Accor points.
We looked at Avios to Accor transfers here. Assuming that you value an Avios at 1p, you would be sacrificing £45 of Avios for €20 of Accor hotel credit, which is clearly not great.
Which airlines are Accor Live Limitless partners?
Because Accor has been rolling out these deals so quickly, you might not realise that it is now working with an airline where you have a handful of useless miles.
These are the current Accor ‘transfer in’ airline partners. Full details are on this page of the Accor website – make sure you are on the ‘Earn’ tab of the airlines page.
- Aegean Miles+ Bonus: 2,000 miles = 500 Accor points
- Air France KLM Flying Blue: 4,000 miles = 1,000 Accor points
- Azul: 10,000 TudoAzul points = 1,000 Accor points
- Finnair Plus: 3,500 miles = 500 Accor points
- Hainan Fortune Wings Club: 2,500 points = 500 Accor points
- Japan Airlines: 5,000 miles = 1,000 Accor points, 10,000 miles = 4,000 Accor points
- LATAM Pass: 5,000 miles = 2,000 Accor points
- Qatar Airways: 4,500 Avios = 1,000 Accor points
- Smiles: 6,000 miles = 1,000 Accor points
Plus … not (obviously) on the airlines page of the Accor website:
- Club Eurostar: 500 points = 1,500 Accor points
If you have enough airline miles for a free flight in any of the above schemes (or Eurostar points for a free trip) then it is likely that you will lose value by moving them to Accor Live Limitless.
However, if you have a small amount of orphaned miles in any of the schemes above, a transfer to Accor is a great way of getting some value from them.
You can learn more on the airlines page of Accor Live Limitless here.
Accor Live Limitless update – October 2022:
Earn bonus Accor points: Accor is not currently running a global promotion
New to Accor Live Limitless? Read our overview of Accor Live Limitless here and our article on points expiry rules here. Our analysis of what Accor Live Limitless points are worth is here.
Want to earn more hotel points? Click here to see our complete list of promotions from Accor and the other major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Offers’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.