Is it possible to transfer hotel loyalty points to a friend or partner? Can you transfer the points for free? In most cases, the answer is ‘Yes’.
Airline schemes are not like this. Most frequent flyer schemes allow you to pay to transfer miles to a friend but it is usually a terrible deal.
The price is often only modestly cheaper than buying miles outright but no new miles are being created. You are paying a high fee simply for the loyalty programme to move them from one account to another.
British Airways is the one exception where airline mile transfers ARE a good deal
Totally under the radar, British Airways totally revamped – and massively improved – its Avios transfer facility this year.
Here is British Airways page for Avios transfers. You can now transfer 27,000 Avios per calendar year to another person for a FLAT FEE of just £15.
A Gold member can transfer 27,000 per year to another person for free.
Full details of how to share Avios are in this article. Even though transfers are now just £15, remember that:
- you can issue a reward ticket for someone else from your account, and
- you could create a Household Account for free and pool your miles that way
Apart from British Airways, none of the airlines we cover on HfP has a free or low-cost way of transferring large quantities of miles from one person to another.
How can you transfer hotel loyalty points to someone else?
With the hotel loyalty schemes, it is a totally different game.
Most of the hotel schemes make it very easy to transfer points around – and you often don’t need to pay. Here are some examples:
Accor Live Limitless
Accor points cannot be transferred.
Best Western Rewards
“Yes. Points can be transferred between accounts that share the same physical address. To arrange a point transfer, please contact our Rewards Team at email@example.com”
Hilton Honors allows FREE transfers via a service it calls points pooling. You can send up to 500,000 points, albeit across no more than six transactions, and receive up to 2 million points per calendar year.
It works well. Every time that my wife has a Hilton stay I sweep the points across to my account, partly to keep things tidy and partly because I have higher Hilton status than her and it makes sense that redemptions are booked via my account. You can find out more on this page of the Hilton Honors website.
IHG One Rewards
You can transfer IHG One Rewards points to anyone else for a flat fee of $5 per 1,000. I did this once to top up my Mum’s account when she was 1,000 points short of a redemption – in this scenario it was $5 well spent (buying 1,000 would have been $13.50). The link to arrange transfers is here.
Marriott Bonvoy allows you to transfer your points to anyone, for free. Full details are here.
There is a cap of 100,000 points per year. A recent improvement is that transfers can now be done online.
The split of Radisson Rewards into Radisson Rewards Americas and Radission Rewards (ie rest of the world) has led to a change in the ‘sharing’ rules.
The new rule is that an account can make or receive up to five transfers per month, with a maximum inbound flow of 100,000 points per month.
You must have been a member of Radisson Rewards for 30 days in order to send or receive points. There is no longer any requirement to have elite status to make transfers. Details are on the website here (see 5d).
World of Hyatt
Hyatt points can be transferred to any other member for FREE by filling in this PDF form. You can only make a transfer once every 30 days. In theory you are meant to redeem them as soon as the transfer is complete but this is not enforced.
On my recent experience, transfers take 3-4 days to get done so this isn’t something to leave until the last minute.
I have had problems in the past with the service centre insisting that both the giving and receiving accounts must have had a qualifying Hyatt stay during the previous 12 months. This is what it means when the PDF form says that both accounts must be ‘active’.
Other people have not had this issue, but be aware that it is a risk. I would not recommend doing this to get around the low annual limit on buying Hyatt points unless both accounts have had a stay in the last year, just in case.
PS. It is worth knowing that Club Eurostar also lets you transfer points to anyone for free within annual limits. We wrote this article on how to transfer Club Eurostar points to another person.
Hotel offers update – December 2023:
Want to earn more hotel points? Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Offers’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.
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