US Airways offering 50% bonus on Dividend Miles transfers from hotel partners through March 31, 2012

Here’s a gem. Through March 31, 2012, US Airways is offering a 50% bonus on points transfers from their hotel partners to Dividend Miles. There’s no need to register, and the bonus points post 6-8 weeks after the qualifying activity.

The best transfer bonus here would be with Starwood Preferred Guest. SPG points transfer at a 1:1 ratio to US Airways Dividend Miles, and for every 20,000 points you transfer you get a 5,000 point bonus. That means transferring 20,000 SPG points would earn you 37,500 Dividend Miles during this promotion. That means you’re basically earning 1.875 US Airways Dividend Miles per SPG point, which is an amazing transfer ratio.

I’ve on many occasions purchased US Airways miles when they were selling for 1.5 cents each. Using that value, through this promotion I would be getting 2.85 cents of value per SPG point, which is more than I value them (2.5 cents each). I know many will say they can get more value out of points, though this isn’t retail value I’m stating, but rather their value to me. Now that US Airways has raised the cost of purchased miles to over 1.8 cents each, it’s even more of a no brainer for me.

When making the transfer, keep in mind that the transfer limit is 79,999 points per day. That means for all practical purposes you won’t want to convert more than 60,000 points per 24 hours, since that would max out the 5,000 point bonus for every 20,000 points you transfer.

The one thing I’m trying to figure out is what this part of the terms and conditions means:

Dividend Miles members will earn only one bonus when they transfer hotel points into Dividend Miles during the promotion.

I’m not sure if that means you can only earn the bonus points for one transfer, if the points all post at once, or what, but I’ll certainly be looking for clarification on that before making any transfers.

Transferring Membership Rewards points to US Airways ~1:1 ratio

It’s almost never a good idea to transfer American Express Membership Rewards points to SPG, though through March 31 Membership Rewards is running a 50% transfer bonus for SPG. So while the transfer ratio is usually 3:1, it’s now 2:1, meaning 40,000 Membership Rewards points earns you 20,000 SPG points, which still isn’t a good deal. That being said, through the US Airways transfer promotion you can convert those 20,000 SPG points to 37,500 US Airways Dividend Miles. So when all is said and done your 40,000 Membership Rewards points will net you 37,500 miles, close to a 1:1 ratio.

I’m not suggesting everyone run and transfer their points now, because I do believe Membership Rewards points just got much more valuable due to Singapore Airlines’ new policy of allowing saver awards in their new first and business class products. But I have for a long time been hoping that US Airways Dividend Miles becomes a Membership Rewards transfer partner, and this is about the closest I’ve seen to that for those of you looking to “cash out” your Membership Rewards points.

I’ll certainly be transferring a minimum of 60,000 SPG points, though won’t be converting any Membership Rewards points to SPG in order to take care of this promotion.

Coming up shortly: a summary of the Dividend Miles program and some of the best award redemptions it offers.

Comments

  1. I still have 114k wyndham by request points i bought about a year ago… i think with this promo i would end up with 71k dividend miles… but my problem is that i can never get an us air credit card.. barclays always declines me… so i could never top this off, unless i’d transfer from starwood… decisions, decisions!

  2. It’s also worth noting that you can buy 20000 Starpoints for $700. This equates to an effective 87.5% bonus on the purchase of US DM.

  3. I currently have 55000 club carson points from one of their promo, and i spent $72 for it. what would you say If i transfer 50000 club carson points to us airways to get 12000 miles? or should i just redeem for free nights? i just can’t find any good radisson hotel near LA, and since i don’t have any status with club carlson, i just don’t stay there…

  4. @David – that’s like 2cpm for a US mile. I’ll pass.

    @lucky – I disagree with your newfound value for MR. About the only thing you can get with them now that you can’t get with US miles is SQ F. But they have YQ and the award mileage amounts are much higher. So I think it’s still better to convert to US miles to redeem SQ C. If I’m not mistaken, SQ C is wide open and it’s not like you need the preferential KF availability. For F it’s another story and I guess that’ valuable to some, but I don’t think it’s worth the extra in miles and cash (for YQ) that you’ll have to pay with KF miles. I’d be perfectly happy with SQ C (and I say that having flown LH/LX/UA F) though I realize that some travel bloggers just have to try all products.

  5. @abcx – It actually works out slightly cheaper than buying them from US with a 100% promo on. While it is still 1.8cpm, that represents good value for F and J awards.

  6. Like Lantean I have about 162k Wyndham points from the discover America promotion that I was thinking of transferring to united (I don’t really have any miles in that program but have over 200k with us airways). Do you think this promotion now makes it better value transferring the points to us airways over united? I do like the thought of diversifying my points but a 50% bonus is a 50% bonus.

  7. @Vik, Lantean – I’ve had this dilemna before as well between US and AA instead. I ended up transferring to US. I think I would have been better off moving it to AA though as IIRC they had a 25% bonus going and this was in the days when all miles counted towards MM status.

    In your case, I would transfer to US. UA/CO miles are most valuable for the flexibility they offer in terms of changing awards after booking (date and routing changes are free outside of 21 days). But the US award chart is almost(?) always cheaper. If you can get some miles on UA using the Chase Sapphire cards, do that instead and transfer these to US.

  8. DanR:

    Show me an airline that doesn’t charge non-elites award fees for partner redemptions, allows RTW routings on Asia awards, and doesn’t charge YQ/fuel surcharges, and regularly has ways to accumulate bonuses as easily as US Airways does, and I’ll consider using them.

    Good luck finding one.

  9. This is great.

    Best possible deal? I may do a Category 4 Nights & Flights transfer from SPG (5 nights + a 50,000 mile transfer for 70,000 SPG points).

    If the bonus applies, that gives you 75,000 US miles for the price of 30,000 SPG points (30,000 is the difference between 5 nights in a Cat4 hotel and the Nights & Flights award cost). I.e. 2.5 US miles per SPG point. Sweet!

  10. Great deal ,I was 4000 SPG short to transfer 40.000 to get 75.000 Us-airways miles. So I bought 4000 SPG for $140 , and received 75000 miles in my Us-airways account.

    SPG signup 30.000 points
    revered a friend to SPG 5000 points
    spend some money on the card including min spending $3000 (for the bonus)
    toped of with 4000 SPG $140
    end result
    75.000 us airways miles

  11. Update: 40.000 SPG transferred to Us-airways.10.000 Bonus SPG
    25.000 bonus points from Us airways in my account to day
    total 75.000 miles from transfer

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