Can You Combine Citi ThankYou Rewards Accounts?

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There are a few credit cards that Citi offers that earns ThankYou points:

Then there’s the new the AT&T Access More MasterCard® from Citi, which for a certain type of spender has the potential to be extremely lucrative, given that it offers 3x points at online retailers, and 10,000 bonus ThankYou Rewards points when you spend $10,000 on the card in a year.

All of these cards accrue ThankYou points, though they can all be redeemed in different ways.

With that in mind, what are the rules for combining and transferring ThankYou Rewards points?

Can you combine ThankYou Rewards points between accounts?

You absolutely can combine ThankYou Rewards points between accounts, and you can do this directly through the ThankYou Rewards website, under the “My Account” header, and then under “Combine ThankYou Accounts.” You would simply enter your account numbers so that the cards are linked, and then you can freely transfer points between accounts. Points should transfer instantly, and will have the same expiration policy they’d otherwise have.

Combine-Citi-ThankYou-Rewards

What’s the benefit of combining ThankYou Rewards points? Not only does it allow you to get to a reward faster by combining your points, but it potentially allows you to increase the value of your points. For example, say you have both the Citi Prestige® Card and Citi ThankYou® Premier Card.

The points from the Citi Prestige Card can be redeemed for 1.6 cents each towards the cost of a ticket on American Airlines, while the Citi ThankYou Premier Card points can only be redeemed for 1.25 cents each towards the cost of a ticket on American Airlines. So by transferring the points you’d actually be able to increase the value of your points on the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card.

Per the Citi ThankYou Rewards terms & conditions, here are the official rules for combining ThankYou Rewards points between accounts:

Adding Citi Accounts and Combining ThankYou Member Accounts:

You are provided a ThankYou Member Account for each Citi Account. You can add Citi Accounts that transfer ThankYou Points into your ThankYou Member Account provided the Citi Account belongs to you, and you can combine multiple ThankYou Member Accounts into one ThankYou Member Account, provided the ThankYou Member Account belongs to you. Citi Accounts can be added and ThankYou Member Accounts can be combined by visiting thankyou.com or by calling the ThankYou Service Center. If you combine your ThankYou Member Accounts, any action taken concerning Points from one Citi Account may affect all the Points in your ThankYou Member Account.

Can you transfer ThankYou Rewards points between people?

Here’s what makes Citi really unique. American Express Membership Rewards will only let you transfer points to an authorized user, Chase Ultimate Rewards will only let you transfer points to an authorized user or spouse, etc.

You can transfer Citi ThankYou Rewards points to anyone’s account. That’s right, to anyone else’s ThankYou Rewards account — they don’t have to be a family member, spouse, or even a linked cardmember.

As a gift you can share your ThankYou Rewards points with another ThankYou Rewards member, though there are just a few things to keep in mind:

  • Shared points expire 90 days after they’re received, so you can’t “hoard” someone else’s points in your ThankYou Rewards account
  • The recipient of shared points can’t share those same points with another member

This is an extremely generous policy, since you can freely share ThankYou Rewards points with friends who are also members, even if they have a different type of ThankYou Rewards card.

Per the Citi ThankYou Rewards terms & conditions, here are the official rules for transferring ThankYou Rewards points between people:

ThankYou Points Sharing:

  1. You may share some or all of your available qualifying ThankYou Points as a gift with another ThankYou Member by using the Points Sharing feature of ThankYou Rewards, provided the Points to be shared are not due to expire in less than 90 days. In order to share your Points, you, as the sharer, must have first set up your ThankYou Member Account with a user name and password either by calling the ThankYou Service Center or through thankyou.com.
  2. ThankYou Points can be shared only with another ThankYou Member.
  3. Once you share Points with another ThankYou Member, the shared Points will be deducted from your Points balance and added to the recipient’s Points balance. Points will post to the recipient’s ThankYou Member Account immediately after the transaction.
  4. The recipient of shared Points may not share the Points received with another ThankYou Member.
  5. Taxable Points (defined below) and Points made unavailable for redemption due to signs of fraud, abuse or suspicious activity in your ThankYou Member Account or due to your failure to make the required minimum payment due on your Citi Accounts by the payment due date are not eligible for sharing. “Taxable Points” are Points obtained through activity unrelated to purchases made with your Card Account, as well as Points received for a CBNA checking relationship and bonus Points that may be awarded such as for opening new Citi Accounts or for signing up for new Citi Account services with no spend requirements.
  6. Shared Points received expire 90 days from the date they are received.
  7. If an item redeemed with shared Points is returned, the shared Points used for the redemption will be returned to the ThankYou Member Account of the redeemer, but the Point expiration timeframe of the shared Points will not re-set. For example, if shared Points with 60 days left before they expire are redeemed and 30 days later the Points are returned to the ThankYou Member Account after the redeemed item has been returned, the shared Points will expire 30 days after they are returned to the redeemer’s ThankYou Member Account.
  8. A submitted request to share Points may not be canceled by the sharer or the recipient and shared Points may not be returned to the sharer by the recipient.
  9. You may share your available Points through thankyou.com or by calling the ThankYou Service Center (1-800-THANKYOU). When sharing Points, you must accept the applicable Terms & Conditions before completing the transaction.
  10. You may also share Points using the ThankYou Point Sharing app on Facebook, which are subject to the term and conditions specific to the app. These terms can be found at https://apps.facebook.com/thankyoupointsharing/.

Can you transfer ThankYou Rewards points to someone else’s frequent flyer account?

Okay, so you can transfer ThankYou Rewards points between accounts, and even between people. But can you directly transfer points from your ThankYou Rewards accounts to someone else’s frequent flyer account? As a reminder, Citi ThankYou Rewards does have the following airline and hotel partners, to which you can transfer points:

Air France/KLM | Flying BlueGaruda Indonesia | Frequent FlyerQatar Airways | Privilege ClubHilton | HHonors
Cathay Pacific | Asia MilesJetBlue | TrueBlueSingapore Airlines | KrisFlyer
EVA Air | Infinity MileageLandsMalaysia Airlines | EnrichThai Airways | Royal Orchid Plus
Etihad | Etihad GuestQantas | Frequent FlyerVirgin Atlantic | Flying Club

The answer to that is no. You can only transfer ThankYou Rewards points to an airline or hotel partner program with an account that has a matching name on it. Actually, when you go to transfer points, you’ll see that your name is already pre-filled in, and you just have to enter your account number.

Citi-Etihad

Of course the easy workaround here is to simply transfer your ThankYou Rewards points to someone else’s ThankYou Rewards account, and then to their frequent flyer account. Or transfer the points to your frequent flyer account and book it out of there, if the circumstances permit it.

Per the Citi ThankYou Rewards terms & conditions, here are the official rules for transferring ThankYou Rewards points to one of their airline or hotel transfer partners:

Points Transfer:

In order to use the Points Transfer feature, you must be a ThankYou® Rewards Member with a ThankYou Member Account (“ThankYou Account”), have a Citi ThankYou® Premier, Citi Prestige® or Citi Chairman® credit card enrolled in ThankYou Rewards (“Card Account”) and agree to the following terms and conditions in order to transfer your available and qualifying ThankYou (“Points”) to participating travel loyalty providers (defined below).

  • Your ThankYou Account and Card Account must be open and in good standing at the time you use Points Transfer.
  • The participating travel loyalty program providers are: Asia Miles; Etihad Airway Guest; EVA Air Infinity Mileage Lands; Flying Blue Air France KLM; Garuda Indonesia Frequent Flyer; Hilton HHonorsTM; Malaysia Airlines Enrich; Qantas Frequent Flyer; Qatar Airways Privilege Club; Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer; Thai Airways Royal Orchid Plus and Virgin Atlantic Flying Club ( “Travel Loyalty Program” collectively, “Travel Loyalty Programs“). ThankYou has the right to remove or add Travel Loyalty Programs from or to Points Transfer at any time without notice.
  • In order to transfer your Points to a participating Travel Loyalty Program using the Points Transfer feature on thankyou.com, you must have a valid membership account with the applicable Travel Loyalty Program (“Travel Loyalty Program Account“) and the first and last names on both your ThankYou Account and Travel Loyalty Program Account must match.
  • The Points Transfer feature may be modified or terminated at any time without notice.
  • Each Point Transfer must include a minimum of 1,000 Points and any additional Points must be in increments of 1,000. There is a maximum of 500,000 ThankYou Points that you can transfer per Points Transfer. All Points Transferred are 1 Point = 1 mile, except for Hilton HHonorsTM where 1 Point = 1.5 Hilton HHonorsTM Bonus Point.
  • Upon completion of a Points Transfer request, the transferred Points will immediately be deducted from your ThankYou Account Point balance. The applicable rewards currency will be posted to your Travel Loyalty Program Account after the completion of the Points Transfer transaction. Timing of posting may vary depending on the Travel Loyalty Program. and may take as long as 14 days to process. Following the Points Transfer the resulting reward currency will be subject to the terms and conditions of the applicable Travel Loyalty Program.
  • A submitted request to transfer Points may not be canceled and the Points in a submitted request may not be returned to your ThankYou Account.
  • Taxable Points (defined below) and Points made unavailable for redemption due to signs of fraud, abuse or suspicious activity on your ThankYou Account or due to your failure to make the required minimum payment on the Card Account by the payment due date are not eligible for Points Transfer. “Taxable Points” are Points received for a Citibank® checking relationship, Points obtained through activity unrelated to purchases made with your eligible Card Account, as well as bonus Points that may be awarded with no spend requirement.
  • There is no fee to use the Points Transfer feature.
  • You may transfer your available Points through thankyou.com or by calling the ThankYou Service Center (1-800-THANKYOU). When transferring ThankYou Points, you must accept these Terms & Conditions of Points Transfer before completing the transaction.
  • Thank You is not responsible for, or affiliated with, the Travel Loyalty Programs. Citi makes no representation regarding travel services or loyalty programs provided by any of the Travel Loyalty Programs.
  • Additional ThankYou terms and conditions apply and are available at https://www.thankyou.com/tc.jspx

Bottom line

Of the major transferrable points currencies, ThankYou Rewards points are by far the most flexible, which is another thing working in their favor. The ability to transfer points to anyone — and in many cases increase the value of your points in the process — is a pretty awesome perk.

So while I think it’s totally worth picking up both the the Citi Prestige® Card and Citi ThankYou® Premier Card given how compelling the offers are, long term you could transfer points from one Citi ThankYou Premier Card to someone else’s Citi Prestige Card. That’s a pretty awesome perk.

In your mind, does the flexibility and transferability of ThankYou Rewards points increase their value?

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Comments

  1. I’d just also add that combining Thank You accounts only works online if you’ve got the same personal information on both accounts. I had one with my old address on file and it wouldn’t allow me to combine online. A quick call to their customer service line and it was resolved (although she did try to combine under the non-Prestige Account – no thanks!), but just a heads up.

  2. When you transfer points between accounts, how are they prioritized in redemption? For example, if I have 30,000 points, receive a transfer of 50,000 points, then redeem 75,000 points, what is the status of my remaining 5,000 points? Are they subject to 90-day expiration or will I have spent the full 50K of transferred points? Is there a way to tell which points you are using?

  3. Maybe I missed it, but after a TYP transfer, how does the recipient ensure that when they redeem, Citi depletes the transferred points first?

  4. I thought banking points can’t be transferred to airlines? I just combined my bank and prestige thank you accounts and going to the transfer page to attempt a transfer, it says 24,000 (out of ~40,000) points can be transferred to SQ.

  5. @Lantean I don’t think I was clear. my understanding was banking points couldn’t be transferred to airlines; however, 24,000 of 40,000 (all earned through banking) is eligible. I haven’t earned any Prestige points yet.

  6. @mangoceviche

    well, that’s awesome! maybe i will get citi checking after all. 😉
    curious how it decided to let 60% of your points be transferrable… who knows what’s going on.

  7. @ Rory @ Stannis — Great question. Just got both cards, so don’t have firsthand experience there. Does anyone with more experience know?

  8. @ mangoceviche — That’s correct. Points from cards like the Preferred can be in conjunction with the Prestige/Premier, but not banking points, as far as I know.

  9. Thanks Lucky, that was a kind of “everything you wanted to know about Thankyou, but were afraid to ask.” You’ve covered everything, even some stuff I never would’ve thought of.

    Unless I hear otherwise, I’ll assume that TY is programmed to use the soonest-to-expire points first, like any other points program. I hope so, since I’m sitting on a mountain of TY points from a previous targeted offer, and I was planning to sign up for TY Prestige and transfer them.

  10. It seems like combining my accounts reset the expiration date on my accumulated points. I’d had no activity on the old account for at least a year and a half, yet all are now showing as expiring Dec 31 2018, as though they’d been earned this year.

    Perhaps you’re also able to game the system by transferring points from a friend / family member into one of your multiple accounts, and then combining within your own Thank You accounts. Or perhaps they truly are part of a separate, 90 day bucket.

  11. @Porkisking: I can confirm that the system will let you combine Citi Prestige/Premier accounts with a Citi Forward account. A few days ago I had separate pools for each of my Prestige, Premier and Forward accounts. Now they are all combined into one Thank You network account which shows the combined total as my available points. The combination process didn’t work initially, but then I read Mark’s comment above about addresses. Sure enough, after I logged into my oldest Thank You network account and updated the address, it worked straight away.

    @Rory: If you log into your Thank You network account, then click on the My Account dropdown in the upper right, select My Account Overview, then on Points Summary, it will show you all your linked accounts, including each credit card and your bank account, and how many points originated with each card. It also says at the top if any points are expiring soon, and will let you click to see expiration of all points. Interestingly, for me it shows big slugs of points associated with my Citi Forward card expiring at the end of 2019 and 2020. My Prestige, Premier and Preferred cards all show “No Expiration.”

  12. Lucky,

    Great post. I just signed up for the Prestige and want to be clear on one thing. If I also sign up for the premier and I transfer the premier points to my prestige account. Can I cancel the premier card without worrying about losing the points or them expiring? Do they only expire when they are transferred from another individual?

  13. btw, what happens when you close one of the accounts? do you get to keep all the points you’ve had in both?

  14. So, “taxable points” are not transferable. Do the 50,000 bonus points you get for opening a Premier or Prestige card count as “taxable” or not? The rule is very confusing:

    “Taxable Points” are Points obtained through activity unrelated to purchases made with your Card Account, as well as Points received for a CBNA checking relationship and bonus Points that may be awarded such as for opening new Citi Accounts or for signing up for new Citi Account services with no spend requirements.

  15. Same question as Nick and Lantean. I don’t plan to pay the AF for both premier and prestige in 2nd year.

  16. “American Express Membership Rewards will only let you transfer points to an authorized user, Chase Ultimate Rewards will only let you transfer points to an authorized user or spouse, etc.”

    Does this mean, if I have my own Amex Platinum and I am an authorized user on my mom’s Amex Platinum, she can transfer her membership reward points to my account? Do transferred points have an expiration (like thank you points transferred between members)?

  17. I have a combined account from Preferred and Premier cards, and was planning to close the former.

    Just spoke with two Citi agents. Both said that even with a combined account, the points earned from each *respective* account are tracked and expire 60 days after closure, even if the other card remains open.

    I haven’t seen any written rules, and wonder if anyone can confirm the policy based on their experience.

  18. I have a citi forward account through which i’ve accumulated thank you points. I was intially trying to transfer thank you points to the Krisflyer program but was unable as I don’t have the prestige or premier card.

    My question is if I open a premier card and combine accounts, can I then transfer my points (technically earned through the citi forward card) to Krisflyer program?

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