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The US Citi ThankYou program has just added a useful new transfer partner. Citi ThankYou points can now be converted into LifeMiles at a 1:1 ratio. The Citi ThankYou transfer page has already been updated to reflect this. Of the “big three” transferrable points currencies, Citi ThankYou is the first to partner with LifeMiles, and this is a great development.
Citi ThankYou points are accrued on cards like the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card, which offers a great earnings structure — you can earn 3x points on travel and gas, 2x points on dining and entertainment, and 1x points on other purchases.
As many of you may be aware, LifeMiles is known for frequently having bonuses on purchased miles, and they can often be acquired for as little as 1.375 cents each. So it’s fantastic to be able to top off those accounts with Citi ThankYou points as well.
LifeMiles is the frequent flyer program of Avianca
With this change, Citi ThankYou has the following transfer partners (though note that Hilton Honors is being removed as a partner as of December 13, 2017):
|Citi ThankYou Transfer Partner||Transfer Ratio|
|Air France KLM FlyingBlue||1000 : 1000|
|Avianca LifeMiles||1000 : 1000|
|Cathay Pacific Asia Miles||1000 : 1000|
|Etihad Guest||1000 : 1000|
|EVA Air Infinity MileageLands||1000 : 1000|
|Garuda Indonesia GarudaMiles||1000 : 1000|
|Jet Airways JetPrivilege||1000 : 1000|
|JetBlue TrueBlue||1000 : 500|
|Malaysia Airlines Enrich||1000 : 1000|
|Qantas Frequent Flyer||1000 : 1000|
|Qatar Privilege Club||1000 : 1000|
|Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer||1000 : 1000|
|Thai Royal Orchid Plus||1000 : 1000|
|Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles||1000 : 1000|
|Virgin Atlantic Flying Club||1000 : 1000|
|Hilton Honors||1000 : 1500|
LifeMiles is Avianca’s frequent flyer program, and the program has access to Star Alliance award availability. Citi ThankYou now has five transfer partners that belong to Star Alliance — Avianca, EVA Air, Singapore, Thai, Turkish. I’d say that along with Singapore KrisFlyer, this is now one of the two most useful Star Alliance transfer partners that Citi has.
You can find LifeMiles’ Star Alliance award chart here. To give a few examples of one way premium cabin redemption rates:
- US to Europe in business class costs 63,000 miles
- US to Europe in first class costs 87,000 miles
- US to Southeast Asia in business class costs 78,000 miles
- US to North Asia in first class costs 90,000 miles
Redeeming LifeMiles for ANA first class is a great value
Furthermore, LifeMiles recently introduced one-way economy awards within the US starting at just 7,500 miles, which many could find useful.
The great thing about the LifeMiles program is that they allow one-way award tickets, they don’t impose fuel surcharges, and partner airline awards can be booked directly through their website.
The one consideration is that LifeMiles doesn’t always have access to all the same award space that other Star Alliance programs do. So you’ll want to do an online search to make sure the type of redemption you’re looking at is eligible. For example, they often block awards in Lufthansa first class, Austrian business class, all Air China flights, etc.
Redeem your LifeMiles for Thai first class
I’m thrilled to see LifeMiles added as a Citi ThankYou transfer partner. While it’s always nice to see transferable points currencies add more partners, this is one that’s actually useful, and that can help you maximize your points. Now I’d say my four favorite ThankYou transfer partners are Air France-KLM Flying Blue, Avianca LifeMiles, Etihad Guest, and Singapore KrisFlyer.
Are you happy to see LifeMiles added as a Citi ThankYou partner?