Chase Sapphire Reserve℠
Reader
Question

Can I Transfer Amex Membership Rewards to Someone Else?

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

I love transferable points. I’ve said it time and time again; the best way to protect yourself from program devaluations is to built up points in one of the three major transferable points programs: American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest.

TPG reader Blayne recently tweeted at me:

“‪@thepointsguy Can I transfer Amex Membership Rewards points to a Delta Skymiles account with a different name?”

The answer used to be sort of; technically Amex prohibited it, but in reality you could transfer Amex Membership Rewards points to whomever you wanted. Unfortunately, however, Amex has really cracked down on this.

Basically what’s happening is that a lot of people are selling their Membership Rewards points to brokers, and those brokers turn around and sell award tickets to people looking for cheap business class fares. It’s a huge business and a shadowy market. I’ve met a lot of people who have sold miles successfully, but it’s a huge risk, because Amex will shut your account down if they catch you, and you’ll lose all your points. I don’t recommend it.

So recently Amex has instituted many more controls. You can now only really transfer points to a spouse or additional cardholder, since Amex wants to make sure that the people you transfer points to are people you actually know, and that you’re not selling them. If the person you want to transfer to is a spouse or has an additional card, then you’ll have no problem. Otherwise it’s going to be tricky.

If you have any other questions, please message me on Facebook, tweet me @ThePointsGuy, or send me an email at info@thepointsguy.com.

The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN

Apply Now
  • Special Offer: Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $5,000 in purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership
  • Get 3x points - Choose 1 out of 5 categories
  • Plus, 2X points on the 4 remaining categories and 1X points on other purchases
  • 3X and 2X apply to the first $100,000 in purchases in each of the 5 categories per year, 1X point per dollar thereafter
  • Track, organize, and stay on top of your business expenses with powerful expense-tracking tools
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $175
  • Terms and limitations apply
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR Regular APR Annual Fee Foreign Transaction Fee Credit Rating
N/A N/A $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $175 0% Excellent Credit