Can I Transfer Amex Membership Rewards to Someone Else?

Jul 20, 2014

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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.

2018 TPG Award Winner: Mid-Tier Card of the Year
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

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More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
17.99% - 24.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.