[Expired] 30% transfer bonus from Marriott to AA…probably not worth it

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When we posted about the current Aeroplan transfer bonus earlier today, I was reminded that the Aeroplan transfer bonus isn’t the first time recently that Marriott Travel Packages have been excluded from a transfer bonus promotion. There is also a promotion going on to convert Marriott Rewards points to American Airlines AAdvantage miles that excludes travel packages. This bonus began on October 21st and runs through December 5th. While it is “old news”, we wanted to post it here so that we can also include it on our Current Point Transfer Bonuses page. We wouldn’t recommend taking advantage of this transfer bonus in most situations — conversion rates from Marriott to AA aren’t very attractive.

The Deal

  • Convert Marriott points to AA miles and receive 30% bonus miles

Key Terms

  • Valid through 11:59pm CT on 12/5/17
  • Bonus miles will post within 7 business days of qualifying conversion activity

Quick Thoughts

This transfer bonus isn’t a very good deal. Here are the example conversion rates provided.

As you can see, those rates aren’t impressive. For example, 20K Marriott points would get you 6,500 American Airlines miles after the bonus. Alternatively, you could convert 20K Marriott points into 6,666 Starpoints. Those transfer to AA at 1:1 any day of the week, no transfer bonus required.

There are times where a transfer here might make sense. For example, if you need 32,500 AA miles for a precise redemption, the ratio from 70K to 32.5K could make sense. If you were the convert to SPG first, the 70K Marriott Rewards would get you 23,333 SPG points. That’s only worth ~28K AA miles. You’d do better with the Marriott conversion.

But consider other options; the rate from Marriott to AA is 70K to 32.5K — or about 2.15 Marriott points to 1 American AAdvantage mile. If you compare this transfer to a Marriott Travel Package, you’ll see that you could get a similar rate any day of the week. For example, 270K Marriott points would get you 120K American AAdvantage miles, for a ratio of 2.25 Marriott points to 1 American mile. That ratio isn’t quite as good — but the travel package also comes with a 7-night hotel stay. Alternatively, you could theoretically “return” your 7-night certificate for 45K points. If you’re successfully able to do that, your conversion ratio becomes 1.875 Marriott points to 1 airline mile — much better than the current transfer bonus.

Of course, the key consideration there is whether or not you have 270K Marriott points / want 120K American miles.

Normally, Marriott Travel Packages would be the ultimate use of a transfer bonus (See: 12 Things you need to know about Marriott Travel Packages). These hotel-and-miles packages present great value as you can turn Marriott points into a 7-night stay plus a nice haul of miles. In the past, transfer bonuses have stacked on top of Marriott Travel Packages. However, this time, they are excluded in the promotion terms and conditions:

Travel Packages: Points converted to AAdvantage miles as part of a Marriott Rewards/AAdvantage travel package do not qualify for this promotion

That’s a very unfortunate exclusion — and one that we’ve now seen catch on with Aeroplan.

Bottom line

This transfer bonus runs through 12/5. It’s not a particularly strong bonus, but it could make sense in limited scenarios. Unfortunately, Marriott Travel Packages are excluded from this transfer bonus.

H/T: One Mile at a Time

About Nick Reyes

Nick Reyes is a (fairly) regular guy with an animalistic passion for maximizing the value of miles and money to travel the world in comfort and style. There is little in life that he loves more than finding a fantastic deal and helping you shop smarter & harder to achieve your travel dreams.

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Comments

  1. Should probably switch the title around almost thought we were able to actually transfer AA mile into Marriott points, which might’ve been SWEET!

      • Good to have corrected the title but the email subject was still wrong…yeh, you can’t fix it. Better be cautious next time.

        Last year, the United transfer bonus was triggered by travel package deposit, though it took a while to get it. I assume this year, it would be no difference.

  2. Greg or Nick, could you smart guys help to write an article or at least comment about ways to use the AA miles? I have piled up lots of AA miles in the past years thanks to several credit card sign-ups, but, lack of redeem options, I can only watch them depreciating. Thanks in advance.

    • I have used 100,000’s of AA miles without any problems. I book the minute (literally) flights are loaded into the reservation system.

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