Citi ThankYou Transfer Partners: A Complete Guide

With 14 airline and two hotel transfer partners, there's no shortage of ways to use your ThankYou points.
Sally French
Carissa Rawson
By Carissa Rawson and  Sally French 
Updated
Edited by Giselle M. Cancio

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Are you trying to figure out how to spend your hard-earned Citi ThankYou points? There are many ways to redeem them, some of which provide better value than others.

While exchanging your Citi ThankYou points for cash back or statement credits is straightforward and convenient, the simplicity comes with a trade-off, as points are typically only worth 0.5 cent per point when you go that route.

Citi also lets you redeem points for travel booked through its own travel portal, where points are worth 1 cent apiece. But then there’s the most superior way to use Citi ThankYou points, and that’s taking advantage of Citi’s transfer partners.

Citi’s transfer partners are largely other hotel and airline loyalty programs, which allow you to convert your ThankYou points to their own currency. Much like any other currency exchange, transfer ratios differ by program.

Often, transfers are 1:1, meaning you hand over 1 ThankYou point for 1 hotel or airline point or mile. But that’s not always the case, and many Citi transfer partners offer outsized value. In fact, NerdWallet estimates the overall transfer value between 1 cent and 1.3 cents. In short, converting your Citi ThankYou points to other airline and hotel loyalty programs through Citi’s transfer partners is one of the best ways to spend your points.

Let’s look at the different Citi transfer partners and their transfer ratios.

About Citi ThankYou transfer partners

Citi’s transfer partners include more than a dozen airlines and two hotels, depending on the credit card you have. Citi also has one non-travel partner called Shop Your Way, which is a shopping loyalty program that earns points redeemable for retail gift cards.

Note that while these are the typical transfer ratios offered, the program does offer one-off promotions that bump up ratios from time to time.

If you have a Citi Double Cash® Card, Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card (not open to new applications) or Citi Rewards+® Card, you can only transfer points to the following three travel partners:

  • Choice Privileges (1:1.5 ratio).

  • Wyndham Rewards (1:0.8 ratio).

  • JetBlue TrueBlue (1:0.8 ratio).

Those who have either the Citi Premier® Card or the Citi Prestige® Card (not open to new applications) have access to the full list of Citi transfer partners below.

Aeromexico

Customers can transfer to SkyTeam partner Aeromexico at a 1:1 ratio, meaning that 1 Citi ThankYou point becomes 1 Aeromexico Premier Point in the Club Premier program.

ALL - Accor Live Limitless

Accor is a loyalty program that encompasses dozens of hotel brands, many of which are in the luxury space. Accor properties include Raffles, Fairmont, Sofitel and Novotel. 1,000 ThankYou points transfer to 500 ALL Reward points.

Avianca Lifemiles

The LifeMiles program belongs to Colombian airline Avianca, a member of Star Alliance. ThankYou points transfer at a 1:1 ratio.

Choice Privileges

Citi’s first hotel transfer partner features a variable transfer ratio depending on which card you hold:

  • Citi Premier® Card and Citi Prestige® Card holders: 1:2 ratio.

  • Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card, Citi Rewards+® Card and Citi Double Cash® Card cardmembers: 1:1.5 ratio.

Either way though, the ratio of points transferred from Citi to Choice Privileges beats American Express Membership Rewards and Capital One Miles, both of which transfer at a 1:1 ratio.

Emirates Skywards miles

Famous for its over-the-top first-class suites, cardholders can transfer their ThankYou points to Emirates Skywards at a 1:1 ratio.

Etihad Guest

As another United Arab Emirates airline, customers can opt to transfer points at a 1:1 ratio to Etihad Guest.

EVA Air

A Star Alliance member, EVA Air is a Taiwanese airline to which points can be transferred at a 1:1 ratio, so 1,000 points = 1,000 Infinity MileageLands miles.

Flying Blue

The Flying Blue reward program includes Air France and KLM; Flying Blue miles can be used interchangeably between these two airlines and to book flights with other SkyTeam partners. In addition, Citi cardholders can transfer ThankYou points to Flying Blue at a 1:1 ratio.

JetBlue TrueBlue

A New York City-based airline, JetBlue services destinations in North America, the Caribbean and Latin America. Like Choice Hotels, the transfer ratio you’ll receive will depend on the card that you hold:

  • Citi Premier® Card and Citi Prestige® Card holders: 1:1 ratio.

  • Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card, Citi Rewards+® Card and Citi Double Cash® Card cardmembers: 1:0.8 ratio.

Qantas Frequent Flyer

This Australian airline, another Oneworld member, allows cardholders to convert their Citi ThankYou points to Qantas points at a 1:1 ratio.

Qatar Privilege Club

Qatar Airways has recently joined the Avios reward program, allowing its miles to be exchanged interchangeably with fellow Oneworld members British Airways, Aer Lingus and Iberia Airlines. In addition, Citi points transfer to Qatar Airways Avios at a 1:1 ratio.

Singapore Airlines

As a member of Star Alliance, those who transfer their points to KrisFlyer Miles can redeem them to more than 1,000 destinations worldwide. The transfer ratio from Citi to Singapore Airlines is 1:1.

Thai Royal Orchid Plus

Thai Airways, Thailand’s national carrier and another Star Alliance member, operates its Royal Orchid Plus loyalty program for its customers. Citi ThankYou points can be transferred at a 1:1 ratio.

Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles

With a massive hub in Istanbul, Turkish Airlines flies to more countries in the world than any other airline. As a member of Star Alliance, miles can also be redeemed with partner airlines such as United and Air Canada. Your points will transfer to Turkish Airlines at a 1:1 ratio.

Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

Despite not being a member of any airline alliance, Virgin Atlantic enjoys several partnerships with airlines such as Delta Air Lines and Air France-KLM. Citi points will convert to Virgin points at a 1:1 ratio.

Wyndham Rewards

Like Citi’s other hotel partner, the transfer ratio you’ll receive when converting your points to Wyndham Rewards will depend upon the card that you hold:

  • Citi Premier® Card and Citi Prestige® Card holders: 1:1 ratio.

  • Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card, Citi Rewards+® Card and Citi Double Cash® Card cardmembers: 1:0.8 ratio.

Shop Your Way

Citi’s final transfer partner is neither a hotel nor an airline but rather a shopping loyalty program called Shop Your Way. You can transfer your Citi points to Shop Your Way points at a 1:10 ratio, which means 1 Citi point becomes 10 Shop Your Way points.

Shop Your Way points can then be redeemed for gift cards at more than 100 popular retail brands.

A comparison of Citi ThankYou partners

Bookmark this table that gives you a quick overview of Citi's current partners and their transfer ratios.

Partner

Ratio

Aeromexico.

1:1.

ALL - Accor Live Limitless.

1:0.5.

Avianca Lifemiles.

1:1.

Cathay Pacific.

1:1.

Choice Privileges.

1:2 or 1:1.5.

Emirates Skywards.

1:1.

Etihad Guest.

1:1.

EVA Air.

1:1.

Flying Blue.

1:1.25.

JetBlue TrueBlue.

1:1 or 1:0.8.

Qantas Frequent Flyer.

1:1.

Qatar Privilege Club.

1:1.

Singapore Airlines.

1:1.

Thai Royal Orchid Plus.

1:1.

Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles.

1:1.

Virgin Atlantic Flying Club.

1:1.

Wyndham Rewards.

1:1 or 1:0.8.

Earning Citi ThankYou points

There are a few ways to earn Citi ThankYou points. Even without a credit card, you could earn points by taking certain actions with eligible Citibank consumer checking accounts, such as enrolling in direct deposit.

The more common way to earn points is through spending on a Citi credit card that participates in ThankYou Rewards, both through taking advantage of introductory offers — where you can get a windfall of points upon meeting a certain threshold within a window of time upon card approval — and through ongoing spending.

Just note that not all Citi credit cards earn transferable ThankYou points. Citi cards that do earn transferable ThankYou points include:

Some of these cards offer bonus points in certain categories, so someone seeking to maximize their points earning might have one card for dining out and another for supermarkets, and perhaps even another for everyday spending.

Can you combine Citi ThankYou points?

The ThankYou Rewards program has a feature called Points Sharing, where you can give qualifying ThankYou points to another ThankYou member at no additional fee. This can be a helpful way to quickly get more points.

Say you and a friend are trying to book a hotel room together but you don’t have enough points on your own to book the room. They can send their points to you, in theory giving you a high enough point balance to book.

There are some limitations when it comes to sharing points through Citi. Shared points received are valid for just 90 days from the date received, so you’ll have to quickly book travel (or transfer them to one of Citi’s partners) once your friend sends their points to you. There’s also a cap of how many points you can transfer: 100,000 in a calendar year.

Is transferring your Citi ThankYou points worth it?

While you might book hotels and airfares with cash or through Citi’s own travel portal called the Citi ThankYou Rewards Travel Center, it’s often a better deal to put in the extra effort and transfer your points to one of Citi’s transfer partners.

That said, folks seeking to maximize value should always calculate the value of the Citi ThankYou points relative to the price to pay for airfare or hotel rooms in cash.

Use NerdWallet’s Citi ThankYou points calculator below to determine the value of your points, based on both the baseline and NerdWallet estimated values:

In general — and as is the case with most other flexible point currencies — Citi ThankYou points become most potent when transferred to partners. Happily, for Citi cardholders, there are various programs to choose from, including representations from all three major airline alliances.

However, before you transfer your points, you’ll want to make sure that it makes sense. Not all points are equal, and each program will value its currency independently. So it’s a good idea to research Citi’s best transfer partners to maximize your redemptions, no matter where you’re traveling.


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