Which Airline Miles and Hotel Points Expire?

Keep miles and points active by monitoring your accounts and using strategies offered by loyalty programs.
Alisha McDarris
Elina Geller
By Elina Geller and  Alisha McDarris 
Updated
When Do Your Frequent Flyer Miles Expire?

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When it comes to award travel, there’s little more frustrating than logging into your frequent traveler account with big plans for an exciting trip only to find that your miles have expired. It happens from time to time, especially if you haven’t flown for a while.

This is why we’re going to lay out which airline and hotel points and miles expire right here, right now: so you never have to watch your frequent flyer miles disappear again.

Domestic airlines frequent flyer miles expiration

Here’s a run-down on how long you can hold onto frequent flyer miles before they become obsolete if you primarily fly with U.S. domestic airlines.

When do Alaska Airlines miles expire?

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan miles never expire, but your account may be closed if it is inactive for two years. If your account is deactivated, you can ask Alaska to reinstate your account, at which point your miles will be there for you to use.

When do American Airlines miles expire?

American Airlines AAdvantage miles expire after 24 months of inactivity, but all you have to do to keep them is earn or redeem miles with an airline partner at least once every two years.

On the upside, travelers under 21 are exempt from this expiration date, as are active primary AAdvantage credit cardholders.

Do Delta miles expire?

Delta Air Lines SkyMiles never expire, so rest easy knowing whenever you’re ready to travel, your points will be waiting for you.

» Learn more: Do Delta miles expire?

When do Frontier miles expire?

Frontier Airlines Frontier Miles expire in 12 months if there’s no earning activity (i.e. flying with the airline).

However, Frontier doesn’t extend that expiration date when you redeem miles or participate in other online activities.

Frontier Airlines World Mastercard®

Frontier Airlines World Mastercard®

NerdWallet Rating
3.7
Annual fee

$89

The only other way to keep your miles in your account longer is by signing up for (and using at least once a year) Frontier Airlines World Mastercard®.

Do Hawaiian miles expire?

Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles don’t expire, so you can keep saving up for that dream vacation.

When do JetBlue miles expire?

JetBlue TrueBlue points never expire. Plus, you can pool your points with other members or pay with a combo of points and cash to put miles to use faster.

Do Southwest miles expire?

Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards don’t expire, so keep them until you’re ready to use them.

When do Spirit Airlines miles expire?

Spirit Airlines Free Spirit points expire in a brief 12 months if there’s no earning or redeeming activity on your account.

Free Spirit® Travel More Mastercard®

Free Spirit® Travel More World Elite Mastercard®

NerdWallet Rating
3.6
Annual fee

$0 intro for the first year, then $79

That said, if you won’t be flying with the airline, you can signup for theFree Spirit® Travel More World Elite Mastercard®, which will keep miles from expiring as long as the card is open.

Do United miles expire?

United Airlines MileagePlus miles never expire. So you can focus on maximizing rewards instead.

International airlines with mileage expiration dates

Do airline miles expire on international airlines? Sometimes. Here are some of the most popular international airlines with miles that do expire:

  • Air Canada Aeroplan: When do Aeroplan points expire? After 18 months if account is inactive.

  • Air France/KLM Flying Blue: The Flying Blue miles expiration date is two years if no account activity, unless you’re a Silver, Gold, or Platinum elite status member. If the latter, the miles don't expire.

  • Air New Zealand Airpoints: Four years after they are earned.

  • ANA Mileage Club: 36 months after they are earned.

  • British Airways Avios: 36 months if your account is inactive.

  • Cathay Pacific Asia Miles: 18 months after no account activity if earned on or after Jan. 1, 2020.

  • Emirates Skywards: Three years after miles are earned, they will expire on the last day of your birthday month.

  • Etihad Guest: 18 months for Bronze, Silver, and Gold members. Platinum members’ points never expire.

  • Finnair Plus: 18 months if the account is inactive.

  • LATAM Airlines LATAM Pass Multiplus Points: 24 months.

  • Lufthansa/Swiss Airlines Miles & More: do Lufthansa miles expire? Yes, after 36 months (on the last day of the quarter). No expiration for Frequent Traveller, Senator or HON Circle Members and holders of the Miles & More credit card in certain countries including the U.S.

  • Qantas Frequent Flyer: 18 months if the account is inactive.

  • Qatar Airways Avios: 36 months after they are earned.

  • TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go: Three years after they are earned; some bonus and promotional miles expire one year after they are earned.

  • Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles: Three years after they are earned; the expiration date can be extended for three years by paying $20 for every 1,000 miles.

Do hotel points expire?

If you’re also concerned with keeping your hotel points in play, here are the major hotel loyalty programs and how long their points are valid.

Marriott Bonvoy points

When do Bonvoy points expire? Marriott Bonvoy points expire after 24 months of inactivity. To keep them from disappearing, earn points via stays, redeem them, or purchase points once every 2 years.

Hilton Honors

Hilton Honors points expire after 24 months of account inactivity. On the upside, you can book a room with cash and points if you need to use up points before they expire.

Wyndham Rewards

Wyndham Rewards points expire on a rolling system with each batch of points earned during a stay expire after four years after said stay. However, if there’s no activity (points earning, booked stays, or points transfers) on your account for 18 months, all of your points will expire.

Choice Privileges Rewards

Choice Privileges Rewards hotel points expire after 18 months of account inactivity, which includes qualifying stays, point redemption for free nights, purchasing points and referring friends who sign-up for the program and book a stay.

Choice Privileges Mastercard

Choice Privileges® Mastercard®

NerdWallet Rating
4.1
Annual fee

$0

You can also keep your account active by using the Choice Privileges® Mastercard® and earning points that way.

IHG One Rewards

For entry-level members, IHG One Rewards points expire in a short 12 months. To keep points from expiring, earn or redeem them for stays or with one of IHG’s partner programs.

However, points for those with elite status with the program never expire. One way to enjoy immediate elite status: sign up for any of the IHG One Rewards credit cards.

IHG credit cards
IHG&® One Rewards Traveler Credit Card
IHG One Rewards Traveler Credit Card
NerdWallet Rating
Apply now

on Chase's website

IHG® One Rewards Premier Credit Card
IHG One Rewards Premier Credit Card
NerdWallet Rating
Apply now

on Chase's website

IHG&® One Rewards Premier Business Credit Card
IHG One Rewards Premier Business Credit Card
NerdWallet Rating
Apply now

on Chase's website

Annual fee
$0
$99
$99
Earning rates

• Up to 17 total points per $1 when you stay at an IHG hotel. (Includes points earned from using the card, points earned from being an IHG Rewards Club member and bonus points from the Silver Elite status you get automatically as a cardholder.)

• 3 points per $1 at gas stations, restaurants and on monthly bills.

• 2 points per $1 on all other purchases.

• 26 total points per $1 when you stay at an IHG hotel. (Includes points earned from using the card, points earned from being an IHG Rewards Club member and bonus points from the Platinum Elite status you get automatically as a cardholder.)

• 5 points per $1 at gas stations, restaurants and on travel.

• 3 points per $1 on all other purchases.

• 26 total points per $1 when you stay at an IHG hotel. (Includes points earned from using the card, points earned from being an IHG Rewards Club member and bonus points from the Platinum Elite status you get automatically as a cardholder.)

• 5 points per $1 at gas stations, restaurants, on travel and on select advertising.

• 3 points per $1 on all other purchases.

Bonus offer

Earn 80,000 bonus points after spending $2,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.

Earn 140,000 Bonus Points after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

Earn 140,000 Bonus Points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

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World of Hyatt

Does Hyatt points expire? Yes. World of Hyatt points expire after 24 months of inactivity.

To keep your account active, you’ll need to earn or redeem points on stays, transfer points, combine them with another member or purchase points outright.

Sign up for a Hyatt credit card, though, like World of Hyatt Credit Card or World of Hyatt Business Credit Card and points never expire.

World of Hyatt cards
World Of Hyatt Credit Card
World of Hyatt Credit Card
Apply now

on Chase's website

Chase World of Hyatt Business Credit Card
World of Hyatt Business Credit Card
Apply now

on Chase's website

Annual fee

$95.

$199.

Welcome offer

Earn 30,000 Bonus Points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Plus, up to 30,000 More Bonus Points by earning 2 Bonus Points total per $1 spent in the first 6 months from account opening on purchases that normally earn 1 Bonus Point, on up to $15,000 spent.

60,000 Bonus Points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.

Reward earn rates

• 4 points per $1 at Hyatt hotels and resorts.

• 2 points per $1 on dining, airline tickets purchased directly from the airline, gym memberships, and local transit and commuting.

• 1 point per $1 on all other eligible purchases.

• 4 points per $1 at Hyatt hotels and resorts.

• 2 points per $1 in your top three spend categories each quarter through Dec. 31, 2024, then your top two categories each quarter.

• 2 points per $1 on fitness club and gym memberships.

• 1 point per $1 on all other eligible purchases.

Benefits

• Earn one free night on each cardmember anniversary to redeem at any Category 1-4 World of Hyatt property.

• World of Hyatt Discoverist status.

• Earn five elite night credits when you get the card, and two additional elite night credits for every $5,000 spent.

• Earn one free night on each cardmember anniversary to redeem at any Category 1-4 World of Hyatt property.

• Earn up to a $100 Hyatt statement credit on your cardmember anniversary.

• World of Hyatt Discoverist status.

• Earn a rebate of 10% of points (up to 200,000 points) redeemed after reaching $50,000 in annual spend.

• Earn five elite night credits for every $10,000 spent.

Do credit card points expire?

What about travel points and miles earned with credit cards? Do those expire? Every issuer is different, but generally, as long as your account is open and in good standing — and you have qualifying activity within the policy's time period — credit card points don’t expire.

Airlines with miles that don't expire

The airlines with miles that don't expire are Delta, United, Southwest, Hawaiian and JetBlue.

Ways to keep your points from expiring

Various programs count different activities as qualifying, so read the fine print before you rely on any of these tactics.

The AmEx and Chase option

If you have a credit card that earns American Express Membership Rewards points or Chase Ultimate Rewards® points, you can transfer points to your airline of choice, which would keep the account active and extend the life of expiring points or miles. Although it would be nice to transfer just one mile, you’ll likely need to transfer a minimum of 1,000 points into your account. AmEx is known for running transfer bonuses to hotels.

Consider low and no-fee cards

There are even some low-fee and no-fee rewards credit cards that allow point transfers. For example, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card only has a $95 annual fee and earns Chase Ultimate Rewards® points. The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card earns American Express Membership Rewards points and has a $0 annual fee. Terms apply.

Credit card offers can vary, so if you’re in the market for one of these cards, check out their welcome bonuses to make sure you’re maximizing the offer.

Other card and loyalty programs

Keep in mind that Chase and AmEx aren’t the only credit card companies with rewards programs that allow point transfers to airlines and hotels. Citi ThankYou points and Capital One miles can also be transferred to airlines.

If you’ve collected hotel points that you have no use for, consider transferring them to an airline if you have expiring miles. Some of the hotel rewards programs that allow point transfers to airlines include:

The number of miles you receive in your frequent flyer account will depend on the transfer ratios of each hotel program.

Some airlines aren’t transfer partners of many programs (or any at all), in which case you can extend the validity of your miles by applying for a co-branded credit card.

For example, American Airlines is only a transfer partner of Marriott, so if you don’t have Marriott hotel points, you won’t be able to do a transfer. A great way to keep your American Airlines AAdvantage miles active is to apply for a co-branded credit card.

One of our favorite cards is the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard® because it has an annual fee of $0 intro for the first year, then $99, providing you with a great opportunity to try the card. The welcome offer is: Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.

The bottom line

Depending on the airline or hotel, frequent flyer miles or points can expire after a period of inactivity.

To keep that from happening, keep an eye on your accounts, sign-up for email alerts if the company offers them. Also, know how to — and if you can — keep them from disappearing if you aren’t planning a trip in time. That way you always have miles on hand for your next big trip.


How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2024, including those best for:

Travel Cards from Our Partners
Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

on Chase's website

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
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NerdWallet Rating
Rewards rate

1x-5x

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Intro offer

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on Chase's website

Chase Freedom Unlimited®
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NerdWallet Rating
Rewards rate

1.5%-5%

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Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

on Capital One's website

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
4.7
NerdWallet Rating
Rewards rate

2x-5x

Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day. Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options.

Miles

Intro offer

75,000

Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel.

Miles
See more travel cards
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