The Starwood Preferred Guest program and its affiliated American Express-issued credit card are justly celebrated for a generous transfer bonus: For every 20,000 points transferred into a participating airline program, the cardholder receives an extra 5,000 miles. So, for example, transferring 20,000 Starpoints into the American Airlines AAdvantage program nets 25,000 AAdvantage miles, a hefty 25 percent bonus.
While that sets a high standard for both value (the 25 percent bonus) and flexibility (transfers to more than 30 participating airline programs), a new limited-time offer from American Express trumps it, at least as far as value goes.
Through December 15, American Express cardholders who participate in Membership Rewards will earn a 50 percent bonus on all points transferred into Delta's SkyMiles program.
In addition, anyone transferring 50,000 or more points will receive 25,000 elite-qualifying miles—enough to receive entry-level elite status in Delta's program.
Registration is required.
Deal or No Deal
There are two minor negatives here.
First is American Express' transfer fee of $0.60 for every 1,000 points. To transfer 25,000 points, for example, the fee is $15.00.
Second is the promotion's short duration.
Compared to the potential value of the offer, however, the above are non-issues. If you're a SkyMiles member and have Membership Rewards points, this is a terrific opportunity to get significantly more miles for your points, and to reach elite status without even flying.
Mind the deadline!
Reader Reality Check
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This article originally appeared on FrequentFlier.com.