Book Great “Round The World” Awards With This Citi Transfer Bonus

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We’ve used to seeing Amex Membership Rewards offering frequent transfer bonuses to some of the loyalty programs it partners with but transfer bonuses offered by Citi’s ThankYou program don’t appear all that often…so it’s always nice when one turns up.

Right now Citi is offering a 25% bonus for points transfers to the Qantas Frequent Flyer program made by 22 February 2020.

As is the case with all of Citi’s transfer partners, ThankYou points ordinarily convert over to Qantas Frequent Flyer at a rate of 1:1. With this bonus accounted for that ratio rises to 1:1.25.

a close-up of a card

To get an idea of just how useful (or not) this transfer bonus can be it’s important to take a look at the award charts (which were devalued slightly in June last year).

Qantas award chart (1) for flights with Qantas, Jetstar, QantasLink, American Airlines, Emirates, Fiji Airways, Air Vanuatu, & Airnorth:

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Click to enlarge

Qantas award chart (2) for flights with Aer Lingus, Air France, Air Niugini, Alaska Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, China Eastern, Dragonair, EL AL, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, Jet Airways, KLM, LATAM, Malaysia Airlines, Qatar Airways, Royal Jordanian, S7 Airlines, & SriLankan Airlines:

a table with numbers and text
Click to enlarge

There’s good news and bad news here.

The good news is that Qantas Frequent Flyer is, even without a transfer bonus, one of the most economical ways to book EL AL flights with points (and EL AL now finally offers a good Business Class product out of New York) and it can be one of the more economical programs to use if you’re looking to book Emirates First Class.

With a transfer bonus on offer these redemptions just get better.

In further good news, the transfer bonus on offer makes some of the more expensive awards look a little more palatable – American Airlines Business Class from LAX to Sydney costs 86,800 ThankYou points with this transfer bonus (rather than 108,500 ThankYou points when the transfer bonus promotion isn’t running) and American will charge 80,000 AAdvantage Miles for the same booking.

The bad news is that with or without this transfer bonus a lot of the other award options are still very pricey.

Oneworld Classic Round The World Award

An award that often gets overlooked (and which may be worth considering in light of this transfer bonus) is the Qantas oneworld Classic Round the World award which costs 318,000 miles in Business Class or 455,000 miles in First Class.

The rules of the award booking are pretty straightforward:

  • Stopovers of over 24 hours are permitted in up to 5 cities
  • Stopovers of up to 24 hours are permitted in a further 10 cities
  • Trip must not exceed 12 months
  • Maximum distance traveled must not exceed 35,000 miles

Assuming you can find award availability it would be possible to fly this routing (28,244 miles)…

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…for 318,000 Qantas miles in Business Class or 455,000 Qantas miles in First Class.

In terms of ThankYou points (and accounting for the current transfer bonus) that equates to 255,000 points for Business Class and 364,000 points for First Class.

Assuming you value Citi ThankYou points at 1.5 cents each (as I do), you would essentially be booking a round the world Business Class trip for $3,816 or a round the world First Class trip for $5,460.

If you can find award availability that’s a phenomenal deal….and it continues to be a fantastic deal even if you happen to vastly over-rate ThankYou points and assign a value of 2.0 cents each to them.

Bottom Line

There’s definitely value to be had by using the latest Citi transfer bonus to the Qantas Frequent Flyer program…you just have to look for it. A lot of the awards remain overpriced despite the transfer bonus, but a few look very good indeed.