Update: SPG no longer exists. Any SPG points were transferred to Marriott as a result of the merger. You can still transfer Marriott points to airlines, but at a 3:1 ratio.
In addition to using SPG Starpoints for hotels, you can also transfer Starpoints to airlines and then use those miles to book plane tickets.
A few things before you transfer Starpoints to airlines:
- Remember that the best deal is to transfer 20,000 miles at a time to get the 5,000 bonus. An exception to this would be if you’re just needing to top off an account. For example, if you have 22,000 miles in your Delta account and need 25,000, it might make sense to only transfer the 3,000 Starpoints even though you will not get a bonus.
- Be sure that you are transferring to the correct airline. For example, if you’re trying to book an award flight on an American Airlines flight but you want to book the flight with British Airways Avios because BA charges less points, you need to transfer the points to British Airways Executive Club. If you transfer the points to American Airlines, you are subject to American Airlines AAdvantage award ticket pricing.
- Starpoints transferred to airlines can take up to 5 business days to show up in your airline account.
- Check the airline you are trying to book because you may be able to put an award ticket on hold while waiting for your miles to post. For example, American Airlines allows you to hold an award ticket for 5 days and this can be done online.
- Starpoints can be transferred between spouses, significant others, or any individuals sharing the same address listed on the SPG account. This can be requested online but it can take about a week for the transaction to post. For example:
- You have 10,000 starpoints and your partner has 30,000.
- You can transfer the 10,000 points to your partner or your partner can transfer their 30,000 to you.
- One of you now has 40,000 points to transfer to an airline.
- 40,000 starpoints earns a 10,000 bonus when transferred to airlines (5,000 for every 20,000)
- This nets a total of 50,000 airline miles.
2 Reasons you may consider pooling your starpoints BEFORE transferring to airlines.
- As stated in the example above, SPG gives 5,000 bonus miles for transfer of every 20,000. You get a total of 50,000 miles if you combine your SPG points.
- If you transfer your 10,000 points to your AA account rather than your spouse’s SPG account, you get 10,000 AA miles. Your spouse transfers 30,000 starpoints to AA, they get 35,000 miles (because of the 5,000 bonus).
- Now you have 10,000 AA miles and your spouse has 35,000 AA miles
- You could then transfer your AA miles to your spouse’s account, but you will have to pay. Different airlines charge different fees for sharing miles but its usually around 10$ per 10,000 miles plus a processing fee of around 15$. So now you’re paying over 100$ to combine your miles when you could have done it at no charge by combining your SPG points prior to transferring to airline miles.
How to transfer Starpoints to airlines:
1. I know I repeat myself often but never transfer to an airline without first confirming availability! Transfers to airlines are permanent. You may also want to check the cash value of the plane ticket you are trying to book and calculate the cents-per-point value you’re getting. It’s very simple and this post explains how.
2. Login your SPG account
3. Click “Book and Redeem” and then choose “Redeem Starpoints”
4. Click “Travel”
5. Scroll until you see the “Transfer Air Miles” option then click on it
6. Click “Transfer Starpoints to Air Miles”
7. The above box will pop up. Click “Select transfer partner” and a drop-down menu will appear.
8. Choose the airline
Starpoints are among my most valued award currencies. Between Starwood hotels and their airline transfer partners, there are so many great ways to use Starpoints. What are your favorite ways to redeem Starwood Preferred Guest Starpoints?