1. Citi Double Cash Rewards Now Convertible to ThankYou Points
For the past few days, the points-and-miles world has been abuzz about the apparent imminent change by Citi to allow rewards from the Double Cash card to be converted to ThankYou Points (TYPs). We discussed this subject in last Monday’s News & Notes article, but we noted that we still had many unanswered questions about this potential new feature.
It appears that Citi has now activated the Double Cash rewards-to-TYPs conversion feature, and so far the news seems to be good about how it works. Double Cash rewards can be converted to TYPs on a 1:1 basis ($1.00 in rewards converts to 100 TYPs). And this morning, Greg at Frequent Miler is reporting that he was successfully able to share Double Cash TYPs with his Citi Prestige card and convert them into airline miles with Avianca LifeMiles.
Given that Greg was able to share TYPs from his Double Cash card with his Prestige card, presumably this will work with a Premier card as well. Hopefully, the TYP accounts can be directly linked/connected. In addition, given Greg’s successful experiment, presumably TYPs earned on Double Cash will also be able to be used for travel through the ThankYou portal at 1.25 cents per point if you have a Premier card. We’re hoping to see direct data points on these issues soon.
We’ll have more on this very interesting subject as we learn more and are able to personally experiment. We recently converted another Citi card to Double Cash, so we’re just getting started earning Double Cash rewards. We’re also planning an article on the conversion that we hope to publish within the next day or two. Stay tuned for more!
2. Citi Cards Lost Many Valuable Travel Protection Benefits Over the Weekend
This is a quick reminder that, effective 9/22/2019, cards issued by Citi (except the Costco co-branded card) lost many valuable travel protection and other benefits. Gone are:
- Worldwide car rental insurance
- Trip cancellation & interruption protection
- Worldwide travel accident insurance
- Trip delay protection
- Baggage delay protection
- Lost baggage protection
- Medical evacuation
- Citi price rewind
- 90-day return protection
- Missed event ticket protection
- Roadside assistance dispatch service
- Travel & emergency assistance
For all of these former benefits other than roadside assistance and travel & emergency assistance, they may still be utilized if you made your purchase before 9/22/19.
For the travel-related benefits, our quick analysis is that any travel charges that we would have put on a Citi card will now be made on a Chase card with travel benefits going forward. On the personal side, we’ll use our Chase Sapphire Reserve. On the business side, we’ll be using a Chase Ink Preferred. Both of these cards have 3x earning for travel and a solid array of travel protection benefits.
3. Choice & IHG Hotels Earn 10% / 10x MR at Rakuten Today
Rakuten (formerly Ebates) has a 10% promotion today, and Choice and IHG hotels are included. If you go through the Rakuten shopping portal, you can earn 10% cash back on reservations made today with hotels in the Choice or IHG families of brands – or better yet, 10x Amex Membership Rewards (MR) points if you have a MR-earning Rakuten account.
These 10%/10x MR promotional days are great times to make your Choice and IHG hotel reservations. At our baseline value of 1.5 cents per MR point, this amounts to an extra 15% points rebate on your Choice and IHG hotel stays.
These bonus cashback/MR-earning rates stack with regular points-earning with Choice & IHG, and they also stack with the current promotions from Choice, IHG and InterContinental that we reviewed in detail last week here:
- Middle Age Miles: Round-Up of Fall 2019 Hotel Chain Points Promotions – Accor, Best Western, Choice, Hilton, Hyatt, IHG, Radisson (September 17, 2019)
In addition to Choice & IHG, the Rakuten 10%/10x promotional day includes more than 200 stores, so it might be worth checking those as well if you have an online purchase to make today!
4. IHG Announces Partnership with Mr & Mrs Smith
Sticking with IHG news, IHG has announced a new partnership with Mr & Mrs Smith. Beginning in “early 2020,” IHG Rewards Club members will be able to earn and redeem points at over 500 Mr & Mrs Smith hotels, when booking direct through IHG (online or through the IHG app).
Mr & Mrs Smith is a marketing alliance of luxury and boutique hotels. It describes itself as “a carefully curated collection of the world’s most seductive hotels.” Access to points-earning and redemptions at these hotels will almost certainly be a positive development for points-and-miles enthusiasts.
We applaud IHG for this partership, and we look forward to learning and reporting more on the details as they are released!
We’ll stop here on News & Notes for today so we can get these exciting pieces of news online. We’ll have more to come!
At Middle Age Miles, we love to bring you travel, credit card and points-and-miles information that you can use to help make your travel dreams come true. To see all of our tips and insights, please Like and follow us on social media at:
Please share and re-tweet our posts and tell all of your friends about Middle Age Miles! Thank you!