Amex Introduces Flat $38 Fee for Points Transfers in Hong Kong
The American Express Membership Rewards program is one of the most popular point currencies out there. You can easily earn points through many American Express cards and you have several redemption options. You can read more about the program here.
The best option is obviously transfers to travel partners. They have several airline partners, foreign and domestic. There is no fee for transferring to foreign airlines, but when you transfer to U.S. airline frequent flyer programs, you have to pay an “Excise Tax Offset Fee”. The fee is $0.0006 per point, up to a maximum of $99.
Now the Hong Kong program is introducing a new fee, which would make it a terrible value to transfer small amounts of points. Beginning in April 1, 2020, transfer to any airlines will cost HK$300. That is about US$38.
This change is for the Membership Rewards Turbo Program in Hong Kong. So it does not affect U.S. issued American Express credit cards. But is it a possible hint of things to come here in the states as well? Paying $38 for every transfer would be a huge increase for small transfers, but it would end up being cheaper if you are transferring 64K or more points.