SQ Mile Transfer is part of the Over Under Trip Report.
Planning award trips is not easy. We’ve all been there when we go to book and the website errors out. In those situations, it is a waste of time to call the airline and complain that there is phantom availability (see Delta’s Website: The Phantom Of the Opera). Another issue is transferring points from a credit card to a travel partner. Glitches are inevitable (see Amex Transfers Points Twice! The Fight Is On!).
Searching for a flight from SE Asia back to the US, I was surprised how easily I found a business class flight on SQ from BKK-SIN-JFK for 112,000 points. The next step was to transfer miles to Singapore Airlines. I deliberated which currency I should use. I value URs the most but have the most of them. I value MRs second and have the second most of those. I value TY points the least, have the least amount of experience in redeeming them, and have the least amount of those points.
I checked the transfer time for Citi and found it to be less than one day. I checked the transfer time for Amex and found it to be less than one day. I wasn’t concerned about Chase because their points transfer instantaneously.
I decided not to use my Citi points, opting to save them for a time when I can learn more about their unique transfer partners, like Turkish. For Ms. TPOL’s flight, I sent 112,000 from her Amex account. For my account, I split the points transfer evenly between Amex and Chase, sending 56,000 from each to my account. Refreshing my SQ account, I saw that 56,000 was already deposited. But where did that 56,000 come from? I checked MS. TPOL’s SQ account and saw that the 112,000 had already gone through.
Amex beat Chase? How could this be? Confused, I took to Google to investigate further. Imagine my surprise when I learned that Chase can take up to 7 days to transfer points to SQ. Nervous, I booked Ms. TPOL’s flight, while contemplating what to do about my trip. I debated if I should send over another 56k from Amex. I took to Bing to see if there was a search result that would say that Chase actually transfers much faster than 7 days. I did not find comfort in those results either.
Ultimately, I decided that I would wait for Chase and deal with the consequences of not being diligent in my research. I kept refreshing the SQ page to see if the transfer had gone through. All I kept seeing was 56,000 written in the beautiful SQ font. I didn’t dare to search for availability as I did not want to see that the flight had moved from available to the dreaded wait list. Almost 48 hours later, I hit refresh once again. This time it showed 112,000 points. I searched for availability and swore to the gods of points that I would not be so reckless should the flight still be available. Fortunately for me, it was. The ticket was booked and the email confirmation was received. The next morning, 60 hours later, I received an email from Chase saying that my points transfer had been completed.
- It was smart to use 56k from Chase and 56k from Amex to keep my balances high in each.
- It was stupid to assume all Chase transfers are instant.
- It was smart not to impulsively transfer over another 56k from Amex as SQ miles expire 3 years after they are earned.
Overall, this worked out perfectly for me but perhaps it is wiser, given the unknown transfer times, to send the points from one card all at once.