American Express devalues Membership Rewards in India

It is old news that Amex in India has been devaluing the Membership Rewards. A year back, Amex reduced the number of MR one could earn on a few types of payments and even imposed a Rs. 250 fee for redeeming on airline miles.

While the website has no indication of this devaluation, members are being individually informed via their statements. Here are the transfer partners who are now changed from 1.6 MR = 1 FFP to 2 MR = 1 FFP, with effect from 16 January 2013:

  • British Airways
  • Cathay Pacific
  • Etihad Airways
  • Finnair
  • Singapore Airlines
  • Thai Airways
  • Virgin Atlantic

These are all of the airline transfer partners that American Express India has in India, apart from Jet Airways and Air India. Jet Airways miles are still continuing at 1.6 MR = 1 FFP.

While  I am speculating, in the common scheme of things, Jet Airways miles are priced at the same exchange price as these other airlines. However, seems like Jet’s co-branded Amex has something to do with this arrangement, where Jet Airways miles are now being made to look more attractive than the other transfer partners on the airline front. This could have either been done with making a cheaper pricing on JP miles because of their newfound partnership, or could be a move from Amex/Jet to try and flank away redemptions to other partner airlines.

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About Ajay Awtaney

Ajay is a financial services pro, working to bring order to the chaos of the financial industry on an everyday basis! Beyond that, he dons the hat of India's favourite frequent traveller, trying to help people elevate their travel experience via tips and tricks they never knew before, or introduce them to the world of miles and points. Armed with an MBA from MDI Gurgaon and graduate degree in computer science from the University of Delhi, Ajay brings a systematic and objective approach on the table for his audience in dissecting travel and loyalty programs in India and around the world, and how to benefit from them. Ajay has been quoted in various reputed traditional and online media including The Hindustan Times, Inside Flyer, Bloomberg, DNA India, Conde Nast Traveller, The Telegraph, Mumbai Mirror, Mint, MoneyLife and The USA Today.

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