Which frequent flyer program should I transfer my Amex MR points to if I plan to redeem flights to Europe - Velocity or Krisflyer Miles?

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Hi, been reading a lot of very useful information from this site, thanks to everyone.  Really new here and would like to see if anyone can give me some guidance.

I have around 375K points in my Amex account which I can transfer to either Velocity or Krisflyer.  I am planning to redeem it for a business class trip for myself and hubby sometime in Sep 2017 from SYD to AMS and FCO to SYD.

I know that redeeming it in KF, taxes would be around $900+ but lot less in points. Using Velocity will have lower taxes but lots more points.  Which is the better option. Note, I have also around 125K in my Velocity account.


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Great Response

Hi aswang,

You may find this page useful: http://www.pointhacks.com.au/krisflyer-vs-velocity-taxes-comparison/. Although I don’t think either of those routes are in there, the method is the same.

The answer is that it depends ultimately on your value of a point – is it better to “buy” Velocity points at the differential between taxes?

HTH. If I have time later this morning I’ll post some numbers.

  • OK, some numbers. I wasn’t able to find any availability for the SQ flights from within Virgin’s site, so I used https://www.velocityfrequentflyer.com/content/Redeem/Airlines/PointsTables/
    to find the correct points (10,454 miles leaving Aus; 10,167 miles returning to Aus) and guessed $100 in taxes. You should call up Velocity to find out what is available and what the actual taxes are to be 100% sure.

    These are for J on SQ metal for one person:

    VA SYD-SIN-AMS 139,000 $100.00 (guesstimate)
    VA FCO-SIN-SYD 139,000 $100.00 (guesstimate)
    SQ SYD-SIN-AMS 80,750 $459.65
    SQ FCO-SIN-SYD 80,750 $438.23 (from 300.29 EUR)

    Coming from MR at 1:1, you would be spending 116,500 more MR to redeem through Velocity at a saving of ~$700 ( (~$450 x 2 ) – ( $100 x 2 ) ). If you choose to minimise the upfront cost using Velocity, you are in effect valuing the extra 116,500 MR points (as VFF) at $700.

    This gives a cent-per-point value of 0.60 cents: each extra point is getting you $0.006 in return. IMHO, that’s well below what I would consider a good return (looking at 1.5c or more), so it would be better to go with SQ.

    Your hands may be tied anyway, as I couldn’t find anything for those routes using Virgin’s site even at 11 months out. ?

  • I know that AMS and FCO may look appealing because they are slightly ‘cheaper’ than other European destinations for redemptions on Singapore – although I believe this has been updated with all European destinations now put together as one zone. Just be aware that when I looked at this a year or so ago – the ‘cheaper’ zone destinations were serviced by a different plane model. The more ‘expensive’ zone destinations were on the A380. So if you were planning on AMS/FCO as destinations due to cheaper rate – you may want to check redemption costs from the latest charts, or better – online, and also be aware that you may be on a different model plan (and quite possibly, older style seating).
    Of course, if you want to go to Amsterdam and Rome – you shouldn’t let this put you off!

  • Thanks darrenk for those calculations, they do helped when I finally crunch the nos. I was leaning towards SQ at this point (subject to availability of course).

    Tristan, thanks for your advice as well. SQ has actually changed and AMS and FCO points are now the same as the rest of Europe except Instanbul. AMS I believe is now serviced by the A350 but the planes from FCO are older. So we’ll see how that goes.

  • aswang – someone mentioned to me the 10-15% discounts you occasionally get with MR to VFF transfers (Velocity promotions). I don’t think that changes the outcome, but worth testing out the maths on that too.

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