I was trying to book an award ticket via Air Canada Aeroplan. Aeroplan doesn’t allow award holds (that I know of), so an instant transfer is greatly appreciated to lessen the likelihood that the award space disappears. AMEX Membership Rewards transfers to Aeroplan are generally instant. However, the website does say it can take up to 48 hours. I’ve done a few transfers in the past, and all of them had been instant for me, so I thought I wouldn’t have any issues.

Last night at around midnight EST, I tried transferring 50,000 Aeroplan points from my American Express Membership Rewards Account, which wasn’t instant. I waited for 30 minutes, and nothing happened. I was tired, so I went to bed and hoped the points would arrive in the morning.

In the morning, my Aeroplan account wasn’t showing the points. So, I chatted with an agent to see what was going on, and they let me know that the transfer was reversed. I learned a good way to check is under your “Points Summary” and see if it’s redeemed or refunded, as you won’t get an email that the transfer was rejected or not. They recommended I try the points transfer again. So I did, and a few seconds later it was rejected and refunded. At this point the agent suggested I call the Membership Rewards line for assistance.

AMEX Membership Rewards Transfers

Failed (Refunded) Points Transfers

Is the Third Time the Charm?

I was quickly connected to an associate from the Membership Rewards team on the phone. He said he would try the transfer for me as he didn’t know of any ongoing issues. He did it for me, and it was showing “redeemed” under the status for about 5 minutes. But, the transfer quickly got rejected and reverted to “refunded”. He said he was going to speak with a supervisor to find out more. When he came back, he said that since last night, all points transfers had been not working correctly across all AMEX partners. But, that it should be fixed in 2 hours or so.

Perhaps they should have had a banner on the website stating the temporary technology issue…but I guess they don’t want to look bad.

Not wanting to lose my award space, I decided to just transfer Capital One miles, which arrived instantly, and then I ticketed my award online.

The Verdict

Hopefully, this is a one-off, and AMEX Membership Rewards transfers don’t keep getting into these technical difficulties. Not wanting to risk the award space disappearing, I used Capital One miles instead to be less stressed.


Have you run into transfer issues with AMEX Membership Rewards? How was your experience? Comment below!