20% bonus on conversions between Krisflyer and Shangri-La Golden Circle is still a bad deal

Massive loss of value when transferring points between programs.

Shangri-La and Krisflyer started a reciprocal status and points earning relationship earlier this year called Infinite Journeys. One of the touted benefits was the ability to convert GC points (Shangri-La’s rewards currency) to Krisflyer miles and vice versa.

The general rule for those based in Singapore is you should never give up hotel points for airline miles, especially not Krisflyer. Krisflyer miles can be earned relatively easily in Singapore through credit cards, hotel stays, pumping petrol etc, but hotel points are virtually impossible to earn, at least not at anything remotely resembling a decent rate.

However, thanks to a tip off from Ang, I’ve learned that from now till 16 November 2017 there’s a 20% bonus on conversions between Krisflyer and GC. Does this change the equation? (spoiler: no)

Let’s examine the promotional rates:

12 Krisflyer Miles to 1.2 GC Points

Image result for shangri-la maldives
Shangri-La Maldives, a Category 7 Property

Shangri-La’s rewards system has 7 categories, with the cheapest hotels starting at 1,000 points and the most expensive at 20,000.

I’ve never worked out the value of a GC point, but since we know that 500 GC points can also be redeemed for a US$50 F&B voucher, let’s take 1GC point= 10 US cents to be the floor value (redemptions for rooms tend to yield slightly higher valuations).

The regular conversion rate is 12 miles= 1 GC point, and with the promotion that becomes 1.2 GC points. 12 miles is perhaps just over 24 SG cents of value, and 1.2 GC points are about 16 SG cents. I wouldn’t call that anywhere near a good deal, considering the fact that 2 cents per Krisflyer mile is extremely conservative, and you’re liable to reap greater value if you plan your redemptions right.

1 GC Point to 1.5 Krisflyer Miles

If you thought the above conversion was poor value, wait till you get a load of this. This conversion is the equivalent of trading 13.6 cents of value for 3 cents. I don’t see how anyone could ever consider doing this, it’s just ridiculously poor value.

So even with the promotion I wouldn’t advise anyone to move points between Shangri-La and Krisflyer because of the extreme loss of value involved. To me, the real value in this partnership isn’t points transfers, but reciprocal status recognition. 

On another note, I just completed a two week stay at the Shangri-La Sule Yangon, which was an altogether pleasant experience. Although the property was a bit dated, the service was excellent and the hotel lounge was huge and the perfect place to work out of. Spa prices were pretty decent for a 5 Star hotel (US$45 for a 1 hour massage, less 20% for Golden Circle members), although I’m sure you could find cheaper if you went out. Food was so-so, but I didn’t eat anything in Yangon that really blew me away.

Krisflyer Elite Gold members can enjoy an accelerated upgrade to Jade membership in the GC club with just one stay, so I made sure to link my account before I checked in. You can be sure, however, that I’m only ever going to use my GC points with Shangri-La.

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2 Comments on "20% bonus on conversions between Krisflyer and Shangri-La Golden Circle is still a bad deal"

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Would you ever recommend to transfer your KF miles to GC?

If I had a lot, and I really mean a lot, of krisflyer miles with no immediate use for them and if there was a fantastic gc redemption value