American Express customers have 5 days left before AMEX changes the ratio that Membership Rewards points transfer to British Airways at. Currently, transfers occur on a 1:1 basis. 1,000 Membership Rewards points will transfer to 1,000 British Airways Avios.
On October 1st, 2015, that ratio changes to 5:4. Or, for practical purposes, you’ll be transferring 1,250 Membership Rewards points to receive 1,000 Avios from British Airways.
British Airways devalued their program earlier this year, making many awards more expensive. This included my favorite award, 10,000 Avios to upgrade one-way (one flight) to the next class of service. That one came in handy quite a few times. But, Avios are still helpful in a number of circumstances, including shorter flights in the US on American Airlines.
I suspect that you’ll still be able to take advantage of transfer bonuses offered by American Express from time to time to get a better value.
In fact, I stumbled across one that AMEX is offering to Canadian customers right now, where 1,000 Membership Rewards points gets you 1,250 Avios.
At any rate, I wouldn’t transfer points to British Airways right now unless you were quite certain you would use them within the next 12 months or so. The biggest benefit programs like American Express Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards offer is flexibility. Once you transfer points to a program like British Airways you lose that flexibility.
If you do anticipate travel in the next 12 months, now is likely the best rate you’re going to see for a while. So, get those transfers done before the end of the month.