Club Carlson has had the most generous rules for transferring points between member accounts — no restrictions. That changes June 1.

In contrast to Club Carlson’s past generosity (but still quite generous), Starwood lets members at the same residential mailing address move Starpoints between accounts. That’s useful if you want to put miles into a family member’s airline miles account (you transfer from your Starwood account to theirs, and from their Starwood account to their airline account, since the names on the Starwood account the points are coming from and the mileage account points are going to must match). Starwood has cracked down in recent times, trying to ensure that members aren’t just changing addresses to facilitate transfers.

Club Carlson took no such precautions. There were no restrictions whatsoever on points transfers. You could move your Club Carlson points to anyone else’s account without restriction. A phone call took care of the transfer, instantly.

This benefit was likely abused on several levels. First, it facilitates all sorts of points trades and even sales. Second, it allowed members to abuse promotions — when Club Carlson was giving out 50,000 bonus points on a single one night stay, they would limit the bonus to one per member. But people would sign up for multiple accounts, pocket the bonus multiple times, and then just combine points.

So starting June 1 non-elite members will have to have had their accounts open for a year to transfer points, will only be able to transfer points to accounts at the same address, and will have had to had their address in place for at least 30 days.

Now, I’m going off of what a telephone rep for Club Carlson told me. So it’s possible that some of the detail on changes in place beginning tomorrow are off, but it appears that restrictions of some kind (along these lines) will begin tomorrow. And it also appears that Club Carlson’s elite members either won’t see changes at all or won’t see changes quite as restrictive.

None of this seems unreasonable to me. Fee-free transfers is still a generous benefit. The ability to combine points from friends with orphan accounts is great, but now they’ll have to use your address for this to be possible (or get a status match). And no more just opening accounts (sans status match) to take advantage of big promotions, should they ever bring back their giant “free night anywhere for a single stay” promotion.

If you do want to make transfers from non-status accounts, do it today.

  1. sil said,

    I have 2 club carlson credit card. when i applied for the biz card, a new CC number was generated automatically. i have 2 accounts under my name. can i transfer points between each account?

  2. Jerry H said,

    @sil – you can email CC asking them to MERGE them together for you, and they’ll merge points & status together

  3. DCA Rob said,

    Thanks for the heads-up – been meaning to do some spring cleaning!

  4. Ralph L said,

    Thanks for the notice Gary. It reminded me/forced me to transfer 60k points from wife’s non-status member account to my Gold account.

  5. Michael M MA said,

    My wife just moved her points (Gold) to my account (Siver) via phone. The points appeared in my account right away. I was planning on doing this anyway and the notice of pending changes got me moving.

  6. Jerry said,

    Thanks for the heads up Gary! I just called and transferred 120,000 points from my account to my wifes account. Process was simple and instant. She has the Club Carlson Visa so it was better for her to have all the points for sure.
    Just FYI The rep was super friendly and while we were talking about the upcoming rule changes regarding transfers he said wife and I would still be able to transfer with no problem because our addresses are the same and accounts were over a year old. It was obviously policy on their end not to detail the reason for the upcoming changes but after our conversation it is a sure bet that it was caused by people using multiple accounts to stack bonuses.

  7. Carl P said,

    I am Concierge status with Club Carlson and had not heard a word prior to this. I like CC, but I do sometimes find thier communications to be lacking.

    It will be interesting to see how it affects Elite. I From my selfish point of view it could be a good thing (as related to point devaluation).

    I was involved with the transfer option once. Points were take from my account for a reward stay in error. It was the fault of the person at the hotel (picked the wrong account when somebody checked in). She was afriad she’d lose her job if she had to go to her manager to fix it. Instead she transferred me the points from her account to handle the situation.

  8. Carl P said,

    I see they have changed thier T&C on the website. Sounds like no change for Elite.

    7. TRANSFERABILITY OF GOLD POINTS
    Elite members may transfer Points from their account to another Program member account upon request. All other members (non-Elite) may transfer Points to another Program member residing in the same household provided that both individuals have been a Program member for at least one year and the addresses for either account involved in the transfer have not been up updated within thirty (30) days prior to the transfer request. All members can request a transfer by contacting Member Services. Club Carlson reserves the right to require proof of eligibility or residency and, in its sole discretion, deny a Point transfer request.

    Except as expressly set forth in the Program Rules, Points may never be sold, exchanged, bartered, transferred, or given without our written consent. The Card is non-transferable and is the property of Carlson Hotels, to whom it must be returned upon request. The only right you acquire in the Points is to surrender them for redemption

  9. Carl P said,

    I assume your “address in place for at least 3 days” is a typo. It should be 30.

  10. Gary said,

    Correct, typo fixed

  11. tassojunior said,

    Phone # ?

  12. Tom said,

    thanks for the warning, motivated me to finally consolidate some accounts

  13. tassojunior said,

    Got the number- 1 (888) 288 8889 .

    Thanks consolidated 4 accounts and now have 650K. Thanks as I’ll try for the Carlson credit card for double nights on the one account.

  14. Kathy C said,

    Ooops, just got home from work and their office is already closed. I didn’t get through on the phone in time to transfer in time. Wonder if I can tranfer by email?

  15. May 31 – Club Carlson transfer rules, Air France La Premiere sale, Air Canada 77HD swap - Canadian Kilometers said,

    [...] View from the Wing talks about how Club Carlson is changing their rules for moving points between accounts. According to a phone rep, non-elites will need to have their account open for at least one year, and transfers need to be between the same address that haven’t been changed for 30 days. Seems pretty reasonable for me although that cracks down on a lot of coupon connection trades. [...]

  16. BlogMe said,

    Just called, looks like I’m fine

  17. Kathy said,

    Since I wasn’t able to get thru yesterday on the phone, I emailed them. They emailed back and said they made the transfer. Very easy.

  18. JetBlue Introduces Family Pooling of Miles - A Great Option, But They're Not First - View from the Wing - View from the Wing said,

    […] Carlson recently tightened their rules. You used to be able to transfer points fee-free between any two accounts, in any amount, any time. […]

  19. Here Are the Biggest and Most Rewarding Credit Card Bonuses You Can Earn - View from the Wing - View from the Wing said,

    […] with elite status can still transfer points to other accounts with few restrictions. And award nights now count towards elite […]

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