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Two weeks ago Starwood Preferred Guest added Korean Air as a transfer partner. That’s fantastic because Korean has some of the best redemptions in first class (amazing availability), to Hawaii (cheap awards on Alaska, Delta, and Hawaiian), and for business class to Europe (40,000 miles each way with fuel surcharges).
I tested a one point transfer from Starwood to Korean (no minimum transfer is a benefit of being a Starwood Platinum): a Wednesday afternoon transfer appeared the following Sunday night/Monday morning.
That same Monday when I found the points in my account I made another points transfer, looking for another data point for when points would post.
And… they posted overnight Sunday night/Monday morning as well. So the same posting time, despite trnasferring two days earlier.
Starwood points seem to post consistently at the same time each week, based on two transfer data points. I do not yet know what the cutoff point is for making a transfer and having the points show up overnight Sunday night. I’ll need to test Thursday and Friday transfers.
While the transfers can take some time to post, fortunately Korean Air holds are generally sufficient to lock in an award prior to making the transfer of points. Booking a few months in advance there’s generally no problem putting a Korean Air flight on hold for months. So you can lock in the award, then transfer the points, then ticket once the points post. And for partner redemptions you can usually hold for 5 days, a Wednesday transfer should be sufficient to allow points to post before the hold expires.
For more on the value of Korean miles, Starwood transfers, and the process of redeeming with Korean Air Skypass see: How Long It Takes to Transfer Starwood Points to New Partner Korean and Korean’s Astounding Award Hold Policy.