“Kick Back With 4,500 Avios” promotion launches

Love Clubcard, don’t collect Avios?  You should be reading our sister site, Shopper Points (www.shopperpoints.co.uk), which covers the latest Clubcard and Nectar offers without any distracting frequent flyer talk!  Why not check it out now?

I wrote a bit about this promotion a couple of weeks ago, before it officially launched.  If you an avios.com member, you have probably had the email and this pretty picture of a hammock in your inbox by now.

Since I first mentioned this, I have given it some extra thought and decided that I am not even going to bother signing up, even for just one quarter.  It simply isn’t worth it.

What avios.com is offering you – if you decide to sign-up for auto-conversion of your Tesco Clubcard vouchers into Avios every quarter – is a voucher worth 4,500 Avios.  This voucher is only redeemable when you book 2 nights of hotel accommodation alongside your flight.

Now, there are obviously some scenarios where this may make sense for you.  However, most people prefer to make their own hotel reservations.  They will either want to redeem some hotel points for free nights, or they want to collect points and get their hotel status recognised when they stay.

This offer is no good for that – if you book a chain hotel, it will count as a third-party booking and you won’t get points and (depending on chain) won’t get status benefits either.

You may also want to stay with a friend or in a hotel that Avios does not offer.  You may also find that Avios is not price-competitive for the hotel you want.

Where it would  work is if you were 100% price driven, as 4500 Avios is effectively worth £30+ and that is a notional £15+ per night off your hotel.  If you staying somewhere very cheap, this would be a decent benefit, especially as bargain-basement hotels are rarely in chains anyway.

If this last paragraph doesn’t describe you, I would give this offer a miss.  The biggest problem with auto-conversion is that you cannot keep your Tesco vouchers in a drawer and save them for the next time there is a 50% transfer bonus to Avios points.  And (whilst you can opt out of auto-convert, if you remember to call them in time before the next mailout) that could cost you far more than 4,500 Avios in the long run.

Love Clubcard, don’t collect Avios?  You should be reading our sister site, Shopper Points (www.shopperpoints.co.uk), which covers the latest Clubcard and Nectar offers without any distracting frequent flyer talk!  Why not check it out now?

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Comments

  1. Good insight and options/contemplations on this offer.

    I also of course don’t like the idea of a voucher rather than pure miles, especially with conditions, but did decide to open a new CC account for my wife and get the minimum required points to qualify. Will this transfer though? Normally you require 250 CC minimum for transfer to Avios, but here they require only 150 CC for the offer – will it transfer at the lower balance because it’s an opt in for auto-conversion? I did try find T&C regarding opt in transfers, but found nothing regarding minimums.

    Getting the new CC up to 650 points is beneficial to also take advantage of the 2,000 bonus offer under the new collection special, that way having 1,560 (transfer) + 2,000 (bonus) + 4,500 (voucher) = 8,060 Avios – almost enough for a zone 1 flight (enough should I build up 1,050 CC).

    Considering it’s a new account with no existing CC points (a status surely many CC accounts will be close to currently if they took advantage of the previous 50% transfer bonus) and I’ll opt out immediately after 20 Oct, I’ll be transferring a minimum of 150 CC yet getting 360 (transfer) + 4,500 (voucher) = 4,860 Avios which is far more than I’ll get should I wait for a 50% transfer bonus, getting only 540 Avios in total. If I take it up to 650 CC, I’ll get 8,060 Avios as stated above, yet only 2,340 for a 50% transfer bonus. So I guess at your valuation of 1p/Avios (only applicable value for Reward Saver flights I might add, far less for long haul flights), the difference is worth £57.20 – more than I’ll pay for 2 ultra-cheap hotel nights in some faraway dive (see below)!

    The other reason I decided to go for it was that I’ve done it before. Years ago I had an Airmiles voucher with the same 1 or 2 night hotel condition of use, and it worked out worthwhile as while I didn’t book a hotel and use it (I didn’t need a hotel if I recall), I did book the cheapest hotel I could find in the most remote place for only a few ££ – there was no stipulation that it had to be at your destination. That way, I used the voucher and it was cost effective as a) the “wasted” hotel booking was dirt cheap, and b) Airmiles were worth more in those days considering the all-inclusive rewards.

    If I ultimately don’t use the voucher it’s hardly a lot lost, and will still have the Avios anyway, so decided better to have in the bag than not. At the end of the day, I guess it has everything to do with how many CC points would be involved in a non-bonus transfer as to whether this is worthwhile for people.

    With regards to costing more than 4,500 Avios in the long run (only a consideration should you have a huge CC balance currently, as shown above), when considering waiting for a CC->Avios transfer bonus, how often do these offers come along? Despite some previous experience, I am new to the “game” of playing it big time as you do (only found this site days ago), hence generally need the points transferred frequently and available as I don’t have a truck full of Avios ready for use.

    • Transfer bonuses from Tesco were very rare. Now they seem to come along like buses, once or twice a year. (This is not surprising, because transfer bonuses eventually have the opposite effect to what BA wants – when you are expecting another one soon, no-one converts at the usual rate and BA is forced to run an expensive conversion promo to get any money from Tesco.)

      Note that the new partner 2000 avios bonus needs to be into an active avios.com or BA account, so you can’t open a new avios account and have the first transaction into it a Tesco conversion.

      This is also the last quarter for this promo, so you’d need to get 150 Clubcard points in a new Tesco account by mid November. Or possibly 250, as you say!

  2. Perhaps I have received a slightly different offer? The linked T&C in the email I received are:

    Here’s how it works
    Shop at Tesco as usual — collect just 150 Clubcard points from 1 September to 20 October 2012 and we’ll add a 4,500 Avios voucher to your account
    Book two hotel nights or more — and get the Avios off the hotel price and any return flight or Eurostar™ trip on the same booking
    Travel within a year of getting your 4,500 Avios voucher
    We’ll add your voucher to your account by 16 November 2012.

    I.e. there is no requirement to auto-convert or even convert CC points to Avios at all. I don’t auto-convert for the reasons Raffles has given. I have already collected over 150 CC points in the specified period so the voucher will be posted. It is conceivable that I may book a hotel (for cash only) via Avios and take the 4500 Avios discount on a flight e.g their cheapest hotel in Venice is price-competitive.

    I would not be so fast to write this offer off. Look this gift horse in the mouth.

  3. Thanks for the reply, Raffles.

    I realise this is the last quarter of the Avios bonus (what a shame), but 2,000 Avios is better than none or simply a conversion bonus as noted on the few miles. Also, I do already have an active Avios.com account in my wife’s name.

    Tim, very odd that what you received says nothing regarding an opt in for auto-transfer. I never received an email, but was alerted via a till voucher from Tesco stating that an opt in was necessary and to visit http://www.avios.com/tesco4500 While not explicitly stating “opt in”, direction 1 at the website above very clearly shows you what you need to do, which is opting in. Are you sure there wasn’t more to the email or a “*” implying “see the small print” which indicates that the voucher is subject to certain T&C?