If you travel on business, earning airline miles from your hotel stays is an easy way of running up your Avios points balance. You should never take airline miles by default, though, as it is normally better value to take points in the relevant hotel loyalty scheme – as long as you are confident of earning enough to redeem. If not, you might as well take the miles instead.
British Airways has a huge number of hotel partners and it is even bigger when you include chains who are partners with Iberia and who can be credited to Iberia Plus.
There are still some hotel chains which do not give Avios. In those cases, it may be able to credit your stay to Virgin Flying Club instead.
Note that my list below ONLY includes Virgin partners who are NOT Avios partners. You can see the full list of Virgin Flying Club hotel partners here.
Virgin Flying Club is a Best Western partner even though, surprisingly given their scale, they have no deal with Avios. This gives you access to 4,000 hotels in 80 countries. You will earn 500 miles per stay at any of their hotels, UK or worldwide. You must be a member of Best Western Rewards and choose to credit your stay to Flying Club.
Note that Best Western will match your Flying Club Silver or Gold status into its programme – see here for details.
Blue Sky Luxury
Blue Sky Luxury specialises in Barbados, Antigua, Dominica, Jamaica, St Barts, St Lucia and St Martin with 300 holiday homes to rent. You earn 1 mile per $1 spent.
The Dubai-based chain is growing its presence in Europe and now has three London properties. You earn 1 Flying Club mile per US$1 spent, plus a 5,000 mile bonus for staying 15 nights in a year.
Marco Polo Hotels
This Hong Kong and China-based group offers 500 – 1000 miles per stay depending on the room type you book.
Millennium and Copthorne
This is a medium sized chain of 120 4- and 5-star properties around the world, with a decent UK spread. Virgin Flying Club earns 750 – 1,000 miles per stay.
Morgans Hotel Group
You earn 650-1,000 miles per stay at any of these luxury boutiques. In London, they own St Martins Lane, The Sanderson, the Mondrian and the Mondrian at Sea Containers House.
Red Carnation Hotels
Red Carnation Hotels is a small luxury boutique chain with the bulk of its global properties in London. You earn 1,000 miles per stay as a Flying Club member.
This new chain, slowly rolling out in the US, offers 1,000 miles per stay. Flying Club Gold members will receive a complimentary breakfast daily and upgrade whilst Silver members will receive a complimentary upgrade, based on availability.
You can also earn miles at YOTEL New York, but no other branches of the chain.
And also …
Whilst not a hotel chain, PointsHound is a hotel booking site which offer airline miles with every booking, irrespective of chain. The downside is that the stay will be non-qualifying from the point of view of earning status or points with that particular hotel. Whilst competitors such as Kaligo.com and Rocketmiles work with Virgin and Avios, PointsHound only works with Virgin Atlantic.
Note that I have not included Worldhotels on this list. This is because, whilst they are not a British Airways Avios partner, you can collect Avios points by crediting a stay with them to Iberia Plus.
Earning more Virgin Flying Club miles
Even if you regularly stay at one of these chains, you may think twice before bothering with Virgin miles because you would never earn enough for a decent redemption.
However, you can top-off your Virgin account with an Amex Membership Rewards, Tesco Clubcard or Heathrow Rewards points transfer or by getting the Virgin Atlantic credit cards. You can still earn 6,000 Virgin miles very quickly by opening a Virgin Money ISA.
You can even transfer Flying Club miles into Hilton HHonors or IHG Rewards Club points, allowing you to indirectly earn Hilton points whilst staying at another chain! The minimum number of Virgin miles required is 10,000 and the transfer rate is 1:1.5 into Hilton and 1:1 into IHG.
(Want to earn more Avios? Click here to visit our home page for the latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios from current offers and promotions.)