Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

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(Edit:  I have now closed this page to new comments, as I have enough questions to cover the spots over Easter.  Keep an eye out next week for my responses.)

It’s Easter, so we are off on holiday again for 10 days.  Need to keep the kids occupied somehow!

This is therefore a good time to open the blog up to the floor.  If you have burning question about any specific loyalty scheme, loyalty credit card or miles and points in general, please post it below.

Question mark

I will pick a few of the interesting ones and answer them on Head for Points next week, for the benefit of anyone else who may have a similar issue.

(This also has the added benefit of allowing me to pre-write a few days of posts for when we are away ….!)

So, jump in.  What’s on your mind?

Comments (64)

  • James says:

    Hi HFP,

    I LOVE your website. I’m a total newbie to all this at a ripe age of 25, and wanted your advice on what card actually is the best for someone that has no loyalties to airlines yet and eligible for all of the credit cards you mention in your posts.

    Thanks,
    J

    • Rob says:

      I will address this next week, but Amex Gold is a good choice as you have HUGE flexibility over which airline or hotel you transfer the 22,000 points to. The Hilton card is a good Visa partner as the free night is an easy-to-earn and easy-to-use treat for yourself, that will help convince you that this hobby can get you some really nice free stuff!

  • Scott says:

    I’ve got an old BMI AMEX which earns 2 Avios per GBP, and the BA AMEX which earns 1.5 Avios per GBP. BMI calculates the total reward based on statement total x 2 (ie £1000/month = 2000 Avios), whereas BA calculates per transaction and seems to round up (ie £1.01 spend = £2 x 1.5 = 3 Avios) – or at least that seems to be the case for the limited time I’ve spent looking through statements. Having earned a 2-4-1 voucher already, is it still worth using the BA AMEX for all my spend (to get the “extra” points for the rounded up cost) or is it best to credit everything to BMI as it has a higher headline Avios to spend rate? I make a lot of transactions each month, and typically they are odd numbers (ie pounds and pence).

    • Mr Bridge says:

      I think ba amex rounding method is half way point
      so £1.50 should = 2.25 avios but you will get only 2 as its rounded to the nearest whole number
      if you have £1.75 it should = 2.62 avios and is rounded to 3

      unless you work out which card to pay with depending on the transaction value( eg £1.50 pay bmi, £1.75 pay ba)
      i think your best off earning the 2 miles with bmi as it will be constant

  • Ben E says:

    I’ve got my companion voucher and 100-120k avoids to spend, looking for flights in oct/nov… Any recommendations for destinations to look at? I’ve had very little success on the BA site. Do they release further reward seats at later points?

  • Stripy says:

    If you had to pick one hotel program in which to accumulate miles and in which to earn status which would it be? (based on the following):
    1) Hotels visited would be primarily in the UK and Europe
    2) Hotels would mainly be city hotels
    3) Standard of the hotels should be similar to Marriotts in the US (or better)

    Thanks!

    • Rob says:

      I will answer this one on the blog over the next couple of weeks

    • Stripy says:

      Thanks for the tip! As I have an Amex Plat that just gave me 100k points for signing up the Club Carlson scheme looks very tempting 🙂

      • Stripy says:

        …although I’ve just found out that the complimentary gold status one gets with an Amex Plat. isn’t available with the US card (according to Amex customer services) 🙁

        • Andrew (@andrewseftel) says:

          If you’re in the US, you can get one of the Club Carlson credit cards, which confers either Silver or Gold status depending on which you get.

  • Neil Chapman says:

    Great site raffles – couldn’t live without it!

    I have just got my wife the platinum Amex for the 77,000 MR points (inc referral). I want to cancel my ba premium plus – what’s the deal with this card if you have the platinum, is it free, or £30 or full price? If its worthwhile I will take it out in my wife’s name to retain the 2-4-1 offer on 10k spend

    • Rob says:

      Unfortunately, there is no longer a discount on the BAPP fee for Platinum cardholders, you have to pay the full fee.

      The 2-4-1 voucher is well worth having – it can easily save you 100,000+ Avios each year. Best bet is to refer your wife for her own card (so you get the referral bonus) and then cancel your card once it has posted to your account.

      Once your wifes card has arrived, get yourself a supplementary card on it. You will then be able to help her work towards the £10k voucher.

  • Martu says:

    I want to do a BA Tier Point run to/in the US later in the year but am confused about how to maximise points. Are BA or AA flight numbers better, how do I work out whether connections count as separate flights or just one for TP earning purposes? Could you FAQ my Qs?

    • Alan says:

      BA numbers earn more Avios than AA ones. No difference in TPs. I’ve opted for AA ones on my upcoming TP run as it meant I could buy it all through AA’s website on their stock and thus hopefully easier to get rebooked in case of irrops. If different flight numbers they should count as different segments – there’s a very good BA TP run thread over on FlyerTalk I’d check out.

    • Rob says:

      This is, unfortunately, not my specialist area! I’m others can chip in.