Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

“Are there any restrictions on the BA Amex bonus if you have the Lloyds TSB Avios Amex?”

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Over Easter, I will be answering a number of the reader questions that were submitted via this article.  If you didn’t take part this time, don’t worry as I will be re-running this feature in the Summer.  Feel free to expand on or critique my answer using the Comments section below!

Today’s question is from Mark Ross who asked:

“I currently have a Lloyds Premier Amex but am looking to move to the BA Amex. Do you know if you can go straight from one to the other or do you have to close one down and wait a certain length of time to apply for the next one. I realise that it is two different card issuers but both are Amex and both offer bonus Avios.”

‘It is no problem’, is the quick answer.

The long answer is that I spend a lot of time on Head for Points listing ‘conflict of interest’ rules which stop you getting a certain credit card bonus if you already have a similar credit card.

American Express is the main culprit.  The main rule they have is that you cannot apply and receive a bonus on the Platinum or Preferred Rewards Gold charge cards if you already have – or have closed within the last 6 months – a Platinum, Gold or Green Amex.

Both Lloyds TSB and Amex also refuse to give you a bonus if you upgrade (or indeed downgrade) directly from their free Avios card to the higher-earning paid version.

In Mark’s case, however, there is no problem.

As he points out, the Lloyds (and MBNA) American Express cards have nothing to do with American Express in terms of your customer relationship.  If you apply for the Lloyds Avios cards, what matters to Lloyds is your current credit exposure to them via any other Lloyds credit cards, not how many Amex-issued Amex cards you may have.

The only thing to remember is that – when Mark applies for the BA Amex – the fact that he has another active credit card with another issuer will obviously be taken into consideration.

American Express often gives ludicrously high credit limits, which can hurt your chances of getting other credit cards.  If you have a £20,000 limit but never spend more than £3,000 a month, you should consider cutting your limit (you can do it online) to something like £5,000 – this make it a lot easier to get other credit cards.

Want to earn more points from credit cards? – January 2023 update

If you are looking to apply for a new credit card, here are our top recommendations based on the current sign-up bonuses.

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 21st February 2023, the sign-up bonus on the British Airways Premium Plus American Express card is increased to 35,000 Avios from 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

35,000 Avios (ONLY to 21st February) and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and unbeatable travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

SPECIAL OFFER: Capital On Tap has increased its sign-up bonus to points worth 30,000 Avios if you apply by 4th February. This is exclusive to Head for Points readers. Click here to apply.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 30,000 points bonus, worth 30,000 Avios, until 4th February 2023 Read our full review

For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending.

Barclaycard Select Cashback credit card

1% cashback (3% for 3 months if you apply by 31st March) and no annual fee Read our full review

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