Is there a 'secret' 6000 Avios bonus for upgrading to BA Premium Plus?

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Is Amex running a ‘secret’ upgrade bonus on the British Airways American Express cards?  Two readers have contacted me in the last three weeks to say that they received 6,000 bonus Avios with their first purchase.  Both had rung Amex to upgrade from the free British Airways Amex to the Premium Plus version.

We know that Amex is running a 15,000 point bonus to upgrade from Gold to Platinum.  There is also a 5,000 point bonus to upgrade from Green to Gold.

BA Premium Plus Amex

However, so far, I have not heard of any ‘formal’ upgrade deal on the BA cardsIf you have received an email from American Express offering you an incentive to upgrade, please let me know.

If you want to switch from the free BA Amex to the paid card, one way is to cancel the free card, wait six months and then apply directly for the Premium Plus version.  This allows you to get the usual sign up bonus of 18,000 – 25,000 Avios.

The downside of this, though, is that you need to start again with your qualifying spend towards the 2-4-1 voucher which is issued at £10,000.  If you upgrade directly, your spend to date (and your existing Amex membership year dates) are carried forward.  If you have already spent over £10,000 on the free BA Amex, your 2-4-1 voucher will be issued instantly.

With no formal proof that this offer is running, you should not upgrade purely to get the 6,000 bonus Avios.  Neither HFP reader was told he would receive the bonus – they just turned up!  If you were thinking about it anyway, though, it is something else to weigh up in your mind.

If you want to compare the cards, my review of the free BA Amex is here and my review of the BA Premium Plus Amex is here.

(To see our complete list of all current credit card bonuses, click here to visit our ‘Credit Cards Update’ page or use the link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

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  1. So, it would be £112.5 for the 15000 points. Less if they’re posted earlier. Theoretically one can upgrade from Gold to Platinum, spend the £1000 on the Platinum and then go back to Gold? Can one downgrade to Gold and got the rest of the first year for free or does it count as new application?

    • Presumably it resets the clock. Why not wait until the end of the first year before upgrading, then cancel, wait for 6 months and apply for Gold again?

      Don’t forget the Gold Credit Card (but this needs to be cancelled to reset the clock as well)

      • OK forgot about CX Gold, but if you think 15K points for £112.50 is a good deal then still worthwhile

  2. Bit OT, but I upgraded from Amex Gold to Plat and have received the 15k MR bonus. Still no sign of the £450 fee being charged, and we’re well into the second month now. When will they charge it? And if I cancel now, will hotel cards and Cathay Pacific Gold still arrive?

    • I was charged the £450 in my first month (after the Gold fee was refunded pro-rata). Their upgrade process has been a bit glitchy – I had to ring to get the new card sent out and I still haven’t received my priority pass! So maybe it’ll take them a few months to figure out that they forgot to charge you.

      • Sounds familiar – I haven’t had a new card in the post (but my wife, a supplementary cardholder, did!). Got the 15k so I guess I’ll cancel before they remember to charge me!

        • Think we also got lucky on this, for once. OH upgraded Gold (coming to end of first, free year) to Plat, £1k charged and cleared quickly, CXGold card received, 15k bonus MR banked to BAEC, no Plat fee as yet so cancelled card.

    • I wish this sort of thing would happen to me, I always seem to get charged correctly but never get bonuses posting automatically

  3. Do they perform a credit check when you upgrade?

  4. Nick Phillips says:

    I also got the 6k avios when I upgraded last year

  5. Luke Atkinson says:

    I upgraded the other day. Asked about any offers, they said no. But as my form wasn’t on file and I had to do it by a clean application online they gave me 2k avios for the inconvenience.

  6. Anyone know of a bonus if you downgrade from plat to gold ? Thanks

  7. thechiefexecutive says:

    My partner was offered 6000 avios to upgrade in December. Decided to think about it, and then when she phoned back amex denied the offer existed. She insisted amex listen to the original call, and they agreed the offer had been made and honoured the 6000 avios. 241 voucher posted immediately as £10,000 spend exceeded. Upgraded because we weren’t going to hit the £20,000 before March.

  8. squills says:

    OT Shard food & booze: Set to welcome its first guests on May 6, 2014, Shangri-La London…

    …Perhaps of most interest to Londoners, the hotel’s food and beverage options will include Gong, set to be London’s highest bar when it opens on level 52 of the Shard. Its name is derived from dougong, said by the hotel to be “an ancient Chinese structural element of interlocking wooden brackets that will be a component of the bar’s interior”. On level 35, the signature restaurant is Ting – its name is derived from the Chinese word for a living room – while a ground-floor deli called Láng will serve departing or incoming guests and passing commuters.

    As part of the Shangri-La’s staggered opening, Gong will be fully operational from July 1. Its interior has been conceived by Hong Kong interior designer André Fu, who was behind the design of the Berkeley’s recently opened Opus Suite, and will feature “cinnabar red lacquer panels… and a wall of Chinese cabinets made of galvanised steel. And quite a bit of purple.”

    Level 52 will also house the hotel’s 24-hour gym and an infinity pool which, predictably, is also the highest in London. Although renderings and precise details have yet to be released, Fu has said that “at night, the pool will be part of the bar. It’s high-tech, modern and pretty dramatic – which is what you need if it’s going to become a destination experience.”

  9. squills says:

    You gong tingaling this evening? 😉

  10. georgemac says:

    I upgraded my BA Amex last month to get the companion voucher. I asked about the 25K introductory offer but was told there was no bonus for upgrading – just for new applications. However this month I got a 6K Avios bonus – points are credited to my BA Avios account.

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