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Buy cheap Avios points with Tesco Fuel Save

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Earlier this week, Tesco launched its latest promotion – Fuel Save.

It is new scheme which offers you discounts on Tesco Petrol based on how much you spend in the store.  Effectively, for every £50 (cumulative, does not need to be in one transaction) you spend in Tesco each month, you will be credited with a 2p fuel credit.

The credit is valid for the rest of the current and the following month, on one petrol transaction at a Tesco garage.  The maximum discount you can obtain is 20p per litre.

Since 3V Virtual Visa cards stopped being accepted for financial services transactions, they have become a lot less attractive.  However, many Tesco stores still sell £50 Visa gift cards.

These £50 gift cards carry a fee of £3.95.  However, unlike 3V cards, you can redeem these for financial services transactions.  This means that you can pay them into a National Savings account, against your council tax or against any Inland Revenue bill.  Effectively, it easy to get your £50 ‘out’.

Tesco is still giving 150 bonus Clubcard points for every £50 you spend on gift cards.

Assuming you own a car which you fill up with 60 litres at a time, this is how the maths would work:

For every £50 of £3.95-fee £50 Visa gift cards you buy, up to £500-worth per month, it looks like this:

Money spent on card fee:  £3.95

Avios earned from 150 bonus Clubcard points:  (150 x 2.4 =) 360 Avios

Amex points earned on an Amex Gold charge card at 2 points per £1 for supermarket spend:  106 = 106 Avios

Fuel saving of 2p per litre x 60 litres:  £1.20

Your total net cost is therefore £2.75 for 466 Avios, or 0.59p per Avios point. 

Remember that you can scale this up to £500 per month (ie 20p off per litre of petrol) which would mean 4,660 Avios per month at 0.59p.  Fuel Save will run until September, so you could earn over 25,000 Avios between now and then.

The maths is dependent on your car, of course.  You are allowed the 2p discount on up to 100 litres in one transaction, so a 4×4 owner would make a far bigger saving.  If your car never takes 60 litres at once, however, your Avios won’t be as cheap as the example above.

I have also assumed that you are using an American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card which offers 2 Avios (= 2 Amex points) for every £1 you spent at a supermarket in the first year.  You also receive up to 20,000 Avios for signing up!  If you use a less generous card, the maths will be a little less attractive.

Personally, I do not like this promotion (ignoring the Avios-earning side).  It discriminates against people without cars – probably poorer than people with cars.  The bigger and more expensive your car, the more benefit you get – which seems wrong.

It will also encourage people to fill up a couple of jerry cans with petrol and put them in the boot, since you need to buy the 100 litres in one trip to make the saving.  You cannot buy 50 litres one week and another 50 litres another week and get the saving both times.  This is not exactly the safest thing to do.

Full details on Fuel Save can be found here.

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (April 2024)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous 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

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

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

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

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £15,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points. These points convert at 1:1 into Avios.

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

40,000 bonus points and a huge range of valuable benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital on Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.

Capital on Tap Business Rewards Visa

Huge 30,000 points bonus until 12th May 2024 Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

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

There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

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

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (74)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Jonny says:

    I think you can actually take advantage by filling multiple times in a month, just the max saving is 20p/litre each time (and of course your fuel save balance will reduce by 20p each time you fill up)

    I often get my fuel from tesco anyway so this is useful for me- wouldn’t change my spending habits, though tend to buy a fair few visa gift cards anyway using money off coupons so can make an ok saving.

    Worth also noting that it’s instant- can go shopping and buy fuel straight after, taking advantage of the saving accumulated from the shop.

    • Kipto says:

      Tesco have been trialling the tesco fuel save promotion in Wales for two months. I can confirm that the up to 20p off vouchers can only be used once. They aren’t actually vouchers. They appear on your clubcard account and the cashiers at the petrol stations ask each time you fill up whether you want to redeem the money off per litre. The more savvy customers wait until there is more money off on the card up to the value of 20p before redeeming.

  • Frenske says:

    Nice spinning of the numbers but using AmEx Gold directly at the pump and the clubcard would have netted you 100 Avios (double for petrol or supermarket) plus 25×2.4 is 160 Avios and get £1.20 on top of that. So the Visa gift card route would you would effectively buy 306 Avios for £3.95.

    Moral of story get the AmEx Gold card.

    • Sandgrounder says:

      150- you get both bonuses. I think you are missing the point- you can still buy the fuel on your PRG. The 20 p/l discount is achived by buying the cards. You can spend them as you choose

  • erico1875 says:

    I think with careful selection, you could probably half that spend on Visa gift cards.
    Spring is coming so B+Q gift cards might be usefull. The new council tax year is fast approaching and 3v’s are now in abundance. Carefull planning of High St spend could include Next, Debenhams, TopShop, Primark, Claires Argos, ToysRUs, Mothercare not forgetting Nandos.

    • Rob says:

      For clarity (for others) only a small number of councils still take 3V cards for payment. It is absolutely NOT a no-brainer you can do it, so test with 1 x £25 card first in case your council is already blocked.

  • Mrtibbs1999 says:

    3v cards go through izettle at 1.5% if you put enough through each month. Using the prepaid visa route for fuel save is not cost effective IMHO.

    £50 in 3v costs 75p to £1.50 at most. Nets 200 clubcard and 100 MR with the Amex Gold. Less than half the cost of the other card and you can still pay for fuel with amex gold with your fuel save knocked off.

    • Rob says:

      Quite a few stories in the FT Manufactured Spend UK thread of people getting izettle / sumup accounts closed down if they are not able to mix 3Vs with genuine small business transactions. If I thought it was a trouble-free route I would have looked into it.

      • xcalx says:

        I had my Izettle account shut down even though I did use the account for some business transactions. The transactions that they wanted information on were all Izettle ones.

      • mrtibbs1999 says:

        Cheers for the heads up. I’d given up on that thread 🙂

  • Danksy says:

    IMHO tesco are sometimes a little crafty in their fuel pricing when they give promos …..sometimes theybendb being 2p more expensive (this was my perception when they used to do 5p off per litre promos)

    • Kwab says:

      Yes, my sentiments. Expect to see them bump up prices!

      • mrtibbs1999 says:

        They just dropped prices by 2p a litre.

        • John says:

          124.9p in Wembley HA0 3NJ ‎(I think), another Tesco nearby is 128.9p

        • Waribai says:

          Good point.MrTibbs1999 BTW, Thanks for the comments about the adword vouchers. Has proved very usefuk. Sent you a messsage on FT about this!

  • squills says:

    If you can still get the 3Vs to work, it’s far better. [TV licence, water co?, elec/gas co?, shopping vouchers Asda/ Sainsburys & others, broadband, Amazon etc.]

    Spend £500 on 3Vs to max the Tesco points = free = 4720 Avios = £47.20 in my books, if you have a 2 Avios per £1 card [when you combine Amex card points and Tesco points].

    Get another £12 back on 60 litres of fuel.

    = £59.20 in your hand.

    • Rob says:

      I agree. If you are able to use 3Vs for council tax then its a better deal. Whether people will want to buy huge amounts of shopping vouchers via highstreetvouchers etc is a different issue.

      • avidsaver says:

        Hi Rob
        Apologies for being dumb!
        Never bought a 3v card before. Please can you kindly clarify. Can you use them to buy gift card/vouchers on Amazon? If so, do you feed the 3v number in where you add a new payment card to your Amazon account?

        • Rob says:

          It is slightly more painful with Amazon, as they take a £1 authorisation to the card when you register it. You therefore need to wait a few days for that authorisation to be reversed, otherwise the most you can spend is £24. But, yes, fine in theory.

          • avidsaver says:

            As ever, many thanks. For the record I added three 3V cards to my amazon account and then with each one bought three email gift vouchers @ £25 each and sent then to myself. Used straight away towards a purchase. No £1 authorisation was charged 🙂 I think I read somewhere the £1 deduction applies to PayPal?

          • Alan says:

            Yes, I’ve seen it on Paypal before but not seen it with Amazon – mind you I’ve always just added the card as part of the checkout process rather than adding it in advance, not sure if that makes any difference?

        • What's the Point says:

          Over the course of a weekend I bought £400 worth of Amazon gif vouchers using 3V cards. I sent the Amazon vouchers to Mrs WTP’s email address.
          Some went through instantly, others took a couple of hours.
          It was a great way to buy a large ticket item and earn Tesco CC from the 3V cards.
          All amazon gift cards bought via the HFP link – hope you earned some pennies from it Rob!

      • craig says:

        My experience with highstreetvouchers was that they declined 3V cards after the first 2-3 transactions. Have been unable to use them since.

  • Andrew says:

    Ive been searching for 3vs in tesco Hatfield for ages (since everyone else was finding them in abundance) but they never seemed to have any.

    Last night I found some hidden behind an angry birds gift card – any HFP readers owning up to depriving me for the last few months??? (If so, my wife would like to thank you 😉

  • mitpat474 says:

    Proper scraping the barrel now 😀

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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