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SriLankan Airlines available for Avios redemptions from today

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SriLankan Airlines joins the oneworld airline alliance today, becoming the first airline from the Indian subcontinent to join any major airline.

This means that, as of today, you can use your Avios points to book redemption flights on SriLankan.  Although, to be honest, I wouldn’t be 100% certain that can handle it immediately.  It is still having problems with accurate TAM availability a month after they joined …..

SriLankan is not a large airline, operating just 21 aircraft to 20 countries from Colombo (below). It carried 4.7m passengers in 2013.  It only adds two new cities to oneworld – Hambantota and Tiruchirapalli in India.

Routes include Heathrow, Frankfurt and Paris, Hong Kong, Bangkok and Tokyo, so it will open up opportunities for getting around Asia. There are also a number of flights to and from India and the Middle East.

Importantly, Colombo is also a key stopping off point for the Maldives, with Colombo being just an hour or so from Male. This opens up yet another potential redemption routing from London, and adds to the new Qatar Airways and Malaysia Airlines options that opened up when they joined oneworld. Colombo to Male would be just 4,500 Avios each way.

SriLankan also runs a number of flights out of Bangkok, heading to Shanghai, Beijing (these two are ending soon), Hong Kong and Gaungzhou. There is also a Tokyo to Male route.

British Airways resumed its own flights to Colombo last year after a number of years, tagging it onto the end of three existing flights to the Maldives each week.

Great Circle Mapper shows that London to Colombo is 5,405 miles – 100 miles further than Maldives.  This is good news (as long as BA agrees with this number!) as it puts it right on the edge of the ‘4,000 – 5,500 miles’ pricing zone.  This means that flights will be 100,000 Avios return in Club World and 150,000 return in First.


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (March 2023)

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.

SPECIAL OFFER: Successfully apply for either of the Barclaycard Avios credit cards by 2nd April 2023 and you will be entered into a free draw to win ONE MILLION AVIOS! Full details are on the application forms here (free) and here (paid). This competition is exclusive to Head for Points readers. T&C apply.

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

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 £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

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

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

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers 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.

Until 30th March 2023, the sign up bonus on American Express Business Platinum is increased to 120,000 Membership Rewards points – click here. The bonus on American Express Business Gold is increased to 60,000 Membership Rewards points – click here. T&C apply, see the application forms for details.

American Express Business Platinum

Crazy 120,000 points bonus (to 30th March) and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

60,000 points sign-up bonus (to 30th March) 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 (17)

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

  • Phillip says:

    Disappointingly poor availability of LHR-CMB and vv flights in Business. One way taxes from CMB in Business only £50 though so great value! From Indian cities as little as £3 in fees and taxes! LHR-CMB just over £200 in taxes in Business one way which is not bad.

    • James W says:

      Really, £250 return in business. That’s not bad.
      If could start in Europe instead of London might get that down even further.

  • Londonbus says:

    So with Oneworld, we now have the following ways to go London – Bangkok:

    BA – Direct (via Ba9/10)
    SriLankan via CMB
    Finnair via HEL
    Cathay – via HKG
    Royal Jordanian – via AMM
    Qatar via DOH

    And somewhat less directly – JAL via TYO and AA via a number of points.

    Any other cities with as many OW choices?

  • James W says:

    Got excited when I went on the Sri Lanka website and saw London – Colombo for £192 return.
    Bastards hadn’t added all the obscene taxes and charges to that yet. Gits.

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

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