Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Bonus Avios Part 1 – Amex Currency Exchange and Moneycorp

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British Airways Executive Club has launched a raft of bonus Avios deals as the build up to the main holiday season approaches.  I will explore them over two articles today.

This is what is on offer for anyone looking for foreign currency:

American Express Currency Exchange

When you order foreign currency via the Amex Currency Exchange website  you will receive 500 bonus Avios when you exchange over £400.  This is in addition to the standard 1 Avios per £1.

Remember that Amex no longer has any foreign exchange booths at Heathrow so this will only work for home delivery.  The only airport offering collection is Birmingham International.

If you charge your purchase to an Amex-issued Amex card (BA, SPG, Nectar, Gold, Green, Platinum etc) it will be treated as a purchase.  This means that you will receive points for the credit card spend and it will count towards any Amex sign-up bonus.

(Please do NOT ring Amex to check that the above statement is correct.  They will tell you I am wrong.  I am not.)

Remember that Amex offers a poorer exchange rate via the Avios website above than it does at its main website here so make sure that the Avios are worth the extra cost.  These are NOT free Avios.

The ‘500 bonus Avios’ promotion runs until 11th July.

Moneycorp

The Amex locations at Heathrow were taken over by Moneycorp.

They are running an identical promotion – 500 bonus Avios if you convert over £400 into foreign currency.  This is in addition to the standard rate of 1 Avios per £1 exchanged.  The closing date is 11th July.

There isn’t much about Moneycorp on ba.com – all they have to say is here and it does not mention this promotion.

You should NOT take advantage of this offer though.

Moneycorp only allows you to collect Avios on ‘walk up’ purchases, as Amex has retained the exclusive rights to offer Avios on pre-ordered currency.

You should never, ever buy currency at Heathrow as a walk-up purchase if you are spending your own money.  The rates are so poor it beggars belief.  The Travelex as you come through Terminal 5 passport control seems especially poor, with a ludicrously huge spread of around 20% IIRC.  I pity anyone who effectively pays Travelex £50 for changing £500 of $ or Euro into Sterling.

The only reason to take part in this promotion is if you are getting repaid by your employer – and even then, only do it if your employer reimburses you for foreign spending at the exchange rate you paid rather than the market rate.

I wrote about the Moneycorp / Avios deal in this article last year if you want to know more.


How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (September 2022)

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

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 UK’s most valuable card perk – the 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.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

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

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points, £200 travel credit and an unbeatable set of 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 10,000 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

50,000 points bonus until 2nd October – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company 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 a long list of travel benefits 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 (33)

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

  • JK says:

    I took advantage of this offer, I can only see the avios for the transaction (well over £400, used my BA amex) but no bonus avios.

    Anyone else notice this?

    • Rob says:

      The rules for the Amex promo say:

      “The 500 bonus Avios will be awarded in a separate transaction to the standard Avios points and will show in the members account within 40 calendar days of the standard Avios award.”

  • John Tickner says:

    Is there a way of getting delivery to place of work rather than home address ?

    I can’t be there to sign for the postman.

    • Rob says:

      Don’t think so, for obvious fraud reasons, unless you re-register your credit card at your work address (which may not be possible anyway).

  • pazza2000 says:

    Just purchased £500 of currency via the Amex Currency Exchange Website, no mention anywhere of the 500 bonus Avios although I was able to provide my EC# so I assume all will be well?

    • Rob says:

      If the promo is still running then I’m sure you will, but keep the confirmation email just in case – and possibly a screenshot of the promo page on the Amex site.

  • Doug Soper says:

    Thank you for your help and advice. Bought some currency a week ago. Nothing showing yet. How long would you expect before base avios show in my BAEC account.

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

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