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.
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.
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.
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:
There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:
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.
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.
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.
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.
Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.