Five Avios credit card sign-up bonuses you can get which will arrive by April 28th

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The last day to book Avios redemption tickets before the massive devaluation kicks in is April 28th.  Whilst that is still 11 weeks away, you may already be too late if you need to top up your account before you can book.

The next Tesco conversion date, for example, will not be until late April or early May.  There is no guarantee that you will have your vouchers by April 25th which is probably the last realistic day to convert.

You PROBABLY still have time to pick up a large amount of Avios points from a credit card or charge card sign-up bonusThe key issue is whether you can hit the target spend in time.

Here are five options:

BA Amex - NEW

British Airways American Express card  (no fee)

Here is my full review – please read it before applying.  The bonus is 9,000 Avios points if you apply before February 11th or 3,000 points afterwards.

The bonus points will show on your Amex statement about 3 days after you pass £1,000 of spending.  However, they will NOT go over to your British Airways Executive Club account until six days before your next statement date.  At worst, this could mean a three week delay from when they show as available online.

You would therefore need to hit the target spend within, lets say, six weeks of getting the card to ensure that the Avios points are transferred over with your second statement.  Your third statement would be too late.

The representative APR is 15.9% variable.

BA Premium Plus Amex

British Airways American Express Premium Plus card (£150 fee)

Here is my full review – please read it before applying.  The bonus is 25,000 Avios points if you apply before February 11th or 18,000 points afterwards.

The bonus points will show on your Amex statement about 3 days after you pass £3,000 of spending.  However, they will NOT go over to your British Airways Executive Club account until six days before your next statement date.  At worst, this could mean a three week delay from when they show as available online.

You would therefore need to hit the target spend within, lets say, six weeks of getting the card to ensure that the Avios points are transferred over with your second statement.  Your third statement would be too late.

The representative APR is 56.4% variable including the annual fee based on a notional £1200 credit limit.

Amex Gold 350

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold charge card (no fee for first year)

Here is my full review – please read it before applying.  The bonus is 20,000 American Express Membership Rewards points which, when transferred to BA, becomes 20,000 Avios.

The bonus points will show on your Amex statement about 3 days after you pass £2,000 of spending.  As soon as they are showing you can transfer them.  This gives you a little more flexibility than the British Airways cards – as long as you pass the spending target by, say, April 15th you should have the Avios in your BA account by April 28th.

Amex Platinum

American Express Platinum charge card (£450 fee)

Here is my full review – please read it before applying.  The bonus is 30,000 American Express Membership Rewards points which, when transferred to BA, becomes 30,000 Avios.

The bonus points will show on your Amex statement about 3 days after you pass £2,000 of spending.  As soon as they are showing you can transfer them.  This gives you a little more flexibility than the British Airways cards – as long as you pass the spending target by, say, April 15th you should have the Avios in your BA account by April 28th.

SPG Amex

Starwood Preferred Guest American Express card (£75 fee)

Here is my full review – please read it before applying.  The bonus is 10,000 Starwood Preferred Guest points which, when transferred to BA, becomes 10,000 Avios.

The bonus points will show on your Amex statement about 3 days after you pass £1,000 of spending.  However, they will NOT go over to your Starwood Preferred Guest account until six days before your next statement date.  At worst, this could mean a three week delay from when they show as available online.  Once in your Starwood account, you need to do another transfer to get them across to British Airways Executive Club which could take another week.

You would therefore need to hit the target spend within, lets say, six weeks of getting the card to ensure that the Avios points are transferred over with your second statement.  Your third statement would be too late.  For safety, because you cannot be sure how quickly Starwood will move the points to BA, you really want to hit the £1,000 target with your first statement.

The representative APR is 39.7% variable including the annual fee based on a notional £1200 credit limit.

Lloyds Avios Rewards 2

Lloyds Avios Rewards cards (£24 fee)

Here is my full review – please read it before applying.  There is NO sign-up bonus.  However, if you are referred by a friend then you will receive 4,500 Avios points when your application is accepted.  Email me at raffles [at] headforpoints.co.uk if you need a referral.

The 4,500 bonus points arrive very quickly so you should have no problem receiving them in time to book.  Remember that this card earns points in avios.com, not British Airways Executive Club, so you will need to have an avios.com account number available when you apply.

The representative APR is 23.7% variable including the annual fee based on a notional £1200 credit limit.

Other cards

There are some other credit cards available which offer a sign-up bonus which converts into Avios points.  These include the IHG Rewards Club Visa, IHG Rewards Club Premium Visa and the Marriott Rewards MasterCard.

Unfortunately, the operators of these cards are not as efficient as American Express and there is no guarantee – in fact, I would bet against it – that the points will arrive in time.  Even if the credit card company sent them to IHG or Marriott, transfers out of those two schemes into airlines can be slow.

There is also a bonus of 1,000 Clubcard points available if you are referred by a friend for the Tesco MasterCard.  (This can also be backdated – if you have taken out the card in the last two months, email me at raffles [at] headforpoints.co.uk and I will send you the form.)  However, the next batch of Tesco vouchers are unlikely to arrive before April 28th.

Want to earn more miles and points from credit cards?  Click here to visit our ‘Credit Cards Update’ page or use the link in the menu bar at the top of the page.

(Disclaimer: Head for Points is a journalistic website. Nothing here should be construed as financial advice, and it is your own responsibility to ensure that any product is right for your circumstances. Recommendations are based primarily on the ability to earn miles and points and do not consider interest rates, service levels or any impact on your credit history.)

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Comments

  1. Slightly OT – but not by much, I have accrued 60,000 SPG points with AmEx SPG with family members and referrals but have a major problem that I hope I can get some advice on from the immensely knowledgeable folk here at HfP 🙂

    My daughter got the SPG card 6 months ago, we did a £1,000 spend and got the 10,000SPG points + the 1,000 points for the spend, the 11,000 points transferred to her SPG account no problem. In December she did four referrals and got 5,000 SPG points per referral, 20,000 points in total. Due to timing, 10,000 SPG points left her AmEx account on January 8th and have disappeared into the ether, failing to turn up in her SPG account. The other 10,000 SPG points are due to transfer out of AmEx on the 8th of this month but I fear they may vanish too. There has been no changes to any account details and this has been confirmed by AmEx.

    I have been speaking with AmEx in Brighton about the missing 10,000 SPG points, they can see the points went out and they did not bounce back and they cannot now seem to offer me a resolution other than escalating the query, which I am told could take 8 weeks and would be too late for our intended use of these points which is 2 nights at the Universal City Sheraton. I gave them my daughters SPG account number so that they could speak with SPG but they have not followed through on this.

    I am worried that the next 10,000 SPG points will follow the last 10,000 SPG points and vanish. I have suggested to AmEx that they cancel down the 10,000 SPG points in my daughters account, and put 20,000 in my SPG AmEx account: 10,000 to replace the 10,000 that have gone AWOL and the other 10,000 as a “transfer” from my daughter’s card to mine. (SPG allow free transfers between people at the same address in any case so that all seemed a sensible resolution to us!) However AmEx has declined this proposal.

    I have now told AmEx that if we don’t get the points by the end of this week, we will book the hotel in my daughters SPG AmEx card and then dispute the charge with AmEx. Is this a reasonable step to take? Can anyone offer any constructive suggestions for a resolution to this debacle? beyond this, what sort of compensation should I seek from SPG? I have been on the phone to them for probably 2 hours or more in the last week to 10 days and not forgetting the angst involved.

    Comments and suggestions are welcome please.

    • I bet you had no spending on the card? That is the issue.

      I am in a similar boat – I did two SPG referrals in January, forgot to use the card and now the points are floating around. The problem occurs when there is no monthly spend. The points are automatically debited from your account but, without any spend, no transfer is triggered.

      Try putting a charge on the card and seeing if they go across next time. That is what I will be doing.

    • Michelle says:

      Hi

      I had a similar situation last year when I took out the SPG card with the bonus in nov 2013, hit the £2000 spend by early Jan but my amex points continually did not go across to my SPG account (which I set up per raffles advice and put the SPG acc number on my SPG amex application form).

      It’s probably not what you want to hear but it took me to August 2014 to get them across! SPG and amex kept fobbing me off to the other department and would tell me points could only transfer on one date per month and then when I checked and they had not gone across they would tell me I had to play a wait and see game for it to work the next month with whatever tweaking they claimed to have done.

      I escalated the query and only nearer the 8 week expiry did I get amex mangers getting back to me. In the end they gave me 10,000 points and £25 credit as compensation. I’m relatively new to this so I don’t know if this was a good deal but I accepted!

      What was suggested to me was opening a new SPG account and giving them a fresh SPG number (which may be less applicable as my points were stuck and not lost) and putting spend on the card like already said seems a old idea.

      Good luck!

  2. I just got an email from KLM /Air France and couldn’t stop laughing at the way they attack BA’s last move… It reads:

    At Flying Blue, we do not make you pay to reach our hubs in Paris or Amsterdam when you use your Miles to connect to Europe or the world.

    Whether you commence your journey from one of our local UK airports or directly at our hubs, the price you pay in Miles is the same!

  3. Ronster says:

    Hi Ian

    I got this as well.It is indeed a bit of a dig and swipe at BA even if they don’t name names?!

    However there are some funadmentals that they do not bring up. I am a regular Air France and KLM flyer by the way.

    1) Their earning per economy ticket is very poor.(Though admitingly I do not know how they will compare with BA’s after 28 April)
    2)The tax to pay on a return economy ticket makes flying a budget direct carrier to your various european destination, far more economical. However during the winter months, if your flying from a non London base,you will probably find schedules reduced and then you will probably have to fly into a hub to connect.

    So whether you would use them to get to your final destination is questionable, if there are well priced and available budget carriers on your route.

    3)Looking at long haul business they don’t fair any better….Tokyo is 200,000 miles around 750 euros plus in charges.

    Remember that BA have said that they will not charge for connecting flights when travelling outside of Europe. Also obviously there is greater scope to collect avoid if your based in the Uk..Tesco etc.

    When you put that into context, in reality there is little advantage at all with Air France/KLM’s statement.Yes you use less miles getting around Europe but non more getting around outside of Europe and for UK residents there is less scope to collect points with them on a daily basis.

  4. Totally OT (tried on FT to no avail)
    If booking Reward Saver Flights from a BA household account.
    Do all members have to have had activity during the previous 12 months to qualify or can one member with activity book Reward Saver Flights using pooled avios from his and from the other members.
    Thanks.

  5. Michelle says:

    Hi

    Does anyone know if there is a limit to the number of transfers you can do from your SPG account to an airline.

    I have 47, 000 MR in my PRG card and 33,000 in my SPG account.

    Could I therefore shift my MRs to SPG and then do 4 x 20,000 transfers to another airline to make 100,000 points? Assuming it is 1:1 MR to SPG which I think I remember seeing.

    If so, is there any time lag I have to put into place between each transfer or maximum transfers per airline. I’m thinking of adding to my virgin account or starting with delta sky miles in light of recent events.

    Thank you for any help

    • Think you should be ok, I have done 3x 20k miles last year from SPG to Baec, but you need to check the amount you would then get transferring to whichever airline you chose. Maybe do one transfer every day. But double triple check before doing anything, as they all have different transfer values. I was shocked at the poor AAdvantage transfer values from various programs.

      • Michelle says:

        Will do, thanks!

        • Actually Michelle, the chap at SPG was so helpful another time he actually did two separate transfers for me one after the other… Which saved me calling up again. I did what you intend, I moved my PRG mr s to SPG the. To baec, works fine!

  6. I have discovered another benefit of Lloyds Reward Avios cards.
    Lloyds have started a copy of the Amex cash back scheme for debit and credit cards and this card participates (possibly other Lloyds credit cards too).
    5% back at Waitrose has just finished and 10% back at Morrisons (max £10) runs until first few days of March. I bought £100 of gift cards yesterday.

    • Their website seemes to suggest that these offers are for Debit and Creidt card cutomers. but have never see this offer on my credit card account.
      Are you also a Lloyds current account customer? I wonder if this offer is only available for Lloyds credit card holder who also has a current account with them.
      Thanks.

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