Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

My National Geographic Traveller piece is now online, for free

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As I wrote last month, the July / August edition of National Geographic Traveller (UK edition, £3.95) has a three page article on frequent flyer miles.  It starts on page 164.

For better or worse, I feature heavily in the article.

The article is now available online, for free.  You can read it here.


Unfortunately, the article is inaccurate in a couple of places as glossy magazines have a very long lead time.  The interview I did with the magazine was done in December 2014.  When I talk about taking an airberlin flight ‘last year’, I mean 2013.   As this was before the Avios devaluation was announced, some of the numbers quoted in the article regarding the miles needed are now out of date.

There is also an element of hyperbole to the piece that is not really my normal style but which I did for impact ….

There are nuggets of information which the general reader who happens to have a few Avios will find useful.  I cover little-known facts (outside of our circle) such as converting American Express points to Avios and that airberlin and Aer Lingus offer long-haul Avios redemptions with minimal tax.

British Airways BA Amex American Express

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (September 2021)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

There are two official British Airways American Express cards. Both have increased sign-up bonuses until 2nd November 2021:

British Airways BA Amex American Express card

British Airways American Express

10,000 Avios for signing up, no annual fee and an Economy 241 voucher for spending ….. Read our full review

British Airways BA Premium Plus American Express Amex credit card

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

40,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable credit card perk – the 2-4-1 companion voucher Read our full review

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

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 30,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

The 30,000 points bonus on Amex Gold runs to 9th November 2021. The 60,000 points bonus on The Platinum Card runs to 2nd November 2021.

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:

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

The most generous Avios Visa or Mastercard 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. This card has a limited time offer of 60,000 Avios when you sign up:

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express card

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

60,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios 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.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)

Comments (9)

  • RICO says:

    Disappointing absolutely no points earned for reading the article. I don’t get out of bed for less than a thousand Avios these days. 😉

  • Tim says:

    Hi Rob,

    The article mentions you can earn 6 virgin flying club miles for bookings. Is that true? If so how is it done? It is not listed under the hotels section of the Virgin Atlantic Flying Club website… Thanks!

    • Danny says:

      You need to log into your Virgin account and then via the shopping portal (‘shop now’).

    • PJ says:

      Yes, 6 flying club miles per £ spent, plus 10% rebate with their rewards programme, plus pay on Amex to receive membership rewards……

  • Alan says:

    Haha I liked the opening line re ‘do you take Amex’ – sooo true! 🙂

  • Dom says:

    The article mentions at the bottom that business class/Upper long-haul is the same between BA and Virgin. But on a lot of routes, virgin are significantly cheaper. e.g. LHR – SFO is 150000 + £556 on BA, 100000+£528 on Virgin. Virgin don’t seem to have a defined structure between there class prices like BA, so must differ by route?

  • Oliver says:

    Nice one Rob! Great read

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