Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Get double Avios when booking a package holiday or cruise via

Links on Head for Points may support the site by paying a commission.  See here for all partner links. (not British Airways Executive Club) is, technically, a travel agency.  You may not be aware that you can use them to book a package holiday and earn yourself bonus Avios points in the process.

Until 7th July, the earning rate is doubled and you will earn 10 Avios points per £1 spent on your booking.

The first thing to note is that these are promotions, so you will need an account to collect Avios points. These can be transferred to British Airways Executive Club later if necessary.

Avios wing 11

The homepage for package holiday deals is here.

They do not just work with ‘bucket and spade’ operators. The list includes some decent names (this is just a sample of the list):

  • Club Med
  • Cox & Kings
  • Elegant Resorts
  • First Choice
  • Inghams
  • ITC Luxury Travel
  • Kuoni
  • Mark Warner
  • Neilson
  • Thomas Cook
  • Thomson
  • Travelsphere
  • Villas4You

The list of Avios cruise partners includes:

  • Celebrity Cruises
  • Cunard
  • Fred Olsen
  • P&O
  • Princess
  • Royal Caribbean
  • Silversea
  • Viking Cruises

The recommend way to book is to search for whatever you are after directly on the website of the tour operator and then simply call Avios to make the booking.

They accept Amex and there is no surcharge for using any credit card.

Historically, the holidays team appears to have leeway to reduce prices if you can find a comparable deal – and you will still earn your Avios on the bookings

Double Avios points – but less of a deal than you think

Until 7th July, you earn 10 Avios points for every £1 spent on a package holiday.  It isn’t clear from the wording if cruises are included or not.

This is being advertised as ‘double Avios’.  However, late in 2015, quietly halved the earning rate on package holiday bookings.  10 Avios per £1 used to be the standard rate – now it is only 5 Avios per £1.  This promotion simply brings it back to what it used to be every day.

The other downside is that you don’t receive your Avios points until 28 days after your holiday, so you may be waiting a while for them.

It is worth noting that you can also REDEEM Avios points for a discount on a package holiday – see here for details.  I do not recommend this.  The discount is just 0.5p per Avios point you redeem which is poor but, to be honest, I could just about live with it if Avios rich. 

More important is that you will not receive any Avios points for the portion of the booking which you pay in cash. This makes the net outcome substantially worse.  Indeed, the ‘double Avios’ promotion is only valid on 100% cash bookings.

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (February 2024)

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

Get 25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £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. These points convert at 1:1 into Avios.

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

40,000 bonus points and a huge range of valuable 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.

American Express Business Platinum

Crazy 120,000 points bonus (to 9th April) and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

Huge 60,000 points sign-up bonus (until 9th April) 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 (13)

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

  • Alan says:

    I booked on a similar deal back in 2014 for. Cruise with celebrity for our honeymoon and received 10 avios per £1.

    They matched the lowest price I found which also included drinks packages and gratuity.

    I also only had to pay a deposit in January for a December cruise but locked in the price and the avios.

  • Roger says:

    How about REDEEMING Avios for a 100% holiday booking? Sure, 0.5p per Avios isn’t great, but this could be a useful way of denting the high Avios balances that some of us have which would otherwise take years of flight redemptions (assuming no further ‘enhancements’).

    Has anybody done this and how was the experience?

    • Rob says:

      You can get better than 0.5p via Avios hotel bookings though, so the package route is not hugely attractive.

      I admit it is an option if youve built up a massive balance via business travel but in that scenario you would be Gold and can book any seat you want for Avios via Gold Priority Rewards.

  • Yuff says:

    I was looking at our Dubai hotel in October, on avios last week, and the room was 1.98m avios for the 11 nights against a current cash price of £11.5k, so just under 0.6p per avios.
    However some weeks were half that, in terms of avios, so with better planning it would be possible to get over 1p per avios if there aren’t decent cash prices available.
    I did get a much better deal, than the current cash price, through Ebookers a couple of months ago 😉

    • Yuff says:

      PS – Etihad had moved our flight from the 380, to a 777, 3 weeks ago, but thanks to a Myflights alert it looks like they have moved all of us to the 8am flight as I had pleaded that I specifically booked the flight because of the F apartment. So very happy with Etihad’s CS so far 🙂

      • Louise says:

        They did that to me earlier this year, as we have a long connection time to Male in Sept. Thankfully put us back on the a380

        • Yuff says:

          Did they change your flight or did they swap the aircraft back?

  • xcalx says:

    I have cashed in some soon to expire (courtesy of 3v) Tesco CC vouchers for 2 Royal Caribbean Transatlantic cruises in 2017 .

    My choice was either 81,600 Avios or £1020 off each cruise for £340 worth of Tesco CC vouchers 1.25p per Avios. First time using this option as the cruises are usually cheaper to book with a US travel agent but on occasion booking in the UK was cheaper and included a drinks package.

  • Liz says:

    I have just booked our 28 day Rte 66 car hire for next year via using part pay. When I started researching a couple of weeks ago the cost was coming out at around a shockingly high £1500. The online price on for a Group E was £1500 – this included a $1000 surcharge for the one way trip from Chicago to LA. If I split the journey into 2 x 14 day hires, the surcharges reduced to 2 x $300 and the cost came down to around £1300 online. I called Avios at the weekend and for the exact same info I was quoted £1181. In the past they have offered me 5% discount so I asked for it again and got it bringing the cash cost down to £1122. As I have already bought my redemption flights for this trip and have enough Avios/Virgin miles for another 3 USA long hauls I decided to use 51000 Avios to reduce the price by a further £280 (0.54) – I know this is not a great deal. I am happy that I have managed to get the original £1500 cost down to £840 – I could have used a lot more Avios to reduce the cost further but decided I could live with spending 51K. It is a handy tool being able to use Avios part pay if you are Avios rich and you want to keep your cash costs down.

  • Billy says:

    Just slightly off topic but does the BA website do the surcharge of £10 when using a BA premium Amex card? Would be quite ironic if they did considering they have their name on it n

    • Duncan S says:

      My experience is yes. Any booking I’ve made through the BA website has had the Amex surcharge, even for the BA Amex, which just seems insanity to me.

  • Peter Taysum says:

    I found Avios were cheaper than the “staff discounted version” of a cruise I was offered… With Avios at the previous rate…

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

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.