One of the easiest ways of earning Avios points or Virgin Flying Club miles for the last couple of years has been via cashback site TopCashback.
TopCashback allowed you to take up to £50 of cashback from your day-to-day online shopping and convert it into 5,000 Tesco Clubcard points. This means that it would turn into 12,000 Avios points – you were basically ‘buying’ Avios points for just 0.4p each. This was repeatable every year.
It was a great deal and a fairly easy 12,000 Avios points per year for Head for Points readers. If you had a British Airways household account you could do even better.
TopCashback announced in June that Tesco is withdrawing tomorrow, 31st July.
If you have any cashback sitting in your TopCashback account and you have yet to hit the £50 cap, you should send it across to Tesco IMMEDIATELY.
This move appears to be linked to the broader restructuring of the Clubcard scheme which is currently underway. We have already seen the ending of Clubcard Boost ‘double up’ in store. It has also been reported that Clubcard points will soon be instantly redeemable – like Nectar or Boots Advantage points – by swiping your card at checkout.
Interestingly, TCB said that 33% of users who chose Clubcard converted their points into Avios. 30% used them for restaurant vouchers and 20% for family day out vouchers.
That was bad news for Tesco. If you assume that Tesco pays 0.75p per Avios point – and I think they actually pay more than that – the maths was crazy. TopCashback sent Tesco £50 but, in 33% of cases, it had to immediately pay out (12,000 x 0.75p) £90 to Avios. You can see why Tesco wanted out.
You will still be able to convert TopCashback money directly into Avios points. This is an acceptable deal – you get 1.05 Avios points for every 1p of TopCashback money you convert – but nowhere near as generous as routing your points via Tesco Clubcard.
If you used TCB to earn Virgin miles then there is no alternative option. I had heard rumours of Quidco teaming up with Virgin Atlantic but nothing has appeared.
If you never joined TopCashback and want to sign up – after all, buying unlimited Avios points for (1p / 1.05 Avios =) 0.95p is certainly not a bad deal – my refer a friend link is here.
This move could also be problematic for TCB itself. It is generally seen as having poorer customer service than Quidco, but people put up with it because of the Tesco conversion option. With that gone, TCB loses some appeal. Remember, however, that you can still buy Avios via TCB with zero effort for 0.95p and that is not a bad deal at all.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (August 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.