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Bits: another Lloyds / Avios horror story, spam Avios emails doing the rounds

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News in brief:

Another Lloyds / Avios horror story

Long-time HfP readers will know that I have softened my stance on the Lloyds Avios Rewards credit cards over the years.  This is partly because readers convinced me that, despite the appalling Lloyds customer service, the upgrade voucher and lack of FX fees was worth it.  It is also partly because the Avios changes in 2015 made the upgrade voucher more valuable because the price gap between Club World and World Traveller Plus doubled.

Every so often, though, I am reminded what a shambles Lloyds is.  A HfP reader applied for the Lloyds Avios Rewards card in January and has not yet received one single Avios point in his account.  This is the timeline:

  • Reader opens a Lloyds Avios Rewards card in January 2016
  • Card received, spending begins
  • Checks Avios account a few weeks later, nothing there
  • Ring Lloyds which has opened a 2nd Avios account by mistake – but that is also empty
  • Avios merge the two accounts
  • A month later – still no Avios
  • Phones Lloyds, they get in touch with Avios – ‘they are sorting it out’
  • Phones again – Lloyds promise it will be resolved by 31st May
  • Deadline passed
  • Lloyds suggests the reader registers a formal complaint against them (!) – which the reader does
  • Receives an email from Lloyds asking the reader call them on a secure direct line to discuss the complaint.   The email says ‘to prove that this email is genuine, here are the first four digits of your post code’.  The four digits given are completely wrong.
  • Reader is awarded £200 compensation from Lloyds, but still no Avios
  • July – Lloyds gives a solemn promise in writing that the Avios will be sent over within six weeks
  • Six weeks later (this week) – “Due to unforeseen circumstances we’ve not been able to deliver on our commitment of four to six weeks to resolve the issues we have been experiencing regarding Avios points. We are however monitoring this on a regular basis and will be in touch with you as soon as the issue has been resolved.”

The reader has spent £10,000 on the card so far and has not received a single point.  It beggers belief how difficult it can be to actually send the points to an Avios account ……

Spam Avios emails doing the rounds

I suppose it says something about the popularity of the Avios scheme that spammers now feel it worth promoting.

A reader sent me over the following email that she received from “British Airways Promo #417719”:

Congratulations! You won a 10,000 miles British Airways gift card.
A gift card has a value that you can use in full or part payment of a flight booking with British Airways.

In order to claim your gift card, or it’s equivalent value in GBP (399 GBP), simply click the link below and register into our Customer Relationship Management program.

http:// etc
British Airways Customer Service

Obviously there are clear clues here that this is spam – primarily the idea that 10,000 Avios would be worth £399 …..

How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (May 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. 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

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

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways BA Premium Plus American Express Amex credit card

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways BA Amex American Express card

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.

The Platinum Card has doubled its sign-up bonus to 60,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert to 60,000 Avios, if you apply by 1st June 2022.

American Express Amex Gold

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 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 (SPECIAL OFFER) and an unbeatable set of travel 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 10,000 Avios.

Capital on Tap Visa card

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa 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 and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express card

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.

Amex Platinum Business American Express

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus 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.

(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 (65)

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

  • Alex W says:

    I made a £5 transaction on my Lloyds card that was charged to my account over 220 times, leaving me £1200 out of pocket! It took me months to resolve with various other snags along the way. But I got the money back eventually plus a total of £300 compensation from 3 complaints.

  • Sagereid says:

    I’m also still waiting for my Avois points months after opening the account, I’ve already spent enough for the upgrade voucher. I received £100 compensation and they now phone me regularly, to tell me, so far, they still haven’t fixed the problem. I suspect there are many people with the same problem and they have a huge backlog to get through.

  • Neil says:

    My points go on ok but I find Lloyds very odd to deal with generally. Firstly, my credit limit is £2,900. It has been for the three years I’ve had the card. They won’t increase it at all. It’s their choice and I don’t proclaim to have credit limit rights, but all of my other cards have more usable limits that have increased over time.

    Then, when they introduced the new £150 a year version I applied to simply move over to that one. It got declined! I queried it and they said I was too risky. “But I have an existing card I’m asking to move over, I’m not asking for any additional credit”. “Nope, computer says no”. But I’m free to use my existing credit limit.

    More worrying for me is that the MBNA purchase is back on the table, according to recent press. This will give me a headache as four of my cards are issued by MBNA. If they move to LBG systems I’m pretty much finished because if I’m risky at £2,900 limit, it’ll blow their minds when they find my £25k limit with MBNA.

  • JayZio says:

    Avios & upgrade voucher posted fine and the Amex / MC combo and no FX works well, but the customer experience has been painful. Initial card didn’t arrive for 3 weeks, and the reordered card then arrived on the same day as the now-cancelled original. Several hours spent in branch and on the phone trying to sort out the additional card for my OH before the application was eventually “lost in the post”. Penalised £12 for overspend after they they notified me my limit had gone up, although this was refunded without too much fuss.

    Overall I’m happy with the benefits and am keeping it but the customer experience did inspire me to go Amex Plat which has been a dream. Jury out on whether I stay for year 2 with no signup bonus, but my word it’s nice to have.

  • TGLoyalty says:

    I had an issue with not getting c2k avios one month and made a few calls and maybe an hour max of my life trying to sort it with all the various callbacks but Lloyds gave me £150 compensation for my troubles, having already waited 3 months I wasn’t really bothered about the avios after that but they fixed it within a couple weeks once the formal complaint was raised.

    Re the refferal bonus 2 posted very quickly without trouble but another took forever and despite avios knowing it was there and payable it was an eventual Twitter post that actually got it fixed

  • the_real_a says:

    I received £80 compensation after a battle with them to understand if the qualifying period for the upgrade voucher was based on calendar year or anniversary year since (of taking out the cad) their terms and conditions said both in different locations. Of course no agent actually understood what i was talking about… Its anniversary year if anyone else is wondering.

  • Kathy says:

    Oh, The joy of Lloyds CS. I’ve just received a letter telling me of changes in their online banking T&Cs, despite the fact that according to their system I don’t hold an eligible product for online banking. This was what the in-branch computer system said when I attempted to sort it out by going in with ID, after trying and failing to set it up online.

  • ADS says:

    i referred a friend recently, and since they are heading to the US in a couple of weeks, the following day i contacted Lloyds to see if they could chase up the application email for my friend.

    the Lloyds online chat person said that if my friend used the normal application website, and used the same email address that i had referred … then we would each get our 4,500 referral avios. apparently every couple of weeks, Lloyds go through their list of applications and referrals, and post the referral bonuses.

    i have a record of the online chat – will find out in a week or so if it actually works !

    • Alan says:

      IME it does seem to work, as silly a system as it seems!

    • Rob says:

      That is true, I can confirm. I have referred people who never got the email, gave up, applied direct and got the bonus.

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

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