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Generous Avios deals with package holidays ending 31 December

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Avios.com (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 late 2015 this was a very generous deal.  You earned 10 Avios per £1 spent on your booking which, for an expensive family package holiday, often meant a lot of Avios points.  About a year ago the earning rate was cut to 5 Avios points per £1 although occasional ‘double up’ offers meant it remained generous.

Avios wing 6

This is all now to end.  From January 1st, it will no longer be possible to collect Avios points from package holiday bookings.

You can see the announcement on the avios.com homepage for package holiday deals here.

This means, of course, that you CAN still earn Avios on your package holiday bookings for the next six weeks.  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 is here and 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

It is worth noting that you can also REDEEM Avios points for a discount on a package holiday until 31st December – 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.


How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (September 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:

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 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 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.

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.

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

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points, £200 travel credit 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 Business Rewards Visa

50,000 points bonus until 2nd October – 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

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

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.

Comments (60)

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

  • Will says:

    Urghhhh….another perk gone!! We stupidly booked a Kuoni direct without knowing about Avios earlier this yeah. Doh.

    I think the Avios agents are super helpful & I would definitely have thought about using them to get the Avios.

  • Will says:

    nice plan…do you think the rate of Avios return is better than 10 points to the £?

  • Saj says:

    O/T any award wallet codes available ?

  • Ant says:

    OTT:Shop Small
    On the map, is it just the outlets with a number on them that are eligible or even the ones just showing as a blue dot?

    • the real harry says:

      it’s all the dots as well

      when you scroll through outlets on the left, their number appear

      • the real harry says:

        you piqued my interest Ant – I’m having a look around our patch – many more have appeared in the past few weeks

        worst thing is I won’t be buying many half price stamps this year as the Spars are gone, couple of places look possible

        food & drink is better than last year – should keep me busy – several fish & chip suppers as well – quite a few pubs within staggering distance 🙂

        and finally a hairdresser who does Gents cut for £10.70

        map is much more user-friendly this year with links to the outlets https://maps.americanexpress.com/ukshopsmall#/?cl=50.516654,-4.836455999999998

  • Yaakov Kaye says:

    Surely the biggest change here is no more booking Eurostar tickets with Avios.
    They were a great way of using at times especially because there was no Tax to be paid.

  • Tilly71 says:

    Ot:
    Has anyone received their new passwodds from VA yet.

    • Alan says:

      No but I just logged in using existing email/password combo – they asked me to provide new security qns/ans and then I was able to login and told my new VS a/c number. (NB VA is the IATA code for Virgin Australia :D)

  • the real harry says:

    O/T the base points have now posted to BAEC (avios.com were quicker)
    04-Oct-16 17-Nov-16 Avios – 7dayshop.com UK 0 6
    but no 1000 bonus Avios at BAEC, either

  • Wayne says:

    Just seen the Points Guy talking about a statement Alex Cruz made that he thinks the answer is a revenue based program. Given all the cut backs and shrinking of value I guess this spells the end of a fair scheme with Avios?

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

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