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Get 250 free Avios for joining Meridiana Club (but any use?)

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You may never have heard of Italian airline Meridiana, even though it uses Avios for its reward programme.

I wouldn’t blame you.  It does appear to be a slightly bizarre operation.  It is the 2nd biggest Italian-owned airline in Italy but that isn’t saying much.  In terms of passenger numbers, the league table goes Ryanair / Alitalia / easyJet / Vueling / Meridiana, with Meridiana just 15% the size of Ryanair in Italy. 

You also have Meridiana’s odd ownership.  Formerly almost wholly owned by the Aga Khan, the spiritual leader of the Ismaili Muslims, a 49% stake was acquired by Qatar Airways in April 2017.  This follows the trend of Middle Eastern airlines investing in loss making Italian airlines, following Etihad’s debacle with Alitalia.


Etihad wasn’t totally mad. Rumour has it that the money it invested in Alitalia was secured on its Heathrow landing slots.  With the airline clearly unable to repay the loan, it may give Etihad backdoor access to the extra slots it needs at Heathrow to compete with Qatar Airways and Emirates head to head.

In 2014, Meridiana adopted Avios as its loyalty currency.

I wrote about the deal here.  It is an odd agreement because, at present, you cannot move Avios between Meridiana Club and any other Avios programmes.  However, you can redeem Avios points on Meridiana flights via (long haul routes seem to require telephone booking) and Meridiana Club members can redeem across BA and Iberia.

Whether you would actually want to redeem your Avios on Meridiana is a different question.  Taxes are huge – a return economy flight from Olbia to Naples costs 9,000 Avios plus £133 for example.  The option is there, though.

Get 250 free Avios for joining Meridiana Club

All of the above is just a long way of saying that the offer below is not necessarily any use to you.  As it’s a Sunday, though, you might want to give it a go if you have a quiet minute.

When you join Meridiana Club in July, you will receive 250 free Avios.

There is no small print.  The Avios will be added within 10 days.

For total clarity …. there is no logical reason to do this at the moment.  The points will be stuck in Meridiana Club.

However ….. at some point soon, all of the various Avios programmes, including Executive Club, will be moved onto the central Avios IT platform. It is more likely, although not certain, that you will then be able to move points around freely and move your 250 Avios from Meridiana Club into British Airways Executive Club.

Frankly, if it is a choice today of joining Meridiana Club or going out for a kick around with your kids, I’d take the latter.  On the other hand, if you’re reading this on the sofa whilst your other half is watching Fake Or Fortune? then it might be worth a minute out of your life ……

how to earn avios from credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (July 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:

British Airways American Express card

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up, no annual fee and a companion voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

BA Premium Plus American Express card BAPP

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 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 – 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

30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

We also 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

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 (33)

  • Billy says:

    I’ve lost a lot of faith in these promotions after the failure to post of the 500 Avios for AerClub and 1000 Avios for Marriott.

  • Costas says:

    I also did not receive the bonus points for Marriott

    • Lumma says:

      One member of my household account got a random 6600 avios from Marriott. No idea why but I think I got someone else’s points for a stay in a hotel in the USA.

  • Lee says:

    Slow news day 😉

    • Rob says:

      No, I just thought it would be interesting to discuss Meridiana for once. I admit I hesitated about the 1-2-3 positioning.

  • Chris says:

    I am also still waiting for the 1000 avios from Marriott

  • MrsBish says:

    I signed up for Marriot on 3/6, filled in my BAEC number on the form, got a confirmation e-mail. No 1000 points. I e-mailed them 10/7 but no reply as of yet. I’m not sure how companies get away with this sort of thing. If you offer a promotion you should honour it.

    • justme says:

      I got a reply saying there was an error and the miles will post by end of july

      • MrsBish says:

        I’vs had two emails from Marriott about the 1,000 Avios offer; first of all they had no idea what I was talking about so I sent a screenshot of the offer T&Cs. Then I had a reply saying to take it up with Avios – ?!? As this was a Marriott promotion, with the points posting to BAEC, why would I take it up Avios? Really don’t understand what’s going on here.

        • the real harry1 says:

          it’s not ‘they’ or ‘Marriott’ – but some low-paid person trying to dismiss your query in 2 minutes

          which is often the case & why IMV it’s usually not worth spending much time pursuing these things when they go wrong

          if you feel strongly about these 1000 Avios, try escalating the whole thing to the most senior person you can contact

  • Harry says:

    For the 2 minutes it took to join it may one day be worth it. Actually looks a well put together website.

  • Nick says:

    Nice insight there into Rob’s wife’s life……

    • the real harry1 says:


      I’m sure Mrs Raffles speaks perfect English – same as my wife who is also from foreign shores – but mine does prefer, shall we say, less demanding TV to unwind 🙂

      to be fair, she also loves Newsnight, Question Time etc progs as well, which we can share – but I wouldn’t dream of watching perhaps as much as 90% of the drivel she puts on TV

      • Gavin says:

        My wife will only watch Korean TV on YouTube! And I wonder why I spend half my life explaining Bloomberg headlines to her…

        • the real harry1 says:


          good job our wives hold down big jobs or are otherwise essential to our lives 🙂

  • @mkcol says:

    I’d never heard of Fake or Fortune. I wish I’d taken the dogs out for a kickabout in the park instead 🙁

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