Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Bits: ‘Buy Avios’ bonus, more on Kimpton / Accelerate, new JAL London service

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News in brief:

Up to 30% bonus when you buy Avios

Iberia Plus has launched a new ‘buy Avios’ promotion which runs until 30th July.

The offer is:

10% bonus when you buy 2,000 to 15,000 Avios

20% bonus when you buy 20,000 to 80,000 Avios

30% bonus when you buy 85,000 to 100,000 Avios

At the top end, you will be paying €1,800 for 130,000 Avios.  Given the weak £, this works out at 1.22p per Avios based on £1,593.  You would need to add a 3% foreign exchange fee to this price if your credit card has one.

I would not usually be a buyer at this price unless I had a very specific redemption in mind which I knew would be worth more than I am paying.  Don’t forget that BA had a 50% flash sale just three weeks ago and such offers appear to be more common than they were.  I don’t see why a 20% bonus – which is what most people would get given the price ranges – is too exciting.

The exact rules for who can buy Iberia Plus Avios are always confusing.  You MUST have been an Iberia Plus member for 90 days before you can transfer Avios from Iberia to BA via ‘Combine My Avios’.  I think you also need to have earned at least one Avios point in your Iberia account before you can buy points although that may have changed.  Thanks to Andrew.

Avios wing 10

More on Kimpton Amsterdam and IHG Accelerate

I wrote yesterday that IHG Rewards Club was denying credit for their Accelerate promotion to guests at the new Kimpton De Witt hotel in Amsterdam.

Whilst every other Kimpton hotel globally is part of the Kimpton Karma scheme, De Witt Amsterdam is part of IHG Rewards Club.  You can earn and redeem IHG points with the hotel, so it was bizarre that it did not count towards the major Accelerate promotion this quarter.

IHG has now told me that this is a mistake and that it will be corrected.  My Accelerate home page has not yet updated, but I will give it time.  You don’t need to start moving bookings away from Kimpton De Witt due to the lack of Accelerate credit.

This means that my stay in Paris next week will trigger 11,200 bonus Accelerate points for ‘staying in two overseas countries’.  Which is nice.

JAL SkySuite

New Avios redemption option to Tokyo

Japan Airlines, a BA partner in the oneworld alliance, has announced a second daily flight from Heathrow to Tokyo from 29th October.

The flight will depart Heathrow at 09.30, landing at Haneda at 06.25.

JAL has said that the service will feature the new Sky Suite product in Business Class, pictured above.  This uses the herringbone layout favoured by Cathay Pacific, Qatar Airways and – on refurbished planes – American Airlines.

You can redeem Avios points for flights on JAL although you cannot use a British Airways American Express 241 voucher.  You should also remember that partner redemptions always charged at peak day pricing, irrespective of whether BA is charging peak or off-peak prices at the same time.

That said, if you are redeeming for just yourself and on a British Airways peak day, I would be very tempted to seek out this new JAL seat over a British Airways Club World service.  I am guessing that the cabin is not as dark as the PR photograph implies ….


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (November 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.

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

30,000 points and unbeatable 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

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

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 £200 Amex Travel credit every year 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 (65)

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

  • RKp says:

    Guys, I am looking forward to book 2 ine ways – Lon-Tokyo and Tokyo-Lon on around late mar 2018 and return in between April 9-11th 2018. I have app 92k avios and expecting 40k avios in next 2 months. After moving my head around for too many times I think I may have to settle down with one leg on business class and another leg on Prem eco or eco. Lon -tok bus class with jal is 90k avios +£245 and Prem eco is 56k avios + £140. But Tokyo to Lon business class is 90k avios + £88, and Prem eco is 5650 avios + £44. Please can you suggest which leg leg I should choose bus to get the best possible experience and enjoyment? if I book onward in Prem eco and return on bus, costs goes down but avios used will be same. I am bit confused as I never flew jal before.
    Thanks guys and any help is much appreciated.

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

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