Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

BA says goodbye to in-flight shopping on short-haul, the Daily Mail and the Daily Telegraph

Links on Head for Points may support the site by paying a commission.  See here for all partner links.

British Airways has made an internal announcement that it is phasing out in-flight shopping on short-haul flights from January.

January 2018 sees the arrival of the first A320 / A321 NEO aircraft which will come with new high-density seating.  At the same time, the existing short-haul fleet will begin to be retrofitted to the same design.

One key plank of the new design is the removal of the toilets at the rear of the aircraft.  These will now be built into the back wall, allowing extra rows of seats to fill the space currently taken up by the loo.

British Airways A320

The downside is that the space available for storage trolleys is reduced by the width of the loo.  Something has to give, and that ‘something’ is the cart containing the shopping items.

Shopping will remain on the aircraft which have yet to be converted, but as this becomes a bit of a lottery I would suggest that you make your giant Toblerone purchases in the terminal instead.

To be honest, I am surprised that in-flight shopping has survived so long.  Sales always seemed minimal on short-haul flights.  Has anyone at BA ever done the maths on the fuel burn generated by an additional heavy trolley and the brochures?

I can’t help thinking that whatever profit is generated from in-flight sales would be eaten up by fuel costs, and that is before you factor in the crew time required at a time when some flights are struggling to serve all ‘buy on board’ customers.

Newspaper changes too …..

Change is also coming to the British Airways newspaper selection.

From TODAY, the Daily Telegraph will no longer be available on board, in British Airways lounges or at the gates.

From 23rd December, the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday will no longer be offered.

British Airways says that this is due to the scrapping of bulk distribution deals by these two titles.  If this is accurate then they are also likely to disappear from hotel lobbies and other airport lounges amas well.

Other newspapers, primarily The Times and Financial Times, will continue to be offered.

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (July 2024)

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

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

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £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

30,000 Avios and the famous annual 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 £15,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points. These points convert at 1:1 into Avios.

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

40,000 bonus points AND (to 27th August) £400 to spend at Amex Travel 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 10,500 Avios.

Capital on Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,000 points bonus – plus an extra 500 points for our readers 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 an annual £200 Amex Travel credit 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 (130)

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

  • Julian says:

    But the something important, namely the free sandwich or meal plus tea or coffee and soft drink or wine or gin and tonic etc, has already gone.

    So what is the difference now between BA (short haul) and Easyjet or Norwegian? As far as I can see it the only difference is that only BA flies out of Heathrow but that only Norwegian offers free wifi.

    • Catalan says:

      Why should it be different? There’s no money in shorthaul unless you’re a LLC. Most of BA’s shorthaul traffic is from transferring passengers to/from its longhaul network. Point to point traffic works only on LLCs like easyJet/Ryanair, as Virgin discovered when its Little Red project failed. They had no feeder traffic!

      • Anna says:

        Then why no Man-Gatwick shuttle any more? They must have lost so much of their Caribbean business when they cancelled this service.

    • The_real_a says:

      There is none. I came to this realisation about 8-9 years ago. Ryanair/easy/wizz + priority pass + priority boarding is far more comfortable than BA. The only reason i flew BA for so long was because heathrow happened to be incredably convienient. Now im up north, short haul airlines are just a bus.

  • The_real_a says:

    You all sound like old farts! Printed words on physical paper? Good lord how 20th century… 😉

  • Briandt says:

    I think you may find that most readers turn right, while the smug sumptuous lot turn left.

  • Will says:

    Surprised to see so many anti Daily Heil comments. My gut feel would be that BA pax are a hugely mixed bunch but the loss of the Tory rag and Daily Heil would result in elderly protest from a lot of its very loyal Brexity passengers.

  • Whiskerxx says:

    Just wondering if there will be a copy of the Mail in the lucky bag at the Xmas do? 🙂

  • Lesley says:

    Just because I love it here is a sort of appropriate link

  • Martin says:

    I’m fairly sure I have never bought anything onboard a BA flight or any other flights.

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

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.