Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

British Airways expands connection car transfers for premium passengers

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

British Airways has announced an extension of its chauffeur driven executive car connection service at Heathrow.

Passengers travelling in First, Club World or Club Europe, plus British Airways Gold and Silver Executive Club members who are at risk of missing their connection, will be driven to their next flight.  Apparently an initial trial has proved successful and more vehicles are being added to the airline’s fleet.

British Airways expands premium car transfers

Other current initiatives to improve the Heathrow connection experience are in-air rebooking with your new flight details sent to the crew and a boarding pass waiting for you at the plane door, the allocation of planes with large numbers of connecting passengers to a gate in the same part of T5 and self-service boarding pass printers in the Flight Connections Centre, pictured below:

British Airways car connections for late arrivals


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (May 2023)

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:

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 30th May, the sign-up bonus on the Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard is doubled to a crazy 50,000 Avios! Apply here.

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 30th May, the sign-up bonus on the free Barclaycard Avios Mastercard is doubled to 10,000 Avios. Apply here.

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

CRAZY 50,000 Avios for signing up (to 30th May) and an upgrade voucher at £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

10,000 Avios for signing up (only to 30th May) 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

25,000 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 £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.

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 13th June, the sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card is doubled to 60,000 Membership Rewards points – and you get £200 to spend at Amex Travel too! Apply here.

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

60,000 points AND a £200 Amex Travel voucher until 13th June! 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

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers 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 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 (178)

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

  • vol says:

    OT: Groupon Spain Avios in my Iberia account – very smooth transaction.

    • David says:

      Yes – mine too. And the email from plus store about additional avios as well, despite the various t’s & c’s saying they wouldn’t come through (of course they haven’t actually arrived yet…)

  • Keith says:

    BA car transfers – a positive move by BA. But you do have to question why. Could it be the EU 261 compensation rules for example? And if so, it brings home the fact that a good bit of regulation works. I’d like to see regulation on minimum seat pitch, plus minimum service, including complimentary bottled water on all airlines that touch UK airports.

    • Callum says:

      I’d imagine it wouldn’t be restricted by status if it had anything to do with EU261.

      There are regulations on minimum seat pitch. I’d much rather have the freedom to decide what level of service I wish to pay for. I’ve never understood why people are happy to pay extra in the fare for additional service but somehow find it arduous to pay for it on the plane instead? You manage having to pay for things in your normal everyday life without too much stress I’m sure!

      • Paul says:

        Because if Keith needs a glass of water mid air, he can’t just jump out of the plane to the nearest cloud shop and buy one. And water is minimal cost – 15p per litre if that.

        • swhostring says:

          Hot water is free, BA cabin crew more than happy to fill up your cup/ & teabag/ or coffee sachet with the same hot water everybody gets

        • Callum says:

          He can buy it from the cart though…

    • ChrisC says:

      Someone must have done a cost benefit on the costs of the cars against the cost of potential EU 261 payouts. But aside from that it will make a relatively small group,of people feel a little better towards BA if their flight is delayed a little and some will no doubt boast about getting a car and other people didn’t.

      Im not sure we’d ever get legislation on seat pitch / width though as it would open the door to all sorts of other issues / demands on what a minimum service is and anyway they would just increase the fares to cover the cost and people would complain they were paying for stuff they didn’t use or need and it should be unbundled from the fare …

    • BJ says:

      +1 for sear pitch, and width too. I saw reports that new scanners are being tested that could bring an end to the liquid restrictions.

    • Nick says:

      I don’t want to see anyone forced to provide bottled water. In this age of environmental enlightenment I’d prefer to see bottled water banned completely.

      Qantas do not provide bottled water on their flights, it’s from a jug. And they’re supposedly the pinnacle of optimum service. Would you like to see them banned from the EU? ????

      • Mike says:

        What on earth is wrong with having bottled water ? It is really quite handy

        • Aliks says:

          Plastic, for one thing. Its been in the news recently you should look it up on google . . .

        • swhostring says:

          Plastics used in UK bottled waters are 100% recyclable these days

        • Lumma says:

          From what I saw in my previous job working in a casual dining restaurant, people tended to use plastics as a way to bully people in work who have no say in whether plastics are used or not

      • Tim B says:

        I think you’ll find Qantas use large 2 litre plastic bottles to fill those jugs… for an aeroplane, plastic really does make the most sense. Bloomin’ snowflakes.

        • Alex W says:

          Bloomin old farts, thinking they know best and imposing their problems for the younger generations to clear up.

        • Cat says:

          Nick, Aliks, Alex W and Anna +1. I absolutely agree, see my post below!

      • Tim says:

        Qantas fill their jugs from large plastic bottles of water. For an aeroplane, plastic really is quite useful. Bloomin’ snowflakes.

      • CV3V says:

        What to do they pour the water from the jug into? A glass or a plastic cup?

      • Anna says:

        +1. As I recall Air France have a water fountain in Economy where you can just go and fill up your bottle or cup.

      • the_real_a says:

        Practically all Asian airports offer multiple water dispensers for refilling reusable bottles. These are not some disgusting device in the gents toilet either, they are purpose built sanitary devices that you just press a button and quickly fill up your receptacle. Perhaps they should be mandatory in the uk?

        I have been filling up a reusable bottle in the lounges for about 15 years. Never had an issue, and the ice helps to keep the water cool.

  • Callum says:

    There are several options for AirNZ – all you have to do is look at their route map! You can also go from Ho Chi Minh City, Bali, Singapore, Shanghai or Osaka.

  • #FML says:

    I changed my date of travel on an IB avios redemption on a BA flight the original date was peak 120,000 avios but the new date is off peak102,000 avios.Will IB recredit the 18,000 back to my
    IB account ?

    • Evan says:

      Wow you posted the same question in all 3 daily threads….persistent.

      • #FML says:

        Still has not got me any answers ☹️.

        Can’t face calling IB & dealing with their contact centre ????.

        • ChrisC says:

          Well you’re not going to get many responses at 6am! So be patient and don’t post the same question repeatedly.

          And guess what the answer is – you’ll have to phone IB and ask them.

        • sunguy says:

          Totally 100% get that – IB call centers are the worst experience – especially when they are also taking inbound American Airlines calls from Europe…..thats even worse!

          Though as Chris C points out, the only folks that can tell you for sure are IB – though just be prepared to get an awful lot of confused answers and probably be told by 2 different agents 3 different stories…..

  • BJ says:

    Not much point taking a positioning flight to AMS to obtain a one stop flight for £1375 when you can get the one stop exUK for around £1500 or as low as £1150 in promotions. However, it is attractive for anybody wanting a break in Amsterdam and/or Dubai as I might have been myself in my younger days but no longer.

    How does the car connection at LHR work in practice? Are connecting pax on each flight told on board that they will be transferred by car then escorted to car etc? I never heard of this service before, if it is working well it will encourage me and I imagine many others to book the tightest connection possible..

    • Lumma says:

      I can see people thinking up ways to delay the first segment to try and get a car connection. Maybe book an avois seat for a friend, get them to check a bag, treat them to a couple of hours in the lounge which causes them to miss the flight and have to have the bags unloaded 😉

    • riku says:

      how does the car connection work: on the approach to LHR the cabin crew get a message about who is getting the car connection. They tell the passenger in person that there will be a “premium transfer” waiting for them on arrival. When you get off the plane there is somebody waiting at the jetway – I think with your name shown. They lead you down some stairs to the waiting car/minibus. In my case it was from T5 to T3. Since I had 2h for the connection they just left me in the departures area of T3 and I went to CX lounge.

  • Mud Island Mlungu says:

    Etihad is £1350 and Qatar is £1535 for the same routing ex AMS.

  • S says:

    O/T: Are there any clever ways to get reasonably priced one way cross-border car hire in Europe? Specifically I’m looking for Hamburg to Copenhagen but also interested generally. Hertz prices one way within Germany very reasonably but border cross adds 400 Euros!

    • Nick says:

      leave it in the same country and use the train across the border?

    • BlueThroughCrimp says:

      Just get the train.
      Hamburg to Copenhagen is an interesting train journey, with the train going right on to the ferry.

      Last time I was on it, you could disembark the train once it’s in the ferry.

    • Alex W says:

      Try autoslash dot com they always seem.yo avoid one way fees.

      • S says:

        That sounded promising but unfortunately gets same rate as elsewhere – £500. Will bear in mind for future though.

        Not too keen on train as I want to stop and explore along the way

        • Alex W says:

          Try ticking all the boxes for discounts such as AA, Amex Plat, airline membership etc. Even if you don’t have them, in my experience it has never been checked whether you actually hold a centurion card etc.

  • Phillip says:

    Alaska’s Mileage Plan is extremely generous with the miles credited for Emirates flights in premium cabins! In many cases it’s more than double the miles flown! For the 12,531 mile return flights from Amsterdam in Business, you will get credited with 28,195 Alaska Mileage Plan Miles! That can easily get you a one way flight in Business on JAL from Tokyo to Singapore/Bangkok. Or if you want to maximiase… Delhi-Tokyo-Singapore/Bangkok. 45,000 gets you a one way flight in Business on Cathay from Europe to HKG.

    • Rob says:

      True, but very hard to top up and prone to no-notice changes so I don’t like to encourage this.

      • Callum says:

        Unless you get your miles from flying – their list of partners is very impressive.

      • Phillip says:

        I don’t disagree although I’d take that risk any day over crediting anything to Skywards. I find it to be an absolutely useless programme, between redemption rates, surcharges (people moan about BA but so many other airlines charge hefty surcharges) and the expiry rules.

        Alaska very often have Mileage sales with around 40% bonus so I generally find it an excellent programme to use when you already have a target in mind. It’s not particularly “friendly” for European redemptions other than BA and Cathay (and that’s limited to HKG) but there are definitely some very cheap and interesting uses around the world.

        • Rob says:

          You’re clearly not an Arsenal fan then! We had a very nice VIP hospitality day at Queens Club tennis this Summer on Skywards miles too.

          If you’ve got sproglets you’ll also find FAR better availability during peak UK school holiday periods than you’ll get on BA.

        • Phillip says:

          Arsenal! Of course. I knew there was something I was forgetting! 😉

          Yes, I agree on their availability.

        • Phillip says:

          A couple of family members have been flying Emirates solely because they feel that they support Arsenal by doing so! Each to their own I guess! 🙂

    • Matthew says:

      Think its actually slightly less at 42,500 CX to HKG from Europe 😉

    • KevMc says:

      Is there a way to top up Alaska miles other than buying them?

      • Rob says:

        I would imagine the only cost effective route is Amex to Marriott to Alaska which is 2 : 3: 1, so 0.5 miles per Amex point.

        • Alex W says:

          Plus 5k bonus for converting 60k. I think marriott travel packages are still an OK deal if there’s no better way to get miles. But they are much worse than they used to be.

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.