Bits: 500 free Avios for most BA Amex holders, when your BA flight becomes Air Belgium, ‘Credit Card Reviews’ returns

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News in brief:

500 free Avios for British Airways American Express cardholders

American Express has launched a no-brainer offer for most British Airways American Express cardholders.

Look at the ‘Offers’ tab on your online statement page.  You should see an offer for 500 Avios when you spend £5.  There are no restrictions on where you spend the £5 as long as it is in the UK and before 30th November.

Remember that the app only shows a selection of your offers.  You need to access the Amex site via a desktop or tablet to see the full list.

You need to click ‘Save to Card’ but that is literally all you need to do.  It is limited to the first 56,000 people to activate it but as it only launched yesterday I think you’ll be fine.  I’m not sure what has brought on this act of generosity but it would be rude to say no.

500 free Avios for British Airways American Express cardholders

What it’s like to fly Air Belgium when you’re expecting British Airways Club World

If you are due to fly to Abu Dhabi in the near future, you may be in for a surprise.  Air Belgium has been standing in for British Airways due to its problematic Boeing 787-9 fleet.

Reader Gill recently took this service and dropped me a note with her thoughts.  The key fact is that, despite flying on what is basically a Finnair cast-off Airbus A340, it is better than Club World …..

  • The crew are employed by Air Belgium and the cabin is branded Air Belgium
  • Service is the standard Club World offering
  • White Company bedding and washbags are offered, as per Club World
  • The seats are good, comfortable and with a novel massage feature
  • The crew are “incredibly delightful” – “I got a welcome as a Gold member (can’t remember the last time that happened) and they also came and spoke to me to reassure me that my Gluten Free Meal was on board.  They also spoke to each passenger to wish us well and hope we enjoyed our flight before landing.”
  • Staff numbers seemed a lot higher than on a normal Abu Dhabi run, with six in Business Class

The downsides Gill noted were:

  • The in-flight entertainment is rubbish – a selection of about 10 films and nothing else (take your tablet and load it up)
  • The staff were incredibly nervous and slow with the service
  • For those that like to purchase duty free there is none on board

Gill concluded: “I would fly this service again and want to reassure people who may feel they are getting a budget airline.  It’s not BA or a brand new Dreamliner that’s the real downside, but the staff and their mode of operation really impressed me.  I do think that some BA staff could take a leaf out of the Air Belgium staff who were happy to help and really pleasant.  They made sure each and every passenger was well catered for.  The Air Belgium substitution is not an ideal situation, but its also not to be feared.”

Our ‘Credit Card Reviews’ series returns

Starting tomorrow, we will be running the 2018 edition of our ‘Credit Card Reviews’ series of articles.

Each day we will devote a full article to the pros and cons of a specific travel rewards credit card.  The full series can always be found under the ‘Favourites’ tab in the top menu or clicking ‘Credit Card Reviews’ in the Categories section of the sidebar (desktop and tablet sites only).  Now that MBNA has closed its cards, it will take us a week less than last year to do it!

Play Marriott’s ‘daily win’ game

Finally, don’t forget to click here to play the Marriott Rewards ’29 Ways To Stay’ daily win game today.  You should win at least 50, but hopefully more, Marriott Rewards points.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for the latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios from current offers and promotions.)

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  1. I’ve just earned my Lloyds upgrade voucher for spending £7k. It has posted to my avios account in the last couple of days. I have a booking which I want to cancel. The booking was made during my last year but if it is refunded now would I loose the upgrade voucher as the refund would be this year and my spend would then be less than £7k?

  2. This is the first time I have had an offer and not had the automatic redeem email through when I made the transaction. The offer says points to credit in 5 days, but they haven’t. Anyone actually got the 500 avios for this?

    • Kathy Mallam says:

      Yes- my 500 came through today- think the 6th day after the spend. No automatic e-mail- just found it on the account.

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