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Avios invests in online banking app Monese – what is its plan?

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On Monday I published a mini-rant about the bloated state of the UK credit card industry.  As part of that, I asked why investors were pouring vast sums into online current account start-ups (Monzo, Revolut, Starling etc) when such products have never made money even for legacy banks.

On the other hand, few start-ups are pushing into UK credit cards which have historically been hugely profitable.

A reader pointed out to me that Avios Group recently invested in Monese as part of a $60m funding round – see here.

Avios and Monese

If you’ve never heard of Monese, it is like Revolut, Starling or Monzo but aimed at people who are new to a country and would otherwise struggle to meet the checks required to open a traditional bank account.

You can open a Monese account in various European countries, including the UK, simply by uploading a scan of your passport.  Monese is, of course, also happy to open an account for you if you are living and working in your home country.  If you are reading this on a tablet or mobile, you can click here to download the Monese app and have your account open within minutes.

I am assuming that Avios has a plan for Monese – we need to see what develops over the next few months.


How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (September 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.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

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

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points, £200 travel credit and an unbeatable set of 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

50,000 points bonus until 2nd October – 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 long list of travel benefits 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 (150)

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

  • Sunil Sood says:

    JAJA are a credit card fintech currently raising funds on the Seedrs platform (https://www.seedrs.com/jaja/). I believe they plan to launch in the next month or so.

    https://jaja.co.uk/

  • Tom Morris says:

    All though I have never earned Marriott rewards I have a rewards account but it has zero balance, could I buy the 45000 points and then use the purchased points to book one of the above packages? Any body had any experience of this ?

    • Rob says:

      No practical reason why not, as long as there is no rule on accounts being ‘active’ before you can buy. Long term, easier to get the Starwood Amex and pick up 30,000 points as a sign up bonus.

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

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