UPDATE – JANUARY 2021: This article is now out of date, but don’t worry. We produce a monthly directory of the top UK travel credit card offers – please click HERE or use the ‘Credit Card Offers’ menu above. Thank you.
It is time for our regular round up of what is coming and what is going in the world of UK airline and hotel credit card sign-up deals.
Our directory of the 16 main UK travel credit and charge cards can be found by clicking the ‘Credit Cards’ tab at the top of the site or – for email, Flipboard, Apple News or mobile readers – by clicking here.
What was new in February?
The first Avios payment card for small businesses launched – with a special HFP sign-up offer
Until now, there has never been a payment for small businesses which let you earn Avios. This has now changed!
The Capital Club card, from Capital on Tap, is aimed at small businesses and sole traders. Whilst you may not have heard of Capital on Tap, it already has 50,000 customers for its existing ‘no rewards’ payment card. This is their first move into the rewards market.
This is what the card offers your business:
- 10,000 Capital on Tap points (converts to 5,000 Avios) for signing up and spending £5,000 within 3 months
- 1 Capital on Tap point for every £1 you spend (converts to 0.5 Avios)
- No foreign exchange fees when spending overseas
- No ATM fees if withdrawing cash on the card
- Up to 56 days interest free credit on purchases (minimum monthly repayment is the greater of 10% of balance or £250)
- Up to 15 free supplementary cards for your staff
The card has an annual fee of £99. This is obviously tax deductible as a business expense. The maximum credit limit on offer is £50,000.
There is an extra bonus for Head for Points readers! If you use promo code headforpoints when signing up, you will receive an additional 500 Capital on Tap points. This is worth an additional 250 Avios.
The site will still show 10,000 Capital on Tap points as your bonus but the extra 500 will be added separately. Your interest rate is based on your business profile and can be as low as 9.9% APR. The standard interest rate for marketing purposes is 39.4% APR.
The special offer on the Virgin Reward credit cards ended – but gained an app!
The sign-up bonus on the Virgin Reward and Virgin Reward+ credit cards dropped back to its standard level last Thursday. You will now only receive 5,000 miles (was 10,000) on the free card and 15,000 miles (was 25,000 miles) on the paid Reward+ card.
On the upside, the Apple and Android smartphone apps from Virgin Money finally launched. You can now manage your cards on the go.
Monese launched an exclusive partnership with Avios
Online-only bank Monese announced a partnership with Avios, which also has an equity stake in the business. We covered the Monese / Avios partnership here.
The benefits so far are restricted to viewing your Avios balance and recent transactions. There is a lot more to come, however, which will apparently include the ability to earn Avios with your debit card spending.
You download the Monese app here if you want to give it a try.
Bank of Ireland announced it is dropping its Real Rewards credit card in Ireland
For our Irish readers, Aer Lingus is now offering a co-brand credit card in association with Bank of Ireland. The reception has been muted, to be honest. There is no sign-up bonus and the monthly fee is high.
There was an alternative option, however. The free Bank of Ireland personal credit card let you earn SuperValu Real Rewards supermarket points, which converted at 1:1 into Avios. The rate wasn’t great to put it mildly – 1 Avios per €10 spent – but a lot of people found it better than paying €7.99 per month for the ‘official’ Aer Lingus / Bank of Ireland card.
Unfortunately this option is ending. From 1st April it will no longer be possible to earn SuperValue points from Bank of Ireland credit cards. Your only route for earning Avios is to pay up for the Aer Lingus credit card.
American Express still has 30,000 point bonus on the DOLLAR / EURO versions of the Platinum card
For the first time in a while, Amex is running a sign-up bonus on its Dollar and Euro Platinum charge cards – 30,000 Membership Rewards points to be precise.
The good news is that you can get this bonus even if you already have a UK Platinum or Gold card. The bad news is that this is a complicated product with poorer transfer rates to most airline schemes than the UK cards. I wrote about the pros, cons and sweet spots in this article.
Finally, I also ran this article on “What are the best travel credit cards for LONG-TERM spending?“.
Want to earn more points from credit cards? – January 2021 update
If you are looking to apply for a new credit or charge card, here are our January 2021 recommendations based on the current sign-up bonus.
British Airways American Express
5,000 Avios for signing up, no annual fee and a companion voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review
British Airways American Express Premium Plus
25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable credit card perk – the 2-4-1 companion voucher Read our full review
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
30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review
Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard
15,000 points bonus and the most generous non-Amex for day to day spending Read our full review
Earning miles and points from small business cards
If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these:
American Express Business Gold
20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review
American Express Business Platinum
40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review
British Airways Accelerating Business American Express
Earn both Avios and BA On Business points with your business spending Read our full review
Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa
The most generous Avios Visa or Mastercard for a limited company Read our full review
Disclaimer: Head for Points is a journalistic website. Nothing here should be construed as financial advice, and it is your own responsibility to ensure that any product is right for your circumstances. Recommendations are based primarily on the ability to earn miles and points and do not consider interest rates, service levels or any impact on your credit history. By recommending credit cards on this site, I am – technically – acting as a credit broker. Robert Burgess, trading as Head for Points, is regulated and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a credit broker.