Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Earn up to 8 Avios per £1 with a special Hotels.com promotion

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Hotels.com and British Airways Executive Club now have a direct earning relationship, allowing you to earn Avios with every hotel booking.

This deal allows you to earn Avios on virtually every hotel you book – Hotels.com covers several hundreds of thousands of properties globally, more than 5x the combined total of the top five chains – irrespective of whether they are part of a major brand or not.

In order to earn Avios, you need to book via this special link – hotels.com/britishairways.  You will ONLY see the box to add your British Airways Executive Club number if you book via this link.

There are two earning options.

Option 1 – earn 8 Avios per £1 if you book without earning Hotels.com Rewards credit

Until 7th June, you will earn 8 Avios for every £1 spent at Hotels.com as long as you choose not to collect Hotels.com Rewards credits.

The standard rate, from 8th June, is 6 Avios per £1.

The only way to do this is is complete your booking as a ‘guest’ on the Hotels.com site.  Do NOT log in to your existing account or create a new account.

Option 2 – earn 4 Avios per £1 PLUS earn Hotels.com Rewards credit

Until 7th June, you earn a lower rate of 4 Avios for every £1 spent at Hotels.com if you book whilst logged in, or if you create an account during the booking process.

The standard rate, from 8th June, is 3 Avios per £1.

However, you will earn Hotels.com Rewards credit as well.

Hotels.com Avios offer

Which option should I choose?

Before I answer that, let’s look at how Hotels.com Rewards works.

Hotels.com Rewards (the rewards page on their site is here) is an idiot-proof loyalty scheme:

You earn 1 credit for every night you stay, whatever the chain

When you have got 10 credits, you get a free night

The value of the free night is the average price you paid for those 10 nights

Your credits don’t expire as long as you collect or redeem at least one night every 12 months

There aren’t any catches when you redeem. There are no blackout dates and you can pick any property on Hotels.com that takes part in Hotels.com Rewards (ie most of them). You can pay the difference if you want to book a hotel which is more expensive than the value of your free night voucher. You do have to pay taxes and fees.

There is a lot of upside here:

ALL of your stays (assuming the hotels or vacation rentals you book are in Hotels.com Rewards and most are) will count towards free nights. No more ‘wasted’ stays.

Your free night can be used to book any room on Hotels.com. Most reward schemes restrict the ability to book club rooms, suites, family room etc. That is not a problem with Hotels.com Rewards.

When travelling, you are free to stay at the hotel which is most convenient for where you need to be – no need to mess around with badly reviewed properties or out of the way hotels purely to find one in your favourite chain.

If you book multiple rooms, you get credit for all of them. Most hotel loyalty schemes restrict you to earning points on one (IHG), two (Hilton) or at most three (Marriott) rooms per night.

So …..

Because I am a fan of Hotels.com Rewards, I would personally book via Option 2.  I would prefer to earn 4 Avios per £1 plus get 10% of my stay value back as Hotels.com Rewards credit.   This is better – for me – than earning 8 Avios per £1 but giving up my Hotels.com Rewards credit.  I find that I can generate one free night per year this way, mainly from family holiday bookings at unbranded properties.

However, if you are only likely to make occasional bookings via Hotels.com, you may prefer Option 1 and the higher upfront reward of 8 Avios per £1.   After all, your Hotels.com Rewards credit have no value at all until you manage to book 10 nights.

One other thing to remember

Hotels.com bookings do not count for points or stay credit in the loyalty scheme of the chain where you are staying. You may get your status benefits but it is down to the goodwill of the hotel.

If you are booking independent hotels, or hotels chains where you do not collect their points, Hotels.com clearly makes sense.  If you are giving up hotel loyalty points or status benefits, you need to do the maths to see which option works best for you.

Conclusion

Whilst this is a long-term partnership between Hotels.com and Avios, the special rate of 8 Avios per £1 (for non-Hotels.com Rewards bookings) is only valid for bookings until 7th June.

You can find more information on the British Airways / Hotels.com partnership on this special page of ba.com although it does not mention the current special offer.

You need to book via this special Avios page of the Hotels.com website.


HFP-Barclaycard-Avios-Card

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (December 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.

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

30,000 points and unbeatable 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 10,500 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – 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 £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 (101)

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

  • Andrew MS says:

    With Hotels.com , if you book , then cancel and re-book because the price has decreased for example , they will cancel your award on the new booking

  • Memesweeper says:

    If you collect/redeem nights option ‘2’ is a no-brainer. Excellent news, thanks for the tip Rob, I’ll be booking my personal hotels through this route in future.

    I don’t book most of my business travel with hotels.com not because of the lack of earning/recognition of status from hotels, but because I’ve never been able to get a VAT receipt out of them. If this ever changes they’ll get much more business off me and I’m sure many others.

    • sayling says:

      I was just checking their FAQs for exactly that reason – I booked through one of these sites once before and was unable to get a receipt for VAT.

      Actually, that’s not true. I did get a receipt, but there was no VAT, because the site was outside the UK and so didn’t pay, or charge, VAT. That, effectively, is how they make their money – buy/book ex-VAT, sell a little cheaper than VAT inclusive rate.

      But the T&C on the hotels.com site suggests if you want a VAT receipt, select to pay on departure from the hotel.

      May look at this in future, if that’s the case

      • John says:

        Are you saying they are evading tax by pretending a UK customer booking a hotel in the UK (or EU) is not liable to pay VAT? Or is it legal for them to do this?

        • Rob says:

          Seems to be legal but debatable. Hotels.com buys the room from outside the UK and so does not pay VAT. It then resells it to you from outside the UK so you have no VAT to reclaim. Only an issue on UK hotel bookings of course.

          • Bagoly says:

            Relevant to every country with VAT, although most HfP readers don’t (work for organisations that) claim back non-UK VAT.

            “Legal but debateable” – Yes, it sounds to be an example where the interaction of internet business with bricks-and-mortar activity was not envisaged in the tax legislation.
            They are a Texas LP.
            The hotels (or some UK consolidator) are presumably marking at 0% for being an export (itself debatable) – but presumably some as sort of “Accommodation services” because for straight accommodation Hotels.com would appear to be providing taxable services in the UK.
            Maybe Hotels.com legally provide a “voucher” and if purchaser is outside country of hotel that avoids VAT – they might even pay VAT on the ones where purchaser is in the country of the hotel.
            American legislation has been lobbied by the FANGs to be very light on internet businesses.
            To ensure a level playing field with hotels selling direct, I hope HMRC has a go at knocking down the model.

          • memesweeper says:

            > Seems to be legal but debatable. Hotels.com buys the room from outside the UK and so does not pay VAT

            > To ensure a level playing field with hotels selling direct, I hope HMRC has a go at knocking down the model.

            I’d assumed they *paid* VAT but couldn’t charge me VAT, so I couldn’t reclaim it.

            If they don’t even pay the local VAT this is a scandalous example of wholesale avoidance. All the more egregious by not passing the 20% saving on to me!

            Thanks for the ‘pay locally’ tip, I’ll do that in future and can reclaim accordingly.

  • Robert says:

    OT – any cheap tier point runs left in the BA sale, Europe preferred?

    • Stu N says:

      There’s plenty for around £2/TP and you can do a lot better than that; have a play with the low fare finder and see what’s what – e.g Helsinki is 160TPs and £222 return in November.

      We’ve booked a few Edinburgh-London-xxx trips in CE for £2-£2.50/TP in this sale – not pure TP runs but I’d rather spend a little bit more to get well-timed flights to places I actually want to go.

      • Robert says:

        Thanks for this, HEL looking like the best bet, I found the HfP article from January showing the destinations offering 160TP so will scan through those.

  • Greenpen says:

    I use hotels.com a lot and have been very pleased with their various offers and service. However, I have noticed that points earning sites generally have higher prices than available through hotels.com although there are bargains occasionally. You are getting miles but actually directly paying for them making the overall price more expensive.

    Is this happening with this scheme? If so, it is a poor deal but if hotels.com normal prices are being used it represents a nice way to accumulate Avios.

    • Genghis says:

      I’d agree with this. In the past, it has been better overall for me to go through the tripadvisor search portal and forgo any kind of points / cash earnings (but not always). As such, I check both routes now.

    • Joseph Heenan says:

      I’m not sure about in general, but the hotel I just booked for Japan the hotels.com price was exactly the same as booking.com. It was also cheaper than booking directly with the hotel, even after registering with their “members club” for a discounted rate.

      The only website I could find that had it cheaper was nustay, which I’d never heard of, wasn’t significantly cheaper and appeared to be offering a room that was smaller than any room the hotel lists.

      TL;DR at least for this one data point the hotels.com deal looks excellent. I’ve gone for the 4 avios/£ + rewards.

  • GeoffGeoff says:

    I think 15 Avios per £ is still running on hotel bookings via Avios.com (with a Vueling or aerclub account).

  • Combatjohnny says:

    A consistant 8% of through Tottenham Hotpsur website

    • Genghis says:

      Does that then mean you can also get the 10% back and any points / cash earnings? But a bird in the hand and all that…

  • Alan says:

    I rarely find Hotels.com to be competetive with the other aggregators these days. Of the 3 I regularly check for prices I usually find Booking.com to be the cheapest (and most flexible), Expedia second and Hotels.com third.

    • Rob says:

      …. which makes no sense as 2 and 3 are under the same ownership with the same inventory!

      • David D says:

        That will be because Captain Obvious is an expensive hire, they have to make the money back from somewhere. Reportedly, he makes more per week than Gareth Bale. 😋

        Anyway, the price guarantee tends to work very well so can always be brought down to the lowest rate you can find.

      • Alan says:

        May not make sense but it is definitely what I find.

        Its definitely not unheard of in business for an owner to have many brands and charge differently for essentially the same product – do Avis charge the same as Budget? Do Enterprise charge the same as Alamo or National?

        • Rob says:

          They don’t share inventory though!

          • Alan says:

            See my postings below for examples of the disparity.

            I don’t quite understand why you appear to have a problem with my initial posting on the subject when the evidence is quite clear that, despite your protestations as to the sense of it, the 2 companies clearly offer up different prices for the same hotels.

            And, in my experience Booking.com are regularly cheaper than Hotels.com

          • Alan says:

            Ah, sorry, it appears that I have misunderstood your first statement regarding shared ownership and it was only Expedia and Hotels.com that should be the same.

            Sorry about that.

          • Charlieface says:

            Avis with Budget, and Enterprise with National and Alamo jolly do share inventory in most countries, including the UK. It’s quite standard across many industries. The discerning customer knows what is the same as what and buys the cheapest accordingly.

      • Alan says:

        As an example. I have just looked at The Roger Smith Hotel in New York (where I stayed last year) for one night June 1st 2019. Booking.com £239, Hotels.com £286.

        • Alan says:

          Also, The Palazzo Lakeside in Kissimmee. 3 nights in July (as I have booked) currently £176 at Booking.com and £198 at Hotels.com.

          Maybe it doesn;t make sense to you Rob, but these are the figures the 2 websites are throwing out.

          • pauldb says:

            Booking.com might different – it’s Expedia and hotel.com that Rob is saying will be the same: co-owned.

          • Alan says:

            Thanks Paul. I’ll climb down off of my high horse!

    • PerkyPat says:

      And you can sometimes get 8 Avios/£ on Booking.com, though the normal rate is 4.

  • Sue says:

    Would I still earn avios if I used a discount voucher (you don’t get hotel rewards if you use a voucher but I find I save more using a voucher)

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