Get a 30% ‘buy Avios’ points bonus, to go with the January sale
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British Airways is currently running another ‘buy Avios’ bonus promotion. We mentioned this in passing over Christmas but I thought it was worth covering again as it ran at a very quiet time.
In conjunction with the current British Airways sale, which runs to 30th January, British Airways is running four additional offers. Before I get onto the ‘buy Avios’ deal, I want to run over the other three again quickly:
Offer 1: Get better value on certain routes using Avios part payment
You get improved redemption rates when you buy a cash ticket in the BA sale and use Avios to reduce the cost. However, it is only valid on San Diego, Boston, New York City, Johannesburg, Tel Aviv, Kuala Lumpur, Bahamas, and San Jose (Costa Rica) and only in World Traveller. It is good value if you only redeem a small number of Avios, as 1600 points will get you a £20 discount.
Offer 2: Get an extra 15% off hotels when booked with Avios
If you use your Avios to book a hotel, paying either wholly or partly with Avios, you save 15% on the standard rate. It is only valid for selected destinations. The current list is Cape Town, Nice, Dublin and San Francisco.
The best way to benefit from this deal is to select just 1,000 Avios at check-out and pay the rest in cash. You will still get a 15% discount on the usual cash price. Remember, however, that these are ‘third party bookings’ which do not earn hotel loyalty points and you will not get any hotel elite status benefits.
Offer 3: Get up to 3,500 Avios back when using Avios to pay for car hire
Use your Avios to pay for an Avis or Budget car rental and you will be emailed a voucher worth up to 3,500 Avios. You need to spend 10,000 to 20,000 Avios to receive a voucher for 1,500 Avios, or over 20,000 Avios to receive a voucher for 3,500 Avios back. Your rental needs to be completed by 30th June
It isn’t the greatest deal ever. At the very best (ie you spend exactly 20,000 points) you are only getting a rebate of 17.5% and the ‘pence per Avios’ value is likely to be around 0.66p.
Offer 4: Get a 30% bonus when you buy Avios
I want to spend a little more time on this one, as it is the one most relevant to most readers.
You will get a 30% bonus when you buy or gift Avios at this page of ba.com by 30th January.
Here is some typical pricing:
5,000 Avios + 1,500 bonus = £95 (1.46p)
20,000 Avios + 6,000 bonus = £335 (1.29p)
50,000 Avios + 15,000 bonus = £815 (1.25p)
The cap is:
200,000 Avios + 60,000 bonus = £3,215 (1.24p)
This is not the best deal we have seen in the past six months. If you do not need the Avios immediately, I wouldn’t be surprised if another offer for a 50% bonus comes along in the medium term. The other cheap options – via Groupon Ireland or Groupon Spain – are not available at the moment either.
However, if you are looking to redeem in the short term then this deal is clearly better than nothing.
In general, you will pay around 1.25p per Avios under this offer. Based on my spreadsheet of the last 7 million Avios I redeemed, I got 1.15p of value. This is using very conservative valuations for the flights booked, eg I value a Business Class flight to Dubai at £1,500 at peak times because even if BA isn’t charging that there is usually a deal with a secondary airline.
However, as my core article on ‘What is an Avios worth?’ shows, it is easy to get a lot more than 1.25p. My valuation is low because I do a lot of Gold Priority Rewards (using double Avios to force open a seat, mainly due to school holiday restrictions) and don’t always have a BA Amex 2-4-1 voucher to use. I also tend to use Avios irrespective of the value, because I am sitting on a lot of them. If you are strategic you will do far better than me.
This HfP article from our ‘Avios Redemption University’ series shows you which is the cheapest way to buy Avios points from all of the options available.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (March 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.
SPECIAL OFFER: Successfully apply for either of the Barclaycard Avios credit cards by 2nd April 2023 and you will be entered into a free draw to win ONE MILLION AVIOS! Full details are on the application forms here (free) and here (paid). This competition is exclusive to Head for Points readers. T&C apply.
You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express 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 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 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.
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
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.
Until 30th March 2023, the sign up bonus on American Express Business Platinum is increased to 120,000 Membership Rewards points – click here. The bonus on American Express Business Gold is increased to 60,000 Membership Rewards points – click here. T&C apply, see the application forms for details.
American Express Business Platinum
Crazy 120,000 points bonus (to 30th March) and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review
American Express Business Gold
60,000 points sign-up bonus (to 30th March) 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.