The HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard is the most generous Visa or Mastercard available if you want to earn Avios. The earnings rate is great at 1 Avios per £1 spent.
The official website for the card is at hsbc.co.uk as you can see here. The representative APR is 59.3% APR variable and 18.9% APR variable for purchases, based on an annual fee of £195 and a credit limit of £1,200.
To remind you of the points benefits, you get:
40,000 HSBC points (20,000 miles) for signing up and spending £2,000 within 3 months
40,000 HSBC points (20,000 miles) for spending £12,000 in your first 12 months
2 HSBC points (1 mile) for every £1 you spend – this makes it by far the best Avios Mastercard or Visa product
4 HSBC points (2 miles) for every £1 you spend outside the UK
You can take your ‘miles’ as either Avios, Cathay Pacific miles, Singapore Airlines miles or Etihad Guest miles.
If you collect Avios, you will be pleased to know that HSBC also runs 25% transfer bonuses, roughly once per year, from HSBC points into Avios.
What London airport lounges can I get into with a HSBC Premier World Elite credit card?
The HSBC Premier credit card also comes with airport lounge access.
This is via an exclusive Mastercard company called LoungeKey. You can access their special HSBC website here.
What is interesting about LoungeKey is that you simply show your World Elite Mastercard at the lounge door. There is no separate membership card. However, you must have registered your HSBC credit card via this link first.
No free guests are allowed. However, you can get a supplementary card for your HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard for a £60 annual fee and that person can then access lounges with that.
Across Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, Southend and Luton, you can access the following lounges:
Gatwick: No1 Lounge (North), My Lounge (North), Club Aspire (North), No 1 Lounge (South), Club Aspire (South), Grain Store Cafe & Bar (South, not a lounge but a restaurant where you get £15 credit!)
Luton: Aspire, Clubrooms (£10 surcharge on the door)
Heathrow: Plaza Premium (T2 Arrivals, T2 Departures, T3 Arrivals, T4 Departures, T4 Arrivals), SkyTeam (T4), No1 Lounge (T3), Club Aspire (T3, T5)
Stansted: The Escape Lounge
LoungeKey has a better offering the Lounge Club, which comes with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold. Of course, Amex Gold is FREE for the first year and comes with two FREE lounge passes per year, so in value for money terms it is a better product. Your Amex Gold lounge passes cannot be used Southend, the SkyTeam at Heathrow Terminal 4 or the No1 Lounge at Heathrow Terminal 3 lounges.
LoungeKey is indentical in scope, for the London airports, to what you can access with an expensive Priority Pass lounge card.
Is HSBC Premier World Elite better than Amex Platinum?
It is cheaper (£255 for the HSBC card with one supplementary card vs £575 for The Platinum Card) but the Amex Platinum package has FAR more benefits – Hilton Gold, Melia Gold, Radisson Gold, Shangri-La Jade, Marriott Gold, Eurostar lounge access etc etc (see my Amex Platinum review for details).
The choice really comes down to how much you value the additional Amex Platinum benefits on top of the airport lounge access.
PS. Here are links to our reviews of the lounges mentioned above:
Heathrow Terminal5: Aspire T5; Terminal 4: Plaza Premium T4, Plaza Premium T4 Arrivals, SkyTeam T4; Terminal 3: Club Aspire T3, No 1 Lounge T3, Plaza Premium T3 Arrivals; Terminal 2: Plaza Premium T2, Plaza Premium T2 #2, Plaza Premium T2 Arrivals
Want to earn more points from credit cards? – November 2020 update
If you are looking to apply for a new credit or charge card, here are my November 2020 recommendations based on the current sign-up bonus.
British Airways American Express
5,000 Avios for signing up, no annual 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.