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Avios-earning at Travelex is now back after the cyber attack

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As you probably saw in the press over New Year, Travelex recently suffered one of the most damaging cyber attacks ever seen in the UK.

Hackers took control of the Travelex IT system and demanded $6m to unlock it.  The company took down its website in late December and it was around three weeks before it came back on line.  Even then, functionality was limited and the Avios-earning pages had not been restored.

Finally, Travelex has restored the ability to earn Avios when buying foreign currency.

You can earn Avios points when you pre-order foreign currency via the Travelex website for collection at the airport or delivered.

Travelex Avios partnership

The webpage you need, which is now up and running again, is here.   This drops you straight into the currency calculator.  Ignore the ‘Your session has expired’ message and scroll down.

Do not go via the Travelex homepage as there is no option there to add your Avios account details.

Travelex lets you pre-order over 40 currencies and collection is available with as little as four hours notice.

This is what you need to know:

You collect 1 Avios for every £1 when exchanging over £300

Collect 1 Avios for every £2 when exchanging below £300

You must pre-order via the Travelex website here, for airport collection, for Travelex store collection or delivery

Home delivery is free if you exchange over £600, chargeable if you exchange less

You can credit your Avios to BA Executive Club or Iberia Plus

Avios will be added within 14 days of collection or delivery

It is good to see that pre-ordering is required.  The walk-up exchange rates at Heathrow are, frankly, shocking and you should never exchange money without ordering in advance.  You will receive a substantially better rate this way.

The special Avios / Travelex ordering page is here.


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (February 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.

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:

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 21st February 2023, the sign-up bonus on the British Airways Premium Plus American Express card is increased to 35,000 Avios from 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

35,000 Avios (ONLY to 21st February) 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.

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 (33)

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

  • Jimmy says:

    OT anyone have experience of Creation (IHG) and payments? Had my card abruptly declined over the weekend for everything. Just before I had put in a large order in Apple but it has been used very heavily with curve for cough financial payments. Rang them on Tuesday – the chap sounded clueless but then said that it was ok now as they had placed a higher authority on the account ( not sure what that means). Seems to be all fine again but wondering whether I should take it easy with “financial ” payments for a while in the event of more regular reviews. Anyone had this before?

    • Genghis says:

      I’ve had my creation card blocked randomly a few times but not for a while now: as a result of some EUR payments and some top up transactions. I wouldn’t worry. Creation just wanted to confirm it was me making said payments.

      • Jimmy says:

        Thanks. It’s just strange that they then unblocked it automatically. Unfortunately I have always been limited to £200 for my “financial y
        Transactions ” such a pain. But i won’t complain.

    • Alex W says:

      Had mine stopped a few times but never for so called financial payments. It’s probably your large Apple purchase that did it.

    • Anna says:

      Creation’s standard limit so far has been £700 pw on anything it sees as financial-type transactions, however, see my post over on BA bits about how this might have changed recently!

    • Craig says:

      They’ve blocked mine twice and not phoned to tell me. The second time I made a formal complaint which almost covered the fee after compensation.

      • The Urbanite says:

        Automatic security blocks are sometimes triggered and they don’t always tell you. But tend to remove them fairly quickly. I just let it be, they’re usually pretty good at sorting it with a phonecall.

        • Craig says:

          The problems are twofold, firstly you have no way of knowing even though they have your number, secondly, the advanced security dept works normal office hours.

  • David says:

    Travelex order with Avios didn’t work last time I attempted it last year as the Glasgow Airport Travelex desk looked at my order, gave me the agreed rate but cancelled my original order.
    After numerous discussions with Travelex they agreed this probably happened but could not retrospectively award Avios points. Beware

    • Anna says:

      Make sure you have the payment card you used for the order with you when you collect at an airport. I didn’t, and they had to put the order through from scratch! Otherwise, it’s a great service.

    • Martin Lewis says:

      I thought you should never buy at the airport. Or even pre-order from Travelex. Their rates are usually beaten elsewhere.

      • Anna says:

        I found them very competitive a few years ago when I needed some Swiss Francs for a short break and didn’t want to trek around travel agents or pay for home delivery. The kiosk at MAN T3 is very conveniently located opposite the lift up to the lounges!

        • Concerto says:

          If you need Swiss francs, wait till you get to Geneva (if that’s where you’re going), walk a few yards down Rue du Mont Blanc in front of the main station (Cornavin) and go to one of the little exchange kiosks there. I can recommend Leland Finance, on the left side.

      • Rob says:

        But if it isn’t your money ….

    • Kris says:

      That’s odd. I’ve used the Glasgow airport half a dozen times & always had my Avios

  • Sue Loder says:

    Today’s article re Travelex: went to pre order UAE Dirhams and can’t – not listed in their drop down. Tried typing in UAE and Dubai – no luck. Is this deliberate or a glitch I wonder?

  • Simon says:

    Pretty poor exchange rate even when you factor in the Avios.

  • ADS says:

    don’t think i’ll be rushing to give my credit card details to a company that has just suffered “one of the most damaging cyber attacks ever seen in the UK” !

    • Charlieface says:

      Looks like it was a ransomware attack and they didn’t give in, they rebuilt their setup. It’s very costly but perhaps not as costly as paying the ransom.

    • AndyGWP says:

      BA and the NHS probably had it just as bad to be fair

  • Andrew says:

    Rates on the Travelex Avios site are usually worse than their standard site.

    I’ve found the best currency rates are usually with John Lewis. Free collection from your local JL or Waitrose and – if paying with the JL Partnership Card, it’s treated as an in-store purchase (so 1% back in John Lewis points and no cash advance/interest charges).

    • Lady London says:

      JL refused to honour their ‘match competitive rate’ promise when I went to buy at John Lewis Oxford Street.

      I bought at the other FX place 2 streets away where I’d found the match – but wanted to support John Lewis by giving them the business.

      When they refused I left the store and didn’t do my other shopping there. Haven’t been back since as I can always do what I need to do elsewhere so no need to make the trek. I will be back but not going out of my way to whereas before I would have.

      • ADS says:

        did they give a reason for not honouring their “match competitive rate” promise ?

        • Lady London says:

          Something about being unsure the nearby outlet would honour their advertised rates. Even though the small print said they would. Since to prove it I would have to walk back to the other FX place and get something in writing from them, and I’d already passed by and asked them verbally was the rate the same as advertised then gone to JL, I wasn’t going to walk back to there again without buying.

          It seemed the FX person at JL wasn’t actually JL staff and said they had to get authorisation from a manager who wasn’t there… at which point I smelled the herring and told them if they weren’t honouring their FX rate match promise then that put into question JL’s overall promise as well…So I would have to leave the store to catch the better rate’s opening hours.

          The difference was tempting to just forget and get it done. I was actually staying very nearby and could easily have returned the following morning when the authorising manager was supposed to be in but it was clear the staff I dealt with never expected to match and the feeling of them ‘just finding excuses’ was just too strong.

          • Shoestring says:

            compare the rates on offer here

            free delivery & free collection options

          • ADS says:

            sometimes JLP really does feel like a civil service retailer 🙁

          • Lady London says:

            I love JLP and Waitrose to bits and support them whenever I can. I think they are a unique force for good in the British food and general retail landscape. I wish them well and hope they succeed in evolving with the challenges in retail today.

            One of my fave places to meet friends in town is their restaurant in PeterJones in Sloane Square. Good at any time of day. Great views if you can snag the tables on the curve by the windows. And naturally it’s essential to do bits of shopping on the lower floors on my way out :-). As I would have done in Oxford Street had I got my FX on the top floor.

  • Desperado says:

    No one in their right mind would use travelex to get a good deal. Surely only used if no other option exists

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