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BA launches unprecedented 75% ‘buy Avios points’ bonus – worth it?

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British Airways has launched a new ‘buy Avios’ bonus promotion – and it is the most generous we have ever seen.

Until 18th May you will receive 75% bonus Avios when you buy or gift points as long as you are a British Airways American Express cardholder.  It even seems to work if you’ve had a BA Amex in the last couple of years – see below!

If you are NOT a British Airways American Express cardholder, you get a 50% bonus.

Even better, there is no minimum purchase.  The bonus kicks in with the smallest 1,000 Avios transaction.

You need to visit ba.com via this page in order to buy.

IMPORTANT: The landing page shows a 50% bonus irrespective of whether you are a BA Amex cardholder or not.  However, when you reach the purchase page it WILL show you the 75% bonus rather than the 50% shown on the first page.

British Airways has increased the number of Avios you can buy under this deal – the cap is now 200,000 points per year!  Annual purchase limits have been reset so that everyone can buy the full 200,000 + 75%.

This means that, with the bonus, you can buy up to 350,000 Avios for a whopping £3,215 – as long as you have a BA Amex.  Despite what the website says, you can pay with any American Express card.

75% buy Avios bonus

What if I just cancelled or just got a BA Amex?

Here’s the thing.  The Executive Club website appears to be offering the 75% bonus to anyone who has earned Avios from a BA Amex credit card in the last couple of years – even if you don’t still have it.

This means:

if you just took out a British Airways American Express card in the last couple of weeks, you probably WON’T be offered 75%

if you cancelled your card in the last two years you probably WILL be offered 75%, although this seems to vary looking at our comments section

Interestingly, some people who still have a Lloyds Avios credit card, but NOT a BA Amex, are also being offered 75%!

The website says that you MUST pay with a British Airways American Express card.  However, ANY American Express card will work.

What does it cost if I have a BA Amex?

In general, you will pay around 0.92p per Avios under this offer.  Based on my spreadsheet of the last 7.7 million Avios I redeemed, I got 1.18p of value.  This is using very conservative valuations for the flights booked, eg I value a Business Class flight to Dubai at £1,500 because even if BA isn’t charging that there is usually a deal with a secondary airline.

(If you don’t have a BA Amex, you will be paying nearer 1.1p as your bonus is only 50%.)

As my core article on ‘What is an Avios worth?’ shows, it is easy to get a lot more than 0.92p.  My 1.18p real-life 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 should do far better than me – certainly far better than 0.92p.  It is well worth thinking about at this price even if you are not normally a buyer.

The link to buy is here.

Comments (229)

  • Bill says:

    What would you say an Avios point is worth?

  • Talay says:

    So 350k for £3215 which is 0.92p

    Business to Asia is 165k (mixed high and low) plus about £550 which is £2068 on 8 abreast ? No thanks.

    Singapore in first again mixed is 259k or £2382 plus £550 so its just under £3k. Nah, hardly good value.

    So outside the Amex 241, I can’t see how converting liquid cash into a restricted product which may well be devalued and has limited usage makes any sense.

    • Don says:

      It works in an increasingly limited scope. Their own sale prices even make the Avios value poor with all those £1k deals they had all the time even pre-Coronavirus. Plus, free yourself of the shackles and you’ll have a lovely deal with LH group in C and F who are equally awful in FFP but who cares when price is all that matters. As Rob says, Cash is King

      Another one is Gold V class on RFS, but if you’re based outside of LHR (no point writing LON anymore) then the minimum 18,000 and £70 make easyJet, Jet2.com and Ryanair much better value. Minimum 36,000 and £100 for CE is horrendous value.

      Perhaps any sort of “value” someone can feel from a EDI, MAN or BHX short-haul CityFlyer is also for the fairies post-Coronavirus.

      Plus we can all reasonably imagine in the short to medium term they will be desperate to fill their cabins with deals.

  • Mike says:

    is there an online portal where you can spend avios to buy gift cards, similar to what Miles & More, United, etc have?

  • David Reid says:

    BA would be better issuing a statement on how they plan to protect frequent flyers and their staff from contracting COVID-19 on their aircraft rather than offering promotions on unusable AVIOS. Admitting social distancing on a plane is nigh impossible and thus mandating use of face coverings by all staff and passengers would be a start. Time to follow Ryanair’s example?

  • Will says:

    This now seems to offer a 75% bonus for *any* Amex card holder – according to the email I received about 15 mins ago – see website wording below:

    Take a step towards your next adventure with 75% bonus Avios

    This is an exclusive offer for British Airways American Express® Cardmembers. Offer applies to any purchase or gift of 1,000 to 200,000 Avios before 18 May 23:59 BST when using your Card as a form of payment.

    • Scandinavian Traveler says:

      I received the e-mail with 75 % bonus despite cancelling my card in 2018, but it only showed 50 % when I clicked through. I just received another e-mail with 75 % and now it actually offers me 75 % despite only having the Amex Rewards card, so I suppose you’re right.

  • Stagger Lee says:

    I’m still pondering this as, although my my wife has until August to hit her 241 target, hitting before the end of June means she would get the extra 6 months on the voucher. Not sure she would get there before then otherwise.. Decisions, decisions.

  • Carolos says:

    It is impossible to make an avios booking using your ‘book with confidence voucher’. There is no option online (which is outrageous) and the exec club phone is not working. Anyone able to overcome this hurdle?

    • Rob says:

      Try ringing Bremen or Cape Town using the German or SA numbers – people report success this way.

  • Bobby G says:

    Is it just me or has it disappeared? I can only see the 50% bonus, even on checkout page….