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Aegean changes its rules to stop you getting your 1,000 free Avios

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A few weeks ago we wrote about an interesting offer from Greek airline Aegean and its Miles+Bonus frequent flyer programme.

Aegean was offering 5,000 of its own miles for free just for signing up. The miles posted immediately.

The reason this was interesting to us is that you can convert Aegean Miles+Bonus miles into Accor Live Limitless points at 4:1. You can convert Accor Live Limitless points into Iberia Plus Avios at 1:1. This meant that you could turn the 5,000 free sign-up miles into 1,000 Avios.

It was a relatively harmless bit of fun from the Avios perspective. However, Aegean had a bigger problem. Miles+Bonus allows miles to be transferred between members for a nominal fee.

It appears that some people (not HfP readers, as the rules had already changed) had been opening tens if not hundreds of Aegean accounts and paying the small sum needed to move the miles. They were ending up with huge mileage balances which could be redeemed across all 26 Star Alliance airlines.

Aegean has pulled the plug – and you are impacted

By the time I wrote about the offer, Aegean had changed the rules. You received 1,000 miles immediately and the remaining 4,000 miles on 15th December (ie today).

This bought them some time to think.

Today, the extra 4,000 miles posted to your account. If you take a look, you will see that you now have 5,000 Aegean Miles+Bonus miles.

But take a look at this …..

The following message has appeared on the Aegean website:

It says:

“Update on the terms of the program

We would like to inform you that as of 15.12.2020 the terms of the program will be updated. More specifically, Miles+Bonus members that haven’t registered at least 1 flight with AEGEAN, Olympic Air or Star Alliance in their Miles+Bonus account, and are not AEGEAN Bonus Visa or AEGEAN Visa Cyprus cardholders, they will not be able to redeem Miles on non-air partners, but also they will not be able to transfer miles to other members.”

What does this mean?

It means that you won’t be able to get your 1,000 Avios via Accor Live Limitless until you have credited a Star Alliance flight to your Aegean account.

To be fair, this is not a massively stretching goal. Most of us will have the occasional flight on Lufthansa, SWISS, Austrian, United, ANA, TAP etc and the miles often get wasted.

If you credit your next one to your Aegean account, it will unlock your Avios or 1,000 Accor Live Limitless points.

Some you win …..

…… and some you lose. You still have enough Aegean Miles+Bonus miles for a free one-way domestic redemption inside Greece, if nothing else.

How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (October 2021)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

There are two official British Airways American Express cards. Both have increased sign-up bonuses until 2nd November 2021:

British Airways BA Amex American Express card

British Airways American Express

10,000 Avios for signing up, no annual fee and an Economy 241 voucher for spending ….. Read our full review

British Airways BA Premium Plus American Express Amex credit card

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

40,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable credit card perk – the 2-4-1 companion voucher Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points, such as:

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 30,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

The 30,000 points bonus on Amex Gold runs to 9th November 2021. The 60,000 points bonus on The Platinum Card runs to 2nd November 2021.

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:

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

The most generous Avios Visa or Mastercard 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. This card has a limited time offer of 60,000 Avios when you sign up:

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express card

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

60,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios 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.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)

Comments (50)

  • Vit says:

    Managed to get the 5k award miles quickly and transferred 4k through to my ALL account but yes the new condition stop me from transferring across the 5k from my partner account which could combine with the 1000 leftover across to ALL again. Oh well, you win some you lose some as Rob said! 🙂

  • Rob Collins says:

    For those who are not considering taking legal action (!) but won’t be using their 5,000 miles, remember that you can donate your miles to an NGO and do some good this Christmas. SOS Children’s Villages is the only one of the 3 NGO’s mentioned on the website that I know about and I’m sure they’d appreciate your donation.

    • DavidB says:

      Thank you for that tip. Unable to do the Accor transfer (and would never consider moving ALL points to AVIOS as the BA program is one of the worst vis a vis miles value and additional fees) I’ll donate them. Who knows when I might ever get on a plane again, let alone one in Greece…though I have flown Aegean a few times and quite liked them and their service.

    • Coucou says:

      Great idea, Rob!

    • Graham Coombes says:

      How do you donate to an NGO?

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