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Can I earn Avios and British Airways tier points if I fly with Aer Lingus?

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In this article we’ll look at whether you can earn Avios and British Airways tier points by flying with Aer Lingus and whether it’s worth it compared to flying British Airways.

It is possible to earn Avios on Aer Lingus and in fact, AerClub, Aer Lingus’ frequent flyer program also uses the Avios reward currency. This means that there are two ways of earning Avios with Aer Lingus.

Can I earn Avios and BA tier points if I fly with Aer Lingus?

Earn Avios in British Airways Executive Club

When you book or manage your flights with Aer Lingus, you can add your British Airways Executive Club number. Upon completion of your flights you will automatically be credited the correct Avios.

Because British Airways and Aer Lingus both belong to the same group of companies, International Airlines Group (IAG), their earning rates are almost identical.

Here is the full chart of earning rates, sourced from the British Airways website.  We are comparing the earnings when you take a flight on Aer Lingus compared to taking a flight on British Airways.

Economy lowest – 25% on both airlines

Economy flexible – 100% on both airlines

Premium Economy – Aer Lingus does not have a premium economy cabin. 100%-150% on British Airways

Business lowest – 150% both airlines

Business flexible – 250% on both airlines

First – Aer Lingus does not have first class – 250%-300% on British Airways

As you can see, all the classes have the same earning rates. However, because Aer Lingus does not fly premium economy or first class cabins, British Airways has several rates for intermediate and additional rates for these.

Despite their almost identical earning rates, Aer Lingus does not match the additional Avios tier bonus that British Airways runs for Executive Club Bronze, Silver and Gold card holders.  If you have British Airways elite status, you’ll be losing out on another 25%-100% in additional Avios, though you do get a minimum Avios award of 300 per flight.

Earn Avios via AerClub

Aer Lingus has its own Avios-based loyalty scheme called AerClub.  Nothing stops you from opening an AerClub account, crediting it with the Avios from your Aer Lingus flight and then using ‘Combine My Avios’ to move them to British Airways Executive Club.

Just to make life confusing, the earning model for AerClub is totally different.  It is not based on your class of travel, it is purely based on how much you spend.

The Aer Lingus website explains this is more detail.  You earn 3 Avios per €1 spent.  You may need to do the maths to see which of the two options here (AerClub or British Airways Executive Club) is more lucrative.

Can you earn British Airways tier points on Aer Lingus?

You will NOT earn British Airways Executive Club tier points when you fly with Aer Lingus as it is not a member of the oneworld alliance.

However, this is expected to change in 2022.  Aer Lingus will become a full member of the British Airways / American Airlines / Finnair / Iberia transatlantic joint venture, and as part of this would be obliged to offer tier points to BA flyers, at least on transatlantic routes and connections.  We will update this article when it happens.

(This article is part of our ‘BA Q&A’ series which explains how British Airways Executive Club works.  You can see all of our ‘BA Q&A’ articles here. )

(Head for Points is the UK’s biggest frequent flyer website with 2.4 million monthly page views.  Want to learn more about earning and spending Avios?  Click here to read our latest news storiesclick here to join our email list and click here to read our ‘Avios Redemption University’ series.)

How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (October 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

Get 25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £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 a huge range of valuable 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.

EDIT: Applications for this card are temporarily suspended due to IT issues with the British Airways On Business SME loyalty scheme.

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 good bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These are available to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit 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.

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