Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

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

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

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

It is possible to earn Avios and British Airways Executive Club tier points on Finnair and its subsidiaries instead of Finnair Award Points. This is because they both belong to the oneworld alliance.

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

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

However, you will earn a different amount of Avios on Finnair compared to if you fly British Airways. This is because they have different earning rates. On Finnair, you will earn Avios at a maximum of 150% of miles flown if you fly first class. On British Airways flights, however, first class fares can come with 300% of miles flown – so double what you’d expect to earn on Finnair.

How many Avios do you earn flying with Finnair?

Here is the full chart of earning rates, sourced from the partners page of the British Airways website.

We are comparing the earnings when you take a flight on Finnair compared to taking a flight on British Airways.

Economy lowest – 25% on both airlines

Economy low – 50% on both airlines

Economy flexible – 70%-100% vs 100% on British Airways

Premium Economy – Finnair does not operate a premium economy cabin. 110% vs 150% on British Airways

Business – 125% vs 150%-250% on British Airways

First – Finnair does not operate a first class cabin. 250%-300% on British Airways

As you can see, even economy earning rates vary from British Airways on Finnair. Flights in business suffers more severe losses, earning up to half less on Finnair than you would on a British Airways flight. Additionally, with no first class cabin, it becomes impossible to achieve the 300% earning rate for Avios when flying First on British Airways.

You are also NOT eligible for the usual 25%, 50% or 100% tier bonus if you hold a Bronze, Silver or Gold Executive Club status card, further cutting into your earnings on Finnair.  Purely on the basis of Avios, it makes more sense to fly British Airways where possible.

(This is somewhat of a moot point, however, since BA dropped flights to Helsinki during the pandemic and has shown no signs so far of bringing them back.)

When it comes to tier points, however, you are better off flying with Finnair than British Airways if your trip involves a connection.  This is because tier points are earned per flight, so connecting in Helsinki to your final destination (Finnair has a lot of routes to Asia) will earn more tier points than taking a direct flight on British Airways from London.

You can work out how many tier points you will earn on the BA tier point calculator here.  Remember to search leg by leg if you are connecting.  You will see, for example, that London – Helsinki – Tokyo is a lot more lucrative, in terms of tier points, than London – Tokyo direct.

(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 2.3 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 (September 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.

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.