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Can I pay for British Airways buy on board food and drink catering with Avios points?

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Today I want to answer the question over whether you can pay for British Airways buy on board food and drink using Avios points?

In 2017 British Airways chose to scrap complimentary food and drinks on its short-haul flights in economy, opting for a buy-on-board offering instead.  This is in partnership with premium British supermarket chain Marks and Spencer.

British Airways and Marks and Spencers food

You can now purchase sandwiches for just under £5, whilst most non-alcoholic drinks cost somewhere between £1.50-£2.50. On the whole, these prices aren’t as awful as they could have been.

The quality of the Marks and Spencer products is significantly better than the food sold on other carriers.  To be honest, it is substantially better than the free drink and snack that British Airways were providing for free before the switch-over, although you could argue that they were just softening people up in advance by degrading the quality. You can see the full British Airways Marks & Spencer menu here.

If you do not want to spend your hard earned cash, however, British Airways also lets you pay for food and drinks with Avios.  In general, you are looking at an Avios valuation of 0.7p per Avios – not the worst, but not good, either. You can read more about how much we believe an Avios is worth here.

PS.  Technically, British Airways does not allow you to “spend your hard earned cash” on board.  It is strictly credit cards only!

(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 1.5 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 get 20,000 Avios from Amex Gold or 60,000 Avios from Amex Platinum (September 2021 offer)

The sign-up bonus on American Express Preferred Rewards Gold converts to 20,000 Avios and the card is free for the first year.

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

You don’t qualify for the Amex Gold bonus if you have a British Airways American Express card. You DO qualify for the bonus on The Platinum Card, which converts into 60,000 Avios.

60,000 points on The Platinum Card is a special offer which ends on 2nd November 2021. Find out more here:

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

If you have your own small business, the best way of earning Avios is via the Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa. It has a sign-up bonus which converts to 10,000 Avios:

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

The most generous Avios Visa or Mastercard for a limited company Read our full review

You should also look at the British Airways Accelerating Business card, because it currently 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

You can find out more about ALL UK credit cards which offer travel rewards in this article, updated monthly.

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