Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Which of the SEVEN special credit card sign-up bonuses currently available should you get?

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In the 10 years we’ve been running this site, I don’t think we’ve ever seen so many credit and charge cards running ‘special’ sign-up bonuses at the same time.

Whilst this is great news for you, it is also easy to get confused about what is available. I thought I’d do a quick summary today of what is available and until when.

For more information on how each card works and the benefits it brings, click through to our full review. This article purely looks at the sign-up bonuses.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold 30,000 points bonus

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

What’s the deal? The sign-up bonus is increased to 30,000 Membership Rewards points from 20,000 Membership Rewards points. These convert to Avios at 1:1 and to many other airline and hotel schemes.

What do I need to spend? £3,000 in 90 days

When does the deal end?  9th November

What is the card fee? Free in the first year, £140 thereafter

Do I qualify for the bonus? You cannot have had any personal American Express cards, including the BA, Nectar or Marriott cards, in the past 24 months. Business cards and supplementary cards are OK.

What’s the legal stuff on interest rates? Representative 24.5% APR variable for the first year, 59.9% APR variable for subsequent years based on a notional £1200 limit and £140 annual fee.

Our full Amex Gold review is here.

You can apply here.

American Express Platinum 60,000 points bonus

The Platinum Card from American Express

What’s the deal? The sign-up bonus is increased to 60,000 Membership Rewards points from 30,000 Membership Rewards points. These convert to Avios at 1:1 and to many other airline and hotel schemes.

What do I need to spend? £6,000 in six months

When does the deal end? 2nd November

What is the card fee? £575, refundable pro-rata if you cancel

Do I qualify for the bonus? You cannot have had a personal Gold or Platinum American Express card in the past 24 months, or any other niche personal Amex card which also gives Membership Rewards points. Business cards are OK. BA, Nectar and Marriott cards are OK.

What’s the legal stuff on interest rates? None, this is a charge card. You must clear your balance each month.

Our full Amex Platinum review is here.

You can apply here.

British Airways BA Amex American Express 10,000 Avios bonus

British Airways American Express

What’s the deal? The sign-up bonus is increased to 10,000 Avios from 5,000 Avios

What do I need to spend? £1,000 in 90 days

When does the deal end? 2nd November

What is the card fee? Free

Do I qualify for the bonus? You cannot have had any personal American Express cards, including the Gold, Platinum, Nectar or Marriott cards, in the past 24 months. Business cards and supplementary cards are OK.

What’s the legal stuff on interest rates? Representative 24.5% APR variable

Our full British Airways American Express review is here.

You can apply here.

British Airways BA Amex Premium Plus American Express 40,000 Avios bonus

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

What’s the deal? The sign-up bonus is increased to 40,000 Avios from 25,000 Avios

What do I need to spend? £3,000 in 90 days

When does the deal end? 2nd November

What is the card fee? £250 per year, refundable pro-rata if you cancel

Do I qualify for the bonus? You cannot have had either British Airways American Express card in the past 24 months

What’s the legal stuff on interest rates? Representative 101.1% APR variable based on a notional £1200 limit and £250 annual fee

Our full British Airways American Express Premium Plus review is here.

You can apply here.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express 60,000 Avios bonus

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

What’s the deal? The sign-up bonus on this card is 60,000 Avios – this is a relaunch offer which is expected to drop at some point but we do not know what it will become

What do I need to spend? £5,000 in 90 days

When does the deal end? No end date is published – the terms say that it will run until at least 2nd November

What is the card fee? £250 per year, refundable pro-rata if you cancel

Do I qualify for the bonus? You cannot have had an American Express small business card (Business Gold, Business Platinum etc, Accelerating Business) in the previous 12 months. You also need to have some sort of self employment or small business income to apply.

What’s the legal stuff on interest rates? Representative 96.7% APR variable based on a notional £1200 limit and £250 annual fee

Our full British Airways Accelerating Business American Express review is here.

You can apply here.

Virgin Atlantic Rewards credit card 2,000 Virgin Points bonus

Virgin Atlantic Reward Mastercard

What’s the deal? The sign-up bonus is increased to 2,000 Virgin Points from nothing

What do I need to spend? £500 in 90 days

When does the deal end? 15th October

What is the card fee? Free

Do I qualify for the bonus? You cannot have had a Virgin Money-issued credit card in the previous six months

What’s the legal stuff on interest rates? Representative 22.9% APR variable

Our full Virgin Atlantic Reward Mastercard review is here.

You can apply here.

Virgin Atlantic Rewards Plus Credit Card 30,000 Virgin Points bonus

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

What’s the deal? The sign-up bonus is increased to 30,000 Virgin Points from 15,000 Virgin Points

What do I need to spend? You receive 15,000 Virgin Points with your first purchase and a further 15,000 Virgin Points when you spend £3,000 in 90 days

When does the deal end? 15th October

What is the card fee? £160 – this is a sunk cost which is not partially refunded if you cancel

Do I qualify for the bonus? You cannot have had a Virgin Money-issued credit card in the previous six months

What’s the legal stuff on interest rates? Representative 63.9% APR variable based on a notional £1200 limit and £160 annual fee

Our full Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard review is here.

You can apply here.

Conclusion

There is a lot of choice here, which doesn’t always make things easy.

Study the rules carefully to see what you can get.

  • If you have only had BA American Express cards, you should qualify for 60,000 points on The Platinum Card.
  • If you have only had Gold or Platinum American Express cards, you should qualify for 40,000 Avios on British Airways Premium Plus.
  • Got some sort of self employment or small business income? You should qualify for 60,000 Avios on BA Accelerating Business if you’ve not had business Amex recently.
  • If you are totally maxed on the American Express bonuses you can get, take a look at Virgin Atlantic Reward+. As a Mastercard, this is a good partner card to use alongside your American Express.

Comments (28)

  • Joe King says:

    We just need a return of the Lufthansa credit card and then it would be a “full house” with these cards.

  • Andrew says:

    For the business cards, is “you” the individual / director or the limited company? Pretty sure, but to confirm… Supplementary cards also don’t count, do they?

    • Chas says:

      I believe it is the individual. My wife has a Business Plat on my small ltd company, but I am expecting to be eligible for the Accelerating Business card in my own name when I apply in a month or so.

  • Copperknob says:

    For the free BA card the bonus for BA executive club members is doubled again to 20,000 until September 30th.

  • Diydegsy says:

    If my husband refers me for the BA business card from his platinum business card does he get a referral bonus? Thanks

    • Chas says:

      I don’t think that the accelerating business card is visible when being referred – I had a look from my wife’s link and couldn’t see it, and I think I saw a similar comment from Rob on a previous article. Time to pay our subs to Rob by using his link!

  • David says:

    Do you get a referral bonus for yourself? I have an Plat which I’m looking to get rid of as I no longer get value from the annual fee given post-covid changes to my working pattern (no longer commute weekly EDI-LGW) – can I get myself a referral bonus for the BAPP before I cancel the Plat?

    Or is the only option for a referral bonus to refer my wife for the BAPP? She earns significantly less than me – when deciding whether to approve and what credit limit to give, do they consider individual income or household?

    • Genghis says:

      Do you get the referral bonus for self-referral? Yes
      Should you do a self-referral? Probably not, given the risk.
      For limits, it’s something like (A x household income ) – (B x other credit limits in your name only).

      • David says:

        Cool, not up for doing anything dodgy, I was more asking do you officially get the referral bonus for yourself. Good to know that it’s household rather than personal income that counts

    • CarpalTravel says:

      Given that in the USA they clawed back points and can lock accounts (or probably worse) for what they deem inappropriate behaviour, you really need to ask yourself if you should be doing it.

      My personal rule of thumb is that if I even have to ask myself that question, then the answer is invariably a solid no.

  • Judy says:

    I referred someone for the Amex Gold and received my referral bonus but the spend tracking bonus (£3000 in 3 months) isn’t showing on their account.

    Is this a problem? How do they know they qualify? I’m sure they will as they’ve not had Amex for over 2 years.

  • Dave says:

    If my wife refers me for BAPP, she gets 12K and I get 42K. I also have the targetted offer for 45K. I guess the former is the way to go, unless there is a way to get the referral AND the 45K??

  • RTS says:

    Any offers for the business plat?

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