Should you trigger your next British Airways American Express 2-4-1 voucher early?
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It now seems clear that British Airways will not be offering any further extensions to American Express 2-4-1 companion vouchers.
British Airways started to expire 2-4-1 vouchers in October. If you are still hoping for an extension, it is unlikely to happen. The good news is that you can artificially extend your voucher to September 2023 by using the route outlined in this article.
The good news is that British Airways IS still offering a six month extension on all newly issued vouchers, which are currently valid for 2.5 years (or 1.5 years if generated on the free BA Amex card).
Here is the interesting point I wanted to flag today:
The six month extension is only valid on 2-4-1 vouchers issued by 30th December 2021.
This creates a situation where it may be advisable to trigger your next 2-4-1 voucher early.
Why would you want to trigger your next BA Amex 2-4-1 early?
Let me explain with an example:
- A 2-4-1 companion voucher issued on 20th December 2021 will expire on 20th June 2024
- A 2-4-1 companion voucher issued on 20th January 2022 will expire on 20th January 2024
Anyone who triggers their next voucher between January and June 2022 will be worse off than someone who triggers their next voucher in late December 2021.
There could be real benefits in triggering your voucher early to get the extra six months. It would allow anyone who has a card year ending in January or February to get a voucher covering Easter 2024 for example.
What does this mean for you?
If your next British Airways Premium Plus American Express card year ends between January and May 2022, you may want to push forward spending in the next couple of weeks so that you trigger the voucher before 31st December 2021.
This will maximise the life of the voucher by giving you a validity period which runs until late June 2024.
(Remember that the expiry date is the date by which you must take your outbound flight and not the deadline to book.)
Of course, British Airways could change the rules again and continue to grant extensions beyond 31st December. They have already done this twice. However, realistically, it is difficult to see this happening given that BA is now happy to let unused 2-4-1 companion vouchers expire again.
Your bigger problem is how you generate the spending. There is always Billhop, reviewed here, although this is not a free service so you need to weigh up the pros and cons. Luckily we have the run up to Christmas which, whether you like it or not, is likely to see a spending boost. Other options could include topping up your Amazon account or buying gift vouchers for your usual supermarket or petrol station.
If you want to learn more about how to use your companion voucher, this Head for Points article is the definitive guide to everything you need to know about the British Airways American Express 2-4-1 voucher.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (March 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.
SPECIAL OFFER: Successfully apply for either of the Barclaycard Avios credit cards by 2nd April 2023 and you will be entered into a free draw to win ONE MILLION AVIOS! Full details are on the application forms here (free) and here (paid). This competition is exclusive to Head for Points readers. T&C apply.
You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:
Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard
25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review
Barclaycard Avios Mastercard
5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £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 unbeatable travel 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.
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 generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.
Until 30th March 2023, the sign up bonus on American Express Business Platinum is increased to 120,000 Membership Rewards points – click here. The bonus on American Express Business Gold is increased to 60,000 Membership Rewards points – click here. T&C apply, see the application forms for details.
American Express Business Platinum
Crazy 120,000 points bonus (to 30th March) and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review
American Express Business Gold
60,000 points sign-up bonus (to 30th March) 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.