Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

You can, effectively, buy British Airways Gold and Silver status from Finnair – is it worth it?

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I am deliberately not making a big song and dance about this offer because I do not have a great understand of Finnair’s Finnair Plus loyalty programme.

Because I don’t know all of the intricacies over redemptions costs, taxes, expiry policies etc I don’t want to be seen to be recommending this deal, because I’m not. I’m just laying out some facts and pointing you towards some sources of further information.

Here’s the offer. You can currently buy Finnair Plus Platinum status (which gets you virtually the same benefits as British Airways Gold status) and Finnair Plus Gold status (which gets you virtually the same benefits as British Airways Silver status).

Finnair A350

How can you earn de facto British Airways status buying Finnair points?

Here is a quick summary of how it works:

  • Finnair is running a 100% bonus when you buy 150,000+ Finnair Plus points – click here
  • For every redeemable point you buy, including the bonus, you also receive 0.25 tier points
  • You can buy up to 200,000 points, which means that you end up with 400,000 redeemable points with the bonus as well as 100,000 tier points
  • 80,000 tier points is enough for Finnair Plus Gold status, which is equivalent to British Airways Silver (gets you into BA lounges, gets you free BA seat selection etc)
  • You can swap Finnair redeemable points into tier points at a 3:1 ratio, so you can trade off 150,000 of the redeemable points you have just bought for an extra 50,000 status points
  • You would then have 150,000 tier points, which makes you Finnair Plus Platinum – this is equivalent to British Airways Gold

What will this cost you?

There are various options for making this work. At the top end, you spend €2,575 (£2,200) and end up with either:

  • 400,000 redeemable Finnair Plus points plus Finnair Plus Gold status (equivalent to BA Silver), or if you do the swap I mentioned above ….
  • 250,000 redeemable Finnair Plus points plus Finnair Plus Platinum status (equivalent to BA Gold)
Finnair A350 business class

You could spend less. If you only wanted Finnair Gold, you’d get it by just buying 320,000 Finnair Plus points to trigger the necessary 80,000 tier points. You spend even less than that if you bought fewer miles but converted all of them to status points to top up the status points you’d receive directly.

I can confirm, from a reader email, that everything works OK as it is explained here. What I can’t advise on is whether the value stacks up – in particular, whether you can get value from the Finnair Plus points.

Do your research first

Here are two lengthy articles from other sites which explain the deal in more detail – see here (the author is Finnish so knows what he is writing) and here.

Finnair ran an identical offer last year, so it knows that it is doing. It won’t pull the offer and it isn’t a mistake.

Let me repeat that I am not giving an opinion either way on whether this is a good deal, given the amount of money involved. Spend some time doing the necessary research. In particular:

  • There are also minor differences to having BA vs the equivalent Finnair status. You won’t get an Avios status bonus on cash BA flights, for example, although if you flew enough for this to matter you’d have BA status already. Finnair Platinum can’t access Gold Priority Rewards, although the value in those is now nil in most cases following recent changes, or the extra Avios seats which open up in Economy.

The offer runs to 27th December.

You can buy Finnair Plus points, and find the official details, here.

PS. Remember that BA Holidays is still offering double tier points when you book with them. If you aren’t bothered about also having a pile of Finnair Plus points along with your status, booking yourself a BA Holidays package is a cheaper way to status – and you get a holiday thrown in.


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 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 card

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.

Comments (118)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Matthew says:

    If anyone would like to ‘gift’ gold to me I’ll be happy to ensure you are thanked 😉

  • tony says:

    I’m thinking the real value here lies if you’re a family with long haul BA club flights booked and want to assign seats. Suddenly you’re getting another £1k worth of value out of this.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Really? Who is daft enough to pay £1k to reserve seats!!!

      • Rob says:

        People do, you should see the emails I get.

      • tony says:

        You probably ought to re-read what I said. This seems to be a well-priced deal that doesn’t have a gaping arbitrage opportunity in it – until you get to things like the Turpin-esque antics of BA. So whilst you might be on the fence about paying a lot more to ensure you can sit together, all of a sudden that’s now “free” as part of the status and miles bundle you’ve bought. And as I said, the “free” bit can now be worth an eye-watering sum.

        Have deliberately booked family travel across the pond next year on EI and AA to avoid this rinsing – and ensure we’re not all scattered across random middle seats.

  • Richard G says:

    How does the tier point / membership year work for this? Is it based on your existing BA membership? So for instance, if I did this in December, and my membership year runs from May, would I still have Gold (Emerald) from May 2022 to May 2023?

    • Stu_N says:

      You’re buying Finnair status that is broadly equivalent to BAEC status so nothing to do with BA membership.

    • ChrisC says:

      It works based on the Finnair scheme and is not linked to your BAEC account.

  • John says:

    Your Finnair Plus status is entirely separate from BAEC

  • Matthias says:

    I just signed up for a Finnair account and confirm that the collection period end date comes up as 31/12/22. So if you went ahead with this on a newly created account, you *should* get your status until 31/12/23.

    Also, by my calculations the cheapest price for BA Gold / Finnair Platinum is around £1,600 for 300,000 points (=75,000 Tier bonus + convert 225,000 of the points into another 75,000 Tier points.)

    It does seem like a really good offer, but I have to say that being able to buy Status does take the fun out of this game somewhat.

    • Thomas Davey says:

      I think its min. £2.2k because 50% of the tier points can’t come from a conversion. By buying a bigger outlay i.e. 200k mile points + 200k bonus you get a bigger TP cut from this (which doesn’t count towards the 50% conversion). So you have to do 200+200 to get platinum and be left with 250k Finnair miles. Ive done this and using the Finnair miles to book biz flights from Helsinki to somewhere far flung…

      • gundam says:

        I think Matthias calculation stacks up and has found the sweet spot for platinum. The rule is no more than 50% can come from conversion so exactly 50% is fine logically, no?

  • ATC says:

    I already have a Finnair account and the tier point collection periods ends 31 Jan 2022. So I’m not sure whether this is good for me as if I bought the points and converted a few to achieve Platinum, I’m thinking I would only get it for 1 year and 1 month. Or should I hold off converting points to achieve platinum until after that date? Having said that…even though I’d be gold, my tier points would prob reset to zero. Gosh this is confusing….!! Maybe I’m just better off opening a new Finnair account??!

  • Andrew J says:

    Doesn’t everyone that reads HFP already have BA status anyway?

  • Guy Incognito says:

    If this got access to Gold Priority Rewards I would do it in an instant – we collect so many points through our business that we’d use that a lot (even with the recent changes).

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