Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Get a 25% bonus on hotel points transfers to Avios – but is it a good deal?

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For the first time in 18 months – an unusually long gap for this offer – Avios has brought back its ‘bonus when you transfer your hotel loyalty points to British Airways Avios‘ promotion.

This is the weakest version of the offer we have seen since 2015, looking at my records. For the last seven years the bonus has always been 30% or 35%.

The ba.com page for the offer can be found here.

When you transfer hotel loyalty points to Avios by 25th April, you get a 25% bonus.

There are a few simple rules you must follow:

Rule 1: You must convert your hotel points to British Airways Executive Club Avios by 25th April.  25th April is the date by which the points must leave your hotel account, not arrive at ba.com

Rule 2: Only transfers from the following hotel programmes count:

  • IHG One Rewards
  • Marriott Bonvoy
  • Radisson Rewards
  • World of Hyatt

Hilton Honors, MeliaRewards, Shangri-La Circle and Best Western Rewards – who have taken part in the past – are sitting it out.

Rule 3: There are minimum transfer requirements in theory, but these are the same as the lowest possible transfer out of that programme.  Nothing has changed compared to the normal transfer rules.

Rule 4: Only lump sum transfers of existing points get the bonus. Points earned directly from stays – if you choose to take Avios instead of hotel points – do not attract the bonus as they would fall under the minimum transfer threshold.

Rule 5: You can make multiple transfers from multiple programmes and, based on past experience, all will attract the bonus.

Avios transfer bonus from hotel schemes

Is this a good deal or not?

In general, hotel points are best redeemed for hotel stays. Let’s look at the points needed for a high category room redemption, which I am assuming is worth £250 a night.  The Avios conversion does not include the 25 per cent bonus.

IHG One Rewards – 60,000 to 70,000 points = 12,000 to 14,000 Avios or a £250 room

Marriott Bonvoy – 50,000 to 70,000 points (Cat 7) = 17,000 to 28,000 Avios or a £250 room

Radisson Rewards – 75,000 points = 7,500 Avios or a £250 room

World of Hyatt – 25,000 to 35,000 points (Cat 7) = 10,000 to 14,000 Avios or a £250 room

Is it worth converting with the 25% bonus?

Looking at these numbers, you are probably better leaving large stashes of IHG, Radisson or World of Hyatt hotel points where they are.

Radisson Rewards is the most extreme case where you probably should take the free room.  I’d far rather have a £250 five-star hotel night for 75,000 points than take (7,500 + 25%) 9,375 Avios.

Hotel points to Avios transfer bonus

Marriott Bonvoy is the only partner worth considering

Marriott Bonvoy is the only hotel programme where it is seriously worth considering converting points to miles.

This is especially true if you can convert in blocks of 60,000 Bonvoy points.

The standard conversion rate of Bonvoy points to airline miles is 3:1. However, when you convert 60,000 points at once, you get a bonus of 5,000 miles. This stacks with the 25% bonus.

Looking at the maths:

  • 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points = 25,000 Avios (including the 5,000 Avios bonus)
  • Adding in the 25% bonus from British Airways gets you to 31,250 Avios

Our standard valuation of a Bonvoy point is 0.5p. We tend to value Avios at 1p+ when used for premium flight redemptions. On this basis, you won’t lose any value if you convert in chunks of 60,000 Bonvoy points to Avios before 25th April.

For a small amount of points it is a difference decision

A few years ago I tidied up some of my small hotel balances by converting to Avios, often topping up first from American Express Membership Rewards, and didn’t regret it. If you will never earn enough for a free room, you might as well convert them and a 25 per cent bonus is a good excuse.

The other thing to remember is that the hotel chains convert to many airline programmes, often over 20 (Marriott Bonvoy has 40 airline partners).  You will get a 25 per cent bonus via Avios, but perhaps topping off another account may be more useful?

If you had a very large pile of hotel points, you may be able to get enough points from scratch in, say, Emirates Skywards to get yourself a trip in the amazing new First Class suite.  Miles in a different scheme or alliance would give you a lot of extra flexibility.  Avios is not always the answer.

Here is my final thought – why not transfer a small balance to another person?

You can transfer IHG One Rewards points to someone else for $5 per 1000 and Radisson Rewards points for FREE if you share an address. Marriott Bonvoy lets you transfer 100,000 points per year for free to anyone.

Perhaps a transfer to a friend who can use a larger total for a hotel room is a better deal than taking a handful of Avios for yourself, even with the 25% bonus?

This offer runs until 25th April so you only have a few days to decide.

You can find full details of the offer on ba.com here.


How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (August 2022)

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

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 BA Premium Plus American Express Amex credit card

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways BA Amex American Express card

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.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

American Express Amex Gold

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

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points, £200 travel credit and an unbeatable set of 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 10,000 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company 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 card

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.

Amex Platinum Business American Express

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits 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.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)

Comments (30)

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

  • Roger says:

    Wish AA brings back this offer

  • Matt says:

    Does anyone know if Hyatt are bringing back points + cash redemptions? Although they advertise it on their website, I never find them on the booking system.

    I currently have just over 6k points sitting in my account with no further stays planned. I don’t really fancy any of the Cat1 properties but could definitely use them for a Cat3 points + cash redemption. Otherwise the best option looks like converting to Avios.

  • SammyJ says:

    Surely transferring IHG points at $5 per 1000 is one of the worst things to do with them? You can usually buy points for around that (£40 per 10k is how I calculate them) when there’s a DFS-style ‘sale’ on, so you’re effectively giving the points away for nothing? Or am I missing a vital point somewhere?

    • Rob says:

      True. That comment dates back to the days when you didn’t get a 100% bonus.

      Transfers used to count for status, albeit reducing the status points of the giver. Not sure if this is still true.

      • SammyJ says:

        Ah ok. If they count to status I can see an advantage if a small number was needed for qualification.

  • Manya says:

    I have a residual balance of about 22k Marriott points which are leftover from a larger amount of points purchased in March.

    Are purchased points also eligible for the 25% AVIOS conversion bonus? Note that I already received a 50% bonus from Marriott on the purchased points.

    • Peter K says:

      Yes they are eligible. All BA sees are the points transferred, not how they were acquired.

  • Ben says:

    I’m about 50 Shangri La GC points away from being able to cash out for a $100 voucher – which I think needs done before the end of the month to avoid devaluation. Any idea how I can convert/transfer only a handful of points to make this work?

    • Qrfan says:

      I was in this position and ended up buying the smallest amount possible. Was worth it for $150 at the shard.

      • Manya says:

        Any tips on what you spent on at the Shard? I have about $300 worth.

        • Qrfan says:

          We did the 5 course tasting menu at Ting. I don’t usually go in for hotel restaurants but with the voucher subsidy and the terrific views I have no regrets.

      • Ben says:

        Buying them! Of all the things I forgot that I could do! I was looking at transfers and conversions here, there and everywhere! $6.50 for 50 points tops me up perfectly. Cheers!

  • points_worrier says:

    Used it to transfer out a small pile of Marriott points that I was unlikely to use. Thanks.

  • Matt says:

    How long do marriot points take to transfer across?

    • Rob says:

      To BA? These things can take a while, don’t do it if you need to book a redemption which popped up. I’d say you should have them in a week. The 25% bonus may come later still.

  • kevind says:

    Myself and the wife both have just shy of 60,000 points in our Marriot Bonvoy accounts. We want to convert to Avios but to get the extra 5000 miles we need to transfer over 60,000 points. If I telephone Bonvoy today to move my points to her account, will the Bonvoy points be in her account before 25th April? (Allowing us to get the extra 5000 miles AND 25% bonus)

    • Kowalski says:

      If you call and transfer points from your Bonvoy account to her’s the transfer is pretty much instant in my experience

    • yorkieflyer says:

      In increments of 1000 points

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

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