Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The new HSBC Premier airline and hotel transfer partners are now live, with some transfers instant

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HSBC Premier’s new airline and hotel transfer partners are now live. The partners are as we exclusively revealed in our article two weeks ago.

Unfortunately, the weak transfer rate to the hotel partners is also as we expected – the information we were given was true, despite feeling all wrong.

As a reminder, if you sign up for free to HSBC’s Premier current account (£75,000 income and a HSBC investment product required) you are allowed to apply for the free Premier credit card and the paid-for Premier World Elite credit card.

New HSBC airline and hotel credit card partners

The two HSBC credit cards earn as follows:

How to transfer points to travel partners

Annoyingly, it is not possible to make points transfers via the HSBC app. You need to log in to the HSBC UK website using your HSBC Premier details.

One bit of positive news which I didn’t already know is that there are no transfer minimums.

2 points will get you 1 airline mile or 1 hotel point.

Transfers to some partners are instantaneous

Yes, instant. In the UK points market, this is still rare.

I did a small test transfer of 50 HSBC points to IHG One Rewards. The transfer was, literally, instant. For the record, the points did NOT count towards status – this is unsurprising but I know some readers will wonder.

New HSBC airline and hotel credit card partners

Who are the new HSBC Premier credit card travel partners?

Here are the HSBC airline transfer partners:

HSBC credit card airline partners

The additions are Emirates, Finnair, Flying Blue, Qantas and TAP.

Here are the hotel partners, both of which are new:

HSBC Premier credit card hotel partners

What do we think of these additions?

Obviously, since no partners are leaving, these changes can only be beneficial to HSBC Premier credit card holders.

In our article two weeks ago I laid out my views on which of the airline partners were most interesting. Some of you disagreed with me in the comments, and it is worth taking a look at those if you are looking for ideas.

What everyone agrees on, however, is that the hotel transfer ratios stink.

The exchange rate from HSBC to hotel points is 2:1 – the same rate as used for airline miles. This is shocking value because, using a very broad generalisation, airline miles are worth double what hotel points are worth.

For example, I value an IHG One Rewards point at 0.4p. This means that 2 HSBC points gets you 0.4p of IHG One Rewards points – but would also get you 0.66p of shopping vouchers! Avoid – unless you need the points immediately, since the transfer to IHG is instant.

Conclusion

All in all, HSBC’s reward package is now much improved. HSBC Premier has, overnight, established itself as the clear leader in the Visa / Mastercard space for anyone who wants a ‘convertible currency’ that could be moved to multiple travel rewards schemes.

For 10 of the 11 partners (Avios being the exception) it is the only way of earning these points from Visa or Mastercard spend.

Unlike many credit cards, airline miles are excellent value compared to taking shopping vouchers. 1,500 HSBC points gets you 750 airline miles or £5 of vouchers (Amazon, Costa, M&S, John Lewis, Tesco etc) so you are ‘paying’ just 0.66p per airline mile.

The snag is that you need a HSBC Premier current account to apply for these cards, which requires a £75,000 income and the holding of a HSBC mortgage, insurance or investment product – albeit Premier has decent benefits, including full travel insurance, and is free.

Our full review of the free HSBC Premier credit card is here.

Our full review of the HSBC Premier World Elite credit card is here.


Want to earn more points from credit cards? – August 2022 update

If you are looking to apply for a new credit card, here are our top recommendations based on the current 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

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

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.

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

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

Virgin Rewards Plus credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

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

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

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company Read our full review

For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending.

Barclaycard Select Cashback credit card

1% cashback (3% on business travel for four months) and no annual fee Read our full review

Comments (31)

  • Ricardo Fantastico says:

    I’ve previously had this card – does anyone know if I’d get another sign up bonus for applying again? Is it 24 months like AmEx?

  • The Urbanite says:

    I transferred from HSBC to Singapore Airlines a couple of days ago. It was instant. In the past it definitely took at least a day. No complaints here!

  • Red says:

    I’m very happy with my HSBC Premier card – Lounge Pass worked well for us at NRT/ICN/BKK/AMS on a recent trip, including guest entry to lounges.

  • Speedbird676 says:

    The old portal used to show how many points were expiring, month by month. I can’t see anywhere in the new portal that shows any information about points expiry. Anybody found this info?

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