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British Airways launches flights from London Heathrow to Florence

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British Airways has announced a new daily service from London Heathrow to Florence, starting on 26th April 2023.

It will be a Terminal 5 flight, presumably designed to maximise connections from North America.

British Airways launches flights from Heathrow to Florence

You may be surprised to know that BA does not already fly to Florence from Heathrow, but it required a recent runway extension to make it possible.

There is an existing service from London City Airport and, on Summer weekends, Edinburgh, both operated by BA CityFlyer with smaller Embraer aircraft.

The flight times are not ideal, unless you are connecting from the US. The departure from Heathrow is at 07.50, arriving at 11.00, whilst the return departs Florence at 11.50, arriving in Heathrow at 13.05. You may prefer to return on the 3pm-ish London City flight. Bologna is also a short train ride away and is a BA route.

As a new service, flights will be wide open for Avios redemptions if you book now.


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (February 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.

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:

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 21st February 2023, the sign-up bonus on the British Airways Premium Plus American Express card is increased to 35,000 Avios from 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

35,000 Avios (ONLY to 21st February) 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.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year 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.

Comments (53)

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

  • points_worrier says:

    Why are some of the watch finder watches more than RRP, and are currently cheaper brand new (and in stock) on the goldsmiths website? Rolex millegaus for example.

    • points_worrier says:


      • Jess says:

        There is a 10-15 year waiting list for Rolex and you are only able to name 3 models you want to buy when placed on this list. The watches in the window you see are for ‘exhibition only’ purposes.

    • Mike Hunt says:

      I guess they are trying to make more profit

      • Rob says:

        You can’t actually buy most Rolex or Patek models. The supply isn’t there. Shops will only sell them to ‘preferred’ customers – it’s not unusual for a jeweller to ask you to spend a substantial sum on other products before they will sell you a core Rolex model, for example – and even then, they can only do it when Rolex decides to supply them, which for core models isn’t often.

        The Financial Times magazine last Saturday had a six page feature on this, based on a US court case that is currently ongoing.

        What’s bizarre is that Rolex admits to making 1 million watches per year but no-one knows where they go, because they are virtually impossible to buy ‘fresh’. As the FT reports, many independent jewellers sell them via a back door onto the grey market (above the Rolex RRP, which is not allowed – the sale comes with a cash bung, and a fake buyer ID is supplied to Rolex) which then resells them for even more.

        It’s like trying to buy a Hermes Kelly or Birkin bag – there is zero chance that any Hermes boutique in the world will sell you one if you walk in and ask. If you spend five or six figures over a period of time then they may consider your request. There is a reason they sell for many, many times RRP at auction.

        • Bagoly says:

          Rolex in particular are used as currency in various parts of the world (E.g. much of Africa). I would not be surprised if Rolex ships large quantities either direct to the countries, or, more likely, direct to vaults in Europe controlled by dictators.

        • Ken says:

          Rolex (and other brands) are perfect for drug dealers.
          Expensive, easy to transport , universal, tradeable , and hold their value (for now).
          I’d imagine their are no end parked in southern Spain and Dubai.

        • DaveJ says:

          I bought a fake one from a market in Vietnam three years for £40.

          Still works and people think it’s real. Saved myself a few thousand pounds too 🙂

          • David says:

            I want to travel to Vietnam in 23 or 24. Do you remember where exactly or roughly?!

          • DaveJ says:

            “I want to travel to Vietnam in 23 or 24. Do you remember where exactly or roughly?!”

            Hanoi night market which is open on weekends.

        • Harry T says:

          Enjoyed that FT article!

    • Andrew J says:

      Simple supply and demand. Same as the Omega Moon Swatch – people spend days queuing outside a Swatch shop to get one, which is why they are on eBay for 2.5x RRP.

      • Mark says:

        My initial thoughts on the Moonswatch (as someone who has an Omega Seamaster) was that this is diluting the brand. On reflection it could actually be a great way of marketing to a younger generation of people who buy the Moonswatch and then aspire to own a “real” Omega one day. Either way I don’t really care, I have a watch which should over time hold its value reasonably well and in the meantime I can wear and enjoy it!

        • Andrew J says:

          Yes it’s the same marketing approach that fashion brands do with fragrance and makeup – buy a £50 bottle of Dior fragrance and aspire to owning a piece of ready to wear or a bag. And indeed buying a luxury watch is a much more interesting and lucrative way to save your money than putting in a savings account.

        • Londonsteve says:

          I agree with everything you’ve written, the main issue is the Moonswatch is an appalingly badly made item that should never have been allowed out of the factory. The fact that it carries the Omega and Swiss Made labels are a problem, but it’s even not befitting of Swatch to put out such a poor quality item. The case is cheap plastic, the buttons fall off and the plastic ‘glass’ scratches at the slightest provocation. They’re something that should be given away in a Christmas cracker and are probably worth £10 RRP. I’m pleased they’re heavily restricted availability of them otherwise I might have bought one. The fact that many people did and discovered how dreadful they are have done me and others a favour and overall Swatch/Omega have lost a ton of sales. Also from people that can’t be bothered with the whole charade of visiting a Swatch shop 25x in the hope they might have you preferred model in stock.

    • Mark says:

      Prices are not as mental as they used to be 12 months ago, but anecdotally it sounds like we are no where near being back to walking into a store and buying a Rolex same day. Will be interesting to see if Rolex officially selling used watches through authorised dealers will change things.

      • Londonsteve says:

        Am I unable to walk into a Rolex agent and buy a basic Submariner for RRP?

        • Jess says:

          That’s right, no chance at all. There is an incredibly long waiting list – I said if I don’t answer the phone when I make it to the top of the list then I am probably dead!

        • Andrew J says:

          Yes, that won’t be possible I’m afraid.

          • Londonsteve says:

            I’m rather surprised that supply is restricted for such a ‘basic’ model. What do they hope to achieve by making them hard to buy? And how do Rolex agents make any money if they’ve nothing to sell to potential customers?

          • Rob says:

            The ones they get are pure profit – watch arrives AM, sold PM to someone on the list. Cash in the bank within a day, don’t pay Rolex for 30-60 days presumably. Still better than putting £250k into holding stock of other brands which take months to shift.

        • JDB says:

          Sounds like you will have a lucky escape. For the reasons cited above by @Ken and many others, why would anyone want to be seen wearing a Rolex? Hardly very exclusive when they are making 1m of them a year, they make a statement that most people consider vulgar and it seems they invite muggings.

      • Chabuddy Geezy says:

        I was able to buy 3 moonswatches in Swatch Venice this week 😀

        • Londonsteve says:

          I hope they’re still telling the time correctly in a year from now.

          • Chabuddy Geezy says:

            Steve they come with a 2 year warranty. Cheers for the heads up though, I was not aware of the quality issues.

          • Andrew J says:

            They’re a great watch, really good value and well made. I think it’s a brilliant concept that Swatch have done with this collaboration between two companies in their group.

        • tw33ty says:

          They are limited anymore, Hamburg had loads of every model of the swatch omegas last week.

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