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Qatar Airways replaces Emirates as the official airline sponsor of Formula 1

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As was rumoured a few weeks ago, it has been confirmed that Qatar Airways is replacing Emirates as the official airline partner of Formula 1.

This is more relevant than you might think, because it makes it likely that race tickets and hospitality experiences will become available via Qatar Privilege Club.

At present Qatar Airways does not have ‘experiences’ redemptions. If they decided to launch them – and obviously having Formula 1 tickets to dish out is a good base to start from – this would be good news now that Qatar Privilege Club has adopted Avios as its currency.

Qatar Airways Formula 1 sponsorship

It will be a blow to those who were redeeming Emirates Skywards miles for Formula 1 experiences. You were never going to get a bargain for the British Grand Prix, but for anyone willing to head to some of the lower profile European races there were deals to be had.

I know one reader paid just over 100,000 Emirates Skywards miles for 2 x 3-day Paddock Club hospitality packages for a European race last year.

What do we know about the Qatar Airways Formula 1 deal?

The Qatar Airways deal wil run for five years, from 2023 to 2027.

As well as becoming ‘the official airline partner’ of Formula 1, the airline will become the title sponsor of the Qatar, Hungary and Italy (Imola) races.

To quote:

“The best partnerships thrive because of mutual values. Both Qatar Airways and Formula 1 are global brands that share a passion for innovation, precision and luxury. As a brand, we believe in the power of sports to unite people, and as such, we have been selective with picking the most thrilling sporting events and sponsoring a variety of new and prominent sporting initiatives.”

 “With 23 stops in the 2023 World Championship, F1 is a global sport, requiring a Global Airline partner that offers extensive global connectivity. Hence, Qatar Airways demonstrates the perfect companion for one of the most desirable sports series in the world.” 

Qatar Airways Holidays is offering VIP packages for some races. These will include pit lane walks, guided track tours and access to special events with appearances by top F1 drivers. You can see details on the Qatar Airways Holidays site here.

We’ll let you know if there is any sign of Avios redemptions being available.


HFP-Barclaycard-Avios-Card

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

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Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

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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

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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

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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.

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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

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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.

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American Express Business Gold

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Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (28)

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

  • lonjams says:

    Honestly why would anyone waste their time/money/points on Formula 1? Surely it has no sporting integrity? They threw their rules out of the window to annoint Verstappen champion at the expense of Hamilton and acted like nothing had happened. Verstappen’s team was then caught and admitted to overspending the budget cap that same season (essentially cheating) and all they got was a slap on the wrist. How can you be sure when you watch this farce that you are watching genuine sport and not a pre-fabricated outcome?

    • Nick says:

      I love it! Over the past 10 years or so I’ve been to McLaren F1 factory tours, dinners & car launches (using HH points), as well as Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 functions (using Marriott points), many of which we got the heads up on from Rob.

      I’ll be looking out for these too!

    • Spare says:

      Just say you are still bitter and stop to all the non-sense.

      • Novice says:

        I don’t think some ppl who still say stuff about happened are bitter. I genuinely stopped watching or following the sport because of the dishonesty. I have never supported LH. I was a Vettel fan. I just can’t support cheating.

    • HH says:

      1. I really don’t think the Abu Dhabi 2021 farce was a conspiracy, it was just Masi’s human error / misjudgement in the face of pressure. He paid a steep price for it, and FIA admitted it was wrong in its report. Whether the result should have been changed retrospectively is open to debate, I can see both sides to that argument.

      • Michael Jennings says:

        I agree completely. It wasn’t a conspiracy. It was just a stuff up, although a bad one.

    • HH says:

      2. There were mitigating factors like the delayed HMRC rebate due to Covid, which offset most of Red Bull’s overspend. Besides, the overspend seemed to be genuinely over matters of interpretation rather than deliberate obfuscation. I think the financial hit and loss of aero time was fair enough, especially in the first year of the cost cap – even financial regulators are lenient when they first bring in a new rule / law.

      • dougzz99 says:

        OK Christian we get it.

      • Panda Mick says:

        @HH This is not the place for facts…. Opinions, maybe, but certainly not facts 🙂

        Wasn’t aware of your second point. I don’t think RB set out to overspend…

    • Will says:

      Since liberty media took over its nose dived.
      Was Masai under pressure from them for the best final lap ever?
      Everything they do is about getting more viewers to increase its value to sell it on to someone else for a profit.

      • Rob says:

        As opposed to what alternative strategy exactly?!

        In a parallel universe you’d be writing “Everything they do is about letting the sport decline, pulling in money from their existing contracts whilst not investing anything to help the sport grow and develop.”

        • Andrew says:

          Some would say the current strategy seems to be about maximising short term gains whilst harming long term value. The final couple of laps in Abu Dhabi were incredibly exciting but why invest days of your life watching the other 21 races when the rules can be interpreted on the fly and all that matters is the last 2 minutes of the season?

          Making the results random seems exciting at first but turning a sport into an effective coin toss is not going to build long term support.

          • will says:

            Exactly this, my thoughts on this more widely are long and without firm conclusion but they revolve around:
            1. Capitalism in it’s current form encourages short term gains for specific private enterprises without regard to the longer term (that’s waffle I know, in the long term everything is space dust but there’s something to it particularly considering humans have finite lifespans and are more concerned in general with bettering their own life and less concerned about what happens once they are gone).
            2. With sport in particular, it’s proven possible to buy a monopolistic position and that exploit that monopoly. The analogy is with buying up all the water, once you have it you dictate the price and become relatively unconcerned about it’s quality as you have a thirsty customer base regardless of the quality of product you pump out. At which point you focus on selling salt to make people more thirsty.

            If I told you that building a house in your back garden would make you wealthy, you might be tempted, but over the long term you might really miss the back garden that is now gone.

            At what real price are races in Saudi, Bahrain, Qatar previously Russia? Liberty love them as they pay a fortune in royalties to host. Do we need Miami where celebrities appear to be the main interest?

            I’ve followed it since I can remember, maybe it’s nostalgia deluding me but

    • r* says:

      You could say the same about football.

      • Spurs drive me mad says:

        I’m the same used to love watching the F1 but that was final straw for me in 2021. It wasn’t a “ mistake” it was blatant cheating to get the result they wanted.

    • David says:

      Lol, a sport… its overgrown children driving adult toy cars.

  • Novice says:

    I was a f1 fan until they handed the title to crashtappen… If he had won on merit then fair enough but the way everything happened I just can’t be bothered anymore. I guess I wasn’t a diehard fan that could overlook the dishonesty and RB tactics.
    For me it had always been because I love cars. But I can enjoy cars in other ways. No need to waste time following a dishonourable sport.

  • David says:

    Happy for those who are fans of this but I never understood the popularity. Sitting down to watch cars speed by doing their intended speed in the name of “sport”. Each to their own.

    • The Savage Squirrel says:

      I’m a fan of various sports (although not F1 at all). Pretty much all sports are inherently utterly ridiculous if you think about them too much. Still exciting and dramatic at their best though – last night’s Eng/NZ Test Match being a great example.

    • The Lord says:

      F1 has always been a sport for those who aren’t really interested in any other sport

  • Little Littlewood says:

    I could ask the same question about football?? All sports have cheats, some more obvious than others. Wonder if Man city where offering tickets this way if the same would be said??

  • The Streets says:

    Can’t wait for the new electric go-kart as part of the new deal at the Tottenham Stadium

  • Ironside says:

    Never mind, Emirates. You can go and sponsor that other bastion of ‘sports entertainment’: WWE.

  • babyg says:

    “I know one reader paid just over 100,000 Emirates Skywards miles for 2 x 3-day Paddock Club hospitality packages for a European race last year.” – this only happened as Emirates-F1 auctions were “relatively” under the radar and you could often win Emirates F1 auctions at close to the starting bid, HfP didnt talk much about these, hence they stayed under the radar..

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

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