Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Generous new £250 United Airlines cashback offer on American Express cards

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

An impressively generous new cashback offer has appeared on American Express cards thanks to United Airlines. It is a re-run of an offer that ran twice last year.

You will get £250 back when you spend £500 with United Airlines – a 50% rebate if you find a ticket priced at exactly £500.

United Airlines American Express offer

The rules say that you need to book a flight by 24th May which is departing from the UK. I am guessing that non-UK departures may divert you a different version of the United website which is why this rule is in place. It appears there is no ‘travel by’ deadline so you can book right into next March.

Remember that you can earn Avios on United Airlines flights when you credit them to an Aer Lingus AerClub account. You can then use the ‘Combine My Avios’ functionality online to move them to your British Airways Executive Club account. You will not earn any tier points, however.

Alternatively, as a Star Alliance member, you can credit your flight to any of their frequent flyer schemes. Whilst United MileagePlus or Lufthansa Miles & More are obvious options, SAS EuroBonus and Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer have the benefit of being American Express Membership Rewards transfer partners if you need to top up your account.

(The HfP article looks at the best way to earn Star Alliance miles from UK credit cards. This article looks specifically at how to earn United Airlines miles from UK credit cards.)

£500 should be enough to get you an economy flight to the US – albeit in ‘Basic Economy’ which is frill-free – and £250 would represent a chunky saving.

If you are booking for two of you, see if you have the offer on another Amex cards, or on the supplementary card to your main card. You can then book both tickets separately.

As usual, you need to check the ‘Offers’ section on the Amex website or in the app for each American Express card you own, and then click ‘Save To Card’ to register if you can see the deal.

Only 20,000 registrations will be allowed, so if you think you may be able to make use of this offer I would register now.

Want to earn more points from credit cards? – September 2023 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

Get 25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £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.

SPECIAL OFFER: The sign-up bonus on the Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard is doubled to 30,000 Virgin Points if you apply by 2nd October. You receive 15,000 Virgin Points with your first purchase and a further 15,000 points if you spend £3,000 within 90 days. Apply here.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

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 a huge range of valuable benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

30,000 bonus points (SPECIAL OFFER TO 2ND OCTOBER) 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:

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers 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 and no annual fee Read our full review

Comments (68)

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

  • gl says:

    Got burned on this last time – fares were lower on the US site (in USD) and did not end up qualifying for this offer

  • Andrew. says:

    When this was run last year, during BAs price gouging on domestics and the multiple rail strikes…

    EDI-EWR, Points overnight, EWR-LHR was the cheapest and most convenient one way route from Edinburgh to Oxford.

    Plus it gave me a chance to have a potter around NYC.

  • Tracy says:

    I used this offer last year for trip to EDI – NYC. Flights were almost bang on £500 so paid £250 each. I tried to get United to split ticket for me but they said computer say no lol. I ended up booking separate tickets for me and OH, each using our own amex offer. Needless to say the basic economy ticket for us was a la Ryanair, middle seats allocated to both of us miles apart. However, the basic economy transatlantic does allow a cabin bag 🙂

  • Jas says:

    Saved this on my platinum. Really want to try booking Dublin to LAX – even though it’s a non-UK departure. The United website keeps me on the UK version of the site and asks to pay in £ so I’m somewhat inclined to think it may work….. feel free to tell me if that’s a bad choice!

    • L Allen says:

      Can you afford the flight if you don’t get the cash back? That’s the main consideration to be wary of. If you’re prepared to pay the full cost then the cash back will be a welcome bonus.

      • Skywalker says:

        @Jas, please report back how this pans out if you go ahead with it.

        It’s hard to get data points for obvious reasons but if you’re willing to try – thank you! 😀

        • Nick says:

          Airlines have to submit itinerary data to Amex before they get any money from them, so it’s a risky strategy. Obviously Amex may or may not set it up this way, but they could very easily check if they wanted. If United are keen to stick to these terms they’ll have made sure of it.

  • L Allen says:

    Having done some research lately into StarAlliance status earning, Aegean or Turkish would be the better schemes to credit the flight to – if you were looking to earn status rather than points to spend. Turkish awards status for two years once you intially qualify and the threshold isn’t high.

    • Jonathan says:

      Don’t forget about hard expiry policy that’s very common amongst Star Alliance airline loyalty programs, off the top of my head United, Air Canada and Aegean are the notable ones not to enforce these types of policies, most of the rest do, including Turkish.

      Something to be aware of or do your research into before you commit to enrolling and earning with a program

    • al_wiltshire says:

      I was just thinking about this, as I may have some Air India flights coming up. Asiana Club seemed quite easy too.

    • VickyTM says:

      So would you say that United is better than Lufthansa in terms of points collection? I don’t actively collect Star Alliance, but I am starting to have to fly on several Star Alliance partner airlines. I signed up for “Miles and More” but could just as easily switch to someone else. I’m thinking that a US carrier may be better as most of my personal travel is in the US. Any thoughts?

      • Rob says:

        United generally has lower taxes on partner airline redemptions because it doesn’t add surcharges. Of course, that doesn’t help if they want more miles than other programmes – you really need a plan for where you want to go first.

        Lots of other stuff in play too, eg Lufthansa has 25% off redemptions for kids, Singapore opens up more seats for its own members on its own flights etc.

  • Cash says:

    Does anyone know if the offer works with partner airlines – looking at booking an Air Canada flight via United.

    • Rob says:

      Risky because for flights Amex is sent full details of what you book – airline, class, ticket number etc, you will have seen this on your statements in the past.

      • Nick says:

        There’s nothing I can see in the T&C to limit to operating carrier. Rob is absolutely right of course, but equally you could push it if you didn’t (obvs DYOR). I suspect in reality if it’s UA coded it will be fine regardless, Amex is clever but not that clever.

        • Rob says:

          If it’s UA coded then I think you could argue it was a United flight even if AC operated.

  • KJ says:

    Not showing on either of my Platinum or BA cards

  • David says:

    *warning – this may not work for you!*

    Last time this offer came round, I booked a US domestic flight via the UK site (this is important), priced it up in £, paid via my Amex, and I got the £250 credit. I needed to book the flight anyway, so it was a risk free bonus.

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

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.