UPDATE: this offer is now sold out.
If you’re looking for something different from a weekend break, British Airways Holidays is offering free helicopter transfers if you book a trip to Monaco.
If you’ve never been in a helicopter, it is a cool thing to do.
I think I’ve only been in a helicopter three times, and one of those times was to transfer from Nice Airport to Monaco. (This was a corporate jolly, I wasn’t spending my own money.) It isn’t a long flight at just seven minutes, but skimming along the sea with the French coast off to your side makes it a very impressive one.
British Airways has teamed up with the Monaco Government Tourist & Convention Authority to offer a free RETURN helicopter transfer with a ‘flight and hotel’ booking. The full details are here.
This offer has run in the past, but has improved from the previous iteration in 2022 as you now get a return transfer, not a one-way.
Here is the small print:
- you must be a UK passport holder and/or UK resident (the BA marketing website contradicts the official terms – the former says UK passport holder, the latter says UK resident)
- you must book a flight + hotel package with selected partner hotels for at least four nights (September) or three nights (1st October – 18th December)
- you must book for 2-8 passengers – not available for solo travellers
- you must book by 17th December (which presumably means that the 18th December deadline to stay is a check-in and not check-out date)
- you must book seven days before departure
Note that the helicopter transfer is only available between 08:00 and 16:30.
You also get a free shuttle bus transfer from the heliport to your hotel and vouchers for “entrance to museums and attractions in the principality of Monaco”.
Because it’s a helicopter, you are restricted in the luggage you can bring. You are limited to one standard sized bag per adult (60cm x 45cm x 25cm) which may not exceed 21kg, as well as one small handbag or briefcase.
Partner hotels include:
- Fairmont Monte-Carlo
- Hotel Hermitage Monte-Carlo
- Columbus Monte Carlo
- Hotel De Paris Monte-Carlo
- Monte-Carlo Beach Hotel
- Le Meridien Beach Plaza
- The Metropole
- Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort
- Hotel Port Palace
- Novotel Monte-Carlo
This is a really good deal, at least off peak. I found three nights at the four-star Columbus Monte Carlo – photo above – plus BA economy flights plus the helicopter transfer for just £574 for two people (ie £287 each) in late October / early November.
Remember that the usual BA Holidays benefits apply. You earn 1 bonus Avios for every £1 you spend, and if you pay on a British Airways Premium Plus American Express card you will receive double Avios (3 per £1) from Amex. If your booking is large enough, you can just pay a deposit now with the balance due nearer departure.
Your flights will earn Avios and tier points. If your booking is for 5+ nights you will also qualify for the double tier points offer on top!
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (September 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:
There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:
You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.
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.
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.
EDIT: Applications for this card are temporarily suspended due to IT issues with the British Airways On Business SME loyalty scheme.
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.
Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.