The card is available to those who don’t have the card, and who haven’t received a new cardmember bonus on the card in the past 24 months, which should make a lot of people eligible. Furthermore, the card isn’t subjected to Chase’s 5/24 rule. Nearly a decade ago the card had a pretty “no strings attached” 100,000 Avios sign-up bonus. You could earn those Avios upon completing a basic minimum spend, and it’s probably one of the hottest credit card offers we’ve ever seen.
I suspect the motivation behind the offer was that the card was new to the market, though not surprisingly we haven’t seen an offer that generous since, and I doubt we’ll see an offer like that again.
At the moment the $95 annual fee British Airways Visa Card is offering a sign-up bonus of up to 100,000 Avios, though the spend requirement is higher:
- 50,000 bonus Avios after spending $3,000 within the first three months
- 25,000 additional bonus Avios after spending $10,000 total within the first year
- 25,000 additional bonus Avios after spending $20,000 total within the first year
The way I see it, there are two ways you can view the sign-up bonus on this card:
6x points on everyday spend
The British Airways Visa Card offers 100,000 bonus Avios after spending $20,000 over the course of a year, and on top of that you earn 20,000 Avios for the actual spend.
That means if you spend a total of $20,000 in the first year, you’d earn 120,000 Avios. That means you’re earning 6x Avios per dollar spent, which is a really great return for non-bonused spend. $20,000 sounds like a huge minimum spend requirement, but really that comes down to under $1,700 of spend per month, which I think a lot of people can swing.
17.7 Avios, 4.6 Avios, and 3.5 Avios per dollar spent
It’s fair to say that the sign-up bonus on the British Airways Visa Card essentially offers 6x Avios on the first $20,000 spent within the first year. However, that doesn’t really account for the diminishing marginal return, given the thresholds at $3,000, $10,000, and $20,000 of spend. So if you really want to look at your marginal return at each spend threshold, here’s what that looks like:
- If you spend $3,000, you’re earning ~17.7 Avios per dollar spent (53,000 Avios for $3,000 of spend)
- If you spend $10,000, you’re earning an incremental ~4.6 Avios per dollar spent (32,000 Avios for $7,000 of spend)
- If you spend $20,000, you’re earning an incremental 3.5 Avios per dollar spent (35,000 Avios for $10,000 of spend)
17.7 Avios per dollar spent is awesome. 4.6 Avios per dollar spent is really great. 3.5 Avios per dollar spent is still very good. It’s a different way of looking at it, but regardless of how you view it, I tend to think the incremental return is worthwhile.
In other words, if you otherwise have any amount of non-bonused spend, I’d rather be earning 3.5x Avios than the return I’d otherwise get on the best cards for everyday spend.
The British Airways Visa Card has a great sign-up bonus that many people should consider. Not only is the card not subjected to the Chase 5/24 rule, but it actually has a very compelling sign-up bonus. I value Avios at ~1.3 cents each, so whether you plan on earning 50,000, 75,000, or 100,000 Avios, I’d seriously consider applying.