Buy British Airways Avios With A 50% Bonus

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Through Friday, November 17, 2017, British Airways is offering a 50% bonus on purchased Avios. Ordinarily you can purchase at most 100,000 Avios (pre-bonus) per calendar year, though during this promotion British Airways has increased the cap to 200,000 Avios, meaning that you could purchase up to 300,000 Avios, including the 50% bonus.

The bonus applies regardless of how many Avios you purchase. One of the things that makes buying Avios unique is that the cost per purchased point varies depending on what country your account is registered in, and therefore based on what currency you pay in. So the price to purchase Avios will be different depending on whether you’re paying in EUR, GBP, or USD.

In the case of my account (which is registered in the US), I’m given the option of purchasing up to 300,000 Avios for $5,523, which is a cost of 1.84 cents per Avios.

As a point of comparison, many accounts registered in Europe can buy 150,000 Avios for 1,800EUR, which is a much better deal.

Personally I value British Airways Avios at 1.3 cents each, though there are certainly ways to get outsized value thanks to their distance based award chart (though keep in mind awards within North America start in Zone 2 rather than Zone 1). In general Avios are extremely valuable for shorthaul awards, while longhaul awards are quite expensive.

Zone // Flight DistanceEconomy
Off Peak // Peak
Premium Economy
Off Peak // Peak
Business
Off Peak // Peak
First
Off Peak // Peak
Zone 1
1-650 miles*
*Not available in North America
4,000 // 4,5005,750 // 6,7507,750 // 9,00015,500 // 18,000
Zone 2
651-1150 miles
6,500 // 7,5009,500 // 11,25012,750 // 15,00025,500 // 30,000
Zone 3
1151-2000 miles
8,500 // 10,00012,750 // 15,00017,000 // 20,00034,000 // 40,000
Zone 4
2001-3000 miles
10,000 // 12,50020,000 // 25,00031,250 // 37,50042,500 // 50,000
Zone 5
3001-4000 miles
13,000 // 20,00026,000 // 40,00050,000 // 60,00068,000 // 80,000
Zone 6
4001-5500 miles
16,250 // 25,00032,500 // 50,00062,500 // 75,00085,000 // 100,000
Zone 7
5501-6500 miles
19,500 // 30,00039,000 // 60,00075,000 // 90,000102,000 // 120,000
Zone 8
6501-7000 miles
22,750 // 35,00045,500 // 70,00087,500 // 105,000119,000 // 140,000
Zone 9
7001+ miles
32,50 // 50,00065,000 // 100,000125,000 // 150,000170,000 // 200,000

For more on the best ways to redeem Avios, see my post on the topic.


Redeem Avios for travel in Aer Lingus business class

Personally this isn’t a currency I’d buy at that price, because I’d rather earn Avios in one of several other ways:

Earn Avios


Redeem Avios for travel on Virgin America as of next year

Bottom line

Typically a 50% bonus is as good as it gets when it comes to buying Avios, and in this case they’ve even doubled the maximum number of Avios you can purchase. The last time we saw a promotion like this was from British Airways was over the summer.

While this is as good as it gets, I wouldn’t exactly consider this a bargain. British Airways has never been that aggressive about selling points, and I’d much rather transfer points from Amex Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, etc.

Still, some people will certainly find this to be valuable.

Do you plan on purchasing British Airways Avios with a 50% bonus?

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Comments

  1. Neil,

    I’d take 8-across (it’s often 7-across) and a non-stop flight over having to change planes somewhere or use a less convenient airport than Heathrow. In fact I frequently do.

    A better complaint is the fees/taxes/surcharge that BA applies to award flights. Frankly I suspect that all airlines will do this eventually – they may be happy to give you a seat that they couldn’t sell anyway, but do they really want to pay the taxes and fees on your behalf as well?

  2. Martin,
    All airlines already charge you for taxes and government-imposed fees on award flights (at least, all airlines that I’m aware of). What’s different about BA is the absurd carrier-imposed surcharges that they add in addition.

  3. I looked at the first picture and thought that seems like a pretty decent Business Class product, but a bit outdated…..then I saw the single angled window seat and realised it was BA First. 🙁

  4. On my BA account(registered in Japan), I get same offer as US based account, which is 300,000 Avios for $5,523.
    But on my Iberia account(also registered in Japan), I get same offer as account registered in Europe, which is 150,000 Avios for 1,800EUR.
    Are US based people able to purchase 150,000 Avios for 1,800EUR on their Iberia accounts?

  5. If purchased with the BA Visa card, would it count as a purchase toward the card’s bonus? Getting close to the last 25K for the 100K Avios sign-up bonus.

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