8 Reasons To Get The British Airways Visa

Filed Under: British Airways, Chase
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The British Airways Visa Signature® Card is one of the better co-branded airline credit cards out there. It’s a card that’s in my wallet, and that I get substantial value out of.

While I’ve written a detailed review of the BA Visa, in this post I wanted to focus specifically on the reasons you should consider getting this card.

Why You Should Get The British Airways Visa Card

The British Airways Visa has a reasonable $95 annual fee, a big welcome bonus of up to 100K Avios, and best of all, it has benefits that make the card worth holding onto long term.

Here are eight reasons you should consider picking up the BA credit card:

50,000 Avios With Minimum Spending

While the British Airways Visa offers a bonus of up to 100,000 Avios, let’s look at it in two parts, because everyone has different spending abilities.

On the most basic level, the card offers a bonus of 50,000 Avios after spending $3,000 within three months. That’s $1,000 of spending per month, which is a reasonable threshold for many people to achieve.

Redeem your Avios for travel in Qatar Airways Qsuites

Additional 50,000 Avios With Spending

In addition to the initial 50,000 Avios you can earn with spending, the card offers an additional 50,000 Avios after spending a total of $20,000 within the first year of account opening.

While that’s a significant spending requirement, it’s also a really good rate of return for those who can swing it. For the incremental $17,000 of spending (above the initial $3,000) you’d earn a total of 67,000 Avios (50,000 bonus Avios, plus the standard 17,000 Avios at the rate of one Avios per dollar spent). That’s nearly four Avios per dollar spent, which is excellent.

Redeem your Avios for travel on American Airlines

Save 10% On British Airways Flights

The British Airways Visa offers a 10% discount on British Airways flights originating in the US (just use promotion code CHASEBA10).

If you fly British Airways on revenue tickets with any frequency, this could save you a huge amount of money. There are surprisingly few restrictions with this, as it works on most British Airways metal flights departing the US in all classes of service.

Best of all, the entire fare, including the surcharges, are discounted by 10%.

Save on British Airways fares with the BA Visa

Award Surcharge Rebate

Not only can having this card save you money on revenue flights, but it can also save you money on award tickets.

While British Airways has reasonably good award availability (and consistently makes at least two business class award seats available on all flights), unfortunately the airline has hefty surcharges when redeeming Avios for most British Airways flights. That’s where having this card comes in handy, and the annual fee can be covered over and over.

This card offers up to $600 per year in statement credits on reward flights. You can get up to three credits per year, as follows:

  • Earn a $100 statement credit for an economy or premium economy booking
  • Earn a $200 statement credit for a business class or first class booking

This only applies to British Airways awards originating in the US. If you do redeem Avios on British Airways often, this could be valuable.

Save on British Airways award tickets with the BA Visa

Earn A Companion Ticket

If you spend $30,000 on the card in a calendar year, you can earn a companion certificate, allowing a companion to travel with you while just paying the taxes, fees, and carrier imposed surcharges.

This can be well worth it, particularly the first year, if you’re going to spend $20,000 on the card anyway to unlock the full bonus. In that case, we’re only talking about an incremental $10,000 of spending.

Use a companion ticket for a Club Suites redemption

Pool Avios For Great Oneworld Redemptions

One of the challenges that many people have with a credit card strategy is that they earn rewards in too many programs, and then don’t actually have enough in any one program to redeem.

Well, the great thing here is that there are lots of credit cards that can earn you Avios, as you can also transfer over points from Amex Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards.

There are so many great ways to redeem Avios, whether you’re looking to travel on British Airways, or a partner airline with lower surcharges.

Redeem Avios for travel in Aer Lingus A321LR business class

Car Rental Coverage

The British Airways Visa offers primary car rental coverage outside the US, while it offers secondary car rental coverage in the US. This applies to damage up to the cost of most rental car vehicles. Make sure you read the full cardmember agreement for details.

Car rental coverage can be a useful perk

Access To Chase Offers

Chase Offers has been getting more and more useful lately. With this, you can save money for purchases with select retailers by enrolling your card and then making an eligible purchase. This new feature is available on most Chase cards, though all cards have different offers.

The more cards you have, the better the odds of getting good deals.

With Chase Offers you can sometimes save on hotel stays

Tip: Consider The Aer Lingus & Iberia Cards

If you already have the British Airways Card, it’s worth being aware that Chase has two other cards earning Avios — I’m talking about the Aer Lingus Visa Signature® Card (review) and Iberia Visa Signature® Card (review).

These cards all earn Avios in their respective currencies, but you can potentially consolidate these all in a single account.

The Avios cards all have similar welcome bonuses, spending bonuses, annual fees, and perks, though they are tailored to each individual airline.

The good news is that you’re potentially eligible for all three of these cards. The Aer Lingus and Iberia cards are often overlooked, and can earn you the same great bonuses.

Iberia also has a co-branded US credit card

Bottom Line

The British Airways Visa has an excellent bonus of up to 100K Avios, and with the benefits that were added to this card in 2019, it’s more useful than ever before. In particular, the 10% savings on revenue flights, and the up to $600 in statement credits on award flights, can quickly add up.

I picked up this card last year, and I’d recommend others consider getting the card as well.

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  1. If you live in the US and have a regular personal car insurance policy it likely will cover you for US rental cars (driver other car coverage) so the non-US primary rental car coverage should cover you most everywhere.

  2. Lucky,

    I downgraded to the no-fee BA visa. Do you know if the no-fee card also has the Award Surcharge Fee rebates?

  3. Here is my dilemma with the BA card. I’ve had it for two years, hit the bonus right away, and as of now have nearly 200K miles. My problem is that I can’t figure out how to use the points. I’ve flown from LAX to LHR several times, paying as low as $349 (Christmas 2019) and as high as $500. Every time I try to use the miles, BA wants to charge me over $500 in fuel surcharges and taxes. Why would I do that when I can buy the ticket for the same price? When I inquire about an upgrade, they tell me I purchased a base fare and can’t upgrade. All that said, how is the best way to use Avios?

  4. In theory you can redeem Avios for AA tickets without surcharges. Currently, I do have 25K Avios without any CC and have no ideas how to use those. Remember that #9 reason for Getting The British Airways Visa is obtaining a referral click credited to the blogger. The latter is properly disclosed by Lucky.

  5. You can use Avios on BA, Iberia, and Aer Lingus.

    Their points web sites can be, ah, interesting to say the least but you can move points from one to the other. Not sure if you can move them back.

    I think tit may be easiest to use the Aer Lingus site as the focal point. I also have nearly 200K Avios. When under 5/24 I plan to get the Aer Lingus card to pick up another 70K or so then likely fly Iberia. [eyeroll]

  6. Can someone refresh my memory?

    Which credit card is allowable for making mortgage payments with Plastiq? Is it Visa or Masterdard?

  7. I assume the BA Visa card referred to is only available to US residents.
    What is the equivalent for Uk residents ? .

  8. In the past they always made First Class available. We had two tickets in June from NY to Tel Aviv but obviously the trip got cancelled. Looking to rebook for next year. Searched for almost a month and not one FC seat available while the cabins show up as empty. Won’t fly BA Business Class – the worst in the skies. Ended up moving the Avios to Iberia as we have in the past. Great availability and excellent Business Class product.

  9. They have made it impossible to use the travel together voucher even at a 220000 Avios per FC cabin ticket. Just a waste of time !

  10. I have successfully used 30,000 BA points accrued during a single year for a free companion ticket with a Business Class points ticket Toronto-London-Beijing, ret HK-London-Toronto. The return was on an A380 – which was a delight. Yes, BA’s business class seating is a pain, but the old configuration is starting to be phased out.

    Cathay? Where the “Communist” Chinese can now arrest me and hold me for ransom? No thanks!

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