HOT! Get A 50% Bonus When You Transfer American Express Membership Rewards Points Into British Airways Avios!


Update, 05/29: This great promotion will end on 05/31! Using AMEX points for British Airways’ amazing short-haul nonstop flight deals and using other mileage currencies for transatlantic and transpacific flights will allow you to fly free no matter where you are going!

Originally posted on 03/15:

Related posts:
-Using BA Miles To Fly In Business Class For An 80 Minute Flight Can Make Sense.

-Flying With An Infant With Miles In Business Or First Class? Start Collecting Air Canada Or British Airways Mile
-Chase Has A New British Airways Visa Offer, Though It’s Not Quite As Sweet As Last Year’s.
-Short-Haul Flights: BA Avios Versus LAN Lanpass.
-BA Miles Are Now Avios…For Better Or For Worse.

BA/MR Promo Offer Linky

-Through 05/31/12 you will get 1,500 Avios for every 1,000 Membership Rewards (MR) Points transferred to BA.

-There are currently no fuel surcharges for flights wholly within the western hemisphere. These include flights on American (AA), Alaska, and LAN.

-There are no expedite or close-in fees for booking last minute award tickets with BA Avios.

-You can book one-way tickets for half of the miles listed below!

-British Airways only charges 10% extra miles and no extra money for a lap child flying internationally, even when traveling on AA.  AA and other domestic carriers charge a whopping 10% of the full fare.

-You can transfer points from an American Express Membership Rewards account to anyone’s British Airways account, names don’t have to match.

-Points transfer instantly from MR to BA and there are no fees or taxes for transferring points to British Airways.

-You can borrow points by calling up Membership Rewards (800-AXP-EARN) and asking for a points advance. You then have up to 1 year to earn those points from signup bonuses or spending or else they will charge you 2.5 cents per point.

-British Airways charges double miles for business class and triple miles for first class. Beware that on AA’s domestic 2 class planes they charge first class rates for what is really just a poor excuse for business class.

-You can search AA and Alaska award availability on and looking for sAAver awards. BA can’t book AAnytime awards, but you should be able to find all AA sAAver awards on does not display all available awards on all airlines, so you will have to call if you see a sAAver award on that’s not showing on

Sample uses:

-6,000 MR points will transfer into 9,000 Avios, enough for a round-trip short-haul ticket between New York and places like Boston, Cleveland, Detroit, Montreal, or Toronto or between Miami and the Bahamas, on OneWorld partner American.

-10,000 MR points becomes 15,000 Avios, enough for a round-trip flight between New York and Chicago or Florida or from LA to Cabo.

-14,000 MR points becomes 21,000 Avios, more than enough for a round-trip flight between Chicago and LA.

-17,000 MR points becomes 25,500 Avios, more than enough for a round-trip flight between the west coast and Hawaii, New York and the west coast, or New York and Costa Rica.  It’s even enough for a round-trip flight between Boston and Dublin or Shannon, Ireland with no fuel surcharges on Aer Lingus!

-27,000 MR points becomes 40,500 Avios, more than enough for a round-trip flight between Dallas and Hawaii or New York and London (though you’ll be hit with fuel surcharges for crossing the Atlantic on most airlines).   It’s also enough for a round-trip flight between NYC or Chicago and Dublin or Shannon, Ireland with no fuel surcharges on Aer Lingus.

-34,000 MR points becomes 51,000 Avios, more than enough for a round-trip flight between New York and Brazil or Argentina.

Need more Membership Rewards points?  Here are some Membership Rewards cards, all 3 of which I have personally burned successfully multiple times within the past year:

-American Express Consumer Platinum Card

-American Express Consumer Premier Rewards Gold Card

-American Express Business Platinum Card

-Opening a card like Premier Rewards Gold with no fee for a year will get you at least 27,000 MR points after spending $2,000, which can become 40,500 Avios with this promotion, enough for 9 one-way short haul award tickets on American! You can even borrow points when you have a charge card to transfer to British Airways during the promo period and pay them back with future spending or signup bonuses.

HT: PlatinumGuy, via DDF

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134 Comments On "HOT! Get A 50% Bonus When You Transfer American Express Membership Rewards Points Into British Airways Avios!"

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is there a maximum of how many MR points you are allowed to transfer?


There is no limit!


Just transferred yesterday about 100k points. Anything to do?


Send a secure message, call membership rewards, or tweet @AskAmex and ask them to honor the promotion.



I have around 50k MR…if you were me, how many would you transfer into Avios? Would you transfer them all or wait for a similar bonus to DL? I don’t have any specific trips planned at the moment, but would like to maximize their value. Thanks!


I got an offer for 50K Business Platinum $5k spend in 3 Months.
Bonus ID 8539


can i transfer MR points into an avios account with a different name?


BA miles are great for travel on non-stop flights in the western hemisphere. If that’s your cup of tea then transfer ’em over, otherwise hold onto them for a bonus to Aeroplan or Delta.

That’s a targeted promotion and AMEX stopped letting people match to other promotion over 6 months ago.



What was the MR-BA promotion that ended a couple months ago?


That was for 30%.


Do you think I’ll find availability on business to Hawaii? Worth 66k for 2 tickets from LA?


is there a way to find out how many Avios BA needs for 2 roundtrip tickets from EWR to Toronto ?
i have 25k being posted at the end of this month but i want to book the ticket today. how do i borrow and transfer on the same day ?


Just search on for LAX to HNL, ITO, KOA, LIH, OR OGG and see what’s available at sAAver rates.
However BA sometimes charges first class rates for business and the truth is that business/first class from LAX to Hawaii is nothing special.

AA doesn’t fly EWR-YYZ nonstop. You can go from LGA or JFK to YYZ for 9,000 Avios round-trip, which is 6,000 MR points right now.

You need to call to borrow and you can transfer on the phone or online instantly.


@Dan: If I did the 30% transfer about a month ago, do you think I should even bother trying to get it honored to 50%?


What about Avios for business class to S. America? Are they a better value than redeeming AA or LAN miles? I have lots of AA miles and could get LAN miles from my Starwood stash.



Ouch ;(


Too bad this bonus doesnt work for Canadian MR transfers.

We get the shaft a 1000:750.
Maybe our lost miles help fund USA promos 🙂


How are they with Israel -? specifically a business class ticket to Israel?


Doesn’t hurt to try the 3 methods I posted above.

It depends to where in South America and if you are bringing a lap child, etc.

You can always ask to be annexed.

You will be slammed with heavy fuel surcharges, making coach redemptions a terrible value and making premium redemptions a hard sell compared to transferring MR to Air Canada Aeroplan and booking on surcharge-free carriers.

If the fees don’t phase you BA charges 65K in coach, 130K in business, and 195K in first.


@dan- so BA would end up booking me on AA, not Air Canada?



No lap child, so thats not a factor. Where is the best value using Avios to S America or is it valuable only within S America? I presume it’s not from US to Buenos Aires due to the distance.


BA is not a partner with Air Canada. You can transfer 25K MR to Air Canada and they’ll book you on United from EWR-YYZ, but I think most would rather go for 6K from JFK/LGA-YYZ using BA miles to fly on AA. 😀

It depends where. LAN has a great deal to Brazil for example for less than 20K SPG round-trip.

34K/67K/100K MR to BA will get you in coach/business/first round-trip nonstop from JFK, DFW, or MIA to Buenos Aires for example. That’s very good, but intra-South America will of course be even better!


Do they allow you to borrow more MR then you spent in the past?


I believe you can borrow 15K on non-Platinum MR cards and 60K on Plat cards.


How long does it take for the miles to transfer over to BA?


Please read the post.


i just created a household account with BA to share the avios we have. apparently , once you do that you cant book tickets for any family member not 18 years old so no infants or children. kind of strange. looks like i need to transfer my avios and pay for it instead of sharing.


Hi Dan, may I ask how many Avios miles for a round trip from San Francisco (SFO) to Hong Kong (HKG)? Thanks


That doesn’t sound correct.

Nonstop flights to Hong Kong on Cathay Pacific from JFK, LAX, ORD, SFO, YVR, and YYZ are 70K/140K/210K Avios in coach/business/first round trip, plus fuel surcharges.
Fuel surcharges on Cathay though are much less than on BA, figure on about $300 I would guess.

Using AA miles to fly on Cathay Pacific would be 70K/110K/135K and there would be no fuel surcharges or additional charges for connecting flights or stopovers in North America.


you’re right. you have to add children and infants to the household account and give them email addresses and then have them accept the invitation to join the account.


can you book aa or elal to israel with ba miles?
will the taxes be the same or less?


They are not partners with El Al and AA doesn’t fly to Israel.
Fuel surcharges for flying across the Atlantic are outrageous when using BA miles.


@Dan: No luck with the secure message. Think I have a shot with the other methods?


dan, not so related but whats the best idea for the $200 in airline fees from amex platinum ??…thanks !


I just did this transfer with 30% extra on the last day of their last promotion. Have no more points.
@APoshiterYid Did you try to make them honor a new 50% promo ? Any luck with that?


where can you calc. the miles needed on BA and AA


What do you have to lose?

Airline gift cards, $100 at a time.


jakke l.

Dan – why no mention of 50 k mr with the amex mercedes benz card? Also, between mr to spg promo, and the spg to usair promo, you could mention a somewhat decent opportunity for mr to star alliance

mike fein

dan the link for MR gold card doesnt work. Is there a link for the 25k no fee first year card ?


@jakke l.:
The cards I listed are cards that I have personally churned multiple times and received the signup bonus each time, I haven’t yet tried out the Mercedes Benz promo.

I mentioned the MR-US possibilities in the post on that promotion:

@mike fein:
The last paragraph of this post explains just what to do if the links don’t work for you.

Shmuel Boruch

Thank you Dan! I just did the transfer! The Amex CSR did not know about the promo nor did the MR CSR know about it. I helped her find it online at etc.

Thanks a million!

Aay B.

@Shmuel Boruch:
Just another proof no how cluless these most of the CSR clowns are… 🙂


Dan Says:
You can always ask to be annexed.
What do you mean that i could ask to be annexed?


Can I book a ticket for someone else with my Avios miles?


so flyin to israel with ba points doesnt make sense ?


Question: Just opened 2 cards. Can I call borrow 27,000 MR points on both, transfer them into BA, and book a few tickets to CLE for Peasch? Or is this pushing the limits to fast?


FYI. Avios to carribean is only 20k roundtrip. With. AA it’s 35k and $75 expedite fee.

delta==worthless. I’ve never had any luck with them in the past few years.

Top mileage value chart.

1.United- Europe /Auz. /India
3.BA-north america / Caribbean
4.Aeroplan & klm.
(I won’t even take delta for $.01 cent each)


Feel free to add CVG and CMH to the list of short-hauls from JFK. (9000 avios RT)


Dan, how do you know so much about points for hotels and airlines? You amaze me with you quick clear responses to a wide spectrum of topics! Maybe you could give a course on these things!!!


The link to the award calculator is working, but the actual calculator is not! It is giving me error messages!!
Please, can you guesstimate AROUND how much taxes will be added to a biz class ticket from the us to TLV?
Thanks DAN!!!
i wasn’t gonna even churn amex this month, but now i’ll have to reconsider 🙂 So many options!!


could you transfer mr amex points from one person to another?


r u sure about being able to transfer to ANYONE’S BA program?? On the SPG site it says names have to match…


sorry, stupid me… You’re talking MR and I’m quoting SPG….


I’m a little confused. When i try to calculate the avios needed to go from EWR-OGG, it says “Sorry, this journey is flown by British Airways and a partner airline. Please try again and search for the individual flights that make up the journey.”
So that means i gotta search each segment separately and then add up the Avios needed?
How annoying


Dan, have over a million MR points and want to travel business class to Israel w family this summer. i was told BA is expensive w taxes, but with this new promotion is it worth it b/c of the miles I’m saving? Or do i need to look elsewhere and where should i look to get maximum value and will realistically have dates????

Ryan from MA

Wow I’m shocked you can churn those credit cards. I thought you couldn’t do that with AMEX. How did you do that?…cancel and re-apply? how long did you wait?


there is an amex offer that you can spend 2k and get 27k or if you want you can spend 100k and you get 125k. i dont get why you always make the spending part of the bonus offer? every card gets you a pint per dollar minimum, so the spending 2k gets you 25k plus the regul;ar 2k for spending. it looks like you are trying to make the offer sound more exciting than it is. The same goes for starwoods. u get 25k bonus for spending 5k you make it sound like its a 30k k offer!


To be our 51st state 😀


Not really.


As well as tons of other short hauls.

Not a bad idea.

I would imagine at least $1,000 per ticket.

Not easily, but why would you need to?

Correct. Which is why Avios are best used on nonstop flights.

I would still try to book through Aeroplan without fees, though British Airways does have a great first class with incredible availability if you can justify paying $$$ in fuel surcharges.

@Ryan from MA:
You don’t have to wait at all after calling to reapply and get the points again. Though sometimes the system kicks out the application if you reapply within 30 days, you can have reconsideration clear out your recent
apps to get the new card approved.
Really easy to churn.

The point at the top that I’m making is that when you spend just $2,000 on the card you will have enough for 9 one-way tickets which is quite incredible.

I say clearly by the link though that the actual bonus is 25K for spending $2K.


This is a great deal! But I hear that BA’s system isn’t showing AA’s schedule so I can’t see which flights would make it worth it for me to transfer my points. I wouldn’t just transfer points unless if you had a particular trip in mind. Flying US to Europe isn’t worth it.. but like Dan said.. short trips.. definitely worth it. Since I live in Alaska its hard to get in on this deal.. I need a Delta transfer bonus 😉


bec i would like to borrow from a family member of mine and pay them back


You can search on for AA or Alaska sAAver flights and call BA to book.
Why would it be hard for you to get in on the deal in Alaska? Seems to me like it should be great!

Why not pay them back by transferring to an airline of their choice when the time comes?

If you add that family member as an additional user on your card, you may be able to transfer points directly into their MR account, but it won’t be easy.


Is the $1000 fuel surcharge for a business class ticket or coach? Or does the class of travel not make a difference in the charges? Sorry to be a nuisance, but i can’t seem to find this info anywhere else
Thank you for providing the links to these wonderful cards. Without them I would’nt even bother searching or i would forget about them


Im trying to use my avios points to travel to from ny to miami. its seems that on they have award availability either in coach or business class but on it does offer it . what can I do to book these reward flights?


I wanted to transfer 8000 MR points to my son’s BA account. I got the following message:
The information needed to link your frequent travel account was either entered incorrectly or is missing. You must select a frequent travel account that is already linked or re-enter the information. If there are no accounts already linked to the Membership Rewards account for the partner(s) below and this information is not available, you will need to remove it from your cart to continue.
I don’t see how to link his account. Can you help?


have you actually seen any availability from ny to argentina return on points? i dont see anything? even when i select on partenrs too??


I heard that if you book non AA with BA avois you don’t have to pay for baggage fee. Is it true?


Hey Dan,
I am new to this hole thing with the points. After I get this card and I get the points then you cancel the card? Or do u need to keep it until u actualy use the points?


Do anyone know if I’ll get the bonus even if I transfer to a UK BA account (from my US MR acct.)?


Just checked random dates.
Surcharges and taxes using BA miles to fly BA from JFK-LHR-TLV-LHR-JFK is $655.40 in coach and $965.40 in business and first. Mileage required on top of that is 65K/130K/195K.

If you see sAAVer award availability on but not just call BA to book.

Just follow the link where it says to link accounts. Or call AMEX.

Search on or, then call BA if you don’t see it on

You can transfer the points and cancel the card.



Is this the way that u get free flights? Getting the points and theme u cancel the card?


If I borrow MR points and I cancel my card before I pay back how will they charge me?


I have 110k amex points.. am i best off selling them or using them for something like this? most travel i do is within the US..



Have you heard of AA deplaning passengers that had tickets booked from s/o else’s BA account?
I have a bunch of Avios and would like to sell tickets to business aquantinces that are in need of short haul last minute flights.


jack L

if u transfer amex points to ba and u get the bonus can u transfer it back to amex when the bonus is over? and have the bonus in amex points (in short can u transfer from ba to mr)


They’ll find a way.

That depends on the kind of lights you take.

If they suspect you of selling them they can do that.

@jack L:
It’s a one way street into airlines, they don’t go back.



i might go to israel or hawaii.. but otherwise it is mainly NY-FL or NY-CA

You think its worthwhile?


For Israel or Hawaii, especially in business or first, you can find better options than BA.

NY-FL is good with BA though.


I want to close my BA card, I do not want to pay another annual fee. If I close it will I loose my Avios points?


can i get 50% with american express starwood points?


i have 61000 starwood points, does this bonus apply to those too?


If I plan on selling what am I better off doing?


Dan, I want to apply for the BA, 50k offer, what other Chase cards would you suggest I apply for at the same time (using the 3 browsers)?


I have 57k Amex mr points
Is this a good use for a family of 6 to fly from fl to NYC


What are other short haul flights from NYC?



Can you do transfer multiple time and get this promo or is this a one shot deal?

Is there a max point transfer?

Any other worthwhile amex point transfers to other airlines or is this the only good/best?



I called to advance points and was told the account must be open for six months prior to allow that. is there a way around this?


How does one “borrow” MR points from Amex? I have a Plat card and want to get in on this. Can I do it online or do I need to call?



There’s a 25%+25% bonus right now, so 20,000 SPG=31,250 BA.

60K SPG=93,750 BA.

Call a broker?

United Explorer=55K+$50 after SM.
Southwest=50K after SM.
Sapphire Preferred=42,800.

Yes, that is a good use, though you will need 60K AMEX for 90K BA for 6 round-trip tickets.
You can borrow those extra points from AMEX.

Anywhere AA flies to.

Multiple times, no max.
This is the best bonus right now.

You need to call AMEX MR: 800-AXP-EARN





Try calling again/ask for a manager/ask to have your pending points posted immediately for the sake of travel within the next week, etc.

Delta promo

Dan do you recommend to wait for the delta promo?


@Delta promo:
What Delta promo?
I predicted Delta might stop having AMEX promos once Continental left AMEX last September and so it has been.


Just reporting back.
I applied 4 the United Visa, was denied, with the reason “too many requests for credit or accounts opened”.
Called the number provided (888-270-2127), where I was told that I had opened 7 cards in the past few months, which is why I was declined. I offered to split the credit between my Continental MC to get approved for the United Visa. I was told, “That’s not the problem, you just opened too many accts in a short period”. I persisted that I have good credit and I am not asking 4 additional credit just to split. “Let me see what I can do”, was the answer.
After the hold I was offered to close my Sapphire card (that I had just opened & hadn’t received the 50k bonus yet!) & they would approve the United. I declined the offer because of the benefits provides when traveling etc.
After much coaxing and cajoling and another hold, she came back with agreeing not to split but to bring down my credit to $500 on the Continental and give me the rest $3500 on the new United Visa. I agreed & was approved.
It was a 12 minutes call but worth it!!!

Thanx again!



I recently was approved for the United Visa, and when I SM’d
to be matched to the 55k + $50 credit signup bonus, I got a reply as follows:
Thank you for contacting Chase about bonus miles on your
I have forwarded your message to the appropriate
department for review and you should receive a response
within seven business day.
If you require immediate assistance, please contact the
number listed below and either myself, or one of my
colleagues will be able to assist you. For your
convenience, we are available to assist you 24 hours a

Do I SM again right away, or do I wait for the response?
Thank You



That’s normal, now just wait and let us know!



I got that same response and 3 days later got a SM from the “other dept” that they will match the offer!

So, don’t worry, Most likely you will get the same 🙂



Thank You


hey dan
whats the best thing to do with 100.000 amex point if i want to go to israel. should i sell it to get money or transfer to a airline. and how to i sell it


i would sell and then you can buy ticket


I dont think they will give a point advance on amex membership rewards if your card was opened for less than 6 months. They will however accelerate points which means you can spend the threshhold points and as soon as the points become pending you will be able to transfer to BA


@steve: to steve what are you talking about , i transferred right away


@steve: sorry i thought you were talking to me


@mendel: email me at helpison at and I will help you


1-can u get matched on the platnuim card for 75k offer? how do u get them 2 match,secure message?
2-does the airline credit still work 4 gift cards?


I have 1 million amex rewards I fly to australia all the time usually using AA/Quantas
does it make sense to transfer amex rewards to BA then book on AA ?

what else can do with the AX rewards?

is there any way to txfr Amex into Starwood 1-1 ?



re mike’s comment #34-does the gift card $200 incidental work on any of the airlines listed participating on the amex site or is it only american airlines


@Dan: isnt ba and aa together? and if i have ba can i book on aa to aviod the fuel charge?


@hey: AA is a partner of BA and there are no fuel fees within US


does BA charge a fuel surcharge on international flights? Is there any way to use BA miles to fly to the asia or israel without fuel surcharges?


i just got the united card last week, when can i send the message asking to get the 55k


what are amex gold points good for i have 75k, should i just transfer them to ba?


@al: Send message now



Just opened this card last week. Called AMEX, spoke to a Supervisor. Told them I need to get my pending points posted immediately for travel next week. She told me that it was systematic and there was nothing she could manually do to override it. I kept trying with them but they wouldnt even budge. Should I call again and speak to someone else or am I wasting my time? Thanks!


If you have met the spending requirement and paid it off then keep calling back at 800-AXP-EARN.


i have 60000 mrp points that i got for gold card sigh ups should i transfer them or sell them i wanted to go to israel but then dontseem so worth while?


You can transfer them to Air Canada to travel to Israel, though frankly you are better off getting United miles and Chase points for travel to Israel and use these for short haul flights.


is it worth is to sell them at 1.65?


That sounds like a fair price. It all depends on whether you think you may want them for flights for yourself.


When flying on AA from NYC to MCO which airport in NY will have best avail.?


what are amex gold points good for?



Who is offering 1.65?


if i have an account that I already made 2 transfers from 2 different amex accounts.Should I transfer into this one or open a new one?


Check them all?

This BA deal is a good use for them.
Other decent options are Delta, Flying Blue and Aeroplan.

Good question. Depends if you need more miles in one account I guess!


you mean transferring them to delta, Flying Blue and Aeroplan?
what is aeroplan and what is flying blue


Aeroplan is Air Canada’s program.
Flying Blue is the joint program of Air France and KLM.


they good for flights in the us or international? and are there crazy fuel fees for the int flights?


For flights outside of the Western Hemisphere you will generally be subject to fuel surcharges. There are better transfer options for many international flights.


Anyone know if any brokers are buying BA miles and if yes, for how much?

Dan, the broker who advertises on your site hasn’t been responding to my quote request submissions…


But is it risky to to make a few amex transfers from different accounts into one BA. I probally will end up selling.


Dan, any idea how often this promo comes around?


@hunch: About Once a year.


random q, what points or miles are best to rent a car with?


does this work with starwood points?


Any one want to guess what amex transfer bonus is next?

I guess 30% ba transfer bonus.