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

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Update: This offer ends tomorrow!


Originally posted on 8/10:

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

-Through 10/10 you will get 1,200 Avios for every 1,000 Membership Rewards (MR) Points transferred to BA. Normally you get 800 Avios for every 1,000 MR points transferred to BA.

This is only valid for US cardholders.

Previous MR->Avios bonus offers:
11/27/11=30%
03/15/12=50%
08/28/12=40%
12/03/12=30%
04/22/13=35%
10/15/13=20%
12/15/14=40%
12/02/15=25%
08/10/16=50%

About British Airways Avios:

In 2011 BA launched the Avios program and it provides a great value for short-haul flights.

Unfortunately their domestic OneWorld partner, American, has been stingy with award availability of late. You’ll want to search for saver awards on AA.com to check the availability on your desired routes before transferring miles.

American also forced BA to raise the zone 1 rates they charge for US flights from 4.5K to 7.5K Avios earlier this year, though zone 1 in the rest of the world remains just 4.5K Avios.

-There are no expedite or close-in fees for last minute award ticket bookings with BA Avios.  That saves you $75 compared to other programs.

-Earning or redeeming any amount of Avios extends your entire account validity for another 36 months.

-You can cancel tickets and redeposit miles for the lesser of $55 or the taxes you paid.  That means you pay just $5.60 for cancel a one-way domestic itinerary (and you always should book domestic flights as one-ways). That saves you up to $200 compared to other programs when you need to cancel.

-British Airways only charges 10% extra miles for a lap child flying internationally, even when traveling on AA. AA and other domestic carriers charge a whopping 10% of the full fare, which can add up to be a small fortune.

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

-You can save Avios on some routes by transferring points from BA Avios into Iberia Avios. Iberia’s awards start at just 11K Avios round-trip.

-You can search American and Alaska award availability on AA.com by looking for sAAver awards. BA can’t book AAnytime awards, but you should be able to find all AA sAAver awards on BA.com. BA.com does not display all available awards on all airlines, airlines like Alaska, Aer Lingus, and LATAM have to be booked over the phone.  Additionally you will have to call BA to make a booking if you see a sAAver award on AA.com that’s not showing on BA.com.

I’ve booked dozens of short-haul tickets using Avios for travel on American.  A Cleveland-NYC ticket can cost $1,200 round-trip if you don’t stay for at least 3 days or if you book last-minute.  But BA allows me to use just 15,000 Avios for that same flight, a whopping value of over 13 cents per mile.  I can hop over to Chicago or NYC on a whim without any kind of mileage regret like I used to have in the pre-Avios days.

-Avoiding fuel surcharges:
-There are no fuel surcharges for travel on American within the Western Hemisphere. Flights start at 7,500 Avios plus $5.60.
-Air Berlin flights still have no fuel surcharges systemwide and remain the cheapest way to get to Israel. They have flights to Israel from Berlin for 10K Avios. Flights to several US cities cost just 20K Avios.

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-Niki flights have no fuel surcharges systemwide.
-Aer Lingus flights have no fuel surcharges systemwide, though they can only be booked over the phone.. A flight from Boston to Dublin or Shannon is just 12,500 Avios in coach or 37,500 Avios in business. From there you can fly elsewhere within Europe without paying fuel surcharges.  Plus you can fly to Boston from cities like Buffalo, NYC, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, or Washington DC for just 7.5K Avios. These flights can only be booked over the phone.
-Alaska flights have no fuel surcharges systemwide, these flights can only be booked over the phone.
-LATAM flights have no fuel surcharges systemwide. Some of their flights can only be booked over the phone.
-Flights within Australia, Europe, Japan, and many other countries and regions have little to no fuel surcharges.
-There are also no fuel surcharges for flying on Qantas within or from Australia.
-Fuel surcharges on award-winning carrier Cathay Pacific are also very low or non-existent and you don’t even need to fly all the way to Hong Kong (though you should-great city with awesome kosher food, airport lounges with kosher food, and a business or first class flight you’ll never forget!) to get a taste of their awesome service, seat, pajamas, and amenities. They fly a daily 777 nonstop between JFK and Vancouver which I reviewed in this trip report.
-You can significantly cut the fuel surcharges when flying on Iberia by transferring your BA Avios into Iberia Avios
-British Airways 5th Freedom Flights (flights that don’t depart from or arrive to the UK) have significantly lower fees. For example even though Singapore-Sydney is a longer flight than NYC-London the fees in first class on Singapore-Sydney are less than half of those from NYC-London.
–As long as you have earned a single Avios within the past 12 months then fuel surcharges for intra-Europe and intra-Africa flights will be very low. You can transfer points from AMEX, Chase, or Starwood to activate that benefit.

ZoneFlight DistanceCoachBusinessFirst
1 (Flights that don't touch the USA)1-6504.5K9K18K
1 (Flights to, from, or within the USA)1-6507.5K15K30K
2651-1,1517.5K15K30K
31,152-2,00010K20K40K
42,001-3,00012.5K37.5K50K
53,001-4,00020K60K80K
64,001-5,50025K75K100K
75,501-6,50030K90K120K
86,501-7,00035K105K140K
97,001+50K150K200K

 

Sample uses:

-3,750 MR points will transfer into 4,500 Avios, enough for a one-way short-haul ticket from London-Milan, Iguazu Falls-Sao Paulo, Johannesburg-Victoria Falls, Hong Kong to Taiwan, Melbourne to Sydney, and between most cities within Europe.

-6,250 MR points will transfer into 7,500 Avios, enough for a one-way short-haul ticket between New York and places like Bermuda, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Miami, Orlando, Montreal, Pittsburgh, or Toronto, or between Miami and the Bahamas or Cancun, or between LA and Cabo on OneWorld partner American.

-8,500 MR points becomes 10,200 Avios, more than enough for a one-way flight between Germany or Austria and Tel Aviv, Chicago and LA, Hong Kong to Singapore, or JFK to Cancun, S. Maarten, or S. Juan,

-10,500 MR points becomes 12,600 Avios, more than enough for a one-way flight between the west coast and any of the Hawaiian islands, New York and the west coast, or New York and Costa Rica. It’s even enough for a one-way flight between Boston and Dublin or Shannon, Ireland with no fuel surcharges on Aer Lingus! You’ll have to call to book trips on airlines like Aer Lingus or Alaska.

-12,500 MR points becomes 15,000 Avios, more than enough for a one-way business class flight between NYC and Toronto or Bermuda or between Miami and most destinations in the Caribbean.

-16,750 MR points becomes 20,100 Avios, more than enough for a one-way 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 one-way flight nonstop flight between NYC or Chicago and Dublin or Shannon, Ireland with no fuel surcharges on Aer Lingus.

-21,000 MR points becomes 25,200 Avios, more than enough for a one-way flight between New York and Brazil or Argentina.

-25,000 MR points becomes 30,200 Avios, enough for a one-way flight between New York and Tel Aviv on Air Berlin with no fuel surcharges.

-29,250 MR points becomes 35,100 Avios, more than enough enough for a one-way flight between the US and Hong Kong in coach.

-31,250 MR points becomes 37,500 Avios, enough for a one-way flight in lie-flat business class on Cathay Pacific from JFK to Vancouver with no fuel surcharges. It’s also enough to fly from Boston to Ireland in lie-flat business class on Aer Lingus with no fuel surcharges, though you’ll need to call to book.

-41,750 MR points becomes 50,100 Avios, more than enough for a one-way flight in lie-flat first class on Cathay Pacific from JFK to Vancouver with no fuel surcharges.
——————————————————————————————

American Express is a DansDeals.com advertiser.

Need some Membership Rewards points?

-American Express Membership Rewards points transfer instantly to BA and can be earned from credit cards like The Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card from American Express and The Amex EveryDay Credit Card from American Express

You can also earn Membership Rewards points from consumer charge cards like the American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card and The Platinum Card® from American Express and business charge cards like The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN and The Enhanced Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN

HT: jmansour, via DDF

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

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.

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mgoldhammer18

Wow, I remember when I transferred when it was 40%

Anonymous

Avios are worse than SkyPesos now that AA has basically no good Saver availability.

Ms

Just an FYI, AB no longer flies from DUS and MUC to TLV. They still have their txl flight though.
Also Niki pulled out of the Israel market altogether.

Kevin

Thqnks, Dan.
But I think that all your ‘Sample’ are on last promo that was 25% ..

Mendel

1,200 Avios for every 1,000
How is this 50%

Steve

@dan is it wort it to transfer even if you dont have any flights planned in the near future and do they expire?

Anonymous

“This is only valid for US cardholders.”

which card do you need to have?

sam

50%? typo? 1,000 > 1,200 = 20%

Anonymous

Dan would you use this transfer bonus now ever since AA has become so stingy?

Anonymous

@sam:

Regular rate is 1000 MR into 800 Avios.
Special rate is 1000 MR into 1200 Avios.

Marland

50% bonus based on the current rate

Currently: 1000 points from AMEX equals 800 AVIOS
With 50%: 1000 points from AMEX equals 1200 AVIOS (50% of 800; 400+800 original, 1200 total)

Srulky

@sam: @Mendel: Read the post.@Anonymous: No

Michael

@mendel @sam “Through 10/10 you will get 1,200 Avios for every 1,000 Membership Rewards (MR) Points transferred to BA. Normally you get 800 Avios for every 1,000 MR points transferred to BA.” =50% more

Mikey

It’s worth noting that Air Berlin stops over at Berlin’s TXL airport which is very very ancient. My son flying home from Israel told me he didn’t use the bathroom because he was afraid he would not have a seat to sit in when he comes out. It resembles a hundred yearcontent old bus station !

MD

whats the best way to book a flight from tlv to jfk? through AA or BA? or 2 separate bookings tlv to London with ba & London jfk with aa?

evan

it just depends what you use Avios for…
if you want flights say within latin america.. like chile to peru or lima to cusco.. great deals!

bobto

@mendel you get 1,200 avios instead of the usual 800 avios. An extra 400 avios = 50% bonus

Cubs Fan

Except the BA Avios redemption website has been down for 3 days straight and they don’t answer the phone. When they do answer the phone every other month some dude in India who doesdn’t speak English answers. Its funny how you ahte Delta but at least they have a website that is functional considering were in the 21st century.

Dan

@Cubs Fan:
It’s working fine for me.
But call the BA Avios line in Singapore if you ever need anything. The regular number is worthless.

Cubs Fan

Thanks, what is the Singapore number?

Dan
Jim

Ms: can you tell me were you see confirmed that ab isn’t flying dus or muc to tlv anymore?

El

Can you only transfer to your own account or can you transfer to someone else’s account, like a family member’s account. If you can transfer to someone else’s account, can I transfer from multiple aa accounts into one ba account?

Eli

I don’t get it. Starwood transfers at a1:1 ratio plus you get 25% bonus, so you get everyday a better deal than this SPECIAL.1000 gets you 1250.

Anonymous

@Eli: Starwood gives you 1 point per dollar = 1.25 avios. Amex everyday gives you 1.5 points per dollar = 1.8 avios (with this promotion).

Web developer

Does it pay to transfer Amex MR to Avios and the transfer it back to Amex MR?

A European

50% = 20% 😉

Eli

Where does Amex give 1.5 everyday?

Dan

@El:
You can’t transfer AA to BA.

@Web developer:
You can’t transfer BA to AMEX.

@Eli:
Read the post.

Q

Is there a way to fly from Toronto to NyC with mileage without paying such high taxes?

Dan is the Man

Dan,

You mention in your examples 30k Avios can be used for Israel on AB Through TXL….when I have booked in the past they looked at it as 2 separate bookings….JFK to TXL 30k and then another 20k TXL to TLV….how can I get the whole shebang for 30k? Thanks in advabce

Anonymous

@Dan is the Man:
Nonsense, I booked AB TLV-JFK twice on BA’s website for 30k Avios. When available it shows up as one complete route for 30k.

Shmuli

@dan
Your just the best, like always so clear cut and understandable…
2 quick questions:
1) when lounges allowed you to bring in immediate family does that only apply to kids and spouse, or to brothers/sisters/parents as well?
2) the Newark lounge for the platnium is not available for any guests even family?

(Btw can we get an article of key perks like this one for the citi prestige card?😘)

carmishk

Is there any worry that they will cancel the deal before 10/10? Just wondering if I should jump on this or see whether I have use for it. Thanks

Question

How much is BA Avios worth on the market?

MrFun

Anyone else getting a system is currently unavailable message when try to transfer?

Dan is The Man!

@Anonymous

How are you able to book as 1 ticket for 30k

When I try on BA.com….only option it gives me is a stop in Heathrow…with Avios on BA….we all know that has Fuel Surcharge.

When I go to AA site see the 2 legs JFK to TXL and TXL to TLV on AB….how do you book as a single ticket to avoid the extra 20k points I paid.

Thanks in advance.

Israel

Hi Dan,
Can I book a flight from NYC to Dublin via BA which stops in London and not take the connecting flight? Then make a new booking from London to tlv? It comes out cheaper. My dates are 1/18-1/29

CDL

Dan- you mention that Aer Lingus has no fuel surcharges; however on a US-DUB round-trip redemption, the fees come out to about $116. Any explanation for this or way to avoid it? Thanks!

Devora

Will Amex Starwoods points work for this promotion?

Dave

Just got charged $95 yearly fee for the BA avios card. Is it worth that? Will they waive the fee?

Dave

How many avios points are needed for LAX to TLV?

lipa

BH

Hi Dan
Im looking to fly to Brussels. would transferring from Amex points to avios points be the best way to go about?
Thanks

Anonymous

Hey Dan! Thanks so much! Is there a quick and easy way to see what partner countries BA has for flights within South America (i.e. like the Iguazu Falls-Sao Paulo) or do I have to call them to check each time I want to find a route from one southern american city to another?

Agoldsc1

What’s the availability for AirBerlin flights from NYC to TLV? Is this the best use of MR points for TLV travel, or better to wait for a transfer offer from FB?

fjdo

Have the same question as “Dan is The Man!” Anyone can answer?? Would be extremely helpful. Thnx!

Ian

Hey Dan, I booked a domestic flight on Alaska with Avios a few days back & the BA Rep said that the cancellation fee is $55, and not the lesser of $55 or taxes paid, for North America now. I read that on the website as well, am I mistaken?

Dan

@Devora:
No.

@lipa:
No.

@Anonymous:
Just do a Google Flights search to see which OneWorld airlines fly on the route.

@Agoldsc1:
Check the availability for your dates and transfer then.

@fjdo:
You can call BA to book it, but they still charge for each segment.

@Ian:
They’re wrong, HUCA.

JB

Gut Moed R’ Daniel,
I did the MR to BA transfer (50% bonus) earlier this month into our 2 BA accounts. A week later we received a 1000 mile bonus stating “Avios – Bonus for collecting with new partner”. I thought you may want to research this (if you dont know about it already).
Thank you for all the info and tips you share with us all!
Shua

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