Get 25% more Avios when you transfer AMEX Membership Rewards points

AMEX cardholders get a 25% bonus on Avios transfers from now till 31 August 2019. Use Avios for great value short haul flights.

From now till 31 August 2019, AMEX cardholders will receive a 25% bonus when they transfer Membership Rewards points to British Airways Avios.

The transfer bonus will be automatically reflected in the Membership Rewards portal; there is no need to register and no cap on the points you can transfer.

Here’s the usual and bonus transfer rates, depending on the card you hold:

AMEX Platinum ChargeAll other AMEX Cards
Regular Rate400 MR: 250 Avios450 MR: 250 Avios
With 25% Bonus400 MR: 312.5 Avios450 MR: 312.5 Avios

Maxing out this opportunity with sign up bonuses

Generally speaking, AMEX cards don’t enjoy the best earn rates for miles. However, they do have pretty good sign up bonuses, which present a one-time opportunity to accumulate a large chunk of points quickly.

For example, if you sign up for the AMEX Platinum Charge through the MGM program and spend $20K in the first 3 months, you’ll receive a total of 140K Membership Rewards points:

  • 40K bonus MR points for the MGM offer
  • 75K bonus MR points for meeting the sign up bonus target
  • 25K base MR points from $20K spending
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This would be worth 109,375 Avios with the current transfer bonus.

Alternatively, if you sign up for the AMEX Rewards card and spend $1,500 in the first 3 months, you’ll receive a total of 24K Membership Rewards points:

  • 21K bonus MR points for meeting the sign up bonus target
  • 1,500 base MR points from $1.5K spend
  • 1,500 bonus MR points from 100% bonus points in the first 3 months

This would be worth 16,667 Avios with the current transfer bonus.

Best uses of British Airways Avios

In May this year, British Airways devalued its Avios chart. I’ve covered the main changes in this post, but to summarize, the program still has good value for short-haul awards (although not as good as before, obviously).

New Avios award chart. All partner flights follow peak pricing. Off-peak pricing applies to certain dates for flights on Aer Lingus, British Airways and Iberia

Some ideas for Avios awards include (all figures round-trip in Economy)

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  • Domestic Japan flights on JAL (12-18K)
  • Intra-Europe flights (8-26K)
  • Domestic Australia/Trans Tasman (12-26K)
  • Intra-South America flights (12-26K)
  • Flights within 2,000 miles of Singapore (12-22K)

A quick summary of some key Avios policies:

  • You can redeem an Avios award for anyone you please
  • Avios points do not expire so long as you have at least one activity in your account every 36 months
  • Avios does impose fuel surcharges on redemptions
  • There’s a S$69 refund/change fee for all Avios awards, although the maximum fee is capped at the amount of taxes paid. All changes must be done at least 24 hours before flights
  • Remember that Avios pricing works on a segment by segment basis, not overall distance. For example, a SIN-KUL-PNH flight (SIN-KUL= 184 miles, KUL-PNH= 642 miles, total distance: 826 miles) would cost 6K+6K=12K miles in total, not 9K miles. For this reason, you should always look for direct flights

Assuming you’re looking to fly short haul, Avios does have an important place to play in your miles portfolio. Yes, there are fuel surcharges, but these are likely to be minimal on regional routes. Avios can be particularly useful during periods of peak travel where short haul flights are disproportionately expensive.

Conclusion

The bonus 25% helps to offset the impact of the Avios devaluation, and it’s certainly worth taking a look at if you’re planning short haul travel. Although the general rule is that you shouldn’t redeem miles for Economy Class flights, it can make sense where Avios is concerned.

Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion with the intention of helping people travel better for less and impressing chiobu. He was 50% successful.

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Low Seow Boon

If we are flying back from Bangkok after the JAL trick, which airline is the best use to make use of Avios ? May be you could come up with a article to learn how to make use of Avios after our long trip using Alsaka JAL trick, Thanks

nanami

that’s a great idea! I have a flight coming back from BKK too using the JAL trick

S✔️

Think this is a pretty straightforward question – you’d be looking at oneworld flights basically – Cathay Pacific does a BKK-SIN route. But then do compare with cash/revenue fares if it makes sense.

Terence

The 24k ‘bonus MR’ on the Amex Rewards is actually calculated as 21k bonus plus the 1.5k spend and 1.5k 100% MR bonus, based on $1.5k spend in the first 3 months. So it would total to 24k rather than 27k MR points for $1.5k spend 🙂

Terence

they removed the T&C awhile back. had to call in to speak with the CSO and clarify, and thereafter realise the website said “spend S$1,500 in the first 3 months to receive 24,000 Membership Rewards points”.. i guess that’s how they cover backside

ZigZag

May I ask how did you find out about this offer?

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