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40% transfer bonus from Amex to British Airways Avios
American Express periodically runs transfer bonuses to their airline and hotel partners, and in the past year we’ve seen a distinct ramp up of those bonuses. Currently, Amex has debuted a new 40% bonus when you convert Amex points into British Airways Avios. Is this a good deal? It definitely could be, especially if you’re looking to book Qatar Airways QSuites via a very attractive British Airways Avios pricing. Let’s take a look.
40% Amex transfer bonus to British Airways
- Runs until 5/15/22
- 1000 Amex = 1400 Avios
- capped at 999k Avios
Booking Qatar Airways QSuites with British Airways Avios
Let’s take a look at a couple of different itineraries…the first is to Doha. I would have loved to stay at the St Regis Doha a bit longer when I visited back in 2019, and would highly recommend the property. I’ll also point out that Doha is littered with incredible properties at attractive prices, but when we stayed, my family was upgraded to an incredible suite for our stay.
If you were to travel from the USA to Doha = 70k British Airways Avios or 50k Amex points with this transfer bonus
Booking option #2 – the Maldives
I honeymooned in the Maldives and was lucky enough to stay at two drop dead gorgeous properties, the Six Senses Maldives and St Regis Maldives on points. The key to this booking is to transfer into British Airways with the 40% transfer bonus. From there, you’d transfer your points to Qatar since
USA to Maldives on Qatar QSuites would cost 105k British Airways Avios or 70k Amex Points; however…
That same booking if you were to transfer your points to Qatar would be just 85k or 61k Amex points.
Note that if you don’t have the miles in your account it will next to impossible to search for award space. I suggest you initially conduct your search on AA.com via the calendar function, then verify on BA prior to moving any points.
Link your Qatar Airways and British Airways Accounts to move points between them
I haven’t dug through all of the various permutations of where one program has suite spots the other doesn’t, but linking your accounts means you could take Amex, Chase, Cap1 points, move them to BA, and then over to Qatar Airways Avios if they priced better. It takes a few minutes to complete and sets you up for success.
Once you log into you account you’ll be prompted to link your BA and Qatar Airways accounts.
Other great uses of British Airways Avios?
Funny enough, the best ways to use British Airways Avios isn’t on British Airways itself. Here are a few of the ways I’d look to leverage them into great deals.
Upgrade your British Airways flight with British Airways Avios
BA makes it pretty simple to figure out whether or not you can use points to upgrade. If an award seat is available in the next cabin up, odds are, you can upgrade.
There are exceptions to these rules:
- Your ticket was issued by a partner airline American, Finnair, Japan Airlines, Cathay Pacific, etc
- You booked a fare coded as Q, O or G.
How many points will you need? Whatever the difference in a award price from your cabin to the next cabin up. The easiest tool I’ve found is the avios calculator here.
I have done this many times – the best…using 25k points to upgrade from a cheap business class ticket into BA first class from LA to London. You can read the review here
Using British Airways Avios for short haul flights on partners
This is another great use of British Airways Avios. Since their program is distance based, and they don’t tack on fees for flights on AA, this is a great thing to keep an eye on. Especially for flights to places like Hawaii. For instance, AA charges, at its cheapest 22.5k miles from LA to Honolulu in economy. That same flight, if you used Amex to transfer to BA, would cost you just 13k points. That’s pretty incredible especially given the fact that Amex runs 30-50% transfer bonus promos annually on Amex to BA transfers.
Absolutely not. I never recommend moving points without a specific redemption in mind; however, I have done in the past, but unless you are especially savvy at extracting value I wouldn’t do it.
Are other Avios programs included?
It’s very rare to not see Iberia and Aer Lingus also included in these transfer bonuses; however, it does happen. You should know that you can always move Avios between programs via Avios.com so it doesn’t really matter if Amex permits it or not. You can do it.
If you have use for British Airways Avios, this could be a good time to move those bad boys over and book it. If not… don’t do a speculative move.
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