More ways to collect AVIOS
Some people believe that the only way to collect AVIOS (or other airmiles) is through flying regularly when in fact you can earn a ton of points without ever leaving the ground. Through the savvy use of shopping portals, you could be boosting your balance in no time at all, so here are my top picks for earning BA miles from your everyday spend.
AVIOS Shopping portal
The Avios E-store allows you to buy online from over 1,000 stores and accumulate points for every pound of spend (in addition to any you may earn from your credit card). What’s even better is that, unlike credit card spending which might give you between one and three AVIOS per £1, you can earn up to 15 AVIOS per £1 of spend in the store.
The video below shows you exactly how to access the E-store and start accumulating points.
As you saw in the video, you can track all your activity daily and gain satisfaction from seeing your points balance growing quickly.
I earned an extra 16,000 points in my first two months of setting up my AVIOS account although I don’t use it as much since I discovered Top Cashback. Use the Avios calculator to work out how far your everyday spending can take you but the table below gives you an idea of how many AVIOS you can collect.
|Hotels.com||6 per £1 spend (plus 1 free night for every 10 nights purchased)|
|Argos||2 per £1 spend|
|Apple Store||6 per £1 spend|
|Itunes||7 per £1 spend|
|Lonely Planet||15 per £1 spend|
|Hoseasons||4 per £1 spend|
|Traingenius||2 per £1 spend|
|Nike||6 per £1 spend|
|Karen Millen||10 per £1 spend|
All the above are correct as at 18/6/16 but please check before purchasing as earnings rates may change.
How to more AVIOS with Top Cashback is a detailed comparison of the AVIOS and Top Cashback stores but if you just need a quick introduction then Top Cashback works in a similar way to AVIOS.
After heading to the Top Cashback site, you click-through to your chosen store, make your purchase and then your account will be credited with Cashback.
Obviously you can take this as Cashback if you are about to head off on a trip and simply want the extra spending money. Alternatively you can convert this money into BA miles, either directly with British Airways or by transferring into your AVIOS account, earning a 5% bonus at the same time (1% if you don’t opt for the Plus Account)
A hotel booking made with hotels.com this week earned me 8.3% Cashback. Given the cost was £205.77 it doesn’t take a genius to figure that I earned £17.03 cashback. This converts into AVIOS at a point per penny plus 5% earning me 1,793 AVIOS.
The same booking through the AVIOS store earns me 6 points per £1, meaning I would have earned 1,234 if I had booked through the AVIOS store. Easy to see why I have switched allegiance!!
Of course not every store you want is featured on Top Cashback so it is nice to have the AVIOS store as a back up. Here’s the earnings rates for a number of stores so you can see how Top Cashback compares.
|Shop||Cashback||AVIOS earned per £100||How does this compare to the AVIOS store?|
|Hotels.com||8.8% cashback (plus 1 free night for every 10 nights purchased)||924||+324|
|Lonely Planet||16.5% cashback||1,732||+232|
|Karen Millen||2.2% cashback||231||-769|
All figures correct as at 18/6/16.
Of course if you also use your AMEX card or other travel credit card to make the payment, then you will earn the Cashback or AVIOS PLUS the credit card points.
Back to my example above, I paid for those nights using my AMEX gold for which I earn 1 point per £1 meaning I earned an additional 207 AVIOS. In total therefore that booking earned me 2,000 AVIOS.
Gate 365 and other airline portals
Gate 365 is the British Airways airline portal which works exactly the same way as the AVIOS store, rewarding you with AVIOS into your account for any bookings made through the portal. It pays up to 30 AVIOS per £1 plus any points earned if you use a credit card.
Many airlines offer similar portals and the best way to find them is to log into your loyalty club website and find the section relating to collecting points. Here’s an example from the British Airways and Virgin Atlantic sites.
From there, you can identify additional options to earn frequent flyer miles. Here’s some idea of what you can earn with both.
|Shop||AVIOS||Virgin Flying Miles|
|Argos||2 per £1 spend||2 per £1 spend|
|Apple Store||6 per £1 spend||3 per £1 spend|
|Itunes||7 per £1 spend||5 per £1 spend|
|Lonely Planet||15 per £1 spend||12 per £1 spend|
|Nike||6 per £1 spend||6 per £1 spend|
|Karen Millen||10 per £1 spend||8 per £1 spend|
|Hotels.com||4 per £1 spend||7 per £1 spend|
For those familiar with Tesco supermarkets, the Clubcard is simply the loyalty card you use to be rewarded for all spend in stores and on fuel. These can then be converted into British Airways AVIOS or Virgin Flying Miles.
Each pound rewards you with 1 point, so £250 of spend earns you 250 points equivalent to a £2.50 voucher to spend in store or online. Alternatively you can choose to exchange each voucher for 600 AVIOS or 625 Virgin Flying Miles giving you an earnings rate of 2.4% to 2.5%, better than any credit card.
Airmiles shopping bonanza
Hopefully by now you can see that changing your shopping habits really can pay huge dividends when it comes to your airmiles balance. So quit going to the shops and get out the laptop….
This week’s tasks
- Sign up for a Tesco Clubcard (if you haven’t already) and set it up to convert points automatically to either Virgin Flying Miles of AVIOS
- Sign up for Top Cashback and start earning cashback on virtually all your household spend
- Sign up for an account on the AVIOS store and Gate 365
- Come and share your progress in the Facebook group
What do you think?
This is week four of the #From Miles To Smiles 90 day challenge and I’d love to know whether we are hitting the spot. Have you learned anything new since you joined the challenge? Is there something you really want LeAnna, Jackie or I cover? Hopefully we will have it covered but it pays to be sure. Be sure to drop me an email with your suggestions, pop them in the Facebook group or share your words of wisdom below.
In the meantime, feel free to download the shopping infographic to serve as your handy reminder and the tracker for you to record which of the above options offers the best earnings opportunity for you.