You can earn bonus Avios on your online purchases by using the British Airways estore and using the right credit card.
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From subscribing to the Economist to crossing the Atlantic on British Airways, there are any number of ways you can collect Avios miles and earn your way to your next vacation.
You can even stockpile miles just by doing your ordinary online shopping. Frequent flyers have access to a free online shopping portal that awards extra miles each time you make a purchase. All you have to do is visit the British Airways Avios eStore, log in to your account and click the link to your favorite stores before you start browsing. Any purchase you make after that will help top up your balance. Shopping with some retailers, such as Walmart, Macy’s, Bed Bath and Beyond, Walgreens and Kiel’s, for example, can net you as many 4 to 12 Avios for every dollar you spend. Others, such as Apple, offer 3 Avios per dollar spent.
If you own a credit card that awards Avios, such as the British Airways Visa Signature card, you can really turbocharge your miles earnings. Every Avios you earn through an Avios estore will be in addition to the Avios you earn through your card.
How to use the British Airways Avios estore
Shopping through the Avios estore is easy. Just visit the British Airways Avios estore at https://www.shopping.ba.com/ and log in to your account. Browse Avios’ list of retailers, click the store the store you want to visit and then click “shop now.” You’ll then be redirected to your target store. Any purchase you make after that will count toward your earnings.
British Airways showcases its most popular retailers on the estore home page. But if you’re looking for a specific store, you can use the search bar in the top right corner of the home page. Or you can press “view all” after featured retailers. There are 611 merchants represented. To see all of them, you’ll have to keep pressing “load more” at the bottom of the page. You can sort by name, most Avios or most popular.
Why should you get this card?
For frequent flyers of British Airways, the British Airways Visa Signature offers generous rewards, including 4X miles on the first $30,000 in purchases for the first year and Travel Together Ticket each year you spend $30,000.
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How many miles can you earn?
The number of miles you earn will depend on the merchant. However, most deals offer between 1 and 12 Avios for every dollar that you spend. Barnes and Noble, for example, offers 2 Avios per dollar spent, while Office Depot offers 4 Avios per dollar spent. Nike offers 6 Avios while 24 Hour Fitness offers 10 Avios.
Some merchants are offering even sweeter promotions. FromYouFlowers.com, for example, currently offers 25 Avios per dollar spent, while ValueMag.com offers 40 Avios. Meanwhile, T-Mobile offers a one-time bonus of 7,500 Avios. Verizon offers 3,000 Avios. Generally, the more specialized merchants offer the best deals. But you can still get some great rewards from major retailers. For example, World Market is currently offering 16 Avios per dollar spent.
Best credit cards to use with the Avios shopping portal
Using a frequent flyer card from British Airways, such as the British Airways Visa Signature card, is the easiest way to pad your Avios balance. However, there are also a number of other airline cards that earn Avios, such as the brand-new Iberia Visa Signature card. You can transfer the Avios you earn from partner airlines, such as Iberia or Aer Lingus, to your British Airways account.
In addition, Chase and American Express both allow you to transfer points to British Airways on a one-to-one basis. Occasionally, American Express also offers extra bonuses for converting your membership rewards points into Avios.
|Credit Card||Rewards for Shopping||Annual Fee|
|British Airways Visa Signature® Card||1 Avios per dollar||$95|
|Iberia Visa Signature card||1 Avios per dollar||$95|
|Aer Lingus Visa Signature card||1 Avios per dollar||$95|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve card||1 point per dollar||$450|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card||1 point per dollar||$95|
|Chase Freedom Unlimited®||1.5% cash back||$0|
|The Platinum Card® from American Express||1 point per dollar||$550|
|American Express® Gold Card||1 point per dollar||$250|
How to get the most out of the Avios shopping portal
- Consider using a 1.5 percent cash back card from Chase. If you prefer simplicity, then the British Airways Visa Signature card is, by far, the easiest card to use for your online shopping. But if you want to maximize your rewards earnings, you may want to consider a card that offers a higher return on your spending, such as the Chase Freedom Unlimited card. Chase allows you to convert your cash back into ultimate rewards points. You can then transfer those points on a one-to-one basis to your Avios account and earn more Avios overall.
- Take the time to scan what stores are represented. More than 600 merchants partner with Avios and so it can be overwhelming to scan every store. But it’s worth it. There are a ton of retailers represented and many offer a huge number of Avios points for every dollar you spend.
- Check back regularly for updates. Bonuses change regularly, so check back often for sweeter deals. The best way to find the most generous promotions is to sort by “most Avios” and then scroll through the selections.
- Don’t confuse the British Airways store with other Avios stores. Iberia and Aer Lingus also have Avios stores of their own. But those are separate programs, so you won’t be able to log in using your British Airways credentials.
- Go through the portal before you make a purchase. Don’t forget to visit the portal before you make an online purchase – your retailer of choice is likely in the list, but you must click through the link from the portal in order to earn the shopping bonus.
Many of the biggest names in shopping have partnered with Avios, including Walmart, Macy’s, Best Buy, Apple, Dell, Samsung, Kohls, Walgreens, CVS, Gap, Lowes and more. You’ll also find a number of specialty retailers, such as Sephora and Guitar Center, and service providers, such as the success coaching company Brian Tacy International. In addition, there are a number of entertainment vendors, such as Fandango, PurchaseTix.com and SeaWorld.
The British Airways Avios estore offers a huge selection of participating retailers and a number of miles-heavy deals. Be sure to add it to your favorites in your browser and come back often. You could earn a free vacation much sooner than you planned if you visit the Avios store first every time you shop.
See related: What are British Airways Avios worth?, Best ways to earn British Airways Avios, Best ways to redeem British Airways Avios, British Airways elite status, Booking a flight with British Airways Avios