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The British Airways Visa Signature card offers a sign up bonus up to 120,000 Avios

Summary

If you can meet the spend cap, the British Airways Visa sign-up bonus is one of the most lucrative available.

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If you are a frequent flyer of British Airways, you might be looking for another unique way to rack up Avios – the airline’s rewards currency. By signing up for the British Airways Visa Signature® Card, you can get a quick influx of points, thanks to its generous sign-up bonus. A unique introductory offer structure rewards heavy spenders and has the potential to be one of the most valuable bonuses on an airline rewards card.

Rather than a traditional points-based introductory offer, the British Airways Visa is currently offering cardholders the ability to earn 4 Avios per dollar in the first year (up to $30,000 in purchases). Cardholders who max out the purchase limit can earn a whopping 120,000 Avios in the first year.

What is the British Airways Visa worth in the first year?

The British Airways Visa does not waive its $95 annual fee in the first year, but it comes with a lucrative rewards rate that makes it easy to offset this cost. Here’s a quick look at the card’s highlights:

British Airways Visa Signature® Card

Why use it?

The British Airways Visa Signature card is fantastic for avid travelers, and its varied and generous benefits perfectly mitigate the relatively high annual fee.

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Other things to know:

  • 4 Avios per dollar on purchases in the first year (up to $30,000)
  • 3 Avios per dollar on British Airways purchases and 1 Avios per dollar on general purchases in following years
  • Earn a Travel Together ticket each year you spend at least $30,000
  • $95 annual fee
  • Estimated earnings in first year: $890

On top of a generous rewards rate, British Airways Visa cardholders earn a Travel Together ticket any year they spend at least $30,000 on the card. This allows you to bring a companion on a reward flight you book with Avios for just the cost of taxes and fees. While British Airways is known for its high surcharges, this can still save you a lot of money.

Recent changes to the British Airways Visa

In January 2019, the sign-up bonus on the British Airways Visa went through a restructuring – transitioning from a traditional points-based bonus to a higher rewards rate for the first year.

British Airways Visa Signature Card Recent Changes
Jan. 30, 20194 Avios per dollar for the first year (up to $30,000 in purchases) for up to 120,000 Avios
Previous
  • 50,000 Avios if you spend $3,000 in first 3 months
  • Additional 25,000 Avios if you spend $3,000 in first 3 months
  • Another additional 25,000 if you spend $20,000 in first year (up to 100,000 Avios total)

Other than the update to the earning scheme earlier this year, the British Airways Visa sign-up bonus hasn’t changed much throughout the card’s history. While the additional Avios you could earn for heavier spending has shifted a bit, the base bonus has always been 50,000 Avios.

Who is eligible for the sign-up bonus?

The British Airways Visa is issued by Chase, so it falls under the 5/24 rule. That means that if you have opened five or more credit accounts with any issuer in the past 24 months, you won’t be eligible for the card. Additionally, the card is designed for users with excellent credit (above 740).

Best ways to use 120,000 Avios

Avios can be a relatively valuable rewards currency, but unfortunately there is no cash redemption option. You’ll get the most value out of your Avios by redeeming for a reward flight, but you can also redeem for several other travel purchases.

British Airways Visa redemption options

Redemption optionAvios value (cents)Value of 120,000 Avios
Reward flights1.4$1,680
Avios & Money2.1$2,520
In-flight food purchases0.9$1,080
Hotel stays0.6$720
Car rentals0.6$720
Experiences0.95$950

You can often stretch your Avios even further by opting for the Avios & Money option when redeeming reward flights. Plus, reward flights can be booked with any oneworld alliance airline partner, which fly all over the world.

Should you apply for a British Airways Visa now?

The new British Airways Visa sign-up bonus is particularly rewarding for heavy spenders and can be one of the most lucrative offers available. If you are already a frequent flyer of British Airways, this card can be a great way to get to your next reward flight a bit quicker.

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Credit Card Rate Report Updated: May 23rd, 2019
Business
15.61%
Airline
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Cash Back
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Reward
17.62%
Student
17.79%

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