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British Airways Visa Signature Card – Earn up to 100,000 Bonus Avios Points

by Ryan Guina

I had the good fortune of living in England for almost three years while I was serving in the USAF. Living and working overseas was a wonderful experience, and I took advantage of it at every opportunity. The only downside to living overseas on enlisted pay was the expense of traveling home to see family. I was able to make out all right by planning my trips in advance and traveling in the down season, but the travel was still expensive.

If I had it to do all over again, I would have looked for a travel credit card deal like the current one offered by the British Airways Visa Signature Card: 50,000 bonus points after your first purchase, and an opportunity to earn up to 100,000 bonus points in your first year.

Earn 50,000 to 100,000 Bonus Avios Points

Bonus points and miles are the name of the game when it comes to airline cards, and the British Airways credit card is no exception. Let’s break down the bonus tiers so you can see how this card might be of value to you:

  • 50,000 Avios Points after first purchase.
  • 25,000 bonus points after spending $10,000 in the first 12 months.
  • 25,000 more bonus points after spending an additional $10,000 within 12 months (total of $20,000).

One purchase is all it takes to make this card well worth owning, as 50,000 Avios Points are enough for round trip ticket to Euro Zone 1 in economy class, or up to two domestic tickets. If you are a frequent traveler to places where British Airways or their partners fly, then this is a solid deal.

Earn Points Through Regular Spending

The British Airways Visa Signature Card also has a standard rewards program, which offers points for each dollar spent with the card. There are no limits and your points never expire so long as your account remains in good standing. Cardholders will earn:

  • 2.5 Avios Points for every dollar spent on British Airways flights, and
  • 1.25 Avios Points for each dollar spent on all other purchases.
Bonus companion ticket: All cardholders also have the opportunity to earn a free “Travel Together Ticket” when they spend $30,000 or more in any calendar year. This is on top of the previous bonus levels, and is not limited to first time cardholders, meaning you can earn this bonus every year. The Travel Together Ticket allows a travel companion to travel free with you in the same ticket class, and it is good for two years.

Redeeming Your Avios Points

There are a variety of ways you can redeem your Avios Points, including for travel on British Airways flights or any of their partners, including locations serviced by Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, LAN, Malev, Qantas, Royal Jordanian, and more. You can frequently use your points for upgrades as well, but this varies by partner. (visit www.BA.com for more info).

We previously mentioned 50,000 Avios Points can be redeemed for a round trip ticket to a Euro Zone 1 location in economy. So it stands that 100,000 bonus oints can be redeemed for 2 round trip economy tickets to a Euro Zone 1 location.

100,000 points can also be redeemed for a round trip business class ticket to a Euro Zone 1 location, or multiple domestic tickets, if you choose to fly with American Airlines, which is British Airways domestic partner.

It’s important to note that travelers are responsible for paying the taxes and fees associated with their free tickets, so keep this in mind when booking your travel.

Other perks with the British Airways Credit Card

There are a few downsides to using a credit card overseas, including the new security chips which are common in Europe and other locations, but haven’t caught on yet in the US. Another downside is foreign transaction fees, which are typically 2-3% of the purchase price. The British Airways Visa Signature Card takes care of both of these issues for you. This card comes equipped with both a standard magnetic strip found on most cards in the US, and the chip commonly found in Europe. So you won’t be stranded with a card you can’t use when you travel overseas. There are also no foreign transaction fees when you use this card. These conveniences allow you to use your card virtually anywhere credit cards are accepted in Europe, and avoid paying the transaction fee to do so (which can easily save you hundreds of dollars over the course of a trip).

To Summarize: This is a Great Card for Travelers

You will do best when you redeem your Avios Points for travel, so this card is best for people who are looking for a solid travel credit card. The good news is that this card is valuable for people who travel to a variety of places due to their extensive network of partner airlines. The only downside to this card is the $95 annual fee, but the generous bonus miles for signing up, and other perks help cancel out the annual fee.

Here is a quick recap of the benefits with the British Airways Visa Signature Card:

  • You will get 50,000 bonus Avios after your first purchase
  • 25,000 bonus Avios after you make $10,000 in purchases within the first year of account opening
  • Plus an additional 25,000 bonus Avios after you make an additional $10,000 in purchases within the first year of account opening
  • That’s enough Avios for one roundtrip business class reward ticket
  • New: Smart Chip Technology allows you to use your card for chip based purchases in Europe & beyond, while still giving you the ability to use your card as you do today at home
  • Pay no foreign transaction fees when you travel abroad
  • Earn 2.5 Avios for every $1 spent on British Airways purchases
  • Earn 1.25 Avios for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Every year you spend $30,000 on your British Airways Visa card, you’ll earn a Travel Together Ticket good for two years

Final note: This offer was only available for a limited time last year, and we expect it won’t last long this time around.

To learn more or to open an account, visit the British Airways Visa Signature Card website.


Published or updated January 9, 2014.
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