Beat surcharges. Earn Avios. The British Airways Signature Card

Yet another workaround for the British airline's brutal fees
british airways visa rewards card


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I mentioned last week that British Airways finally launched a new payment tier that allows for less cash spending on fees and surcharges in exchange for more points. While it was welcome news for me and others who cycle through rewards regularly, it’s less beneficial for those who accrue more slowly.

There is another workaround for those with fewer points being put off by the fees: The British Airways Visa Signature Card. It’s the only card British Airways has in the US, and despite not having much in the way of traditional perks, like free checked luggage, it does offer one major benefit, as well as a significant intro bonus of up to 100,000 Avios

You can get 75,000 points after spending $5000 in the first three months. The other 25,000 appear if you spend $20,000 in a year. Personally, it’s not worth putting all my spending on this card, so I’d happily settle for the 75,000-point bonus.

Beyond the bonus, the perk in question is an up to $600 in annual statement credits that go towards taxes, surcharges, and fees on British Airways booked award flights to London. This comes in three $100 statements on economy and premium economy tickets or three $200 statements on business and first-class tickets. That’s a significant chunk to save on notoriously high fees.

On top of that, 75,000 Avios could grab you:

  • Eight short-haul domestic US flights with American or Alaska (think Miami to Dallas)

  • A transcontinental First-class lay-flat seat with American ( with 20,000 to spare)

  • Eight one-way flights to Mexico and the Caribbean

  • Economy Round-trip from the East coast to Europe

  • Economy round-trip from the West coast to Tokyo

It’s not the best earner, so while putting all your spending on the card might get you the extra 25,000 points, you could do it far easier by opening another card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred, which also transfers to British Airways. Both cards fall under Chase’s 5/24 rule, though. The card has an annual fee of $95. 

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone. This post contains references to products from one or more of our partners and we may receive compensation when you click on links to those products.

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