Other ways to ‘buy’ Avios

If you are ever short of Avios for a redemption flight, you can always buy some, but this is generally seen as an expensive way of doing things. A couple of emails have popped into my inbox this week which have given some more interesting possibilities for collecting miles.

British Airways Birthday email

Birthday Details

To qualify, all I need to do is book a flight before the end of January and fly the outbound before the end of March. There are several options which offer different levels of value. At the cheapest end, a day return to Amsterdam:

Birthday AMS

This would earn me 750 Avios as a silver member and a bonus of 4500 – which works out at 1.29p/Avios. To buy 5,000 Avios would cost £95, so this day trip works out better value.

Going further afield, I could have an overnight in Bilbao:

Birthday Bilbao

This would yield a total of 11,300 Avios at 1.93p/Avios – buying 11,000 would cost £191, so in this case it would be better to buy them.

I could also take a trip across the pond to New York:

Birthday JFK

For this, I would earn 20,190 Avios at 1.7p/Avios – the same amount would cost £335.

IberiaPlus and Economist

Having decided that the ideas above involve moving, there are other ways to get Avios without getting on a plane. This email from Iberia details how you can earn up to 12,000 Avios for taking out a subscription with The Economist.


For the Print or Digital subscription, at £126, you would earn 9,000 Avios (1.4p/Avios). The best value is the Print + Digital subscription which, at £155, would earn 12,000 Avios, at 1.29p/Avios. Buying the same amount of Avios from BA.com would cost you £207, so you can save over £50 and have a year’s subscription to the magazine.

In the past, it has been possible to cancel once the Avios had been credited, but as Raffles at Head for Points says, this has changed and you will need to keep it for the year.

The link is here, and you have until the end of February to sign up.

There are some good deals to be had, and it is certainly possible to build up your stash of Avios more cheaply than buying them direct. If I needed more Avios for an upcoming redemption, you might find me reading The Economist on a day trip to Amsterdam.

Just as a final thought, it could also be worth thinking about if you have an upcoming flight booking to make. I have been looking at a LHR-MAN return in April which is coming up at about £155. I could spend the money on the subscription, then make a redemption flight with the miles (assuming that your dont need the cash flights to count for status and have the miles to spare in the meantime).

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