American Express British Airways credit card – Forbes Advisor UK


Frequent traveler looking to collect something from your credit card? This offer from American Express allows you to earn Avios points on all your spending, with a generous welcome bonus and no annual fee.

Representative example

The representative APR example gives you an estimate of what it might cost if you borrowed a certain amount of money. This helps you compare products and provides a guide to the cost of shipping a scale. Your personal offer may differ from the representative APR example.

Assuming a credit limit of £ 1,200 and a variable interest rate on purchases of 24.5% per annum, the representative APR will be 24.5% variable.


  • Generous Avios Launch Bonus
  • Earn Avios on your daily expenses
  • No annual fee
  • Companion voucher when you spend £ 12,000 in the first year
  • 24/7 support whenever you are outside the UK with Global Assist

The inconvenients

  • No interest-free period on purchases or balance transfers
  • Relatively high APR
  • Charges apply for use abroad
  • Do not qualify for the welcome bonus if you have owned a personal American Express car in the past 24 months

TAEG representative

24.5% (variable)

Rewards / Benefits

One Avios for every £ 1 spent (plus 5,000 bonus Avios when you spend £ 1,000 in the first 3 months)


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Main characteristics

  • Earn Avios points on your daily expenses
  • Annual free of charge
  • No promotional periods at 0%


While there is no annual fee payable for the American Express British Airways card, there is no promotional period on purchases and balance transfers are not permitted.

New purchases made on this card will benefit from a representative annual interest rate (APR) of 24.5% (variable).

That said, you get up to 56 days interest free on purchases. So if you clear your balance in full – and on time – each month, you won’t be charged a cent of interest.

If you are late with your monthly repayment you will be charged a fee of £ 12. There is also a return cost of £ 12.


With this card, crafting the rewards is straightforward as you collect one Avios point for roughly every £ 1 you spend. This is in addition to a welcome bonus of 5,000 Avios Points if you spend £ 1,000 in the first three months.

If you redeem your Avios on an economy flight to Europe, one point is worth around 0.5 pence.

According to American Express, 20,000 Avios will get you a return flight from London to Athens, while 9,000 will get you a return flight from London to Berlin. (The examples are based on redeeming Avios through the British Airways Executive Club program).

Avios can also be redeemed for part of the flight, or for an upgrade to Business Class or First Class.

When you spend £ 12,000 on the card during a membership year, you’ll receive a ‘companion voucher’ which you can use to take someone on a flight with you. (This spending threshold increased from £ 20,000 in September 2021).

Vouchers are redeemable on economy class flights (when you book an Avios award flight in Euro Traveler and World Traveler cabins). Taxes and fees will still have to be paid.

If you refer a friend who successfully gets approved for an American Express card, you can earn at least 4000 bonus points. In any calendar year, you can earn up to 90,000 bonus Avios points. You can use them for flights, upgrades or onboard treats.


With the American Express British Airways credit card, you benefit from “Purchase Protection”. If an eligible item is accidentally stolen or damaged, you will be refunded £ 2,500. This applies up to 90 days after purchase of the item.

The card also offers ‘refund protection’, so if you have any issues with a UK store refunding your payment, you will get the price of eligible items refunded, up to £ 200, if you submit a claim within 90 days.

Additionally, cardholders also have chargeback rights as outlined in their terms and conditions, but you should contact American Express directly to discuss this.

Will I be eligible?

To be accepted for the American Express British Airways card, you will need a fairly good credit rating – and no history of bad debt. You must be at least 18 years old.

Before officially applying, it may be helpful to use an eligibility checker. This will show the likelihood of you being accepted, without leaving a mark on your credit report.

What are the advantages ?

  • Generous introductory bonus
  • Continuous ability to earn Avios on daily expenses
  • Possibility of obtaining a free companion ticket
  • No annual fee
  • Generous sponsorship program
  • Additional cardholders can be added
  • Access to Global Assist 24/7 emergency assistance service. Access to travel accident insurance up to £ 75,000. Both are subject to registration
  • Access to American Express experiences such as cinema, theater and music tickets

What are the disadvantages ?

  • No balance transfer
  • No interest-free period on purchases
  • Relatively high APR
  • The rates offered to you may depend on your situation
  • Charges will apply for use abroad
  • Companion flights can now only be redeemed for economy flights

What else do I need to know?

You will not be entitled to a welcome bonus if you have held an American Express card within the past two years.

Be careful before withdrawing money from an ATM with this card, as interest is charged with immediate effect.

With this card, just like with any rewards card, make sure you erase your balance in full each month. Otherwise, the rewards you earn may be outweighed by the interest charges.

Is the card right for me?

If you’re looking for a generous airline credit card and plan to use that plastic for your daily expenses – especially early on to take advantage of the welcome bonus – this card might be ideal.

What you get is a decent Avios deal, a welcome bonus, a friend referral program – and the extra extras that come with being an American Express card holder – all with no upfront fees. .

What are my alternatives?

As with any good deal, this card comes at a cost. In this case, the APR on purchases comes into effect immediately.

You may be able to find a card that offers a long 0% period on new purchases – and potentially balance transfers as well – although the rewards on offer may be less generous.

Be sure to check out other cards from the American Express stable, as you might, for example, find a card with a larger welcome bonus and a slightly higher earning point rate – but with an annual fee. Compare all the options and weigh the costs against the benefits and how you will use them before making a decision.


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