The British Airways Visa Signature® card is one of the most useful co-branded airline credit cards. In this article, I wanted to focus on a specific benefit of the card, which relieves some of the surcharges imposed by British Airways carriers when redeeming Avios.
Why the British Airways visa is worth it
There are many good reasons to choose the British Airways Visa card. Among other things, the $95 annual fee card offers:
If you fly with British Airways with any frequency, it’s definitely worth picking up this card. Even if you don’t fly a lot with British Airways, the card bonus will pay you a lot, given all the great ways to redeem British Airways Avios.
Read a full review of the British Airways Visa Card.
British Airways visa surcharge refund
One of the main problems with the British Airways Executive Club program is the high carrier-imposed surcharges that apply when redeeming Avios for travel on British Airways. Fortunately, a bit of the sting is removed for those with the British Airways Visa card. Cardholders receive up to $600 in statement credits each calendar year for taxes, fees and carrier-imposed surcharges on reward bookings:
- You can get a $200 reward for a British Airways first or business class flight
- You can get a $100 reward for a British Airways premium or economy class flight
You are limited to a total of three credits per year, for a maximum of $600 in statement credits. In other words, if you used the credits for three economy class tickets, you would be capped at $300, while if you used the credits for three business class tickets, you would be capped at $600.
How BA Reward Flight Statement Credit Works
How do you take advantage of the flight record credits offered by the British Airways Visa card? Here are some details and conditions to know:
- You must pay the taxes, fees and surcharges imposed by the carrier with the British Airways visa in order to obtain the statement credits; there is no registration required
- Booking must be for a transatlantic itinerary departing from the US with the transatlantic portion of the ticket on British Airways (although a connecting flight may be included on another airline)
- One-way or round-trip travel is eligible, but only if originating within the United States
- Booking must be made from the primary cardholder’s Executive Club account, although that’s fine if someone else is traveling
- Statement credit will be posted within 45 days of qualifying reservation.
- If the ticket is cancelled, the statement credit will be forfeited
Is BA Reward Flight Statement Credit Worth It?
It is undoubtedly frustrating that British Airways imposes quite high surcharges when redeeming travel on British Airways (luckily there are many ways to redeem British Airways Avios for travel on other airlines with little or no carrier-imposed surcharges).
A one-way first or business class ticket from the United States could easily net you over $800 in cash. Naturally, this is something many people avoid completely, although there are also good reasons to trade on British Airways:
- British Airways has an award seat guarantee and makes available at least four business class award seats on every flight, so it’s nice to have the award availability guaranteed
- If you want to fly direct to and from London, you can’t beat British Airways’ network, as the airline has a global network and even flies to all sorts of secondary cities.
- The British Airways premium experience improves dramatically as the new Club Suites are a great business class product
The reward flight statement credit also potentially offers value for redemptions in economy class. Carrier-imposed surcharges aren’t as high for economy class travel, so the $100 credit per ticket goes even further.
Although not for everyone, I know many people find value in trading on British Airways. If you are going to redeem for travel on British Airways, the award flight statement credit partially discounts redemptions.
At the end of the line
The British Airways Visa card offers up to $600 per calendar year in award flight statement credits. This comes in the form of a $100-$200 credit per ticket, depending on which cabin you book. While the surcharges are still substantial, it helps take the bite out of British Airways reward redemptions.
This is just one of the card’s many benefits, as it also offers an excellent welcome bonus, a 10% discount on British Airways flights, a companion voucher in conjunction with spending, and more.
If you have used British Airways Visa award flight statement credit, what was your experience?