Speed of posting of Avios

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One of the major concerns with booking flights with Avios (and redemptions in general) is often having the points on hand when those redemption seats become available. I draw my Avios from a variety of pots, such as American Express Membership Rewards, Tesco Clubcard, etc. and use AwardWallet to track balances across the various schemes. When it comes to book, it’s good to know how long it takes to transfer into your BA Executive Club account to make the booking.

I’ll cover each major scheme that lets you transfer into Avios, and quote the official timings, and any experience where different. I’ll focus on transferring into BA Executive Club rather than any of the other programmes with the same currency, as that has the most relevance for our UK based readers, but in the first few sections you’ll see why that doesn’t particularly matter.

Some rules on almost all the schemes;

  • Details must match, depending on the scheme this can mean;
    • Name
    • Postal Address
    • e-mail Address
  • You can only transfer to your own BA Executive Club account (hence the rules above)
  • Although experience suggests they post much quicker, most schemes won’t entertain any chasing up of points until their published time has expired (some bloke on the Internet told me it would take 2 days, probably won’t cut it with Tesco)

Iberia Plus / Avios.com


Transfer Time: Instant

Transfers between individual Iberia Plus and BA Executive Club account are virtually instantaneous. You might need to logout of your account and back in again, but there is no delay. You can freely transfer any quantity back and forth between your accounts.

If you are in a BA Household Account, you cannot transfer directly from Iberia Plus, you must transfer via an account on Avios.com. With the closure of the Avios Travel Rewards Programme, this means you’ll need to create an Aer Club (Aer Lingus) or Vueling account, which both use the Avios.com platform.

American Express Membership Rewards


Transfer Time: 5 Days

A popular and, with sign-up and referral bonuses, fruitful source of Avios. It’s worth entering your BA Executive Club account number into your Membership Rewards account as soon as you can, even if you don’t have an immediate need. It costs you nothing, and saves a bit of time when it comes to transfer in a hurry. My experience has been that transfers usually go through in a couple of working days, but the official time is 5 days, so try to work on that basis. While you’re waiting for Membership Rewards points to post, bear in mind the typical delay in posting for the following transaction types;

Spending = 2-3 days from posting (not pending) on your account
Sign-up = With the posting of the transaction that takes you over the threshold
Referral = Up to 5 days, generally as your friend’s shiny new card hits their doormat

British Airways American Express Cards


Transfer Time: See below

Again, an InsideFlyer reader favourite especially the BA Premium Plus card with the 2-4-1 voucher that offers value to many readers (taxes, fees and charges inflation is a topic for another article!). Avios posting to your American Express account (note the bolding) are in line with other American Express reward currencies, so again;

Spending = 2-3 days from posting (not pending) on your account
Sign-up = With the posting of the transaction that takes you over the threshold
Referral = Up to 5 days, generally as your friend’s shiny new card hits their doormat

However…..the transfer from American Express to BA happens once per month, approximately 5 days before your statement date. Bear this in mind when chasing a redemption, as there is almost nothing that can be done if that is still a few days away. I have been offered the chance to change my statement date, which should bring forward the posting, but have never ended up doing that to know if it actually works.

Marriott Bonvoy


Transfer Time: Up to 6 Weeks

A popular feature of the old SPG Starpoints currency was the ability to transfer into many airline schemes at a ratio of 1:1, plus an extra 5,000 miles for every 20,000 Starpoints redeemed. With the move to Marriott Bonvoy, this was retained although revalued at 3:1 in the new currency, plus an extra 5,000 miles for every 60,000 points transferred. i.e. 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points gives you 25,000 Avios. I like to stick by the simple loyalty scheme principles of using hotel points for hotel stays and airline miles for flights, so can’t comment on if it really takes 6 weeks to transfer. I do hope not, though.



Transfer Time: 10 working days

While not huge, paying out from TopCashBack to BA Executive Club will give you a 5% boost, i.e. 105 Avios / £. There are a few retailers who don’t support paying out this way, but most do. I’ve never felt the need to cash out as Avios, so can’t comment on the real world times.

Groupon Spain


Transfer Time: 7-10 Days

Imagine a world where you are sitting at your computer waiting for Craig’s latest article on Groupon Spain selling cheap Avios…..You see it come up, go straight to Groupon.es and buy yourself a bag of hen’s teeth, i.e. 2,000 Avios for €17. You’ll get your Groupon in your account in a matter of minutes, and then need to enter the details into the form. From now, this usually takes up to 10 days before the Avios land in your Iberia Plus account. If you were really smart (and felt that you could spare the time) the 96 Avios from IberiaPluStore will be along in a few weeks (probably).

Tesco Clubcard


Transfer Time: 28 days

The speed of conversion from grocery shopping to First Class travel is much improved now you don’t need to wait for quarterly vouchers. Once you have at least £2.50, you can convert to a voucher straight away. I wouldn’t suggest doing that all the time, as we all love flexible rewards, and you never know, there might be a Clubcard to Avios conversion bonus again (ever the optimist!). Although Tesco advise 28 days in their terms, my recent ones have been available to redeem from BAEC in 2 days, even over a weekend, but YMMV.

But I’m still short / can’t wait!!

Don’t panic, while never very good value you can always buy points directly from the airline. If you’re a few thousand short, and don’t want to miss out, sometimes you have to suck it up and pay the price. Both BA and Iberia have regular bonuses, often with 50% additional Avios but with varying minimum/maximum quantities and bonuses. Check out both schemes, and factor in the FX rate and any card fees to decide where best to get them from. These will appear instantly in your BA or Iberia account and of course you can then transfer between them as needed. From time to time you might see other offers on Groupon, or Vente Privee, but those come with a lag in posting, and generally you will be buying them because you want them NOW!

I hope this article proves useful, and helps you in planning your next redemption flight with BA. I realise there are a *LOT* of other ways to earn Avios, but I focused only on the main schemes that I think will be most relevant to our readers, and ignored those with shocking conversion rates (IHG, Hilton, etc.).

Feel free to comment below with any real world experiences of any of these schemes to add to mine in helping other readers plan.

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