American Express Avios rewards scheme: could this actually work in the long run?


Hi all,

I came across this on MSE’s Boost & max Avios page.

“Kate opens the Amex Gold and spends £2,000 in the first three months to earn a 20,000 Avios bonus.

Ben opens the BA Premium Plus Amex card at the same time and spends £3,000 in the first three months to earn a 25,000 Avios bonus. Plus he’ll need to pay the £195 annual fee.

Once Kate hits the £2,000 trigger on her card she cancels it and gets a secondary card on Ben’s BA Premium Plus Amex card to help them both get to the £10,000 per year trigger spend to earn a companion voucher.

But before she cancels her Amex Gold she refers Ben to it, and he uses the Amex Gold link she generates to apply for it so she gets an extra 9,000 bonus points.

Ben takes some time off the BA Premium Plus Amex card to hit his £2,000 trigger in three months on the Amex Gold to earn an extra 22,000 bonus points (the normal 20,000 plus the extra 2,000 having been referred), and then cancels it to go back to his BA Premium Plus Amex.

Assuming a £25,000 a year annual spend between them making only the trigger spend on the Amex Gold (£4,000 between them), they will also earn 35,500 Avios points on normal spending.

After a year that’s 111,500 Avios points and they’ve got a companion ticket, so they could both get to Sydney or fly premium economy to Cape Town (plus taxes and charges).

But it doesn’t end there. In year two they can reverse roles to earn more intro bonuses, as by the end of year one only Ben will be registered as an account holder on the BA Premium Plus Amex, so they could both get the intro bonuses again on the Amex Gold, and Kate could do the same on the BA Premium Plus Amex, though again, she’ll need to pay the £195 annual fee.”

Could this actually work in the long run? Kate has one application per year & Ben has two: all three are on American Express cards which aren’t ‘low profile’ or ‘credit score building’ cards either.

Surely American Express will see this operation & not allow it? Also, so many credit card applications per year, every year will surely be harmful to Ben & Kate’s credit scores in the long run?

Would they have to stop this one or two years before trying to get a mortgage?



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