Rundown of British Airways Executive Club for Canadians (updated February 7, 2018)

In Canada, after Aeroplan, I would say, British Airways’ Executive Club Avios are the easiest miles to collect without flying. Canadian financial institutions offer a wide range of options to earn Avios. Personally I have an Executive Club account and I rack up most of my Avois through transfer partners and taking advantage of transfer bonuses (see below).

Expiry Policy

I tend to put the expiry policy as the top factor as it seems to be one of the most important aspects of whether to collect miles and points with a specific loyalty program. Executive Club offers one of the best expiry policies, where you need to keep your account active once every 36 months. I just hope that they keep this policy and not devalue it, do not even need them to improve it (because I rather they not improve it and devalue another aspect of their program).

Earning Avios

Airline Alliance 

British Airways is a member of Oneworld alliance. Therefore, if you fly with any of its airline members, you earn Avios due to their partnership.

Airline partners (Oneworld)

  • American Airlines
  • Cathay Pacific
  • Finnair
  • Iberia
  • Japan Airlines
  • LATAM Airlines
  • Malaysia Airlines
  • Qantas
  • Qatar Airways
  • Royal Jordanian Airlines
  • S7 Airlines
  • SriLankan Airlines

Airline partners (other)

  • Aer Lingus
  • Alaska Airlines
  • Meridiana

Hotels & Accomodation Partners

  • Accor Hotels (earn 2.5 Avios for every €2 Euros spent)
  • Agoda.com (earn up to 10,000 Avios per night)
  • Best Western Hotels and Resorts (earn 500 Avios per stay)
  • Carlson Rezidor Hotels (earn 500 Avios per stay)
  • Fiesta Rewards (earn up to 2,000 Avios per stay, minimum 2 nights)
  • FRHI Hotels & Resorts (earn up to 1000 Avios per stay)
  • Hilton (earn 1 Avios for every $1 USD spent)
  • Hyatt Hotels and Resorts (earn up to 500 Avios for each stay)
  • InterContinental Hotels Group (earn up to 2 Avios for every $1 USD spent)
  • Kaligo.com (earn between 5 and 20 Avios for every GBP spent)
  • Kerzner International Resorts (earn 2 Avios for every $1 USD spent)
  • Langham Hospitality Group (earn up to 500 Avios per night)
  • Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group (earn 800 Avios per stay)
  • Marriott International (earn up to 2 Avios for every $1 USD spent)
  • Preferred Hotels & Resorts (earn 500 Avios per stay)
  • Rocketmiles (earn 1,000 Avios per night)
  • Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts (earn 500 Avios for each stay)
  • Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide (earn between 2 and 3 Avios for every $1 USD spent)
  • Taj Hotels Palaces Resorts Safaris (earn up to 300 Avios per stay)

Cars Partners

  • Avis (earn 500 base Avios per rental and more depending on how much is spent)
  • Budget (earn 100 Avios per day)
  • Maggiore (earn 2 Avios per €1 Euro spent)
  • Zipcar (earn 1,000 Avios when signing up for Zipcar and earn 50 Avios for every booking)

Credit Cards

The Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) has a co-branded British Airways Visa Infinite, which recently increased its permanent sign up bonus to 50,000 Avios. Below is a quick recap of the highlights of the credit card:

  • $165 annual fee
  • $75 fee for supplemental cardholders
  • Earn 50,000 sign up bonus Avios (earn 15,000 Avios upon approval, earn 25,000 bonus Avios after spending $5,000 in the first two months and earn 10,000 bonus Avios for renewing after the first year)
  • Earn 2 Avios for every $1 spent on British Airways and British Airway Holidays purchases
  • Earn 1 Avios for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 10% off British Airways flights departing from Canada
  • Receive a Companion Award Ticket (eVoucher) for a reward flight operated by British Airways after spending $30,000 during a calendar year

Transfer Partners

RBC has a transferable reward program called Avion (or RBC Rewards) points where you can convert from Avion to Executive Club at a 1:1 ratio. You do need to convert a minimum of 10,000 Avion points and in increments of 1 point thereafter. RBC usually offers a transfer bonus twice a year. We usually see 30% or 50% transfer bonuses.

American Express Membership Rewards is another transferable rewards program, where you can transfer a minimum of 1,000 Membership Rewards points for 1,000 Avios, and in increments of 100 thereafter. You may see a 25% transfer bonus offer once a year.

Household Accounts

Executive Club offers an amazing feature called the Household Account. The Household Account is free to create and allows everyone in the same household to pool all their Avios into one account. You can include up to 6 people into a Household Account. Note that changes to the registered Household Account address can only be made once every six months.

British Airways Destinations Departing from Canada

Every though I recommended against redeeming your Avios with British Airways (because of its high taxes and fuel surcharges), that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t fly with British Airways on a paid ticket (if you find the right price). Below is a list of direct flights offered departing from Canada, which includes (changes from last time are included):

Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ)

  • British Airways: London-Heathrow
  • British Airways (seasonal): London–Gatwick (begins May 1, 2018)

Vancouver International Airport (YVR)

  • British Airways: London-Heathrow

Montréal–Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport (YUL)

  • British Airways: London-Heathrow

Calgary International Airport (YYC)

  • British Airways: London-Heathrow


  1. You should also mention the largest negative of the British Airways Avios program is the high fee they charge for redeeming your Avios. Often on intercontinental flights the fee is $1000 or more per ticket. Also, award travel booked with Avios in Business or First class also gets you lounge access at most airports.

    The BA AVIOS award chart is rather high for long flights, but very good value for short flights. For example London-Berlin is only 18K AVIOS return in business class. However Vancouver – Berlin in First class is something like 220K AVIOS return

  2. Matthew-
    My wife and I transferred Avion points to Avios during a transfer bonus period a year or two ago.Having been getting messages that points are about to expire without activity (for some reason our recent Aer Lingus flight was not credited).

    What’s the most efficient way to keep our points active? Sounds like Amex MR transfer is the smallest point amount we could transfer in and with no active transfer bonuses at this time SPG or Avion doesn’t make sense.

    Thanks for the info about the household account – that will help us a bunch.

    1. I think you got the options down with AMEX. Can do the minimum 1000 points transfer. I would watch for the transfer bonus before doing it though. Or if you have an E-Rewards account too.

  3. Hi Matt. I really can’t find any reward ticket from YYC except to London. The partner airlines such as Alaska and A.A rewards tickets not searchable from YYC. I try to avid B.A tickets as per the high tax. Am I missing anything or Alaska or A.A tickets are not available often? Any tricks? Thanks.

    1. Try segment by segment. Also, try looking at dates closer to your trip.

      Either way, unfortunately, BA has very little award space on AA, especially when it is a small plane.

  4. Hi Matt, Thank you so much for your informative reviews.
    I have about 170 000 avios in a household account that expire in Aug. Have not had much success using these avios pts on flights because of the problems already mentioned. Would however, like to keep them alive just in case. Besides the RBC pts transfer, which I’m not that keen to do as it means having to transfer 40 000pts because there are 4 members in household account and the RBC pts are so much easier to use than the avios, renting a car for a day with Avis X 4, or making a forced purchase of merchandise which would not be cost effective either. Any suggestions with all your expertise would be so very much appreciated.

    1. I usually use E-Rewards. Can try to use Avios shopping portal to buy something that you were planning to buy anyway.

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