5 underrated holiday hotspots and how to fly there on your business spending

Here’s how your business spending can add up to flights to some fabulous hotspots in 2024, with a British Airways American Express® Accelerating Business Card.

A fifth of us are planning to spend less on our holidays this year, according to the travel trade body ABTA. So we’ve picked out some holiday gems where you can escape the crowds, enjoy the scenery and unwind – and shown you how to turn your day-to-day business spending into that ticket to ride.

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This guide is a paid content promotion brought to you by American Express.

Accelerate your Avios earning. Earn 30,000 bonus Avios when you spend £5,000 in the first 3 months of Cardmembership.

Representative example: When you spend £1,200 at a purchase rate of 28.5% (variable) p.a. with a fee of £250 per annum, your representative rate is 108.4% APR (variable). Learn more

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There’s a range of credit cards that let you top up your travel points balance through spending on the card. The key to getting the best from these deals is to take advantage of bonuses, and to earn your rewards on a range of everyday expenses.

The BA Amex® Accelerating Business Card, which has a fee of £250 per annum, is an example. You can quickly top up your Avios pot through everday business spending and by taking advantage of the bonuses available: the 30,000 Avios bonus for spending £5,000 in the first 3 months of Cardmembership, plus further tiered bonuses that can get you up to another 30,000 Avios during the year if you spend £60,000.

And since the earn rate is 1.5 Avios per £1 of eligible spending, if you put £60,000 of business spending on the Card in your first year, together with the bonuses you could have an Avios pot of 150,000. More on this below.

Here are 5 holiday hotspots we’ve picked for 2024, plus some example flights we found where you can use your Avios. Several of these are Reward Flights, which means the cost is just your Avios plus taxes and fees per person. Reward Flight Savers start at 18,500 Avios plus £1 per person for Europe.

Hotspot 1: Terracina, Italy

Terracina

Just south of Rome, and on the coast is Terracina. If you’re happy to swap the Amalfi Coast for the Pontine Coast, you can expect great seafood for less. According to Time Out, a meal in Terracina can cost half the price of the equivalent in the Amalfi Coast’s Piano de Sorrento.

How do I get there?

Fly to Rome, and Terracina is less than 2 hours’ drive south.

Reward Flights start at 23,500 Avios plus £1 per person for an off-peak return. When we looked in January, we found an economy return Reward Flight Saver on a weekday in mid-June with British Airways from London Heathrow to Rome for 23,500 Avios plus £1 per person.

Hotspot 2: Girona, Spain

Girona

Girona is just a short drive north from Barcelona and far less crowded than its neighbour, plus beer is 25% cheaper, according to Time Out. A walk on the medieval walls of Girona old town is a highlight. The surrounding countryside is dotted with charming villages, too. And if that’s not enough, Girona was a key filming location in season 6 of Game of Thrones.

How do I get there?

Fly to Barcelona – Girona’s a short drive north, or 40 minutes on the train.

As above, Reward Flights start at 23,500 Avios plus £1 per person for an off-peak return. In January, we found a weekday economy return Reward Flight Saver in mid-June with British Airways from London Heathrow to Barcelona for 23,500 Avios plus £1 per person.

Hotspot 3: Malta

Malta

The island of Malta was one of Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel picks for 2023. Offering prehistoric temples, scuba diving and a deep blue sea, Malta is a great spot for those who want to unwind.

How do I get there?

We found an off-peak economy return Reward Flight Saver in mid-September with British Airways from London Gatwick to Malta for 27,500 Avios + £1 per person.

Hotspot 4: Toronto, Canada

Toronto

While it’s a bustling, multicultural city, Toronto also offers beaches and paths along Lake Ontario for those who want the great outdoors. You can even kayak or paddle around the Toronto Islands.

How do I get there?

Reward Flight deals start at 50,000 Avios plus £100 per person for an off-peak return. In January, we found a weekday economy return Reward Flight Saver in mid-June with British Airways from London Heathrow to Toronto for 50,000 Avios plus £100 per person.

Hotspot 5: Yamagata, Japan

Yamagata

Yamagata is a short train ride from Tokyo and well worth it. The region offers mountains, and the hot spring area of Ginzan Onsen. Time Out praises this town’s “centuries-old architecture, reminiscent of scenes from Hayao Myazaki’s Spirited Away”.

How do I get there?

Fly to Tokyo and take the bullet train – a fast train takes just under 2 hours 30 minutes. You could decide to upgrade for this long-haul flight, and go for premium economy. In January, we found World Traveller Plus tickets to Tokyo with British Airways starting at 100,000 Avios plus £380 per person, flying on a weekday in June.

How to build your pot

The welcome bonus

To qualify for the 30,000 Avios welcome bonus, you need to spend £5,000 in the first 3 months of Cardmembership. And you earn 1.5 Avios on every eligible £1 you spend on the Card.

Get the team on board

The BA Amex Accelerating Business Card allows you to apply for up to 20 complimentary Employee Cards. So you can make it a team effort with additional cards to top up your rewards pot faster. Plus, you can manage expenses via one Account. Just remember that, as the Account owner, you’re responsible for paying the bills.

The milestone bonus

When you and your team spend £20,000 in a single year, you’ll get a tiered milestone bonus of 10,000 Avios. You can get this bonus up to 3 times a year, generating 30,000 bonus Avios for a £60,000 spend.

Put the office expenses on your Card

If you put your usual business expenses on the Card, it can quickly boost your Avios. Monthly software, ad spend, even a new company car – it can all go on the Card. Not only will you earn Avios for each £1 you spend on purchases, you’ll also get 56 days interest-free on purchases as long as you pay your balance in full.

Bottom line

This Card will suit many businesses, but it’s worth considering whether it’s right for you. You’ll get the most out of the deal if you fly regularly for business and you spend at least £60,000 a year. If you’re a much smaller business, you might struggle to justify the £250 per annum fee. To find out more about business credit cards, compare all types in our guide.

Rewards shown are examples that are subject to availability and may change. Examples valid as of January 2024. Avios are earned on every eligible full £1 spent and charged, per transaction. Terms apply. Basic Charge Card with no fee, rewards or other features available.
We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you.

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