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Apparently this promotion has been going on since September 1, 2014, though I only learned about it today, via an email I received from British Airways Executive Club. Not a huge loss, since it’s not an earth shattering promotion or anything.
Through September 30, 2014, British Airways is offering a 10% transfer bonus when you convert Starpoints into Avios. While transfers from Starwood to British Airways can often take 1-2 weeks, it can take 4-6 weeks from the time of conversion for the bonus Avios to post.
The normal transfer ratio is 1:1, and for every 20,000 points you transfer you earn a 5,000 point bonus. That means 20,000 Starpoints ordinarily converts into 25,000 Avios, so through this promotion you’d receive 27,500 Avios. There’s no limit to the number of bonus Avios you can earn through this promotion.
British Airways Executive Club is partners with all three major transferable points currencies — American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest. Of those three currencies, Starpoints are hands down the most difficult to accrue, given that you can really only earn them through staying at Starwood hotels and through the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express and Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express. And since those cards don’t offer category bonuses aside from Starwood hotels, it requires a lot of spend to build a sizable points balance. As a result, Starpoints are one of the few points currencies I hoard.
So generally I wouldn’t transfer Starpoints to British Airways, given how many other ways there are to rack up Avios. Back in the day we frequently saw transfer bonuses from Membership Rewards to British Airways, though it has been a while since we’ve seen one of those. As a result, I think either Membership Rewards or Ultimate Rewards points are better options for a transfer.
All that being said, if you’re going to convert Starpoints into Avios, you might as well do it when there’s a transfer bonus. I’ve seen bigger transfer bonuses in the past, though.