How to Earn Miles and Points on Petrol Purchases
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If you regularly drive a vehicle in the UK, petrol may make up a significant and predictable amount of your weekly or monthly expenses. If that is the case and you want to maximise your spend, here are the ways you can earn miles and points on those petrol purchases.
If you fill up at Esso sites across the UK, you can earn 1 Nectar point for every litre of petrol purchased. Unfortunately, Nectar points aren’t great for travel redemptions, as there is virtually no way to get outsized value from them in the same way you could from the likes of Membership Rewards points.
Instead, you can obtain a simple 0.5p per Nectar point value by redeeming your Nectar points with dozens of Nectar partners to reduce your supermarket bill, or even your daily coffee at Caffe Nero or a Pizza at Pizza Express. Sure, these points won’t get you a first-class flight to New York, but there are so many other redemption partners that you shouldn’t have any difficulty for using your Nectar points.
Perhaps a more exciting opportunity with petrol is when filling up at Tesco Petrol. When filling up your tank at Tesco, you can earn 1 Tesco Clubcard point for every £2 spent. Each 250 Clubcard points gets you £2.50 in Clubcard vouchers. 150 points are the minimum amount needed in order to be able cash in your points.
You can cash in £2.50 of your vouchers for 600 British Airways Avios, so £500 pounds spent on Tesco petrol would provide you with 600 Avios, which is a great rate of more than 1 Avios per £1 spent on top of any other points you would earn for paying for the petrol on your credit or charge card. All you need in order to get the Avios is a British Airways Executive Club membership registered to the same name and address as your Clubcard. So, if you’re using a credit card that earns you Avios along side your Clubcard, you will be well on your way to redeeming a short-haul return economy flight within Europe for 8,000 Avios and £35.
Virgin Atlantic offers slightly more than BA’s Executive Club. With Virgin’s Flying Club, £2.50 worth of Tesco Clubcard vouchers can be exchanged for 625 Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles. The name on the Flying Club membership must match the name registered with the Clubcard membership.
Previously, customers could earn Nectar points on petrol at BP. However, BP recently left the Nectar programme and has launched its own programme called ‘BPme Rewards’. You will earn:
- 1 point per litre for regular petrol,
- 2 points per litre for BP Ultimate premium petrol,
- 1 point per £1 spent on BP shop purchases, and
- 1 point per £1 spent on car wash.
Unfortunately, there are no travel rewards with the new BPme programme. You can redeem points for a straight discount on petrol (200 points per £1 off your petrol bill), or for Amazon or M&S gift cards or for gifts like toys, tools and home appliances, although the redemption rates are poor compared with the likes of Tesco Clubcard.
Unfortunately, there are not the same number of retailers offering loyalty points for petrol purchases as there used to be. For example, Shell Drivers Club recently ended.
Paying by Credit/Charge Card
Regardless of where you’re filling up, if you end putting each purchase on a points-earning credit or charge card, this will ensure you are earning points and miles for each purchase. Most cards, like many of the American Express cards, will earn 1 point per £1 spent, while some other options, like the Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Credit Card UK earn as much as 1.5 miles per £1 spent on everyday purchases. If you are also earning points in the programmes above, this will allow you to ‘double dip’ and earn two types of points on the one transaction.
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