UPDATE: This offer has expired.
The American Express 40% transfer bonus to British Airways Executive Club
Now through September 27, 2012, American Express Cardmembers will receive 40% more Avios when transferring American Express Membership Rewards points into British Airways Executive Club.
With this offer, a non-stop o/w business class ticket on American Airlines from Los Angeles to New York drops from 25K AMEX points to just under 18K. A o/w non-stop first class ticket from Los Angeles to London drops from 75K AMEX points to about 54K. A o/w economy class award from New York to Washington drops from 4.5K AMEX points to 3K. Those are just a few examples, of course.
British Airways has a high fuel surcharge on its own metal and on some partners, but you can still get some excellent deals using your Avios. For example, you can fly r/t from Boston to Dublin in Aer Lingus business class for only 50K Avios (pre-discount) with a minimal fuel surcharge or you can fly to South America on LAN with no fuel surcharge. BA charges on a per segment basis (unless you are adding on an intra-UK flight to your itinerary) so keep your routings as direct as possible.
We’ve have not seen as many transfer bonuses this year (still waiting on Delta) so this is a welcome sign. Whether you are looking to book an aspirational award to Australia or the Far East or just a cheap last-minute ticket from LA to the Bay Area (BA has no close-in processing fee like US carriers do), BA Avios are valuable and this offer is not something to scoff at.
But unless you have a specific use in mind, hold off on transferring–I have found the flexibility of having your points sitting in AMEX outweighs the hypothetical advantage you gain when transferring points purely to take advantage of a promotion but with no trip in mind.