RBC British Airways Visa Infinite

Last updated: January 26, 2022
  • 50,000 British Airways Avios
  • $899 First-year value
Best offer is available publicly until February 28, 2022
Signup bonus:
15,000 Avios upon first purchase
35,000 Avios upon spending $6,000 in the first three months
10,000 Avios when you renew your card after the first year
Total of 60,000 Avios (50,000 Avios within the first year)
Annual fee:
Earning Rate
2 Avios per dollar spent with British Airways
1 Avios per dollar spent on all other purchases
Perks & benefits:
Companion award voucher when you spend $30,000 on the card in one calendar year

The RBC British Airways Visa Infinite is the only British Airways co-branded card in Canada, making this an obvious choice if that’s your airline of choice.

For the rest of us, this card still offers a compelling sign-up bonus, and a Companion Award eVoucher should you spend at least $30,000 in one calendar year.

Bonuses & Fees

The RBC British Airways Visa Infinite offers a signup bonus of 60,000 Avios, delivered to you as follows:

  • 15,000 Avios upon card approval

  • 35,000 Avios upon spending $6,000 in the first three months

  • 10,000 Avios upon renewing your card after the first membership year

You’ll note that the final 10,000 Avios are only granted after you renew the card for another year. Therefore, if you’re the type who likes to cancel cards before the first year is up to avoid paying the second year’s annual fee, then you’ll walk away from this card with only 50,000 Avios.

Historically, this card has only offered a total of 50,000 Avios, but the current total bonus of 60,000 Avios is an all-time high.

The annual fee on this card is $165, and to our knowledge, it has never come with a first-year fee waiver. However, you might have some luck getting it waived through RBC’s unadvertised Visa Infinite “customer war” deal.

Basically, many data points indicate that if you call RBC and tell them you are an existing cardholder of a competing Visa Infinite product (such as the TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite or the CIBC Aventura Visa Infinite), RBC will waive the first year annual fee on their own Visa Infinite cards.

However, the success of this “customer war” trick seems to be mixed, and you might need to call in a few times to get an agent who knows about it.

Otherwise, you can also get yourself an RBC VIP Banking Account, which comes with a fee waiver on one of their premium credit cards.

Nevertheless, among other things, 50,000 Avios can get you a one-way flight in economy class from Vancouver to Asia, up to three one-way flights from the West Coast to Hawaii or from Toronto to Dublin, or up to eight one-way flights on any short-haul side-trips you plan to take with Oneworld carriers along your travels around the world.

Earning those points for $165 is still a pretty great deal, and definitely one to consider if you can manage the minimum spending of $6,000 in the first three months.

Earning Rewards

The RBC British Airways Visa Infinite earns 2 Avios per dollar spent on British Airways flights and vacations, and 1 Avios per dollar spent on all other purchases.

This earning rate isn’t the strongest when compared to other cards on the market, like RBC’s own Visa Infinite Avion product. With that card, you could get 1 Avion point per dollar spent on general purchases, and then transfer those points over to Avios during a 30–50% promotion, resulting in a much better value than simply using your British Airways Visa Infinite card.

The 2x return on British Airways bookings might be appealing, but even then, you could put the same charges on the Amex Gold Rewards Card to earn 2 MR points per dollar spent, which then transfer over to Avios at a 1:1 ratio (and occasionally have bonuses as well).

It’s safe to say that the most attractive feature about the RBC British Airways Visa Infinite is certainly the signup bonus rather than the earning rate on regular purchases.

Redeeming Rewards

Unlike many other loyalty programs, Avios redemptions depends on the total mileage flown. Avios uses multiple mileage bands, divided into zones.

Furthermore, connecting flights can often be a detriment since by adding a connection, you might have to pay more miles, since your total flying distance will be higher.

Therefore, the best uses for British Airways Avios tend to be for direct flights, and those just under the threshold of the zone limits.

With the 56,000 Avios signup offer for this card (including the minimum spend requirement), you could:

  • Fly two people from Seattle to Hawaii roundtrip
  • Fly from Toronto to Dublin in one-way in business class
  • Fly multiple short-haul flights starting from 6,000 Avios one-way
  • Fly from Dubai to Paris in one-way in business class

The sky really is the limit with Avios, since the price can depend on which carrier you’re flying and which region you’re flying in.

Perks & Benefits

This card also comes with a Companion Award eVoucher when you spend $30,000 on the card in one calendar year. This voucher allows you to add a companion to your ticket for free when you redeem your Avios for a round-trip flight with British Airways originating in and returning to Canada.

While this sounds like a great deal, keep in mind that Avios redemptions on British Airways long-haul flights come with significant fuel surcharges in the region of $600 in economy class or $1,000 in business class, which can really eat into your savings.

I’d say that this is a benefit that you could take advantage of if you do happen to be making this redemption anyway, but it’s not worth going out of your way to spend $30,000 on this card for it.

Insurance Coverage

As a Visa Infinite product, this credit card comes with comprehensive premium travel insurance, including:

  • Emergency medical insurance for the first 31 consecutive days of any out-of-province trips

  • Flight delay and emergency purchases insurance in the event of a missed connection, delayed flight departure, or denied boarding

  • Auto rental damage and theft insurance, which can help you save on the insurance fees that car rental companies charge

  • Hotel burglary insurance of up to $2,500 in total

  • Travel accident insurance of up to $500,000 against accidental death or dismemberment

The card also comes with strong purchase protection benefits, including an extended warranty that doubles the original manufacturer’s warranty up to a maximum of one year, and coverage against accidental loss or damage of personal property for up to 90 days from the date of purchase.

Historical Offers

Apply Now

As a Visa Infinite product, this credit card has a minimum annual income requirement of $80,000 (individual) or $150,000 (household). RBC banking clients with lower incomes may have success visiting a branch to see if these requirements can be waived.

Follow the below link to the RBC website to learn more about this card and submit an application.

  1. Daniel

    Ricky and team, FYI RBC has come up with a new promo for the RBC British Airways Visa Infinite here (up to 60K Avios SUB): https://www.rbcroyalbank.com/credit-cards/campaign/ba/gn/index.html?ASC=3AB001&utm_dc=ga_DSC_14653987912_131013409394_550377326639_kwd-0_c&gclid=Cj0KCQjw3v6SBhCsARIsACyrRAlBibeOtmaZcVzk4mFtgWbCUANStCvV_gaI0qanIczebEQWKD1MIEwaAk92EALw_wcB

    Rediscover Travel.
    Receive up to 60,000 Avios, here’s how:
    Step 1: Receive 15,000 Avios as welcome bonus upon approvalˆ
    Step 2: 35,000 bonus Avios when you spend $6,000 CAD in the first 3 monthsˆ
    Step 3: Another 10,000 bonus Avios after your first yearˆ

    Collect 1 Avios for every $1 CAD spent on qualifying net purchases*
    Collect double Avios when you shop with British Airways and BA Holidays*
    Earn a companion voucher when you spend $30,000 CAD annually˜
    10% off British Airways flights when you book and pay with your card∞
    Redeem for travel on British Airways and one world partner airlines**

  2. Yulia

    Hi Ricky, I recently came across this clause in the RBC BA Visa Infinite T&C. It says “This welcome bonus is not available to existing or former RBC British Airways Visa Infinite primary cardholders applying for or transferring to an RBC British Airways Visa Infinite credit card.” Does this mean that as a former BA card holder, I will not be eligible for the welcome bonus ever again? Is this something new they added recently?

    Also, these days I noticed other credit cards seemingly started to follow suit and have added clauses that prevent people from “gaming” the system. Another example is Scotiabank. Their T&C is even more ridiculous: “Individuals who are currently or were previously primary or secondary cardholders of a Scotiabank retail credit card in the past 2 years, including those that switch from an existing Scotiabank retail credit card are not eligible for the 30,000 bonus points offer.” Has it always been like this per your knowledge or is this the beginning of a new trend?

  3. Andrew

    Hey Ricky, if I’m specifically looking to maximize flights on other Oneworld carriers (e.g. JAL) from YVR to other Asian destinations, would this BA card or the Avion Visa Infinite be a better choice for doing this? I hardly ever fly on BA, so obtaining this or the other RBC Avion Visa Infinite card would just be for use with JAL really.

    1. Ricky YVR

      They’d both be great, since Avion points can transfer to BA (sometimes with 30–50% bonuses). Currently the BA welcome bonus is at an all-time high, so you might consider getting this if you can navigate the spends.

  4. Robyn Swanson

    I believe the out-of-country medical insurance only covers up to 15 days, not 31. The website states: “Under 65 years of age, 15 days of coverage. For age 65 and over, 3 days of coverage. Coverage underwritten by RBC Insurance Company of Canada.”

  5. Jocelyn

    When I did a switch from Avion to the BA card I received both bonuses. I also got the annual fee waived for having a TD infinite Aeroplan card. I’m wondering about switching again. Can you get this bonus a second time?

  6. Kevin

    If I were to product switch from a RBC Avion Platinum, would I be eligible for just the 15,000 sign up portion, or would the 25,000 for MS be open to me as well?

    1. Ricky YVR

      This seems to vary based on different people’s experiences. Some have reported only getting the 15K, while others have been able to unlock the spend bonus. I’d treat it as a baseline 15K and the extra 25K would be a bonus if you decide to go for it (although there’s also the risk that they don’t get granted upon meeting the spend).

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