From now until June 19, 2018, British Airways is discounting the Avios required for almost 100 long-haul economy routes. This is for travel ex-Heathrow and ex-Gatwick between September 1, 2018, and May 31, 2019.
You can either redeem one-way, or return.
Sounds like a great deal, right?
Unfortunately only the Avios required are reduced, and not the substantial taxes, fees and carrier imposed surcharges. I actually don’t think the Avios required for British Airways economy redemptions are that high, but it is the co-payment that absolutely kills the deal for me.
I’ve been considering travelling to Florida later this year on British Airways, using Avios. So naturally I’m interested in this offer, although I would far prefer to travel in a premium class.
So I’ve looked up the half-price Avios offer for my preferred dates:
16,250 points for a return long-haul flight seems like an excellent deal, yes? Remember, that’s half price — it would usually be twice the amount of Avios.
But here is the price for revenue economy seats for the exact same flights:
That means if you are using Avios, you will be paying 16,250 to save only around £25. That means you are only achieving about one tenth of a pence value from each Avios, whereas I value my Avios at about one pence each (so ten times the value!).
And remember, you won’t earn any Avios or Executive Club/oneworld tier points/status credits on award flights.
Let’s look at another example, which may give us better value, to a premium destination. Let’s go to Tokyo. Here is the 50% off Avios redemption price:
Versus the revenue fares for the same dates:
This is better value.
To save around £300 you could redeem 19,500 Avios. This gives you a value of around 1.5 pence per Avios. That’s good value.
However, I’m comparing the exact same flights. Given you would not be earning any Avios/miles/points or status credits on these flights, if you don’t have status, you may as well shop around and be flexible with dates which reduces the price down to this:
Sure they’re not direct, but y’all know how much I love a stopover anyway!
If you can get a revenue fare for as low as £500, that means that unless you are desperate to fly British Airways economy (and I’m not), suddenly those 19,500 Avios are only going to be worth about £75, which is only about one-third of a pence (so a third of what I would value them at).
In certain circumstances, this is a great deal. If you are looking for a one-way to an exotic destination, and are happy to fly in economy, then you could really score a great deal and obtain well over one pence in value for each Avios you are redeeming.
But in most situations in this deal, economy redemptions are terrible value. If you don’t have status, I would encourage you to shop around for a good deal.
Save your points and miles for a premium experience please! If premium economy was included in this offer I would definitely consider it.
While also not included in this offer, short-haul Avios redemptions remain excellent value.
Have you ever redeemed Avios for long-haul economy redemptions?