Category Archive for 'BA'

29 Direct Flights From Boston That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios

Wednesday, August 6th, 2014

7th in a series.
Related:
-Chase British Airways Visa: Earn 50,000 Avios for spending $2,000, that’s enough for 11 one-way flights to NYC or 4 one-way flights to Europe with no fuel surcharges.
-Click to view 94 Direct Avios Flights From Baltimore/Washington DC
-Click to view 126 Direct Avios Flights From Chicago
-Click to view 77 Direct Avios Flights From Los Angeles
-Click to view 120 Direct Avios Flights From Miami
-Click to view 102 Direct Avios Flights From NYC
-Click to view 123 Direct Avios Flights From Philadelphia
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British Airways Avios can’t be beat for short-haul nonstop flights thanks to ultra-low award rates, no expedite/close-in fees, and dirt cheap award cancellations.  Below are all of the direct flights from Boston that can be booked with Avios.

Be sure to read the British Airways knowledgebase and the 22 Things To Keep In Mind When Using Avios for everything you NEED to know about the BA program and how to best search for BA award availability with tips like always booking one-way awards.  If you have a question it’s probably already been answered there!

Notes:
1. Rates in the chart are for one-way flights. Generally speaking it’s a good idea to book BA flights as one-ways to give you maximum flexibility.
2. Routes that are displayed in bold are subject to fuel surcharges.
3. There are no fuel surcharges for flights on: Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, Alaska, LAN, and TAM. There are also no fuel surcharges for American and USAirways flights within the western hemisphere, for JAL flights within Japan, and for Qantas flights within Australia. Fuel surcharges for intra-Europe flights are also typically quite low. Fuel surcharges for travel on Cathay Pacific aren’t too bad while fuel surcharges to fly on British Airways border on the criminal.
You can save on the fuel surcharges imposed on Iberia flights by transferring British Airways Avios into Iberia Avios.
4. In the charts below I’ve only included direct flights as BA charges Avios for each flight segment. For example Maui isn’t on the chart as BA does not have any partners that fly nonstop from Boston-Maui.  Though you can always fly to Maui via Los Angeles, Portland, San Diego, or Seattle, for 12.5K for the Boston-west coast segment and 12.5K for the West coast-Maui segment with no fuel surcharges. Plus you can stopover in the connecting city for as long or short as you want.
5. BA.com does not display availability for all airlines! If you want to book travel on airlines like Alaska, Aer Lingus, and LAN you’ll need to pick up the phone and call BA! You can search Alaska award availability on AA.com before calling BA to book it.
6. In rare cases connecting flights can be cheaper than nonstop flights when using Avios and I’ve noted that in the chart.
7. Cities in the chart may only have seasonal nonstop service.
8. A dash means that class of service isn’t offered on that route.
9. If you are originating in NYC and don’t want to drive to BOS to pickup a flight you’ll probably be better off searching for and booking the NYC-BOS leg for 4.5K separately from the BOS-XYZ leg. First of all that will pull up more flight results. Second, that will stop you from being priced into the much more expensive multi-partner chart. For example a flight from NYC-Boston on American and from Boston-Ireland on Aer Lingus would price out a 35K Avios when booked as 1 ticket or 17K Avios when the Boston-NYC flight is booked separately (for 4.5K Avios) from the Boston-Ireland flight (for 12.5K Avios with no fuel surcharges).
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Want to pickup Avios? You’re in luck as you can transfer points from all over the place to BA.

-The Chase British Airways Visa Signature offers 50,000 Avios for spending $2K, 1.25 Avios per dollar spent, and a companion ticket for spending $30K in a year.

-Chase Ultimate Rewards points are earned from consumer cards like Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Non-Preferred, Chase Freedom and business cards like Chase Ink Plus, Chase Ink Bold, or Chase Ink Cash. These points also can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios.

-The Starwood Consumer AMEX and the Starwood Business AMEX each award 25K signup points with no fee for the first year. 20K Starpoints can transfer into 25K Avios with the permanent 25% transfer bonus. Note that Starwood point transfers are not instant.

-American Express Membership Rewards points can be earned from cards like the AMEX Premier Rewards Gold. These points can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios.

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View the complete 29 route chart after the jump:

Click here to keep reading this post!

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94 Direct Flights From Baltimore/Washington DC That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios

Monday, May 26th, 2014

6th in a series.
Related:
-Chase British Airways Visa:
Earn 50,000 Avios for spending $2,000.
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From Chicago
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From Los Angeles
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From Miami
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From NYC
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From Philadelphia
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British Airways Avios can’t be beat for short-haul nonstop flights thanks to ultra-low award rates, no expedite/close-in fees, and practically free award cancellations.  Below are all of the direct flights from Philadelphia that can be booked with Avios.

Be sure to read the British Airways knowledgebase and the 22 Things To Keep In Mind When Using Avios for everything you NEED to know about the BA program and how to best search for BA award availability with tips like always booking one-way awards.  If you have a question it’s probably already been answered there!

Notes:
1. Rates in the chart are for one-way flights.
2. Routes that are displayed in bold are subject to fuel surcharges.
3. There are no fuel surcharges for flights on: Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, Alaska, LAN, and TAM. There are also no fuel surcharges for American and USAirways flights within the western hemisphere, for JAL flights within Japan, and for Qantas flights within Australia. Fuel surcharges for intra-Europe flights are also typically quite low. Fuel surcharges for travel on Cathay Pacific aren’t too bad while fuel surcharges to fly on British Airways border on the criminal.
4. In the charts below I’ve only included direct flights as BA charges Avios for each flight segment. For example Maui isn’t on the chart as BA does not have any partners that fly nonstop from Washington DC-Maui.  Though you can always fly to Maui via Los Angeles, Portland, or Seattle, for 12.5K for the Washington DC-west coast segment and 12.5K for the West coast-Maui segment with no fuel surcharges. Plus you can stopover in the connecting city for as long or short as you want.
5. BA.com does not display availability for all airlines! If you want to book travel on airlines like Alaska, Aer Lingus, and LAN you’ll need to pick up the phone and call BA! You can search Alaska award availability on AA.com before calling BA to book it.
6. In rare cases connecting flights can be cheaper than nonstop flights when using Avios and I’ve noted that in the chart.
7. Cities in the chart may only have seasonal nonstop service.
8. A dash means that class of service isn’t offered on that route.
9. If you are originating in NYC and don’t want to drive to WAS to pickup a flight you’ll probably be better off searching for and booking the NYC-WAS leg for 4.5K separately from the WAS-XYZ leg.
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Want to pickup Avios? You’re in luck as you can transfer points from all over the place to BA.

-The Chase British Airways Visa Signature offers 50,000 Avios for spending $2K.

-Chase Ultimate Rewards points are earned from consumer cards like Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Non-Preferred, Chase Freedom and business cards like Chase Ink Plus, Chase Ink Bold, or Chase Ink Cash. These points also can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios.
Through 06/01 the Ink cards receive 10K more signup points than usual.

-The Starwood Consumer AMEX and the Starwood Business AMEX each award 25K signup points with no fee for the first year. 20K Starpoints can transfer into 25K Avios with the permanent 25% transfer bonus.

-American Express Membership Rewards points can be earned from cards like the AMEX Premier Rewards Gold. These points can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios.

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View the complete 94 route chart after the jump:

Click here to keep reading this post!

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22 Things To Keep In Mind When Using Avios

Monday, May 5th, 2014

Related:
-Chase British Airways Visa:
Earn 50,000 Avios for spending $2,000.
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From Chicago
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From Los Angeles
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From Miami
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From NYC
-Click to view Direct Avios Flights From Philadelphia
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BA has an excellent mileage program with their Avios thanks to award flights from just 4.5K Avios each way with no last-minute booking fees and practically no cancellation fees.  Booking a last-minute flight that would otherwise cost $1,500 or require 150,000 Capital One points feels great, but it helps to know some of the program’s quirks though.

Read the BA knowledgebase for program basics, then come back and read this.

1. If you’re flexible with availability, use AA.com to help find award availability. 

By limiting the AA.com calendar to nonstop flights only you can quickly figure out exactly what BA.com will find.  Remember that BA.com will only book MileSAAver awards.

Also remember that AA.com does not search all partner airlines.  It can search for flights on AA, Air Berlin, Alaska, BA, Finnair, Open Skies, Qantas, Royal Jordanian Airlines, and USAirways. AA.com does not search Aer Lingus, Cathay Pacific, Iberia, JAL, LAN, Malaysia, TAM, Qatar, S7.

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2. Search BA.com segment by segment.

The BA site is downright terrible at finding any flight that requires a connection.  That means if you want to fly from Vancouver to Boston you’re going to have to search for 2 separate tickets.  As BA charges a flat rate for each flight segment you’ll pay the same amount of Avios whether you book 2 flights on 1 ticket or on 2 tickets.

Search for a paid flight on Orbitz to find possible connection cities to know which segments to search for.

Searching from Vancouver to JFK:

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Searching from Vancouver to Boston:

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Searching from JFK to Boston:

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3. Call BA to book airlines not bookable on BA.com and ask for a fee waiver.

BA.com can’t book awards on Aer Lingus, Alaska, or LAN.  There are lots of Avios bargains with those airlines (Boston-Dublin for 12.5K, Seattle-Kauai for 12.5K, Buenos Aires-Iguassu Falls for 7.5K, etc) but you need to call to book.  Be sure to get them to waive the phone booking fee.

You can also call to piece together a flight from JFK to Berlin to Tel Aviv onto 1 ticket.  If you’re willing to take a long connection or an overnight stopover BA.com won’t find that when you search for JFK-Tel Aviv but you may find JFK-Berlin and Berlin-Tel Aviv award space when searched separately.  Either way you’ll pay the same 15K Avios for each segment, but when booked together you’ll save on German taxes that only apply to non-connecting flights.  Call and BA will be able to book both segments on one ticket to avoid those taxes.

4. Book one-way tickets.

When you book one way tickets you’ll have more flexibility to make changes if you only want to change or cancel one-way and not the other.
You may also find better award availability and better award pricing with one-way tickets.

5. Avoid booking 2 partner airlines on 1 ticket.
Booking at least 2 partner airlines will generally cause much higher award pricing. Book the segments on each airline separately to avoid that situation. Bonus perk is that BA.com will find more flight options when searching each segment separately.

6. Know when to book a lap child and when not to.
-DO NOT book a lap child on a domestic flight. Just have the child added by American or USAirways at the counter, free of charge. Be sure to have a passport or birth certificate to prove your child is under 2.

-DO NOT book a lap child on a flight to Canada. You can add a lap child at the airport or on the phone with American or USAirways either for free or for just a few dollars.

-DO book a lap child at the time of booking for international travel. BA is very generous in only charging 10% of the Avios instead of 10% of the full fare ticket.
When we flew with Rafi to Buenos Aires in first class in 2012, American wanted $1,000 just to bring him on as a lap child. BA charged just 15,000 Avios. Just be sure to book the domestic portion separate from the international portion so that you don’t pay 10% for the domestic legs where the child shouldn’t need to pay anything.

7. Use Finnair to add your American mileage number onto a BA ticket booked from your account.

If you have elite status or just a credit card with AA you may deserve benefits like better seating, free bags, priority checkin, priority boarding, etc.
However if you booked the BA ticket out of your account then the AA website won’t let you switch your BA mileage number to your AA number to get those benefits.

I wrote about the workaround over a year ago and it continues to work like a charm for me.

8. Get your American/USAirways record locator and select seats.
Your BA record locator will be different that your American/USAirways record locator. Just go to manage your booking and click on “View or change seats for this flight.” You’ll be sent over to the partner airline site to choose seats and view your record locator.

9. Have lots of bags? Look into business.
-Flying in coach with 3 bags from Chicago or NYC to Toronto: 4,500 Avios plus $2.50 tax plus $210 in bag fees.
-Flying in business with 3 bags from Chicago or NYC to Toronto: 9,000 Avios plus $2.50 tax plus no bag fees.

10. Business can be twice or three times as much as coach.
-Within the US, business class costs three times what coach costs except on flights like JFK to/from Los Angeles and S. Francisco which have 3 classes of service. On those flights business class is twice coach and first class costs 3 times coach.
-Internationally business class generally costs twice what coach costs.
-Alaska business class always costs triple coach. So Los Angeles-Cabo in business is 15K on AA or 22.5K on Alaska.
-USAirways business class within North America and northern Latin America is triple coach, otherwise its double coach. So JFK-Toronto in business is 9K on American but Philadelphia-Toronto in business is 13.5K on USAirways.

11. Don’t change flights, cancel them. And do it online.
The fee to cancel or change a BA Avios ticket is $55 online or $80 over the phone.
However online you can cancel an award for just the lower of $55 or the taxes paid.
For a domestic ticket that means a cancellation fee of just $2.50 (nonstop one-way), $5 (connecting one-way or nonstop round-trip), or $10 (connecting round-trip).

That’s another reason I like one-ways, I can cancel and rebook the return flight for just $2.50 and I won’t lose my outbound flight. That’s a $55 savings.

Flight cancellations must be done more than 24 hours before the time of departure or else you will not get your Avios back.

After cancelling a flight just logout of your BA account, and then log back in and the points should be back in your account.

Note that you have to call to cancel a flight within 24 hours of when you booked it.  There is no fee for award cancellations done over the phone if they were booked within the past 24 hours.

12. Search multiple airports.
Searching NYC can pull up different results than searching EWR, JFK, or LGA, so search all 4 of those.

13. Be cognizant of nearby airports.
Fort Lauderdale to West Palm Beach may be only 42 miles away, but a flight from Fort Lauderdale to Chicago is 10K Avios in coach or 30K in first. A flight from West Palm Beach to Chicago is 7.5K Avios in coach or 22.5K in first.
That’s because the former is band 3 award and the latter is a band 2 award. More on award bands in the knowledgebase.

Award space from Philadelphia to Miami will often be much better than from NYC, it may be the same rate, but searching surrounding airports can open up more flight options.

14. BA.com glitches.
No, when you see BA doesn’t have the rights to fly this route” that’s not a glitch, that just means you search for a cash ticket instead of switching to an Avios ticket.

But there are lots of other glitches. Sometimes those work out in your favor (though that entails several other great stories that I’ll be saving for another time ;) ) while other times it will mean that searching for the same flight with the same date will give different results, definitely an annoyance.

Or if you click change when you’re searching for an award without going back to the home page but it gives unexpected results:

ba18

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That’s because the change calendar during the booking process spits out the international version of the date with May 7th being 07/05/14 but when you search it then gives you the results for July 5th.

That’s an easy fix, just manually type in 05/07/14 instead of clicking May 7th on the calendar before searching.

Another glitch is the tax display when you click on a flight on the search results page.  That rate can be off by hundreds of dollars in either direction and it fools lots of people.  Always continue onto the next page to view the true tax rate.

15. Transfer times.
You can transfer points from AMEX Membership Rewards or Chase Ultimate Rewards instantly into British Airways, so keep them by AMEX or Chase until you need to book a flight.
There are 3 Chase cards that can transfer points into miles: Chase Sapphire PreferredChase Ink Plus , and Chase Ink Bold. (The Ink cards currently earn 60K points for a limited time only).  Cards like Chase Freedom and Chase Ink Cash can’t directly transfer points into miles, you’ll have to transfer those points to a card that belongs to you or your spouse that can transfer points into miles.

Just make a transfer, logout of your BA account, and then log back in and the points should be waiting for you.

Starwood Starpoints transfer at a 20K:25K ratio, though transfers can take 2-12 days.

16. Be aware of when fuel surcharges apply.
There are no fuel surcharges for flights on: Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, Alaska, LAN, TAM, and USAirways. There are also no fuel surcharges for American flights within the western hemisphere and for Qantas flights within Austrlia. Fuel surcharges for intra-Europe flights are also typically quite low. Fuel surcharges for travel on Cathay Pacific aren’t too bad while fuel surcharges to fly on British Airways are just criminal.

If you want to fly on British Airways you should be using USAirways miles for those flights, as they currently don’t charge fuel surcharges.

17. Mileage expiration

As long as you have activity every 36 months your Avios don’t expire. You don’t lose Avios by closing their credit card.

Need to extend your Avios quickly? Just book a domestic 4.5K award, wait a day, cancel it for the $2.50 fee, and your Avios are good for another 36 months.

Lost Avios due to expiration? Call them up and they’ll often reactivate them for free!

18. The Iberia Shuffle
If you want to fly on Iberia you can save hundreds of dollars per ticket by transferring BA Avios into Iberia Avios.
To do so you’ll need to have an Iberia account open for 90 days and you’ll have to activate it by transferring 1,000 points from AMEX to Iberia before you can transfer BA Avios into Iberia Avios.

19. Family Pooling
You can pool a households Avios together.
Frankly I’ve never looked into this option too much as Avios award start at just 4.5K anyway and becoming a household creates rules on who you are allowed to redeem for and how points are pulled out of each account that it seems like more of a headache than it’s worth.

If you use a household account and disagree though I’d love to hear about it.

20. Award Bands make for interesting results based on the connecting city.

In general nonstop flights are going to be cheaper than connecting flights with Avios.  You can see the “related articles” in the beginning of this post with links to lists of all nonstop flight options from 5 major cities in the US.

However there are exceptions:
-Los Angeles to Sydney nonstop is a band 9 award, or 100,000 Avios round-trip.
-Los Angeles to Honolulu is a band 4 award, or 25,000 Avios round-trip. Honolulu to Sydney is a band 6 award, or 50,000 Avios round-trip. That’s a total of just 75,000 Avios round-trip when booked separately…

-Los Angeles to Dublin via JFK=65,000 Avios round-trip.
-Los Angeles to Dublin via Chicago=60,000 Avios round-trip.
-Los Angeles to Dublin via Boston=50,000 Avios round-trip.

 

21. Award availability is fluid.
This has nothing to do with Avios specifically, but some folks seem to think that if they check award space and see nothing then that’s it.

Award space is always very fluid and can open up as the flight gets closer. You just have to keep checking a few times a day to make sure you can grab it when it opens.

22. Be willing to stopover.
Again, not unique to Avios, but something that applies to it in particular.

There might not be availability JFK to Hawaii on the day you need it, but there may be if you stopoff in Los Angeles for a night.
There might not be availability JFK to Tel Aviv on the day you need it, but there may be if you stopoff in Berlin for a night.

As BA charges by the segment you can take as many “stopovers” as you want without paying extra by just booking separate tickets for each flight. Creating your own adventure can be a blast and it can help you find award space when it might not otherwise exist.

Have more tips? Let’s hear about them in the comments!

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Why Is BA.com Mispricing Some Round-Trip Avios Awards?

Sunday, May 4th, 2014

Update: As commenters point out, this pricing is intentional.  After booking dozens of BA flights you’d think I’d realize this by now, but if you book at least 2 BA partner airlines on the same ticket then the pricing will be based on the multi-carrier award chart which is completely different than the low per-segment Avios pricing we’re used to.

At any rate, the lesson remains the same, book one-way (or one-segment tickets) if needed to avoid that situation.

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Related: The Chase British Airways Visa Signature offers 50,000 Avios for spending $2K. Points are also transferable to BA from Chase UR, AMEX MR, and Starwood.
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DDF techie wiz BAHayman asked me why the following round-trip itinerary is pricing out at 90K Avios and frankly I’m stumped:

ba11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When booked as 2 one-ways the price is correct at 64,500 Avios total.

Tel Aviv-Berlin is 10K, Berlin-JFK is 20K as it should be:

 

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LGA-Philadelphia is 4.5K and Philadelphia-Tel Aviv is 30K, as it should be:

 

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I was able to replicate this for several dates.  Anyone have any idea as to what the BA.com pricing logic might be?

In the meantime as I wrote in the BA knowledgebase (albeit for other reasons), book one-ways when using Avios.  Sometimes you’ll even have to book the ticket above as 4 separate tickets to get BA.com to show the flights, but the price will still be 64.5K Avios.

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USAirways Not Collecting Fuel Surcharges For Travel On British Airways

Tuesday, April 29th, 2014

I’ve flown on tons of airlines, but never on British Airways.  They may be a great airline with some of the best kosher meals in the sky and in the lounges, but they impose such heavy fuel surcharges that I’ve never had much of a desire to fly on them.

Don’t get me wrong, British Airways runs a good mileage program as long as you stick to airlines without fuel surcharges.  That includes flights on Alaska, Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, LAN, USAirways, American flights within the Western Hemisphere, Qantas flights within Australia, etc. Flights within Europe and on Cathay Pacific also have low surcharges.

But flights on British Airways are just ridiculous.  JFK-London-Tel Aviv and back in first class is 195,000 Avios plus $1,054.

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I’ve heard through the grapevine about USAirways not collecting fuel surcharges for BA flights but posting something like that is sure to get it killed.  I think it could have lasted a while had it stayed within the grapevine and talked about at seminars and the like. However lots of major websites and blogs are covering this story now, so I’m posting it now as well as it will surely die soon anyway.

BA forces airlines like Alaska and American to collect fuel surcharges for their flights, something that other airlines don’t do.  You can use LAN kilometers to book BA flights without fuel surcharges, but that got much less attractive after Starwood slashed the overly generous transfer ratio to them.

I called USAirways to hold the first class itinerary pictured above and was quoted 180,000 miles plus $158.70 in tax and $50 award processing.  In business class it would have been 120,000 miles.

The easiest way to search for availability for BA flights is on AA.com. Once you find what you want just call USAirways to book.  You can’t book BA flights on USAirways.com. Be aware that USAirways has lots of incompetent agents, so it may take a few calls to find a rep who knows how to book BA flights.

You can transfer Starpoints to USAirways miles at a 20K:25K ratio.

You can transfer AMEX MR points at a 1:1 ratio into Air Canada Aeroplan and then from Air Canada to USAirways via Points.com. Up to 100,000 miles can be transferred out of one Aeroplan account per year and 100,000 miles would yield 84,011 USAirways miles.

It’s a great deal, enjoy it while it lasts as it won’t last long.  And bear in mind that while you can hold tickets with USAirways for 3 days, they can add fuel surcharges into the quote until you actually confirm your ticket.

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123 Direct Flights From Philadelphia That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

-Click here to view Direct Flights From NYC That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Chicago That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Los Angeles That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Miami That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Find more articles like this by clicking on the “Mileage Posts” tab on top of the DansDeals banner at the top of this site.
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British Airways Avios can’t be beat for short-haul nonstop flights thanks to ultra-low award rates, no expedite/close-in fees, and practically free award cancellations.  Below are all of the direct flights from Philadelphia that can be booked with Avios.

Be sure to read the British Airways knowledgebase for everything you NEED to know about the BA program and how to best search for BA award availability with tips like always booking one-way awards.  If you have a question it’s probably already been answered there!

Notes:
1. Rates in the chart are for one-way flights.
2. Routes that display the airline in bold are subject to fuel surcharges.
3. There are no fuel surcharges for flights on: Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, Alaska, LAN, and USAirways. There are also no fuel surcharges for American flights within the western hemisphere and for Qantas flights within Austrlia. Fuel surcharges for intra-Europe flights are also typically quite low. Fuel surcharges for travel on Cathay Pacific aren’t too bad while fuel surcharges to fly on British Airways borders on the criminal.
4. In the charts below I’ve only included direct flights as BA charges Avios for each flight segment. For example Maui isn’t on the chart as BA does not have any partners that fly nonstop from Philadelphia-Maui.  Though you can always fly to Maui via Los Angeles, S. Diego, or Seattle, for 12.5K for the PHL-west coast segment and 12.5K for the West coast-Maui segment with no fuel surcharges. Plus you can stopover in the connecting city for as long or short as you want.
5. BA.com does not display availability for all airlines! If you want to book travel on airlines like Alaska, Aer Lingus, and LAN you’ll need to pick up the phone and call BA! You can search Alaska award availability on AA.com before calling BA to book it.
6. In rare cases connecting flights can be cheaper than nonstop flights when using Avios and I’ve noted that in the chart.
7. Cities in the chart may only have seasonal nonstop service.
8. A dash means that class of service isn’t offered on that route.
9. If you are originating in NYC and don’t want to drive to PHL to pickup a flight you’ll probably be better off searching for and booking the NYC-PHL leg for 4.5K separately from the PHL-XYZ leg.
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Want to pickup Avios? You’re in luck as you can transfer points from all over the place to BA.

-The Chase British Airways Visa Signature offers 50,000 Avios for spending $2K.

-The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express awards 25K signup pointswith no fee for the first year. 20K Starpoints can transfer into 25K Avios with the permanent 25% transfer bonus.

-American Express Membership Rewards points can be earned from cards like the American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card and the and The Platinum Card® from American Express.
These points can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios and typically several times per year there are bonuses that range from 20%-50% to transfer points to BA.

-Chase Ultimate Rewards points are earned from consumer cards like Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Non-Preferred, Chase Freedom and business cards like Chase Ink Plus, Chase Ink Bold, or Chase Ink Cash. These points also can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios.

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View the complete 123 route chart after the jump:

(more…)

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102 Direct Flights From NYC That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

The updated chart below will become effective 04/01. USAirways routes will not be bookable until 03/31 when they join the OneWorld Alliance. 10 new American routes from LGA begin 04/01 while routes from LGA to Atlanta, Cleveland, and Minneapolis end on 03/31 and have been removed from the chart.
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-Click here to view Direct Flights From Chicago That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Los Angeles That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Miami That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Find more articles like this by clicking on the “Mileage Posts” tab on top of the DansDeals banner at the top of this site.
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Effective 04/01 there will be 102 direct flights that you can take from NYC with your BA Avios!

British Airways Avios can’t be beat for short-haul nonstop flights thanks to ultra-low award rates, no expedite/close-in fees, and practically free award cancellations.  Below are all of the direct flights from NYC that can be booked with Avios.

Be sure to read the British Airways knowledgebase for everything you NEED to know about the BA program.  If you have a question it’s probably already been answered there!

Notes:
-Rates in the chart are for one-way flights.
-Routes that display the airline in bold are subject to fuel surcharges. Routes that display the airline in bold are subject to fuel surcharges, which can vary from $25 (JFK-Vancouver on Cathay Pacific) to several hundred dollars each way.
-In the charts below I’ve only included direct flights as BA charges Avios for each flight segment.
-In other words Tel Aviv isn’t on the chart as BA does not have any partners that fly nonstop from NYC to Tel Aviv.  Though you can always fly to Tel Aviv via Berlin or Dusseldorf for 20K for the overseas segment and 10K for the Berlin/Dusseldorf-Tel Aviv segment with no fuel surcharges. It can help to search for NYC-Berlin or Dusseldorf and Berlin or Dusseldorf-Tel Aviv separately.
Effective 03/31 you will be able to fly from NYC-Philadelphia for 4.5K and Philadelphia-Tel Aviv for 30K though the jury is still out on fuel surcharges for that route when using Avios.
-Maui isn’t on the chart as BA does not have any partners that fly nonstop from NYC-Maui.  Though you can always fly to Maui via Los Angeles, S. Diego, or Seattle, for 12.5K for the NYC-west coast segment and 12.5K for the West coast-Maui segment with no fuel surcharges. Plus you can stopover in the connecting city for as long or short as you want.
-BA.com does not display availability for all airlines! If you want to book travel on airlines like Alaska, Aer Lingus, and LAN you’ll need to pick up the phone and call BA! You can search Alaska award availability on AA.com before calling BA to book it.
-While the Qantas flight from JFK to Sydney stops in Los Angeles it is considered a direct flight by BA as the flight number remains the same. Therefore they do charge Avios as if it is just 1 flight segment.
-In rare cases connecting flights can be cheaper than nonstop flights when using Avios and I’ve noted that in the chart.
-Cities in the chart may only have seasonal service.
-A dash means that class of service isn’t offered on that route.
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Want to pickup Avios? You’re in luck as you can transfer points from all over the place to BA.

-The Chase British Airways Visa Signature offers 50,000 Avios for spending $2K.

-The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express awards 25K signup points with no fee for the first year. 20K Starpoints can transfer into 25K Avios with the permanent 25% transfer bonus.

-American Express Membership Rewards points can be earned from cards like the American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card and the and The Platinum Card® from American Express.
These points can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios and typically several times per year there are bonuses that range from 20%-50% to transfer points to BA.

-Chase Ultimate Rewards points are earned from consumer cards like Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Non-Preferred, Chase Freedom and business cards like Chase Ink Plus, Chase Ink Bold, or Chase Ink Cash. These points also can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios.

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View the complete 102 route chart after the jump:

(more…)

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A Sad, Sad Day For ATL, CLE, DCA, And MSP Flyers

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

Within hours of British Airways launching the Avios program in November of 2011 I noted how the 4.5K short-haul flights like from LaGuardia-Cleveland were real bargains.

There are currently 4 daily round-trip flights between Cleveland and LaGuardia but they will soon kill the route thanks to the USAirways merger.

No word on the status of the 1 daily flight between Cleveland and JFK, but that’s typically tough to get on an award and if the flight stays on it will likely become near impossible.  Maybe if we’re lucky we’ll see CLE-JFK gain a daily frequency but it seems unlikely.  There’s just too much competition on the route with 3 daily Delta flights from CLE-LGA, 8 United flights from CLE-LGA, 1 Delta flight from CLE-JFK, and 6 United flights from CLE-EWR. There are 2 daily Airtran/Southwest flights from nearby CAK-LGA. And Frontier also starts CLE-Trenton, NJ twice a week starting next month.

Even worse off are folks from Atlanta and Minneapolis.  They don’t even have service to JFK and their LGA flights are being axed as well.

Routes that will soon be killed as per today’s announcement:
Atlanta-LaGuardia
Cleveland-LaGuardia
Minneapolis-LaGuardia
Augusta, Ga.-Washington DCA
Detroit-Washington DCA
Fayetteville, N.C.-Washington DCA
Fort Myers-Washington DCA will become seasonal only
Fort Walton Beach, Fla.-Washington DCA
Islip, N.Y.-Washington DCA
Jacksonville, N.C.-Washington DCA
Little Rock-Washington DCA
Minneapolis-Washington DCA
Montreal-Washington DCA
Myrtle Beach-Washington DCA
Nassau, Bahamas-Washington DCA
Omaha, Neb.-Washington DCA
Pensacola, Fla-Washington DCA
San Diego-Washington DCA
Savannah-Washington DCA
Tallahassee-Washington DCA
Wilmington, N.C.-Washington DCA

New additions:
Los Angeles-Washington DCA goes from 1 flight to 2.
Charlottesville, Va.-LGA
Dayton, Ohio-LGA
Greensboro, N.C.-LGA
Knoxville, Tenn.-LGA
Little Rock, Ark.-LGA
Louisville, Ky.-LGA
Norfolk, Va.-LGA
Richmond, Va.-LGA
Roanoke, Va.-LGA
Wilmington, N.C.-LGA

HT: kracked dude, via DDF

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Get A 20% Bonus When You Transfer American Express Membership Rewards Points Into British Airways Avios

Sunday, December 29th, 2013

Update: This offer ends 12/31.

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Related posts:
-Chase British Airways Visa

-Want to learn more about the BA Avios program. I’ve written up an entire knowledgebase of facts that you can peruse. Read it and you’ll probably find an answer to your question!
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Chicago That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Los Angeles That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Miami That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From NYC That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Flying Round-Trip To Israel On Air Berlin For 50K American Express Membership Rewards Plus $81 Tax: A Tutorial
-More BA.com Improvements: Choose Your Seat On Partner Flights
-Flying With An Infant With Miles In Business Or First Class? Start Collecting Air Canada Miles Or British Airways Avios
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BA/MR Promo Offer Linky

-Through 12/31/13 you will get 1,200 Avios for every 1,000 Membership Rewards (MR) Points transferred to BA.

This isn’t as good as part transfer bonuses that we’ve seen in the past.  If you anticipate the need for Avios in the near-term then go ahead and transfer but there should be a better offer available in the first half of 2014.
Previous MR->Avios bonus offers:
11/27/11=30%
03/15/12=50%
08/28/12=40%
12/03/12=30%
04/22/13=35%
10/15/13=20%

-There are no fuel surcharges for travel on American Airlines within the Western Hemisphere,  There are also no fuel surcharges for flying on Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, Alaska, or LAN worldwide.

-There are no expedite or close-in fees for last minute award ticket bookings with BA Avios.

-You can book one-way tickets for half of the miles listed below!

-Earning or redeeming any amount of Avios extends your entire account validity for another 36 months.

-You can cancel tickets and redeposit miles for the lessor of $40 or the taxes you paid.  That means you pay just $2.50 for cancel a one-way domestic itinerary (and it’s why I always book cheap domestic flights as one-ways)

-British Airways only charges 10% extra miles for a lap child flying internationally, even when traveling on AA. AA and other domestic carriers charge a whopping 10% of the full fare, which can add up to be a small fortune.

-You can transfer points from an American Express Membership Rewards account to anyone’s British Airways account, names don’t have to match.

-Points transfer instantly from MR to BA and there are no fees or taxes for transferring points to British Airways.

-British Airways charges double miles for business class and triple miles for first class. Beware that on AA’s domestic 2 class planes they charge first class rates for what is really just a poor excuse for business class.

-You can search AA and Alaska award availability on AA.com and looking for sAAver awards. BA can’t book AAnytime awards, but you should be able to find all AA sAAver awards on BA.com. BA.com does not display all available awards on all airlines, airlines like Alaska, Aer Lingus, and LAN have to be booked over the phone.  Additionally you will have to call BA to make a booking if you see a sAAver award on AA.com that’s not showing on BA.com.

Sample uses:

-8,000 MR points will transfer into 9,600 Avios, more than enough for a 9K round-trip short-haul ticket between New York and places like Boston, Cleveland, Detroit, Montreal, or Toronto or between Miami and the Bahamas, on OneWorld partner American.

-13,000 MR points becomes 15,600 Avios, more than enough for a 15K round-trip flight between New York and Chicago or Florida or from LA to Cabo.

-17,000 MR points becomes 20,400 Avios, more than enough for a 20K round-trip flight between Chicago and LA.

-21,000 MR points becomes 25,200 Avios, more than enough for a 25K round-trip flight between the west coast and any of the Hawaiian islands, New York and the west coast, or New York and Costa Rica. It’s even enough for a round-trip flight between Boston and Dublin or Shannon, Ireland with no fuel surcharges on Aer Lingus! You’ll have to call to book trips on airlines like Aer Lingus or Alaska.

-34,000 MR points becomes 40,800 Avios, more than enough for a 40K round-trip flight between Dallas and Hawaii or New York and London (though you’ll be hit with fuel surcharges for crossing the Atlantic on most airlines). It’s also enough for a round-trip flight between NYC or Chicago and Dublin or Shannon, Ireland with no fuel surcharges on Aer Lingus.

-42,000 MR points becomes 50,400 Avios, more than enough for a 50K round-trip flight between New York and Brazil or Argentina with no fuel surcharges.  It’s also more than enough for a round-trip in a lie-flat business class seat between JFK and Vancouver on Cathay Pacific.

-50,000 MR points becomes 60,000 Avios, enough for a 60K round-trip flight between New York and Tel Aviv on Air Berlin with no fuel surcharges.
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Need some Membership Rewards points?

-The American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card comes with 25,000 points for spending $2,000 and the first year is free.  That will net you some 30,000 Avios.

-The Platinum Card® from American Express earns 25K points and you can get $400 of airline fee refunds (or airline gift cards in $100 increments) in one cardmember year. You get a free year of Amazon Prime upon signup. It also comes with a $100 global entry expedited customs (5 year membership) refund, Airspace and Delta lounge access for you and your entire family for at least 4 years, priority pass worldwide unlimited lounge membership, Starwood gold elite status with a point rebate even on award stays, car rental perks at Avis, Hertz, and National, lost item (up to $10,000/item) refund protection, checked baggage protection, 3 additional Platinum users (with 4 years of free platinum card lounge access, priority pass membership, and global entry refund) for just $58 each on the consumer card, no foreign exchange fees, and many more free benefits.  There is a $450 annual fee.  As with all annual fees they are refundable if cancelled within 60 days, they are pro-rated if cancelled after 60 days and have another American Express card (i.e. if you have the card for 3 months and then cancel you would get a $337.50 refund), and they are pro-rated if you downgrade the card even if you have no other American Express card.

The Platinum card also now gives free entry to top-of-the-line Centurion lounges worldwide including in Dallas and Las Vegas with other US airports like LaGuardia and San Francisco among other others opening soon.  There are also lounges in Argentina, Brazil, India, and Mexico.  You can even get a free spa treatment in the DFW lounge!

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Chase British Airways Visa Now Free For The First Year

Saturday, October 19th, 2013

Update: The waived annual fee limited time offer for this card was supposed to have ended almost 3 weeks ago.  This limited time offer was the first time the BA card was offered with the annual fee waived for the first year.
If you’re on the fence and don’t want to miss this offer there’s no better time to apply than right now!

-Want to learn more about the BA Avios program. I’ve written up an entire knowledgebase of facts that you can peruse. Read it and you’ll probably find an answer to your question!

-You can click to view a list of every nonstop flight from:
Chicago
Los Angeles
Miami
NYC (EWR/JFK/LGA)
that can be booked with Avios along with whether there will be a fuel surcharge for that flight.
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Chase British Airways Visa Signature Linky

Signup bonus:
-50,000 British Airways (BA) Avios for spending $2,000 within 3 months.

-With this new offer the annual fee is waived on this card for the first year. It is $95 thereafter.

-You will earn 1.25 Avios per dollar spent everywhere and 2.5 Avios per dollar spent on BA tickets. There are no foreign transaction fees and the card includes a chip to use when abroad.

-BA Avios are awesome.  They effectively fill the gap that is left by the major programs like American AAdvantage and United MileagePlus.  The major programs provide a fantastic value for long-haul flights, especially for one-way flights, last-minute flights, or flights in business or first class.  But programs like American are not great for short flights.

In 2011 BA launched the Avios program which provides an incredible value for short-haul flights.  I’ve booked probably a dozen short-haul tickets in the past year for myself using Avios for travel on their partner, American.  A Cleveland-NYC ticket can cost $1,200 round-trip if you don’t stay for at least 3 days or if you book last-minute.  But BA allows me to use just 9,000 Avios for that same flight, a whopping value of over 13 cents per mile.  Now I can hop over to Chicago or NYC on a whim without any kind of mileage regret like I used to have in the pre-Avios days.
-50,000 Avios has gotten me flights that would have otherwise cost over $6,500. Or those same exact flights would run some 140K American miles not even accounting for the $75 expedite fees and $150 cancellation fees that American would charge with their own miles compared to $0 expedite and $2.50 cancellation when booking an American flight with Avios!

-Cardholders get 10% off paid BA tickets with promo code: CARDOFFERU

-You can earn a free companion award ticket every year that you spend $30K though it’s only valid for travel on BA or Open Skies.  The companion travels in the same class of service, so if you redeem Avios for a first class ticket your companion flies in first as well for 0 Avios but taxes and fees will be owed.

-Avoiding fuel surcharges:
-There are no fuel surcharges for travel on American Airlines within the Western Hemisphere
-There are also no fuel surcharges for flying on Qantas within Australia.
-There are also no fuel surcharges for flying on Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, Alaska, or LAN worldwide. You can fly to Europe without fuel surcharges for as little as 12,500 Avios each way in coach or 25,000 Avios each way in business.
-Flights within Europe also have no fuel surcharges as long as you have earned a single Avios mile in the past 12 months.  That means you can fly to Ireland on Aer Lingus for just 12,500 Avios each way and then fly around Europe from just 4,500 Avios without any fuel surcharges.  Or fly to Israel on Air Berlin with no fuel surcharges for just 30K Avios in coach or 50K in business each way.  Bear in mind that Aer Lingus and Alaska Air flights as well as many connecting flights must be booked by calling them, they can’t be booked online though because of that they are willing to waive the phone fee.
-Fuel surcharges on award-winning carrier Cathay Pacific are also pretty low and you don’t even need to fly all the way to Hong Kong (though you should-great city with awesome kosher food, airport lounges with kosher food, and a business or first class flight you’ll never forget!) to get a taste of their awesome service, seat, pajamas, and amenities. They fly a daily 777 nonstop between JFK and Vancouver which I reviewed in this trip report.
-You can significantly cut the fuel surcharges when flying on Iberia by transferring your BA Avios into Iberia Avios. Not that in order to do that you’ll first need to transfer 1,000 points from AMEX MR into Iberia to activate that account.
-British Airways 5th Freedom Flights (flights that don’t depart from or arrive to the UK) have significantly lower fees. For example even though Singapore-Sydney is a longer flight than NYC-London the fees in first class on Singapore-Sydney are less than half of those from NYC-London.

Advantages of BA Avios over most traditional mileage programs:

-There are no expedite or close-in fees for last minute award ticket bookings with BA Avios.

-You can book one-way tickets for half of the miles of a round-trip!

-You can cancel tickets and redeposit miles for the lessor of $40 or the taxes you paid.  That means you pay just $2.50 for cancel a one-way domestic itinerary (and it’s why I always book cheap domestic flights as one-ways).

-British Airways only charges 10% extra miles for a lap child flying internationally, even when traveling on AA. AA and other domestic carriers charge a whopping 10% of the full fare, which can add up to be a small fortune.  When flying domestic you should add the infant at the airport for free.

-It’s easy to top-off your BA Avios account thanks to their partnerships with all of the transferable points programs. You can transfer Starpoints to BA at a 20K:25K ratio with the built-in 25% transfer bonus or American Express Membership Rewards or Chase Ultimate Rewards to BA at a 1:1 ratio:

-With short-haul flights starting at just 4,500 Avios you can get a lot of free travel from your Avios.

Award bands include:
Band 1: Flights that are 1-650 miles cost 4,500 Avios.
Sample routes: LGA-Cleveland, LGA-Detroit, LGA-Montreal, LGA-Toronto, Miami-Cancun, Miami-Key West, Miami-Nassau, London-Paris, Melbourne-Sydney, Los Angeles-Las Vegas
Band 2: Flights that are 651-1,151 miles cost 7,500 Avios.
Sample routes: JFK-Bermuda, Los Angeles-Cabo San Lucas, LGA-Chicago, LGA-Miami, LGA-West Palm Beach, Philadelphia-Miami.
Band 3: Flights that are 1,151-2,000 miles cost 10,000 Avios.
Sample routes: JFK-S. Maarten, JFK-Cancun, JFK-S. Juan, Los Angeles-Chicago, Berlin-Tel Aviv, Hong Kong-Singapore
Band 4: Flights that are 2,001-3,000 miles cost 12,500 Avios.
Sample routes: Boston-Dublin, JFK-Los Angeles, JFK-Vancouver, Los Angeles-Maui, JFK-Costa Rica, Pittsburgh-Los Angeles
Band 5: Flights that are 3,001-4,000 miles cost 20,000 Avios.
Sample routes: NYC-London, NYC-Berlin, Chicago-Dublin, Dallas-Maui
Band 6: Flights that are 4,001-5,500 miles cost 25,000 Avios.
Sample routes: NYC-Buenos Aires, NYC-Rio de Janeiro, London-Johannesburg
Band 7: Flights that are 5,501-6,500 miles cost 30,000 Avios.
Sample route: NYC-Amman
Band 8: Flights that are 6,501-7,000 miles cost 35,000 Avios.
Sample route: S. Francisco-Hong Kong, JFK-Hong Kong
Band 9: Flights that are 7,001 miles or more cost 50,000 Avios.
Sample route: Los Angeles-Sydney, JFK-Sydney

Be sure to read the BA knowledgebase for tips and tricks to make some flights cheaper.

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Other Chase consumer cards you can get at the time as the BA card include the Chase Sapphire Preferred (40K signup points, no fee the first year, plus 2.14 points per dollar on travel and dining with no Foreign Exchange fees), Chase Southwest Visa (through 10/30 you can get 50K signup points and potentially much more, click here to read about it), Chase Freedom (which gives 5 points per dollar in rotating categories and 10% bonus points if you have a Chase checking account), and the Chase United Explorer (which gives free luggage, free primary car rental insurance in most countries worldwide besides Israel, expanded saver and standard award ticket availability, priority boarding, and more).

The Chase Ink Plus and Chase Ink Bold business cards both give 50,000 signup points and offer 5 points per dollar on telecom, cable, and office supply stores, 2 points per dollar for gas and lodging, no foreign exchange fees, free lounge visits, and a waived annual fee for the first year.

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More BA.com Improvements: Choose Your Seat On Partner Flights

Friday, October 11th, 2013

It’s great to see BA continually invest in improving the BA.com experience.  They have recently made it easier to find partner flights and to compare the cost of flying in different classes of service.

Avios are an incredible way to fly on short flights for just 4,500 or 7,500 Avios each way.  They’re also easy to accumulate thanks to Membership Rewards, Starpoints, and Ultimate Rewards points all having Avios transfer options.

And of course there is the Chase British Airways card which gives 50,000 Avios for spending $2,000 with the annual fee waived for the first year.

However they are confusing for people which is why I wrote an Avios Knowledgebase and a tutorial to get American benefits when using Avios on AA flights.

When you book a flight with Avios you get a BA confirmation number that won’t work on AA.com. The big improvement that I haven’t noticed before is that BA.com can now forward you into your AA.com reservation which gives you your AA confirmation number and allows you to select seats.

When I went onto BA.com I logged in, went into “My Bookings,” and entered the BA.com confirmation number.
Then you can click on your flight number and choose “View or change seats for this flight.”

You will then get a message that you will be sent over to American’s website. Agree to that by clicking on reserve seats and you’ll be redirected into your AA.com reservation.

ba3

 

 

 

 

Once forwarded you’ll want to save your AA confirmation number. You’ll be able to use that to checkin on AA.com within 24 hours of your flight to print up your boarding pass.

Besides for choosing seats you may also be able to enter your AA AAdvantage mileage number.
While you don’t collect miles for flights booked with miles you can get a free bag for yourself and everyone on your itinerary if you have AA elite status or the Citi AA credit card. Elites can also select preferred seating once their mileage number is in the reservation.

If you are unable to enter your AA number in your reservation you can still use the Finnair workaround that I wrote about in this post.

HT: Meir W.

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77 Direct Flights From Los Angeles That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios

Monday, October 7th, 2013

4th in a series.
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Chicago That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From Miami That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From NYC That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Find more articles like this by clicking on the “Mileage Posts” tab on top of the DansDeals banner at the top of this site.
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Did you know that there are 77 places you can fly to from Los Angeles nonstop with your BA Avios?
British Airways Avios can’t be beat for short-haul nonstop flights thanks to low award rates, no expedite fees, and practically free award cancellations.  Here are all of the direct flights from Los Angeles that can be booked with Avios.  Be sure to read the British Airways knowledgebase for everything you NEED to know about the BA program.  If you have any questions it’s probably already been answered there!

Notes:

-Rates in the chart are for one-way flights.
-Routes that display the airline in bold are subject to fuel surcharges.
-In the charts below I’ve only included direct flights as BA charges Avios for each flight segment.
-In other words Tel Aviv isn’t on the chart as there are no BA partners that fly nonstop from Los Angeles to Tel Aviv.  Though you can always fly to Tel Aviv via Berlin or Dusseldorf for 30K for the overseas segment and 10K for the Berlin/Dusseldorf-Tel Aviv segment with no fuel surcharges.  It can help to search for Los Angeles-Berlin Dusseldorf and Berlin or Dusseldorf-Tel Aviv separately.
-BA.com does not display availability for all airlines! If you want to book travel on airlines like Alaska, Aer Lingus, and LAN you’ll need to pick up the phone and call BA! You can search Alaska award availability on AA.com before calling BA to book it.
-In rare cases connecting flights can be cheaper than nonstop flights when using Avios and I’ve noted that in the chart.
-Cities in the chart may only have seasonal service.
-A dash means that class of service isn’t offered on that route.
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Want to pickup Avios? You’re in luck as you can transfer points from all over the place to BA.

-The Chase British Airways Visa Signature offers 50,000 Avios for spending $2K.

-The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express awards 25K signup points with no fee for the first year. 20K Starpoints can transfer into 25K Avios with the permanent 25% transfer bonus. Currently there is another 25% stackable bonus which will turn every 20K Starpoints into 31,250 Avios.

-American Express Membership Rewards points can be earned from cards like the American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card and The Platinum Card® from American Express
These points can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios and several times per year there are bonuses that range from 20%-50% to transfer points to BA.

-Chase Ultimate Rewards points are earned from consumer cards like Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Non-Preferred, Chase Freedom and business cards like Chase Ink Bold, Chase Ink Plus, or Chase Ink Cash. These points also can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios.

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View the complete 75 city chart after the jump:

(more…)

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126 Direct Flights From Chicago That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios

Monday, September 16th, 2013

-Click here to view Direct Flights From Miami That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Click here to view Direct Flights From NYC That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Find more articles like this by clicking on the “Mileage Posts” tab on top of the DansDeals banner at the top of this site.
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Did you know that there are 126 places you can fly to from Chicago nonstop with your BA Avios?
British Airways Avios can’t be beat for short-haul nonstop flights thanks to low award rates, no expedite fees, and practically free award cancellations.  Here are all of the direct flights from Chicago that can be booked with Avios.  Be sure to read the British Airways knowledgebase for everything you NEED to know about the BA program.  If you have any questions it’s probably already been answered there!

Notes:

-Rates in the chart are for one-way flights.
-Routes that display the airline in bold are subject to fuel surcharges.
-In the charts below I’ve only included direct flights as BA charges Avios for each flight segment.
-In other words Tel Aviv isn’t on the chart as there are no airlines that fly nonstop from Chicago to Tel Aviv.  Though you can always fly to Tel Aviv via Berlin for 25K for the Chicago-Berlin segment and 10K for the Berlin-Tel Aviv segment with no fuel surcharges.  It can help to search for Chicago-Berlin and Berlin-Tel Aviv separately.
-Maui isn’t on the chart as there are no airlines that fly nonstop from Chicago-Maui.  Though you can always fly to Maui via Anchorage, Los Angeles, Portland, S. Diego, S. Jose, or Seattle.  It’s just 12.5K Avios for the Alaska or West coast-Maui segment with no fuel surcharges. Plus you can stopover in the connecting city for as long or short as you want. Just remember from wat you already know if you’ve read the knowledgebase, you’ll have to call BA to book travel on non-alliance airlines like Alaska.
-You can book flights on Qatar starting in October.
-Cities in the chart may only have seasonal service.
-A dash means that class of service isn’t offered on that route.
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Want to pickup Avios? You’re in luck as you can transfer points from all over the place to BA.

-The Chase British Airways Visa Signature offers 50,000 Avios for spending $2K.

-The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express awards 25K signup points with no fee for the first year. 20K Starpoints can transfer into 25K Avios with the permanent 25% transfer bonus. Currently there is another 25% stackable bonus which will turn every 20K Starpoints into 31,250 Avios.

-American Express Membership Rewards points can be earned from cards like the American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card and The Platinum Card® from American Express
These points can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios and several times per year there are bonuses that range from 20%-50% to transfer points to BA.

-Chase Ultimate Rewards points are earned from consumer cards like Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Non-Preferred, Chase Freedom and business cards like Chase Ink Bold, Chase Ink Plus, or Chase Ink Cash. These points also can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios.

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View the complete 126 city chart after the jump:

(more…)

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Convert 20,000 Starpoints Into 31,250 British Airways Avios

Sunday, September 15th, 2013

Related: You can earn 10,000 bonus Starpoints for spending $1 and another 15,000 bonus Starpoints for spending $5,000 within 6 months on the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

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BA is offering a 25% bonus on hotel points transferred into Avios through 10/15/13.

20,000 Starpoints normally transfers into 25,000 airline miles. With the additional 25% bonus you’ll get a total of 31,250 Avios.

-Transfer 20,200 Starpoints and you’ll have 31,500 Avios, enough for 7 short-haul one-way award redemptions.
-Transfer 40,000 Starpoints and you have 62,500 Avios, more than enough for a 60K round-trip award to Israel on Air Berlin with no fuel surcharges.  Or it’s more than enough for 8 one-way tickets between NYC and Miami or 5 one-way tickets between the west coast and Hawaii.

-Bonus Avios can take 4-6 weeks to show on your account from the date of conversion.

Of course there are dozens of airlines that you can transfer your Starpoints into and you can use them for hotel stays so don’t transfer unless you have a need for the Avios.

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120 Direct Flights From Miami That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios

Wednesday, August 21st, 2013

-Click here to view Direct Flights From NYC That Can Be Booked With British Airways Avios
-Find more articles like this by clicking on the “Mileage Posts” tab on top of the DansDeals banner at the top of this site.
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Did you know that there are 120 places you can fly to from Miami nonstop with your BA Avios?
British Airways Avios can’t be beat for short-haul nonstop flights thanks to low award rates, no expedite fees, and practically free award cancellations.  Here are all of the direct flights from Miami that can be booked with Avios.  Be sure to read the British Airways knowledgebase for everything you NEED to know about the BA program.  If you have any questions it’s probably already been answered there!

Notes:

-Rates in the chart are for one-way flights.
-Routes that display the airline in bold are subject to fuel surcharges.
-In the charts below I’ve only included direct flights as BA charges Avios for each flight segment.
-In other words Tel Aviv isn’t on the chart as there are no airlines that fly nonstop from Miami to Tel Aviv.  Though you can always fly to Tel Aviv via Berlin for 25K for the Miami-Berlin segment and 10K for the Berlin-Tel Aviv segment with no fuel surcharges.
-Maui isn’t on the chart as there are no airlines that fly nonstop from Miami-Maui.  Though you can always fly to Maui via Los Angeles, S. Diego, or Seattle, for 12.5K for the Miami-west coast segment and 12.5K for the West coast-Maui segment with no fuel surcharges. Plus you can stopover in the connecting city for as long or short as you want. Just remember from the knowledgebase that you’ll have to call BA to book travel on non-alliance airlines like Alaska.
-In rare cases connecting flights can be cheaper than nonstop flights when using Avios and I’ve noted that in the chart.
-Cities in the chart may only have seasonal service.
-A dash means that class of service isn’t offered on that route.
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Want to pickup Avios? You’re in luck as you can transfer points from all over the place to BA.

-The Chase British Airways Visa Signature offers 50,000 Avios for spending $2K.

-The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express and the Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express award 25K signup points with no fee for the first year. 20K Starpoints can transfer into 25K Avios with the permanent 25% transfer bonus.

-American Express Membership Rewards points can be earned from consumer cards like the American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card and The Platinum Card® from American Express and business cards include the Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN and The Business Platinum Card® from American Express OPEN.
These points can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios and several times per year there are bonuses that range from 20%-50% to transfer points to BA. You can even pickup up to 80K signup points with one card as I mentioned here and you can apply for Starwood cards and Membership Rewards cards on the same day with just one credit pull.

-Chase Ultimate Rewards points are earned from consumer cards like Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Non-Preferred, Chase Freedom and business cards like Chase Ink Bold, Chase Ink Plus, or Chase Ink Cash. These points also can transfer instantly 1:1 to Avios.

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View the complete chart after the jump:

(more…)

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BA.com Improvements!

Tuesday, August 6th, 2013

Related: British Airways Avios Knowledgebase, A Collection Of Tips For Using Your BA Avios
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1. BA.com now shows availability in up to 3 classes of service when you perform an award search! There’s no longer a need to start a new search to get all the info you need and you can now make mixed-class bookings without making one-way awards.

 

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60,000 Avios+$82.70 for a round-trip to Tel Aviv in coach. You can transfer Starpoints to BA at a 20K:25K ratio with the 25% bonus or MR/UR points to BA at a 1:1 ratio:

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100,000 Avios+$82.70 for a round-trip to Tel Aviv in business class over the Atlantic:

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2. BA.com now asks for the date of birth for all passengers.  I reported 4 weeks ago in the Avios Knowledgebase that BA.com was having issues with this and it was causing big problems for people arriving at the airport without a ticket.  I still highly recommend checking in online 24 hours before the flight to make sure that you do have an issued ticket.

3. Other nice features include a change flights and a back button after you select a flight so that you can change your selection without having to start the search all over again.

HT: Drago, via DDF and FT

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British Airways Avios Knowledgebase, A Collection Of Tips For Using Your BA Avios

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

Find more articles like this by clicking on the “Mileage Posts” tab on top of the DansDeals banner at the top of this site.

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People seemed to appreciate my Random Travel Tips that I posted 2 weeks ago so I figured I’d continue the series with tips on BA.  Your feedback is always appreciated!

British Airways (BA) Avios are awesome.  They effectively fill the gap that is left by the major programs like American AAdvantage and United MileagePlus.  The major programs provide a fantastic value for long-haul flights, especially for one-way flights, last-minute flights, or flights in business or first class.  But they’re not great for short flights.

In 2011 BA launched the Avios program which provides an incredible value for short-haul flights.

I’ve booked probably a dozen short-haul tickets in the past year for myself using Avios.  A Cleveland-NYC ticket can cost $1,200 round-trip if you don’t stay for at least 3 days or if you book last-minute.  But BA allows me to use just 9,000 Avios for that same flight, a whopping value of over 13 cents per mile.  Now I can hop over to Chicago or NYC on a whim without any kind of mileage regret like I used to have in the pre-Avios days.

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4,500 Avios+$2.50 tax or $600. Hmmm… :D

 

Here is what you need to know about the program:

-You can register for an Executive Club/Avios account via this link.

Searching for flights:
-Use this link to login or create a BA Avios account in order to search for flights.
-After logging into your account on the left-hand side be sure to change the search from “Book with money” to “Book with Avios” If you get an error about BA not having traffic rights to a route you probably forgot to switch it to “Book with Avios.”
-BA charges a flat rate for every leg of a flight.
-BA.com is not very effective at searching for connecting flights. You will often need to book a connecting flight on 2 separate tickets or you will need to call them to book it. Either way it will require the same amount of miles as they charge for each flight segment.
-The best way to search for availability is by using the award calendar search on AA.com. BA can only book MileSAAver awards from that calendar.
-You can limit the AA.com calendar to show nonstop flights only. If it’s showing availability with connections remember that you may have to book each flight connection as its own ticket.  Just click through the find the connection city and then search on BA.com for 2 separate tickets.
-Ignore the mileage rates on AA.com, they have nothing to do with what BA will charge you in Avios to fly on that same AA flight.
-Once you find MileSAAver award availability on AA.com you can return to BA.com and plugin those same dates to book it. Don’t forget that if AA.com showed a connecting flight you may have to book it as 2 separate tickets on BA.com. In other words if AA.com shows a flight from NYC to Honolulu via Dallas you may have to book NYC-Dallas as a separate ticket from Dallas-Honolulu if you want to use BA.com. Alternatively you can call BA to book it as 1 ticket but the Avios rate will be the same and your luggage can be checked straight through either way.

 

 

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The picture above is an award search on AA.com.  Note the number of stops box on the left that I’ve boxed in red.  By changing this to nonstop you’ll be able to quickly find nonstop availability for an entire month that you can book on BA.com.  Also note the boxed in MileSAAver award options.  These are the only options that can be booked with Avios.  You need American AAdvantage miles to book AAnytime double-mileage last seat awards.

 

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BA.com is displayed in the picture above.  Be sure to toggle from Book with Money to Book with Avios as I’ve boxed in red to search for an award flight.

 

 

 

Infant travel:
BA Avios are great for lap children. I used BA Avios to fly First class to Buenos Aires with Rafi as a lap child even though American would have been fewer miles. The reason for that was because with BA I only had to pay 15,000 Avios for Rafi whereas American wanted $1,000 to bring Rafi as a lap child!
-If you have a lap child and are flying within the US or Canada do not mention them when booking a ticket on BA.com.  You can add them for free at the airport. There may be some small fees for Canada travel but you’ll be better off dealing with it at the airport than booking it on BA.com.
-If you have a lap child and are flying outside of the US or Canada be sure to include them when making a booking on BA.com. If you do that at the time of booking you will only pay 10% of the adult mileage required. If you want to add them after the time of booking you will be subject to 10% of the full paid fare.

 

Booking flights:
-BA does not charge a last minute close-in/expedite fee.
-Taxes for domestic flights are just $2.50 per leg.
-After booking an award you can cancel it for free for 24 hours from the time of booking by calling BA at 800-452-1201.
-Once 24 hours have passed from the time of booking you can cancel an award and redeposit your miles for the lower of the taxes you paid or $40. In other words a one-way award from LGA-Detroit is 4,500 Avios plus $2.50. You can cancel it online for just $2.50 and get back the 4,500 Avios. An one-way award from Tel Aviv to NYC via Germany that costs 30,000 Avios plus $75 tax can be cancelled for a $40 fee and you will get back your Avios and taxes paid.
-It is cheaper to cancel an award that had less than $40 in taxes than to make date changes to it which will cost $40 regardless of the taxes paid.
-You can thus extend the life of your miles for another 36 months for just $2.50 by booking a short-haul domestic award for 4,500 Avios plus $2.50 and then cancelling it after 24 hours. This constitutes account activity which extends the life of your Avios.
-You can’t cancel or change an award within 24 hours of the flight time.
-You should always book domestic awards as one-ways in case you wind up wanting to switch or cancel just one-way of the ticket. That way you just lose the tax for the one-way instead of the round-trip. Plus if you want to change just one-way you won’t have to cancel the entire ticket and hope the award space for the leg you want to keep will still be there.
-If your international award isn’t subject to fuel surcharges (so the departure flight from the US costs just $2.50 in fees) then you should book that as a one-way award in case you may want to change only the outbound flight for just the $2.50 fee.
-If your international award is subject to fuel surcharges (so the departure flight from the US has heavy fees) then you should book that as a round-trip award as otherwise you will be hit with the $40 fee twice in case you need to cancel the trip. If you need to change just one segment you will be paying a $40 fee regardless as the fees you paid will have been more than $40.

Partner awards and fuel surcharges:
-BA is part of the OneWorld alliance. Alliance partners include Air Berlin, American, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, JAL, LAN, Malaysia, Qantas, Royal Jordanian, and S7. These are all bookable on BA.com
-BA also owns Open Skies which flies between NYC (JFK/Newark) and Paris Orly. This is bookable on BA.com
-Other partners include Aer Lingus and Alaska. These airlines can only be booked by calling BA at 800-452-1201.
-You can get the $25 phone fee waived if you explain that you tried booking online but were not successful. Ask for a manager or play HUCA if the rep refuses to waive the phone fee.
-Flights that are on Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, Alaska, and LAN are not subject to fuel surcharges.
-Flights that are on American and are wholly within the Western Hemisphere are not subject to fuel surcharges.
-Flights that are on Qantas and are wholly within Australia are not subject to fuel surcharges.
-If you have an Iberia account with miles in it (including a transfer from AMEX or Starwood) then you can transfer BA Avios into Iberia at a 1:1 ratio and save on much lighter fuel surcharges for travel on Iberia.
-BA flights from London have a double whammy, they are subject to heavy fuel surcharges and obnoxiously high London APD fees. However there are BA flights that don’t touch London such as Singapore-Sydney, Nassua-Grand Cayman, Antigua-Punta Cana, etc. that are called 5th Freedom flights. These flight have much lighter fuel surcharges and of course don’t have the APD fees.

Problems people run into:
-If you have an AA credit card you get benefits like free bags when flying AA and using your AA mileage number. If you have AA elite status you also get benefits like preferred seating. However it can be difficult to change the mileage number from BA to AA. Read this post for the steps you can take to do so.
-BA.com often forgets to ask for the passengers date of birth, especially when you are booking a ticket for someone besides for the account holder. In this case it will seem like you have a valid ticket but you actually do not. I have heard from many people who were told at the airport that they did not have a ticket issued.
To avoid this you should always checkin on AA.com 24 hours before your flight so that you can print your boarding pass and know that you are good to go.  If there is an error you have to call BA to have your ticket properly issued.
You can read this post for info on how to get your AA record locator online so that you can look at your reservation on AA.com and make sure everything is in order.
-If BA.com is not asking for a date of birth you can try using another browser. Otherwise just book the ticket and then call them at 800-452-1201 to add the passenger’s date of birth. If you don’t give BA this info you will not have a ticket.
-People that use their account to sell tickets to several people with different last names will likely find themselves in audit and have their accounts frozen and tickets possibly canceled.
-People often just search for an origin and destination city without considering stopping over in between. For example if you are searching for a ticket to Israel without any luck you may be able to search for a ticket from the US to Berlin or Dusseldorf and then a separate ticket from Berlin or Dusseldorf to Tel Aviv. See this post for more information on properly searching for Air Berlin award tickets.

Award Bands:
-BA Avios are based on 9 award bands. The longer the flight is the more you pay.
You can calculate distances using the Great Circle Mapper. You can type in LGA-YUL to learn that the flight distance from LaGuardia to Montral is 324 miles and is therefore a band 1 award that costs 4,500 Avios each way.

-The prices below are for coach travel. You will pay double for business class and triple for first class. Note that BA considers most domestic US flights to only have first class and will thus cost triple the coach rate. So a flight from LGA to Cleveland in business class will cost 13,500 Avios each way. This does not apply to international flights so LGA to Toronto in business class will cost just 9,000 Avios each way. Either way you’ll get 3 free bags-definitely something to factor into the cost!
Exceptions to the triple business class price are on domestic routes operated by 3 class planes like between JFK or Miami and Los Angeles or S. Francisco where business class is just double the coach price as there is a real first class cabin on those planes that cost triple the coach price.

Award bands include:
Band 1: Flights that are 1-650 miles cost 4,500 Avios.
Sample routes: LGA-Cleveland, LGA-Toronto, Miami-Cancun, Miami-Key West, London-Paris, Melbourne-Sydney, Los Angeles-Las Vegas
Band 2: Flights that are 651-1,151 miles cost 7,500 Avios.
Sample routes: Los Angeles-Cabo San Lucas, LGA-Chicago, LGA-Miami
Band 3: Flights that are 1,151-2,000 miles cost 10,000 Avios.
Sample routes: Los Angeles-Chicago, Berlin-Tel Aviv, Hong Kong-Singapore
Band 4: Flights that are 2,001-3,000 miles cost 12,500 Avios.
Sample routes: Boston-Dublin, JFK-Los Angeles, Los Angeles-Maui, JFK-Costa Rica
Band 5: Flights that are 3,001-4,000 miles cost 20,000 Avios.
Sample routes: NYC-Berlin, Dallas-Maui
Band 6: Flights that are 4,001-5,500 miles cost 25,000 Avios.
Sample routes: NYC-Buenos Aires, London-Johannsesburg
Band 7: Flights that are 5,501-6,500 miles cost 30,000 Avios.
Sample route: NYC-Amman
Band 8: Flights that are 6,501-7,000 miles cost 35,000 Avios.
Sample route: S. Francisco-Hong Kong.
Band 9: Flights that are 7,001 miles or more cost 50,000 Avios.
Sample route: Los Angeles-Sydney

Award chart anomalies:
-All flights from North America to Hong Kong are band 8 awards, even though flights like JFK-Hong Kong should really be a band 9 award.
-Due to using a band system instead of a region system it’s important to search for surrounding airports. For example a flight from Chicago to Fort Lauderdale is 1,182 miles according to the Great Circle Mapper and is therefore a band 3 award. However a flight from Chicago to West Palm Beach is just 1,144 miles and is therefore just a band 2 award, saving you 5,000 Avios round-trip per person in coach in 15,000 per person in first.
-While you may not find availability for NYC-Miami for your dates, be sure to check other airports like Philadelphia-Miami.
-Due to the band system flights with connections may be cheaper than flying nonstop so always check possible connections! A nonstop flight from Los Angeles to Sydney is 7,488 miles placing it into band 9 with a round-trip cost of 100,000 Avios in coach. However a flight from Los Angeles to Honolulu is a band 4 at 2,556 miles and a flight from Honolulu to Sydney is a band 6 at 5,066 miles. The cost of a band 4+band 6 round-trip is just 75,000 miles in coach.
-A nonstop from JFK to Dublin or Shanon on surcharge-free Aer Lingus is a band 5 award. If you fly from NYC-Boston-Dublin or Shannon you’ll save Avios as Band 1+Band 4 is less than Band 5.
-A nonstop from Miami to Tokyo is a band 9 award. However Miami to Los Angeles is a band 4 and Los Angeles to okyo is a band 6, meaning you’ll save 25,000 Avios by connecting.
-Plus when you connect using Avios you can stay in the connection city for as long or short as you desire.

Earning Avios:
There are more ways to collect Avios than any other mileage currency!

-You can earn Avios on the Chase British Airways Visa. You earn 50,000 points for spending $2,000 within 3 months plus 1.25 Avios per dollar spent everywhere and 2.5 Avios per dollar spent on BA.
-By having the BA Visa you also get 10% off paid BA flights with code: CARDOFFERU
-If you spend $30,000 in a calendar year on the BA Visa you earn a free companion ticket that is good for a free companion award in any class when you redeem your Avios but it is only good for travel on BA or Open Skies operated flights which means you’ll be paying fuel surcharges.
-You can transfer Starpoints to Avios at a 20K:25K ratio thanks to the 25% bonus for transferring Starpoints to miles. Starwood points are earned from the consumer Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express or the Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express OPEN.
-You can transfer American Express Membership Rewards points to Avios at a 1K:1K ratio. There are bonuses that range from 20%-50% several times a year. Membership Rewards points can be earned from consumer cards like the American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card and The Platinum Card® from American Express. Business cards include the Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN and The Business Platinum Card® from American Express OPEN.
-You can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Avios at a 1K:1K ratio. Chase Ultimate Rewards points are earned from consumer cards like Sapphire Preferred, Sapphire Non-Preferred, and Chase Freedom Visa. They can also be earned from business cards like Chase Ink Bold, Chase Ink Plus, or Chase Ink Cash.

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Get A 35% Bonus When You Transfer American Express Membership Rewards Points Into British Airways Avios!

Friday, June 7th, 2013

Update: This promotion will end today.  We will likely see another BA transfer promotion before the end of the year which can range from 20%-50%.  If you will use the Avios within the next several months you should definitely transfer them now but otherwise it’s probably best to hold off.

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Originally posted on 04/22:

Related posts:
-Chase British Airways Visa-Get 50,000 bonus Avios for spending $1,000.
-The Business Gold Rewards Card® from American Express OPEN-Get 50,000 bonus Membership Rewards points (plus 35% more Avios) for spending $5,000.

-Flying Round-Trip To Israel On Air Berlin For 45K American Express Membership Rewards Plus $81 Tax: A Tutorial
-Getting AA Benefits On A Flight Booked Using BA Avios
-Getting To Israel On The Cheap With BA Avios And Air Berlin
-Save $400 On Fuel Surcharges To Israel By Booking Avios Rewards Via Iberia Instead Of British Airways!
-Booking With Avios? Check Those Surrounding Airports!
-Breaking Down Which Miles To Use To Fly To Israel
-Using BA Miles To Fly In Business Class For An 80 Minute Flight Can Make Sense.
-Flying With An Infant With Miles In Business Or First Class? Start Collecting Air Canada Miles Or British Airways Avios
-Short-Haul Flights: BA Avios Versus LAN Lanpass.
-BA Miles Are Now Avios…For Better Or For Worse.

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BA/MR Promo Offer Linky

-Through 06/07/13 you will get 1,350 Avios for every 1,000 Membership Rewards (MR) Points transferred to BA.

-There are no fuel surcharges for travel on American Airlines within the Western Hemisphere,  There are also no fuel surcharges for flying on Aer Lingus, Air Berlin, Alaska, or LAN worldwide.

-There are no expedite or close-in fees for last minute award ticket bookings with BA Avios.

-You can book one-way tickets for half of the miles listed below!

-You can cancel tickets and redeposit miles for the lessor of $40 or the taxes you paid.  That means you pay just $2.50 for cancel a one-way domestic itinerary (and it’s why I always book cheap domestic flights as one-ways)

-British Airways only charges 10% extra miles for a lap child flying internationally, even when traveling on AA. AA and other domestic carriers charge a whopping 10% of the full fare, which can add up to be a small fortune.

-You can transfer points from an American Express Membership Rewards account to anyone’s British Airways account, names don’t have to match.

-Points transfer instantly from MR to BA and there are no fees or taxes for transferring points to British Airways.

-You can borrow points by calling up Membership Rewards (800-AXP-EARN) and asking for a points advance. You then have up to 1 year to earn those points from signup bonuses or spending or else they will charge you 2.5 cents per point.

-British Airways charges double miles for business class and triple miles for first class. Beware that on AA’s domestic 2 class planes they charge first class rates for what is really just a poor excuse for business class.

-You can search AA and Alaska award availability on AA.com and looking for sAAver awards. BA can’t book AAnytime awards, but you should be able to find all AA sAAver awards on BA.com. BA.com does not display all available awards on all airlines, airlines like Alaska and Aer Lingus can only be booked over the phone.  Additionally you will have to call BA to make a booking if you see a sAAver award on AA.com that’s not showing on BA.com.

Sample uses:

-7,000 MR points will transfer into 9,450 Avios, more than enough for a 9K round-trip short-haul ticket between New York and places like Boston, Cleveland, Detroit, Montreal, or Toronto or between Miami and the Bahamas, on OneWorld partner American.

-12,000 MR points becomes 16,200 Avios, more than enough for a 15K round-trip flight between New York and Chicago or Florida or from LA to Cabo.

-15,000 MR points becomes 20,250 Avios, more than enough for a 20K round-trip flight between Chicago and LA.

-19,000 MR points becomes 25,650 Avios, more than enough for a 25K round-trip flight between the west coast and any of the Hawaiian islands, New York and the west coast, or New York and Costa Rica. It’s even enough for a round-trip flight between Boston and Dublin or Shannon, Ireland with no fuel surcharges on Aer Lingus! You’ll have to call to book trips on airlines like Aer Lingus or Alaska.

-30,000 MR points becomes 40,500 Avios, more than enough for a 40K round-trip flight between Dallas and Hawaii or New York and London (though you’ll be hit with fuel surcharges for crossing the Atlantic on most airlines). It’s also enough for a round-trip flight between NYC or Chicago and Dublin or Shannon, Ireland with no fuel surcharges on Aer Lingus.

-38,000 MR points becomes 51,300 Avios, more than enough for a 50K round-trip flight between New York and Brazil or Argentina with no fuel surcharges.  It’s also more than enough for a round-trip in a lie-flat business class seat between JFK and Vancouver on Cathay Pacific.

-45,000 MR points becomes 60,750 Avios, more than enough for a 60K round-trip flight between New York and Tel Aviv on Air Berlin with no fuel surcharges.
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Need some Membership Rewards points? You can always call American Express to borrow some if you have a charge card

-The Business Gold Rewards Card® from American Express OPEN has a limited time offer for 50,000 points for spending $5,000 and the first year is free.  That will net you some 74,000 Avios.

-The American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card comes with 25,000 points for spending $2,000 and the first year is free.  That will net you some 36,000 Avios.

-The Platinum Card® from American Express and the The Business Platinum Card® from American Express OPEN earns 25K points as well you can get $200 of airline fee credits (or airline gift cards in $100 increments) in 2013 and another $200 in 2014. It also comes with a $100 global entry expedited customs (5 year membership) refund, platinum card airline club access (American, Delta, and USAirways) for you and your entire family for at least 4 years, priority pass worldwide unlimited lounge membership, Starwood gold elite status, car rental perks at Avis, Hertz, and National, lost item (up to $10,000/item) refund protection, checked baggage protection, Regus Office Club Membership with worldwide locations on the business card, 3 additional Platinum users (with 4 years of free platinum card lounge access, priority pass membership, and global entry refund) for just $58 each on the consumer card, no foreign exchange fees, and many more free benefits.  There is a $450 annual fee.  As with all annual fees they are refundable if cancelled within 60 days, they are pro-rated if cancelled after 60 days and have another American Express card (i.e. if you have the card for 3 months and then cancel you would get a $337.50 refund), and they are pro-rated if you downgrade the card even if you have no other American Express card.

HT: MEIR613, via DDF

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Getting AA Benefits On A Flight Booked Using BA Avios

Sunday, March 17th, 2013

Related posts:
-Flying Round-Trip To Israel On Air Berlin For 40K Starwood Or 47K American Express Membership Rewards Plus $81 Tax: A Tutorial
-Getting To Israel On The Cheap With BA Avios And Air Berlin
-Save $400 On Fuel Surcharges To Israel By Booking Avios Rewards Via Iberia Instead Of British Airways!
-Booking With Avios? Check Those Surrounding Airports!
-Using BA Miles To Fly In Business Class For An 80 Minute Flight Can Make Sense.
-Flying With An Infant With Miles In Business Or First Class? Start Collecting Air Canada Miles Or British Airways Avios
-Short-Haul Flights: BA Avios Versus LAN Lanpass.
-BA Miles Are Now Avios…For Better Or For Worse.
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Numerous people have asked me how they can get their AA benefits when booking their tickets with BA Avios.

If you have AA elite status and have your AA mileage number connected with your BA reservation you will be able to choose seats with extra legroom and be able to go standby on other flights for free. If you have an AA credit card you will be able to check free luggage that way (though occasionally you get free luggage anyway when booking with BA Avios).

Earlier this month I faced the ever-so-tough option of dropping $1,150 on a ticket from Cleveland to NYC (due to not staying for the required 3 night minimum stay to get a low fare) or spending 9,000 Avios for a the same flights. At a value of nearly 13 cents per Avios that’s just about the easiest “redeem or purchase” scenario you will ever have for a coach flight.

It’s also why I love real miles over proprietary points like those from Capital One. The same flight would have required 115,000 Capital One points!

BA Avios really fills the gap left by my American and United miles. I hate burning those miles on short domestic trips as they’re so valuable for international business and first class trips. Thus the combination of different types of airline miles is what really allows you to derive maximum value.

It also doesn’t hurt that you can transfer points from American Express Membership Rewards, Starwood Starpoints, and Chase Ultimate Rewards points into BA Avios. Plus BA doesn’t charge any last minute expedite/close-in fees, doesn’t collect massive fuel surcharges for flights on AA within the Western Hemisphere or on Aer Lingus, Alaska, Air Berlin, LAN worldwide, and only charges $2.50-$10 (just the 9/11 fees) to cancel a domestic award.

It’s important to remember that BA.com doesn’t search for all partners (you need to call to check for awards on Alaska, Aer Lingus and others) and that it often only searches for nonstop flights, so you may need to book 2 separate tickets to find connecting flights. For example even if NYC to Chicago or Miami comes up with zilch you can always try booking NYC to Cleveland and Cleveland to Chicago or Miami.  You’ll pay more Avios than you would for the nonstop but as BA charges for each flight segment it won’t make a difference in the Avios required if you book a connecting flight as one ticket or as 2 separate tickets plus AA will be able to check your luggage straight through to your final destination. Plus you can “stopover” for as long as you want by booking connecting flights separately. Of course BA.com also won’t search for nearby airports so you may want to search for Philadelphia to Miami before throwing in the towel.

Anyway back on topic. While there are quite a few ways to add your AA number to your reservation, here’s what I do without having to pickup the phone.

-When booking a BA Avios award I leave my BA Executive Club number in my reservation.

-After booking I go to https://www.finnair.com, go to the “My Bookings” section, enter my last name and BA record locator, and press continue.

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-On the next page I scroll down to “additional details,” select American from the drop down menu, enter my American AAdvantage number, and confirm the change.

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-Now I still need to get my American record locator to select elite seats on AA.com so next I go to https://www.checkmytrip.com and under “new trip” I once again enter my last name and BA record locator.

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-There a few places on the next page to find your American record locator, but the easiest way to find it is to click on “PDF” which will download a summary of your trip with a record locator that you will be able to use on AA.com.  The red box that I’ve made on the PDF is where you will find the AA record locator.

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-Finally just go to AA.com, click on “My Trips,” enter your name and AA record locator, and you will be able to select preferred seats if applicable, and you will be able to confirm that your AA mileage number is in your reservation so that you will receive free checked luggage if applicable.  You may need to logout of AA.com to be able to manually enter the record locator.

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-What was your favorite use of BA Avios? Hit the comments and share!

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