Here Is The Newly Devalued British Airways Avios Award Chart, With One Big Surprise!

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Josh Hallett [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
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A month ago, British Airways announced that they would devalue Avios on 5/30. However they refused to publish what exactly the changes would be.

For reference sake, here is the previous Avios award chart for flying on a single partner airline. Rates are for each segment flown. You can search the distance between 2 airports on GCMap.com. For example you can see why a round-trip flight from West Palm Beach to Chicago is cheaper than a flight from Fort Lauderdale to Chicago.

ZoneFlight DistanceCoachBusinessFirst
1 (Flights that don't touch the USA)1-6504.5K9K18K
1 (Flights to, from, or within the USA)1-6507.5K15K30K
2651-1,1517.5K15K30K
31,152-2,00010K20K40K
42,001-3,00012.5K37.5K50K
53,001-4,00020K60K80K
64,001-5,50025K75K100K
75,501-6,50030K90K120K
86,501-7,00035K105K140K
97,001+50K150K200K

Here is the new BA Avios award chart for partner airlines that I’ve put together (as BA still hasn’t published it) for flying on a single partner airline:

ZoneFlight DistanceCoachBusinessFirst
1 (Flights that don't touch the USA)1-6506,00012,50024,000
1 (Flights to, from, or within the USA)1-6507,50015,00030,000
2651-1,1519,00016,50033,000
31,152-2,00011,00022,00044,000
42,001-3,00013,00038,75051,500
53,001-4,00020,75062,00082,500
64,001-5,50025,75077,250103,000
75,501-6,50031,00092,750123,750
86,501-7,00036,250108,250144,250
97,001+51,500154,500206,000

The devaluation stings, but I was expecting things to be ugly given that BA wouldn’t release an award chart. It certainly could have been much worse than this! The one big surprise here is that flights that are 650 miles in distance or less that are to, from, or within the USA will remain priced just as they were before!

I suspect that the reason for that is that AA forced BA to devalue these zone 1 flights several years ago and they were lumped together with zone 2 awards. With the zone 2 awards being devalued today, there was no need to devalue the US zone 1 awards any further that they already have been as they are still more expensive than zone 1 awards elsewhere in the world.

Sample Avios uses:

  • 6,000 Avios is enough for a one-way short-haul ticket from Iguazu Falls-Sao Paulo, Johannesburg-Victoria Falls, Hong Kong to Taiwan, and Melbourne to Sydney.
  • 7,500 Avios is enough for a one-way short-haul ticket between New York and places like Boston, Cleveland, Detroit, Montreal, Pittsburgh, or Toronto, or between Miami and the Bahamas or Cancun. These awards are priced exactly as they were before.
  • 9,000 Avios is enough for a one-way short-haul ticket between New York and places like Bermuda, Chicago, Miami, or Orlando, or between LA and Cabo on OneWorld partner American.
  • 11,000 Avios is enough for a one-way flight between Chicago and LA, Hong Kong to Singapore, or JFK to Cancun.
  • 13,000 Avios is enough for a one-way flight between the west coast and any of the Hawaiian islands or between New York and the west coast.
  • 20,750 Avios is enough for a one-way 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).
  • 25,750 Avios is enough for a one-way flight between New York and Brazil or Argentina.
  • 36,250 Avios is enough for a one-way flight between the US and Hong Kong in coach. Note that Hong Kong remains an exception route and is charged as a zone 8 award even if it should be a zone 9 award, such as JFK-Hong Kong.
  • 38,750 Avios is enough for a one-way flight in lie-flat business class on Cathay Pacific from JFK to Vancouver with no fuel surcharges.
  • 51,500 Avios is enough for a one-way flight in lie-flat first class on Cathay Pacific from JFK to Vancouver with no fuel surcharges.

It’s worth noting that you can still transfer transfer BA Avios to Iberia as their award chart hasn’t changed. You can combine Avios via this link via the BA site. Sometimes that link doesn’t work so you can also try this link on the Iberia site to combine points.

You can save Avios on some routes by with Iberia Avios. Iberia’s awards start at 11K Avios round-trip. However Iberia partner awards are not changeable or cancellable, so you’ll typically want to use British Airways Avios to book partner award travel.

You can also currently transfer Chase points into BA Avios and get a 30% bonus through 6/16.

If you, a member in your household, or an authorized user has one of the following Chase cards, you can transfer points into miles:

  • Chase Ink Preferred has a 80K signup bonus and earns 3 points per dollar on shipping, advertising, and travel, can transfer all Chase points into miles, and points are worth at least 1.25 cents each for paid travel ($95 annual fee).
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred has a 60K signup bonus, earns 2 points per dollar on dining/travel, can transfer all Chase points into miles, and points are worth at least 1.25 cents each for paid travel ($95 annual fee).
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve has a 50K signup bonus, earns 3 points per dollar on dining/travel, can transfer all Chase points into miles, and points are worth at least 1.5 cents each for paid travel ($450 annual fee with $300 travel credit).

Chase no-annual fee cards that are fantastic for earning points, but require one of the cards above for points transfers include:

Chase transfer partners include:

  • United (Star Alliance)
  • Singapore (Star Alliance)
  • Air France/KLM Flying Blue (Skyteam)
  • British Airways (OneWorld)
  • Aer Lingus (OneWorld)
  • Iberia (OneWorld)
  • JetBlue
  • Southwest
  • Virgin Atlantic
  • Hyatt
  • IHG
  • Marriott

About British Airways Avios:

In 2011 BA launched the Avios program and it provides a great value for short-haul flights. Unfortunately their domestic OneWorld partner, American, has been stingy with award availability since they merged with USAirways, but there are still bargains to be had.

  • There are no expedite or close-in fees for last minute award ticket bookings with BA Avios. That saves you $75 compared to other programs.
  • 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 lesser of $55 or the taxes you paid.  That means you pay just $5.60 to cancel a one-way domestic itinerary (and you always should book domestic flights as one-ways)That saves you up to $200 compared to other programs when you need to cancel.
  • 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 search American and Alaska award availability on AA.com by 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 LATAM 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.

Avoiding fuel surcharges:

  • There are no fuel surcharges for travel on American within the Western Hemisphere. Flights start at 7,500 Avios plus $5.60.
  • Alaska flights have no fuel surcharges systemwide, these flights can only be booked over the phone.
  • LATAM flights have no fuel surcharges systemwide. Many of their flights can only be booked over the phone.
  • Flights within Australia, Europe, Japan, and many other countries and regions have little to no fuel surcharges.
  • There are also no fuel surcharges for flying on Qantas within or from Australia.
  • Fuel surcharges on award-winning carrier Cathay Pacific are also very low or non-existent 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 bed, 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
  • 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.
  • As long as you have earned a single Avios within the past 12 months then fuel surcharges for intra-Europe and intra-Africa flights will be very low. You can transfer points from AMEX, Chase, or Marriott to activate that benefit.

Will these changes affect how you use BA Avios?

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57 Comments On "Here Is The Newly Devalued British Airways Avios Award Chart, With One Big Surprise!"

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.

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Cholentfresser

Did this already take affect, or starting tomorrow?

Eli

Big surprise that short haul flight redemption hasn’t changed? Good luck in finding saver awards on American.

Good night

Whew coulda been worse.

Bob

Phoenix is not on the West Coast but I booked the AA flight to Kona for 12,500 Avios last week — saving me 500 Avios under the new award chart. I think the lowest AA mileage requirement was 20,000.

Dave

My avios points expire in October, what is the simplest way to prevent them from expiring?

Sola

We do a lot of JFK-YUL but it seems like American Saaver availability has dried up, especially for non-stop. Is this also a PEBCAK error? For example, we’re trying to plan a trip to Montreal around June 20, returning the following week. All I see is a day-long connection for the return.

Jake

If I’m not mistaken it’s used to be 15k in business from NYC to LA and now it’s much much more?

Evan

I’m confused is it 7500 or 9000 NY- Miami?

7,500 Avios is enough for a one-way short-haul ticket between New York and places like Boston, Cleveland, Detroit, Montreal, Pittsburgh, or Toronto, or between Miami and the Bahamas or Cancun. These awards are priced exactly as they were before.
9,000 Avios is enough for a one-way short-haul ticket between New York and places like Bermuda, Chicago, Miami, or Orlando, or between LA and Cabo on OneWorld partner

helping member

Do you write the question and the answer in the same post?
Q: I’m confused is it 7500 or 9000 NY- Miami?
A: 9,000 Avios is enough for a one-way short-haul ticket between New York and Miami

Evan

Thanks misread the 7500 part just had my coffee

Bernard

Thanks for the update is there a way to avoid taxes to Toronto ?like transferring to Iberia etc?

Shmoogrr

Yes, the same way you avoid tolls from NJ to NY.
In the back of a police car!

PSA

Your Iberia needs activity within 90 days in order not to be ‘dormant’ and to allow transfers from BA.

Motty

My Avios points are due to expire soon. how can I save them?

weiss

whats about ba flights in europe ?

Chacham B\'yoser

@dan Just confirmed a problem with BA.
I kept on trying to book awards tix but would not complete the sale after final step. After waiting on very long hold, they confirmed that there is a problem that the system is not updating in real-time availability for American Airlines. In other words, all of the tickets that I saw were available, were actually not available! They said “working on it” ….but they know it’s a real problem.

Luvtotravel

Tried making a www. Day change today. They’re charging $55 plus additional agile for route. Is that how it’s supposed to work? I guess I forfeited previous price by changing flight time

ADifferentDan

Stinks for my most common booking of ord>lga, but at least 18k is still less than the 25k most other carriers charge.

Akiva

Dan is there any known way to book a flight that is showing up on aa savor but not on ba due to so many flights and they cut off? Example from ny to chi – getting a night flight online is impossible. Have to always call up.
Any tricks to get this done online ?

Dany

Was checking flights from west coast to Tokyo and find out that BA charges 300-600 in taxes for JAL flights in economy. It wasnt like that earlier.

M

I booked a multi city JFKto TLV then PRG to JFK award using a chase free companion so had to take BA flights the taxes work out over$1200 more then booking it as 2 ow but had no choice because of companion. Do you have any option of booking this? Thanks.

chavie

36,250 Avios is enough for a one-way flight between the US and Hong Kong in coach. Note that Hong Kong remains an exception route and is charged as a zone 8 award even if it should be a zone 9 award, such as JFK-Hong Kong.” zone 9 awards are 50k so how can you say 36,250 are enough for one way between nyc and hong kong? is there something im missing\? how much are surcharges usually hong kong flying cathay?

eliza

any routes from nyc to aus? using points you mentioned something about quantas having good rates?

dealsrus

When I try booking on ba.com I can no longer change the first passengers name, and I get this message.
Due to restriction on ba.com, you must be a passenger to make this booking with Avios.

To make this booking for someone else, please contact your local Executive Club service center.

Anyone else have this and why, and is there away to correct. I called ba few times and emailed they don’t know why.

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