So by now you’re aware that a British Airways Avios sale is in full swing, with flights in Economy (World Traveller) Discounted.
here comes the apologist – I mean reasons you’d want to consider these fares:
- Lack of avalibity in other cabins. Now, a big one is that you need to be location x on a specific and return on day y, and you’ve got to go on those dates bar none. At that point, a seat type becomes a non issue, rather the ability of getting there. If a Y class seat is there, it could make the difference you being there… or not.
- Avios Poor, Cash Rich – Lucky suggested this, and this is a good reason. Sometimes this is actually a good reason (if you’ve been scriping and saving here and there, been shopping at Tesco religiously and using Gate365 shopping portal), you won’t have that many Avios to hand (even after buying a few extra).
- Avios holders are used to paying more – I’d hazzard a guess that most of the BA Exec Club membership is UK and Europe based. Alas, for a lot of European frequent flyer programmes paying the excessive fuel surchages is a fact of life (unless they have sump funds in other airline programmes around the world). And to be honest, whilst most of us hate paying taxes, for some this isn’t a problem, rather the pain of accepting the programme.
- Some routes are poor value for money, others are better – If you’re considering London to New York (or the East Coast), stump up the cash fare unless it’s over £600. The value proposition is poor on this length of flight. Mid-west to West coast could prove nice value, as could longer flights.
- These are flexible tickets – Whilst some may compare a £450 ticket to Avios+Taxes, it is important to note that £450 cash ticket will be non flexible, so if your conditions change, you won’t get much of it back. With the Avios redemption, you’ll get everything back bar £35.
My bottom line: Value is where you find it. I’ve done my fair share of bad redemptions (redeemed for friends in United First aboard a CRJ and back for nearly 20k of miles+£160 in tax, or blown 8000 Qantas miles on a $300 fare on an ERJ-145) and I’ve done my reasonable share of good redemptions.
For those who are used to luxuriating in First or Club, this fare isn’t aimed at you. Nor is it overly aimed at those from beyond the UK (as the sale fares are from London). Rather its for those who travel a bit less infrequently, who treat their miles as a discount ticket. And providing a way to spend those miles on the cheap.
Certain cash fares are awful this year (I’m looking at some ridiculous fares to Chicago at the moment for the autumn – for example £724.31 in ECONOMY CLASS), so these are actually looking “not that bad” verses the 20,000+£361.
Avios Sale fare version
Even doing the worst mathematics, that values an Avios is worth 1.82 pence – which is in the “darn good category” Would I take advantage of it? Maybe, depending on my circumstances (and depends if I can find a reasonably better fare).
Put it like this: there are worse ways across the world than in an economy seat on a BA Flight. I know, I’ve done my share of bad economy flights.