British Airways Avios Update: The Sky’s NOT Falling (Phew!)

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Earlier this week, the miles and points community got a bit panicked (myself included!) when news came out that Iberia had posted a partner award flight redemption chart with very expensive rates.  This got folks worried, because British Airways and Iberia’s frequent flyer programs are linked and share a common award currency (Avios points).

There was fear that British Airways would soon follow with an award chart devaluation.  Using British Airways Avios points for short-haul, coach class tickets on partner airlines like American Airlines is 1 of the best award values around!

That’s because 1-way flights under 650 miles cost only 4,500 Avios points plus $5.


Our Favorite Ways to Use British Airways Avios Points Are Intact for Now!

I’m happy to report that this was just a scare.  While it doesn’t mean that British Airways WON’T ever change its award ticket prices, I don’t think there’s a change coming just yet.

Relax…Iberia Didn’t Really Change Anything

Link:   View From the Wing Iberia Update

Via View From the Wing, the award charts Iberia published are the same prices they’ve had for several years.  They just hadn’t published them online before.

Because their rates for partner award tickets are so high, most folks have never used them to book award seats on partner airlines.  And since their charts weren’t available online, it wasn’t immediately clear that the “new” rates were actually what they’d had all along!


Not a Lot of Love for Iberia Earlier This Week…but They Didn’t Really Change Anything!

So for now, I don’t anticipate any changes to how we redeem British Airways Avios points.  But as with everything in our miles and points hobby, things are always changing.  Devaluations do happen periodically, so it’s always best to start using your points!

Bottom Line

The reports from earlier in the week that British Airways might be devaluing their partner award charts after Iberia did the same was just a scare.  I apologize for not digging in a bit more before posting, but wanted to share as soon as possible.

Iberia did NOT change their award charts.  They just published them for the 1st time online.

This is good news for folks who want to use British Airways Avios points for great deals like short flights on partner American Airlines!

I’m relieved by this news…are you?

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14 responses to “British Airways Avios Update: The Sky’s NOT Falling (Phew!)

  1. What do you think of using Iberia points as a substitute for the old AA Explorer type award [particularly to Asia/Middle East. Of course they charge some fuel charges, but for a 25,000 or longer flight with 10+ stops it might be an option? what do you think? I had booked a 24990 AA Explorer trip from LAX-NRT-KIX-GMP-HGK-CGK-KUL-DPS-KUL-BKK-AMM-TLV-MUC-DUS for 130,000 AA miles [business] and $215 in taxes. I know there is nothing close available for this type of trip today, but looking for the best way to replicate it [particularly to Asia with One World – as US to Europe is tougher].

  2. I flew her from AMS-CDG-LAX with a flying blue promotion for 12,500 miles coach and reasonable taxes and fuel charges to make it a round the world trip. The AA Explorer award was just under 20,000 miles [total trip about 25,000]. ANA appears to only permit 8 stops and those miles are harder for me to acquire…

  3. I just tried booking roundtrip from SFO to LAX using Avios and the price was 30,000 Avios and 11.00 instead of 9000 Avios and 5.00. Not sure why that is. I’m sure I was booking economy. The outbound flight was US Airways instead of American but don’t know why that would matter.

  4. Pingback: Last Chance for Great Deals Using British Airways Points? | Million Mile Secrets

  5. @Chris-Did you check the American Airlines website to see if MilesAAver fares were available on the flight you desired? They must to trigger the 4500 price with BA Avios. I just priced out Saturday, September 27th with no problem at 4500 Avios each way (with an option to buy down the fare to 2000 Avios each way and 45.00 each way). So, in short, it still works. My guess is that there is no MilesAAver awards on the day you want to travel.

  6. My 53K British Airways Avios points is expiring in 10 days. What is the cheapest way to extend the validity either buying something or selling ? Thanks

  7. I ran into this issue before with Air Canada Aeroplan. They had non-profit partners (Doctors Without Borders comes to mind) you could donate in 1,000 point increments. The redemption triggered activity, thus extending the life of your miles. This would be my suggestion as the easiest option.

  8. Thanks Vic. Any link you can send me? I tried to buy stuff from BA estore, but link errored out.

  9. Is the annual fee for the BA card waived in first year ?

  10. Nirlay,

    Donate 500 miles to charity.

  11. Joey
    How can I donate 500 miles to charity ? Cannot find any link

  12. Is British now imposing fuel surcharges on American international flights? I was looking at LAX-Tokyo. The first page after I selected my flight said 25,000 Avios plus $27 but when I clicked continue it said 25,000 Avios plus $ 317.60 of which $290 is a British airways fee.

  13. Pingback: Should I transfer my miles if I don’t have an upcoming flight? |