Great News for European Award Flights & Folks With Chase Ultimate Rewards or British Airways Points!

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UPDATE: The offer for the British Airways card in this post has expired.  But check Hot Deals for the latest offers!

I’ve got wonderful news for folks who enjoy Europe and want to use Chase Ultimate Rewards points or British Airways Avios points for award flights.

Starting in 2016, you’ll have more options to redeem your points to visit more countries in Europe on Air Berlin!

One of the best uses of British Airways Avios points is for short, expensive flights.  And in Europe, you can fly on British Airway’s partner Air Berlin.  So Air Berlin’s new and increased service will make your points more valuable!

Great News For European Award Flights Folks With Chase Ultimate Rewards Or British Airways Points

Air Berlin Is Adding New Service to Sofia, Bulgaria, and Bologna, Italy! And Expanding Service to Other Cities Including Budapest, Copenhagen, and Venice

More options are always a good thing.  I’ll share the details!

What’s Going On?

Link:   Book British Airways Award Flights Like Pro

Link:   How to Fly to Europe With British Airways Avios Points

Air Berlin is adding flights from its hubs in Berlin and Dusseldorf.  (To get to Berlin and Dusseldorf, see my post How to Fly to Europe With British Airways Avios Points.)

This is great news because you can get to those cities using British Airways Avios points with no fuel surcharges!  And remember, you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to British Airways Avios points.

Here are the US cities where Air Berlin flies.

And soon, they’ll add new flights and increase existing service within Europe!

Their new flights are:

  • Berlin to Sofia, Bulgaria (starts March 27, 2016)
  • Dusseldorf to Bologna, Italy (starts May 2, 2016)
Great News For European Award Flights Folks With Chase Ultimate Rewards Or British Airways Points

You’ll Have More Routes to Budapest to Choose From so You Can Shop at the Central Market and Walk the Bridges Between Buda and Pest!

And they’ll increase service from:

  • Berlin to Budapest, Hungary
  • Berlin to Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Berlin to Gothenburg, Sweden
  • Dusseldorf to Barcelona, Spain
  • Dusseldorf to Florence, Italy
  • Dusseldorf to Stockholm, Sweden
  • Dusseldorf to Venice, Italy

This is fantastic news for folks who collect British Airways Avios points and Chase Ultimate Rewards points (because those transfer to British Airways)!

British Airways charges only 4,500 British Airways Avios points for short flights under 650 miles in Europe.  And 7,500 British Airways Avios points for flights between 650 and 1,150 miles.

Within that range, you can easily fly between countries in Europe, and save money doing it!

When I tried to search for award flights on Air Berlin on the American Airlines and British Airways sites, I couldn’t find any seats available on these routes yet.  This may be a temporary glitch, because you can usually find award seats on Air Berlin flights without any issues.

That said, I’m excited about having more options to fly around Europe!

Need More British Airways Avios Points?

Link:  Chase Sapphire Preferred

Link:   Chase British Airways – Earn a Total of 100,000 British Airways Avios Points

I wrote about how to fly to Europe with British Airways Avios points.

Remember you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to British Airways at a 1:1 ratio.

And right now, there’s an offer to earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points when you spend $4,000 on purchases within the 1st 3 months of opening a new Chase Sapphire Preferred card.

This is the best bonus I’ve seen on the card, and Chase Ultimate Rewards is my favorite points program because you have the flexibility to transfer to airline and hotel partners like British Airways, United Airlines, and Hyatt.

Great News For European Award Flights Folks With Chase Ultimate Rewards Or British Airways Points

Use Your British Airways Avios Points to Visit Historic Bologna, Italy, on Air Berlin!

Chase also has a fantastic offer to earn a total of 100,000 British Airways Avios points with the Chase British Airways card after meeting the required tiered spending.  Here are the details of the offer.

It’s possible to get both cards, if you’re comfortable meeting the minimum spending requirements.

Keep in mind Chase has tightened up on their approvals but they seem to to target cards that earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred.  So even if you want both, I recommend applying for that 1 first!

Where to Stay?

Check out my guides about where to stay in Europe with your hotel points:

Bottom Line

Air Berlin will add several options next year to visit more of Europe from its hubs in Berlin and Dusseldorf, including new service to Bologna, Italy, and Sofia, Bulgaria.

They’ll also add more daily flights to Denmark, Hungary, Italy, Spain, and Sweden.

This is fantastic news for folks who collect British Airways Avios points because 1 of their best uses is for short, expensive flights within Europe.  And you can fly to Berlin and Dusseldorf with no fuel surcharges using British Airways Avios points.

I had trouble finding award seats on these routes, so give it some time for the flights to become available to book.

More travel options are always welcome, and this makes your British Airways Avios points (and Chase Ultimate Rewards points) even more valuable!

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7 responses to “Great News for European Award Flights & Folks With Chase Ultimate Rewards or British Airways Points!

  1. I generally find that the large taxes when flying between countries in Europe makes Avios redemptions not worth it. I generally just pay the cash fares within Europe.

    For example, I’d rather pay $150 than 7,500 Avios + $60 in taxes.

  2. @Ian – Fares can vary a lot depending on the route, so I always recommend running the numbers before you book to make sure you’re getting a good deal.

    Here’s my post on budget airlines that may give you a few ideas for your next trip to Europe:

    http://millionmilesecrets.com/2015/07/06/explore-europe-for-cheap-with-budget-airlines/

    Thanks for reading!

  3. Where is the place of the first picture located?

  4. @Jon – It’s in Belogradchik, Bulgaria, a town in the northwest part of the country not far from Sofia.

  5. I actually have been watching airberlin availability very closely on the BA website. Haven’t been able to find any 11 months out for a very long time now. I’m wondering if they are even releasing economy seats to BA anymore.

  6. I’ve been searching for availability on Air Berlin for weeks…..using Avios (boo) or AA miles (yeah!)….for a flight originating in Europe to Bay Area (or anywhere West Coast) and return—-couldn’t find any seats at any time…..the AA reps were no help, simply saying, “Maybe something will open up in the future.” Any tips?

    BTW–love the blog….I’m a daily reader and really enjoy all the great advice—thanks!

  7. @Dale @Nathan – Try out a service like ExpertFlyer or Award Nexus to help you find an award seat:

    http://millionmilesecrets.com/2015/03/02/use-expertflyer-like-a-pro-part-1-introduction-to-expertflyer/

    http://millionmilesecrets.com/2015/12/28/save-time-searching-for-award-seats-with-award-nexus/

    It’s possible Air Berlin hasn’t opened award seats on their new flights yet, but I’ve had luck finding seats on their existing flights.

    Good luck and thank you for reading!