BA Avios, can't spend them

(30 Posts)
Eastwickwitch Wed 06-Nov-13 12:06:50

We've got loads; BA flights, Tesco club card, Amex but there never seems to be any availability in the school holidays.
I feel ripped off.

I would have to agree with you.

These have become more difficult to redeem because the scheme has become more popular over time. There is also very limited flight availability and choice. Infact I have learnt that there are only 2 reward seats. They never have availability to any part of the West Coast US for any part of July and August. It can also be a hard task to even secure an upgrade using avios points.

The best value use of Avios points is to but a WT+ ticket and upgrade to Club using points on long haul flights or to book short notice, short haul EC tickets where the base fare is much higher.

Eastwickwitch Wed 06-Nov-13 14:24:14

It's so frustrating.
It's ridiculous to only have 2 reward seats. I started looking at the end of August for next year; nothing at all for any Caribbean Island, West Coast US, Indian Ocean or Thailand. Or we could go but not come back confused.
I tried Traveller/ PE/Club.
I wondered if there were any magic tips?

CreamyCooler Wed 06-Nov-13 16:11:29

I've given up and blown all the points on a hotel stay in the uk for the New Year period. However saying that I did use BA points for 4 ( yes 4) seats to Rio last year, but it took a lot of searching.

NotMoreFootball Wed 06-Nov-13 17:22:21

We managed to get two return seats to the Caribbean using BA points but we had to ring up at midnight the day the flights were released then ring up again at midnight 2 weeks later to get the return flight!

Eastwickwitch Wed 06-Nov-13 17:29:04

That's interesting, I didn't know you could do it over the phone. Did you ring the executive club? What would've happened if you couldn't get the return flights & you'd already booked the outbound?

NotMoreFootball Wed 06-Nov-13 17:38:49

Sorry I'm a bit vague on the details as it was around 3 years ago but I'm fairly certain it was the executive club we rang. We booked some more reward flights over the phone this year so you definitely still have the option to ring them, they staff in the call centre were able to offer more options than the website including using some American Airlines flights as alternates.
If we hadn't managed to get the return flight they would have refunded us the miles, don't remember if there would have been any financial penalty, sorry.

Eastwickwitch Wed 06-Nov-13 17:42:00

OK, thanks. I might try ringing them for next summer. I would hope they might be embarrassed that we've got so many points that we can't use.

CreamyCooler Wed 06-Nov-13 17:43:44

I did my flights over the phone last year. On previous years we've got 2 flights with points and paid for 2 at full price, done as 2 bookings.

Pufflemum Wed 06-Nov-13 17:44:16

I'm in the same position, so now we pay for flights but book our hotels using Avios. Last year stayed a week in Vegas for free, equivalent cost was £1500 on hotels. Did the same in London last weekend, 5 star hotel for £30. Also can be used for car hire with Avis which works out well.

MOSagain Sun 10-Nov-13 19:17:43

We have millions of points but have never been able to book anything, so frustrating

Eastwickwitch Wed 13-Nov-13 09:34:58

MOS we'll all just have to wait until we're travelling without DCs. RTW 1st class! Mind you, the taxes would be mind blowing.

Alwayscheerful Wed 13-Nov-13 09:44:39

Same problem here, spent our on 4 night in a boutique hotel in Barcelona with an infinity pool smile

Bunbaker Sun 24-Nov-13 00:01:46

I find that airmiles are a wasted incentive, except for Lufthansa. OH travels a lot and accrues tens of thousands of airmiles. He has loads of Avios ones that we have never been able to spend and loads of Emirates ones. We have no desire to go to Dubai and there is no other way of spending the Emirates miles.

However, Lufthansa has an online shop and we managed to "buy" DD an iPad with the airmiles.

lovetoski Mon 25-Nov-13 16:01:26

It's not true about only 2 reward seats with BA. Booked New York for Boxing Day back Nye was very surprised to find a choice of class and times available. That was for 3 seats. Have booked 4 to Antigua in the past during school Easter hols.

LayMizzRarb Fri 29-Nov-13 11:14:28

You can spend emirates miles on Easyjet flights....

LayMizzRarb Fri 29-Nov-13 11:19:52

We come to Mauritius every year (here, as I type grin) we fly Emirates business class, and that always gives enough points to upgrade to first class for one way. You can also spend emirates points on electrical goods, jewellery, toys, hotels etc ask your DH to log into his emirates skywards account and grab a few Christmas presents!

ihatethecold Fri 29-Nov-13 22:19:26

I just spent mine on wine.

MuddyWellyNelly Tue 03-Dec-13 21:07:18

Avios can be very useful but you need to be flexible. Also you don't have to use them on BA, try Avios.com. If you need flexibility in date and/or location, that is what cash is for! They tend to release seats 355 days in advance, so get ready.....

Never ever use them for economy, they are poor value.

We have used them for F flights to the Middle East, flown to Miami, Thailand, etc.

They can be very valuable indeed. But hey if you don't want them, I'm willing to accept your stash wink

BecauseIsaidS0 Sat 07-Dec-13 20:50:19

Avoid suck. My husband has more than 300k because he travels A LOT for work. I was on sabbatical in October and wanted to accompany him to NY. The website said no availability, so he called the helpline to check. The woman just read the contents of the website out loud to him. We gave up, and then he came back from NY he told me the flight was half empty both out and back. I never fly for work with BA anymore. Delta/KLM provide heaps better service.

BecauseIsaidS0 Sat 07-Dec-13 20:50:42

Avoid = Avios (bloody autocorrect)

TheCurseOfFenric Sat 07-Dec-13 20:54:34

We've used them a few times (and Miles before they changed ot Avios).

Once I managed 2x business class seats to Tampa (was very impressed with that, but wasn't school holidays).

have also booked 2xadult, 2xchild seats to Germany lsst November, and again, 2xadult, 2xchild for next february half term to Germany.

so overall we are doing ok, but I do tend to find I am planning a holiday around where I can get an Avios flight to...

ChristmasJumperWearer Sat 07-Dec-13 20:56:17

We've given up on using them with the DCs in the school holidays, except the odd European city break (even then there are few options, Spain or nothing) and have opted to go for child-free long-haul breaks during term time.

Thank goodness for obliging family members babysitting!

Before DCs started school we went all over the world with air miles.

goingmadinthecountry Fri 20-Dec-13 19:45:24

There's lots of late availability due to people cancelling. Booked tickets to NY for next Fri this morning!

intheenddotcom Mon 14-Apr-14 23:24:59

Are you trying for long-haul - if so there is very little availability, ditto with popular destinations like Spain.

Best use is upgrading a Y ticket to a higher class but be careful you don't get a discounted Y ticket as they cannot be upgraded with points.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Mon 14-Apr-14 23:31:49

Yep, you have to be poised when the seats open up and again for the return journey for longhaul in the holidays. If you don't get the return you can cancel the outgoing for not much £ loss ( or prepare to check all options eg out to New York, back from Washington, book cheap internal flight)

If you can fly on two different flights and be on under two different logins, you will have more chance (two seats easier to find than four)

Have you tried Moscow? Or similar less popular destinations?

OwlMother Wed 16-Apr-14 18:06:03

We've booked 5 on a return flight to Zurich in the school holidays. We have to fly out on a Friday but the price of an airport hotel is a small price to pay when set against the savings.

PiratePanda Sat 19-Apr-14 21:12:26

We feel your pain; DH has built up more than half a million, they're so difficult to spend.

I recommend using them

A) to upgrade to business, and
B) for hotels - you can put the entire price of many hotels on Avios.

superbagpuss Sat 19-Apr-14 21:26:29

avois are rubbish

we have bought Lego Land tickets and London eye tickets instead other they would have been wasted

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