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any Avios experts out there?

(14 Posts)
moonandforward Mon 09-May-16 18:46:58

I stupidly didn't look at the dates of my Companion voucher & realise it expires early April 2017.
DH & I have loads of Avios and would like 8-9 days of LH sunshine flying Club.
I can't find any availably in the Caribbean or SE Asia for February/March on the website.
Does anyone any hot tips or am I just too late?

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 09-May-16 19:32:50

You needed to apply far earlier but it is getting far harder these days to secure seats. There is very limited availability on many routes in any case, on some flights only one pair of seats become available. The more popular routings (e.g to the West Coast USA cities) tend to have no seat availability at all particularly at peak seasons.

moonandforward Mon 09-May-16 19:45:52

Thanks Attila, I thought it was a May expiry so was waiting for the magical 355 days. I've moved the search to include February but there are no seats anywhere.
Would it be worth ringing the Exec Club do you think?

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 09-May-16 20:57:14

Its worth a try.

Westcountrygemini Fri 13-May-16 15:18:54

Have you tried searching first class also? Plus dates open up all the time, I wouldn't panic.

I find flying mid week always seem to give more availability. We're off to Turks and Caicos next month using a companion voucher, in club, that I booked in January. We've got to fly from Gatwick on a Thursday but small sacrifice for such a large saving.

Good luck, hope you find something.

moonandforward Fri 13-May-16 16:42:20

Gosh you're lucky West. I didn't realise there was more availability nearer departure. I found a lot of the Caribbean flights didn't seem to have First.
Have. Great hols, I've heard C&C is gorgeous.
I'll keep searching.

Westcountrygemini Fri 13-May-16 21:00:39

Just had a 5 minute gander Moon and there's definitely availability to Jamaica next Feb in club, quite possibly other islands as well. If you log into your exec club account, go into flight finder for spending avois and spend a bit of time looking around, I reckon you might unearth a gem ;).

Or ... Drop me a PM or give me a bit more detail and I will see what I can find for you.

Btw, T&C is club but we managed to snag flights to Malaysia in Nov in 1st with a voucher (I had a bunch of avios so thought we might as well splurge) - only stumbled across them as club wasn't available.

randomthoughts Sun 15-May-16 13:53:31

We got 4 seats return in club to Kuala Lumpur for next April. There was quite a lot of availability on some dates. It's only the outbound which needs to be before the expiry date so that may give you more flexibility. Also consider open jaw, e.g out to KL back from Hong Kong. You'll need to book open jaw on the phone but can check availability online first.

onemoremummy Sun 15-May-16 13:59:37

I find that certain routes are just impossible to book with Avios. Also find it very annoying that they release 1 or 2 seats at a time per cabin. Now that we have DS, we would need to book 2 seats using the companion voucher from Amex + an extra Avios seat for DS (we could never afford 1st or Club otherwise), which is quite frankly impossible.

The other airline we frequently use is much much easier in terms of reward flight availability.... I've thought about complaining to BA about it but thought it's not worth the hassle!!

onemoremummy Sun 15-May-16 14:00:12

(Sorry for the rant 😁)

randomthoughts Sun 15-May-16 17:17:57

I agree, this will be our last long haul avios trip, it's costing 350,000 avios as we're upgrading two of the seats from wtp and using a companion voucher for the others. We were so lucky to get availability over Easter, although it did involve a 2am call to ba in Hong Kong to book the return journey and the wtp seats.
Hopefully we'll have enough left for a reward flight saver to Europe in 2018 and then I think we'll be done! Ever since we've had kids we've needed to buy at least one seat, unless we split cabins. We've done fairly well though, 2 trips to Mauritius, 1 to Mexico, 1 to New York and Mexico, Nice, Grenada, Berlin, Prague, Crete (this summer). Given this is just through tesco and credit cards, with a bit of flying, I don't think I should complain too much!

bojorojo Fri 20-May-16 02:12:57

We have often found that ringing them can open up flight options that are not listed on the web site. They don't like Avios seats on busy routes. They need to make money! I imagine high season in the Caribbean would be popular! You could look at India or South Africa for sunshine.

SplinteryBottom Sun 12-Jun-16 15:09:26

Can someone explain it from a very basic point of view? I have years worth of Avios points thanks to my BA Amex, and I have no idea how to use them in practice.

Can somebody explain it to me like I'm a simpleton? TIA!

Westcountrygemini Mon 27-Jun-16 20:27:49

I'll try ...

Basically, BA avios are used like currency to buy a seat.

Each seat costs x amount of avios plus you pay the tax and other fees in real money. This ranges from as low as 35k avios + low fees for something called a reward flight saver (generally European locations) economy return up to 300k avios + I guess around £1200 for a first class return to Sydney.

However, you can only spend the avios if there's availability on your chosen flight for seats that can be purchased with avios currency. BA only release a small amount of seats that can be purchased with avios per flight and availability is often very limited to popular destinations or at peak time. If they only designate 2 seats per class to avios purchasers and someone books them then they rarely offer any more. You can book from 355 days in advance.

You can also use the BA avios to buy hotel nights or car parking (I think) but the relative cost of those is high - most people would see that as a waste of avios unless you can't spend them any other way.

Lately, BA have started to offer money off real flights in return for Avios I.e. £300 discount for say 30k avios.

You can only really see what your options are if you log into your BA Exec Club account and start to play around with the 'how to spend avios' section. Alternately, you could call the BA Amex line and ask them.

Am just about to cancel my Malaysian flights in November so there will definitely be a pair of first class return tickets becoming free shortly!

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