Multi-Carrier Award Flights
Multi-carrier means a combination of 2 airlines on a single ticket, and these awards have their own chart.
These awards are expensive, and you’ll most likely do better by booking separate airlines on separate tickets.
The multi-carrier Avios price is the same regardless of connections, one-way, or round-trip: only total distance matters. However, taxes, fees, and carrier charges vary widely, so beware!
|Multi-Carrier Award Flights|
|Miles in Your Journey||Avios for Economy|
|0–1,500||30,000 + taxes, fees, and carrier charges|
|1,501–4,000||35,000 + taxes, fees, and carrier charges|
|4,001–9,000||60,000 + taxes, fees, and carrier charges|
|9,001–10,000||70,000 + taxes, fees, and carrier charges|
|10,001–14,000||90,000 + taxes, fees, and carrier charges|
|14,001–20,000||100,000 + taxes, fees, and carrier charges|
|20,001–25,000||120,000 + taxes, fees, and carrier charges|
|25,001–35,000||140,000 + taxes, fees, and carrier charges|
|35,001–50,000||160,000 + taxes, fees, and carrier charges|
In general, premium economy is 1.5 times the economy price, business is 2 times economy, and first class is 3 times economy.
What Is Reward Flight Saver?
The British Airways Reward Flight Saver can save you cash on British Airways Europe flights and Comair flights.
Your account must have earned Avios in the past 12 months to be eligible for Reward Flight Saver.
With Reward Flight Saver, award flights on British Airways within Europe and Comair in Africa are charged reduced, flat fees. This is in lieu of other taxes and surcharges.
Reward Flight Saver is automatically applied on qualifying itineraries.
Here’s an example:
Thanks to BA’s Reward Flight Saver, you can pay as little as 8,000 Avios for a one-way flight in Club Europe from London to Barcelona (BCN). Passengers are given the option of selecting an Avios and cash combination that best suits their individual wallet.
Hot Tip: At first glance, paying just 70 cents for the 20,000 Avios option might appear to be a steal. However, given Upgraded Points’ valuation of Avios at 1.25 cents per Avios, it puts the total for that option at $250.70, whereas the lowest Avios/highest cash option comes in at a true value of around $200.
What Is Part Payment?
British Airways and some partner airlines may have several payment options that allow you to use a combination of Avios and cash.
If you want to use fewer Avios or don’t have enough to complete a booking, you can choose an option that includes more cash.
Here are the Avios and cash options for London (LHR) to Doha (DOH) with Qatar Airways as an example:
Beware of Surcharges on British Airways Flights
Extremely high fees are added to the Avios award price of many British Airways flights. Exceptions are flights within Europe that qualify for Reward Flight Saver. In recent times, British Airways has also brought down the fees on other long-haul flights, including transatlantic.
In some extreme cases, it’s not unheard for the cash component of a British Airways award redemption to be as much as directly buying a cash ticket!
The highest of the fees are often those tagged on to redemptions in premium cabins.
If we take a British Airways flight from London (LHR) to Cape Town (CPT) in Club World (business class) as an example, it would cost 62,500 Avios and a whopping $561!
Bottom Line: As a general rule of thumb, short-distance, nonstop flights on partner airlines offer the best Avios value. You may also consider our guide on ways to use British Airways Avios without huge fuel surcharges.
Where To Search for British Airways Avios Award Flights
You can search for British Airways award flights and most airline partners (with the exception of Air Baltic and Loganair) on ba.com. For Aer Lingus, you can search avios.com or aerlingus.com.
Hot Tip: Be cautious searching for awards directly on other airline partner websites. Some awards may only be available to their own members, not to partners. For American Airlines, you can only use Avios to book what American shows as MileSAAver awards, not AAnytime awards.
Start 355 Days in Advance
Awards are available up to 355 days before departure, and there are no award holds or waitlists.
Hot Tip: British Airways can book partner awards up to 355 days before departure, but American Airlines is only 330. With British Airways, you can access awards weeks before American Airlines members can!
How To Search for British Airways Rewards
Start at ba.com, navigate to Book, then Book a flight with Avios.
When the search screen says You can break your journey with stopovers, select No, I want to continue without stopovers.
This will search partner flights in addition to British Airways flights.
Flights may not display on ba.com for various reasons:
- Certain partner airlines are not searched
- “Route unavailable” means the website is not programmed for that route
- Multi-connection flight options are not searched
Online Booking Problems? Call and Waive the Fee
Even if you can’t find an award on the website, the good news is that if an award is available, you can call in to have British Airways agents book it!
Ask the agent to waive the $25 phone booking fee since the flight is unavailable online. They will usually do so if you ask.
Bottom Line: Many award flights are available online. If not, call to book and ask to waive the $25 booking fee since it is not available online!
How To Get a Free London Stopover
When flying British Airways, you have the option of a free stopover in London.
When the award search screen says You can break your journey with stopovers, select, I want to break my journey and choose my stopovers.
Your London stopover can be a few days or even several months.
Given that the pricing for a stopover is the same as booking the same route with a small transfer at Heathrow on the same day, it makes just as much sense to book 2 separate flights if you are planning on staying in London.
Bottom Line: To minimize fees, the best London stopover value is between 2 U.K. or European cities near to London rather than long-haul flights.
Use British Airways Executive Club Household Accounts to Pool Avios
You can form a British Airways Executive Club Household Account where you and up to 6 people at the same address can become a Household to pool Avios. You can even add your kids and have them start earning Avios from an early age.
Awards are deducted proportionally from the Household common pool of Avios, and each household member is able to earn Tier Points and progress through the tiers of the Executive Club.