07 September 2017

Redeeming Avios in Club

As long as you fly once a year with your British Airways Executive Club number tagged to a flight, you gain the benefit of much lower taxes/fees on shorthaul redemption flights - BA call in Reward Flight Saver (RFS).  This means that instead of being Lufthansa redemption levels of taxes/fees - where the points price can be the same as the cash price - the flight will cost 17.50 gbp per sector in Economy, and 25.00 gbp per sector in Business class.

There's a well know trick to reduce the taxes/fees on the ex-EU sector by booking two singles.  For example an Economy seat from DUB to LHR currently costs 12.59 gbp (instead of 17.50) and a Business seat also costs 12.59 gbp (instead of 25 gbp).  So if you're booking a return ex-UK it always worth checking if it's cheaper to book as two singles, especially if travelling Business class (although there may be other reasons you don't want to).

I was recently looking up ex-DUB flights to Rome (connecting in LHR) on the Avios website, and it was charging the expected 41,000 avios, but requesting 100 gbp in taxes in fees.
I tried booking DUB-LHR-FCO as a one way ticket and FCO-LHR-DUB as another - but it still kept trying to charge me 50 gbp for each ticket.

This seemed strange, so I scooted over to the BA website, and for exactly the same flights they wanted 41,000 avios and 79.10 gbp
Booking it as two separate tickets (DUB-LHR-FCO and FCO-LHR-DUB) they wanted 31.26 gbp and 47.84 gbp - so no additional saving to be had !

Booking through the BA website, you also get a lot more choice on which connecting flights to take - with the Avios website, they just give a single connecting option for each initial flight.  This may not be an issue, but worth remembering if you don't like what's offered.

What I don't know is whether you would be charged the lower amount if you weren't eligible for RFS - that would be perverse ... but possible !

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