(EXPIRED) Half Off British Airways long haul awards with Avios

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British Airways is offering 50% off the number of Avios required for long-haul award flights and 25% off short-haul flights. This discount applies only to the Avios portion and not to the surcharges, but it could still make for a pretty good deal in the right situations, particularly since it is good for economy, business, and first class cabins.

You can even get half off on first class.

The Deal

  • British Airways is offering 50% off the Avios on long-haul flights and 25% off on short-haul flights on its own metal for reservations made by October 13th, 2020 for travel through June 30, 2021.
  • Direct link to this promotion

Key Terms

  1. Book directly with British Airways (BA) between 06 October 2020 and 13 October 2020 for travel between 06 October 2020 and 30 June 2021. This offer applies to both peak and off-peak Avios Reward Flights and can be booked by any British Airways Executive Club Member that has earned or spent at least 1 Avios in the last 12 months, when logged into their account and with a sufficient Avios balance.
  2. The required amount of Avios for Reward Flights in World Traveller, World Traveller Plus, Club World and First, will be reduced by 50%. Avios & Money and Reward Flight Saver bookings are included in the offer, but only the Avios amount will be discounted by 50%.
  3. The required amount of Avios for Reward Flights in Euro Traveller and Club Europe will be reduced by 25%. Avios & Money and Reward Flight Saver bookings are included in the offer, but only the Avios amount will be discounted by 25%.
  4. The discount set out in clause 2 and 3 is available on direct one-way and return British Airways operated flights.
  5. The relevant savings will appear after you have chosen your flights and will be relative to your Avios balance.
  6. The full airline taxes, fees and Carrier charges will apply per person, per flight and payment must be made in full at the time of booking. Payment by cheque is not accepted. Bookings made over the phone will carry a non-refundable offline booking fee per person per ticket.
  7. Reward Flights are strictly subject to availability which may be very limited or not available at all on some routes. Reward Flights may not be available on some dates. No registration is required.
  8. This offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer, promotion or deal, including but not limited to industry discounted fares (including agency, industry, employee discounts) inclusive holidays, group discount fares, child/infant fares or senior citizen fares, whether or not booked in one of the qualifying classes, bookings made with any other vouchers, travel class upgrades and any BA staff friends and family offers (for example, Hotlines). Discounts cannot be used retrospectively. This promotion applies only to new bookings made between 6 October 2020 and 13 October 2020.

Quick Thoughts

First up, let me say that I find this deal infinitely less exciting than when Iberia ran the same kind of deal a couple of months ago. Obviously half off a premium cabin award ticket is a rare sight to see; seeing it twice in recent memory is pretty amazing on the surface.

However, I’m not terribly enthusiastic about this deal for two reasons: first, British Airways doesn’t offer quite as attractive an award chart as Iberia and more importantly because they add outrageous surcharges to most award tickets. The cash copay can easily be more than the cost of an economy class ticket, so the Avios portion feels to me more like an upgrade rather than a “free” award ticket.

Compounding on that is the second reason my excitement is tempered here: it is hard to predict what the future of travel will be and there is at least a non-zero chance that your trip will be canceled (either because the flight doesn’t operate or because of travel restrictions). While Avios bookings carry very reasonable cancellation fees, I’m not sure what the timeline has been in terms of actually getting those surcharges back with British Airways (many airlines have dragged their feet for months on refunds).

Still, I’m sure that many readers have Avios on hand from canceled 2020 bookings. If that’s your situation, you could stretch your miles twice as far with this deal.

A couple of tips worth reviewing:

  1. You can easily combine Avios between Iberia, Aer Lingus and British Airways. See this post for more.
  2. You can use SeatSpy to easily see a year of award availability at a time with a search that only takes seconds. See this post for more.
  3. This sale only applies to flights on British Airways metal, not on partner flights or codeshares operated by other carriers.

Finally, keep in mind that it’s worth taking a look at paid fares, particularly in business class. Consider the huge mileage earning possible on a paid ticket credited to Alaska when comparing costs. Sometimes it is possible to stack discounts on British Airways business class that might make a paid fare a better option.

Overall, this could be a good deal in some instances, particularly for those who would ordinarily be willing to accept BA’s high fuel surcharges in exchange for the flights and availability they want.

H/T: God Save the Points

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