Old Jan 2, 17, 4:43 am
Moderator: British Airways Executive Club, Iberia Airlines, Airport Lounges
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: London, UK
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Standard reward flights

Standard redemption flights are the most popular option and are good for itineraries involving BA plus one partner carrier or a single partner carrier. The tables below sets out the number of Avios Points needed for a single flight. If your itinerary involves multiple flights, you will need to add together the individual flights to reach the total price.

Current rates for redemption flights

You will note that variable pricing applies to redemptions on British Airways, OpenSkies, and Iberia, dividing the calendar into peak and off-peak dates. For BA flights, peak rates generally apply to UK school holidays and the BAEC does appear to be reserving Tuesdays and Wednesdays throughout the year at the off-peak rate. There is now a separate tariff and calendar of peak/off peak dates for IB flights although BA and IB flights between LHR and MAD are charged per the BA flight table and calendar.

A 12 month forward view of BA and IB peak and off peak dates is published on BA.com. See here and navigate to “Working out the cost”

Redemptions on oneworld and partner airlines, including Flybe mainline (but excluding BE routes operated from London City) are priced at a single year round rates equivalent to BA's higher peak rates.
Redemption rates for travel on American Airlines, Alaska Airlines, and TAM will start at 7,500 Avios rather than 4,500 Avios, effectively pricing Distance Band 1 flights as Band 2.

Redemption rates for travel on American Airlines within the United States in First Class are calculated at Business Class providing the flight operates as a two class service
Certain routes such as LHR-LCA, LHR-JHB, LHR-CPT, LHR-MEX, LAX-HKG, and JFK-HKG have been adjusted at slightly lower rates than their true distance suggests. However, DUB-BOS is priced as a Zone 5 redemption which is marginally greater than the true flight distance. BA's Avios Calculator is the higher authority so we recommend you use it to check each flight.

01 Point to point flights

Point to point (origin and destination) routes are the easiest to calculate. Using LAX as a theoretical epicente, the figure below illustrates the flight distance zone bands between LAX and a sample of US cities. Using LAX-MIA (three class transcontinental service) as an example, Miami is our focus destination and the route is highlighted in cyan. The sector distance is 2,342 miles, so with reference to the standard redemption tariffs table above, we can determine the base cost of this American Airlines flight using Avios:

Band 4 at 12,500 Avios (refer to the standard redemption table for Other Airlines above)

Using the premium class multiplier, a seat in business class will cost 37,500 Avios or 50,000 Avios for first class.

Zonal map - Origin Los Angeles, Destination: Miami (AA)

02 Connecting flights

As redemptions are calculated by individual sector, so each flight must be considered when connections are concerned. Let's look again at the Los Angeles to Miami itinerary but this time we'll introduce a connection at Dallas Forth Worth.

Flight 1: LAX-DFW. The sector distance is 1,235 miles which places this as a Zone 3 flight, at 10,000 Avios in economy class or 20,000 Avios in first class

Flight 2: DFW-MIA. The sector distance is 1,121 miles, therefore a Zone 2 flight priced at 7,500 Avios in economy, or 15,000 Avios in first class.

So combining flights 1 and 2, overall the base redemption cost works out at 17,500 Avios for an economy class one way ticket (plus all applicable taxes, fees and surcharges). So by comparing the direct flight and connecting flight examples we can see value can be gained by booking direct flights.

Connecting flight - Los Angeles to Miami via Dallas Fort Worth (AA)

The figure below provides us with a further example. This time the routing is on American Airlines from Atlanta to Caracas via Dallas Forth Worth. The first flight ATL-DFW with a distance of 731 miles puts it into Zone 2; the connecting flight DFW-CCS is longer at 2,450 miles and falls into Zone 4. The base fare is a simple calculation, adding both flights: 7,500 Avios for sector 1 plus 12,500 Avios for sector 2 which amounts to 20,000 Avios (plus taxes, fees and surcharges)

Connecting flight - Atlanta to Caracas via Dallas Fort Worth (AA)

03 UK and Mainland Spain domestic feeder flights

When pricing long haul redemptions, domestic connections within the UK and Mainland Spain are included in the fare. Taxes, fees, and surcharges associated with these domestic sectors are added to the overall fare however. In the case of redemptions to/from UK regional airports, the domestic sectors will be booked into Euro Traveller when World Traveller and World Traveller Plus is selected or booked into Club Europe when Club World and First is selected.

Using JFK-LHR-GLA as an example, since the domestic feeder is included in the cost of the international sector to London. The peak time base price is 20,000 Avios (per Zone 5, JFK-LHR) plus taxes, fees, and surcharges. While domestic feeder flights are free, they are still subject to normal redemption availability conditions. So to include a feeder flight, there must be X class availability (and/or V class for Gold members) for that flight as well availability on the corresponding international flight.

BA.com is known to be a bit prickly when it comes to displaying domestic feeder availability so if you find it is not offering domestic connections or if the connection timing is sub-optimal, calling your local BAEC service centre does often pay dividends. Some members have reported BA has bolted on domestic feeder flights on an existing London originating ticket.

Connecting flight - New York to Glasgow via London (BA peak dates)

04 Interesting anomalies in redemption pricing you can exploit
If you are interested in how you might optimise your redemptions, using the distance bands to manufacture lower cost rewards, please visit the following thread: Selecting redemption destinations on the edges of the pricing bands

Introduction | Standard reward flights | Multi-Partner reward flights | Reward Flight Saver | Avios & Money | Upgrading using Avios | Avios part payment | Using your companion vouchers | Additional Gold benefits | Hotel and car rental redemptions

Last edited by Prospero; Oct 24, 17 at 3:35 pm
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