avios good value?

Old Feb 8, 16, 7:22 pm
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avios good value?

Hi all,

Status

My current BAEC status is Gold with 1625 TPs about 151,000 avios with a year end of August. I live in the US and I have absolutely no annual leave left, the way it works in my job is that you need to accrue your leave first and then can use it rather than how it is in jobs I have have in the UK where you are given a lump for the year at the start

I have a trip in May on QR in J AMS-DOH-BKK rtn and a work trip out CLT-SFO on AA in coach lined up for the end of Feb. That should get me to about 171000 avios and about 2250 tps.

Question 1

I'd like to try and get to the GUF2 at 2500. Has anyone any suggestions on a cheap TP run over in the states I could take out of CLT to try and bag 250-300 TPs. Are there any routes which are cheap for first and convenient? I don't want to upgrade the work trip to SFO - too many questions and possible comebacks.

Question 2

I've never used a reward flight and I am thinking of booking one for myself in Jan 2017. I've been looking at taking CX ORD-HKG-BKK return in first (ORD-HKG) and the biz (HKG-BKK). I've priced it up and found this -

279000 Avios + $ 743
235000 Avios + $ 1,643
190000 Avios + $ 2,543
177300 Avios + $ 2,823
156000 Avios + $ 3,203

So, If I can get to 177300 avios, I can get the fare for $2823 US. I just checked the Cathay website and saw the proper cash fare price at $18875 US.

If I was to go biz all the way the prices would be as follows -

216000 Avios + $ 743
193000 Avios + $ 1,523
172000 Avios + $ 2,143
152000 Avios + $ 2,653
121000 Avios + $ 3,273

I think it is a no brainer, first looks like a great bargain and should be a really nice experience. The difference from biz to first after spending the 170000 avios is only about $700 US.

Do you guys think this is a good cost effective way to spend my avios? Is Cathay 1st class nice? I've only ever flown BA first a couple of times on upgrades on work trips, Do Cathay compare favourably?

What would you guys do?

Last edited by capin; Feb 8, 16 at 11:33 pm
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Old Feb 8, 16, 11:04 pm
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If you can find and book F or J award space on CX (or JL) before the AA devaluation takes place towards the end of March, then using your Avios for this trip would make little sense. Currently, AA charges 135K miles for the roundtrip in F, and 110K miles for the roundtrip in J. Look at what it would cost to simply buy those miles now from AA (add 7% excise tax and a $30 processing fee to the prices shown at the following site):

https://buymiles.aa.com/en/buygift

AA does not impose any surcharges on CX or JL awards. You would have to add government taxes and fees to the AA redemption, but I don't think they are very high on such an itinerary.

If you won't be able to book the trip until after the AA devaluation, then using your Avios would make more sense.

Do you qualify for any U.S.-issued credit cards from either Chase or Citi? If so, you could get a boost on your Avios (or on your AA miles).
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Old Feb 8, 16, 11:19 pm
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Originally Posted by guv1976 View Post
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If you can find and book F or J award space on CX (or JL) before the AA devaluation takes place towards the end of March, then using your Avios for this trip would make little sense. Currently, AA charges 135K miles for the roundtrip in F, and 110K miles for the roundtrip in J. Look at what it would cost to simply buy those miles now from AA (add 7% excise tax and a $30 processing fee to the prices shown at the following site):

https://buymiles.aa.com/en/buygift

AA does not impose any surcharges on CX or JL awards. You would have to add government taxes and fees to the AA redemption, but I don't think they are very high on such an itinerary.

If you won't be able to book the trip until after the AA devaluation, then using your Avios would make more sense.

Do you qualify for any U.S.-issued credit cards from either Chase or Citi? If so, you could get a boost on your Avios (or on your AA miles).
Oh, wow. $2655 + tax + $30.

I was a bit dubious about asking what may have been construed as a stupid question but am now so glad I asked, I could have just wasted my avios.

Looks like I needs to move fast but big thanks for the advice.

I moved to the US in August. I tried for a BA/chase card in November (ambitious I know) and got turned down but have just tried again as my credit is slightly more established.
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Old Feb 8, 16, 11:21 pm
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Also, if you end up using Avios for travel in J, take a look at BAEC's multi-partner award chart, which would require slightly fewer Avios for this trip, as long as you include at least two partners (maybe CX and JL, maybe CX and RJ, or maybe QR and CX). You could even cross both the Atlantic and the Pacific in J for 200,000 Avios, with the lowest cash co-pay.

And there was a recent thread in this forum (within the past month?) about a multi-partner, mixed-cabin award that priced at the Economy level as long as just one long segment on the award was flown in BA Economy Class. Whether the BA Y segment has to be the longest one on the itinerary, I'm not sure.
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Old Feb 8, 16, 11:32 pm
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"Looks like I needs to move fast but big thanks for the advice."

Don't buy any AA miles unless and until you have found the needed award space. AA will let you put an award itinerary on a free, five-day hold, so you can always buy the miles after you put the award on hold.

I trust that you are already an AAdvantage member, as only those who have been members for at least 30 days may buy miles.

If you can get a Citi/AA Platinum credit card, you would get a 10% rebate on redemptions, up to 10,000 rebated miles/year. You would then only need to buy 129K miles from AA for the roundtrip in F: you would redeem for just the outbound first (67.5K miles), and get 6,750 miles rebated to your AAdvantage account. Then, you would redeem for the on-hold return trip.

But finding F award seats on CX or JL might prove challenging. You can search one segment at a time at ba.com, or just call AA. (CX/JL award availability cannot be searched at aa.com).
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Old Feb 8, 16, 11:55 pm
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Originally Posted by guv1976 View Post
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"Looks like I needs to move fast but big thanks for the advice."

Don't buy any AA miles unless and until you have found the needed award space. AA will let you put an award itinerary on a free, five-day hold, so you can always buy the miles after you put the award on hold.

I trust that you are already an AAdvantage member, as only those who have been members for at least 30 days may buy miles.

If you can get a Citi/AA Platinum credit card, you would get a 10% rebate on redemptions, up to 10,000 rebated miles/year. You would then only need to buy 129K miles from AA for the roundtrip in F: you would redeem for just the outbound first (67.5K miles), and get 6,750 miles rebated to your AAdvantage account. Then, you would redeem for the on-hold return trip.

But finding F award seats on CX or JL might prove challenging. You can search one segment at a time at ba.com, or just call AA. (CX/JL award availability cannot be searched at aa.com).
I'm not an AAdvantage member. All I have is BAEC gold. Maybe I need to join up soon so that I have the 30 days before the end of March?
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Old Feb 9, 16, 12:15 am
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"Maybe I need to join up soon so that I have the 30 days before the end of March?"

Absolutely. Sign up immediately. While there are no guarantees, I think it likely that AA will announce a similar buy-miles promotion in early March.

And if there is a Citibank branch near you, you might speak with the branch manager to see if (s)he can offer any assistance in helping you to secure a Citi/AA Platinum card (with a 50K-mile sign-up bonus after $3K spend).
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Old Feb 9, 16, 12:54 am
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You have until March 21 to purchase (not just reserve) AAdvantage awards at the current redemption rates.
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Old Jun 20, 16, 2:14 pm
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Hi All,

This didn't work out for me in the end. I had to wait 30 days after registering to buy miles and by that time I missed the deal.

I'm just about to book a reward flight on CX via ba.com. I am looking at CX F ORD-HKG and then J HKG-BKK. Going out mid May 2017 and returning about June 10th. The price is 156000 avios plus ~$3100US.

Am I getting a decent deal here or is there a better way to spend these avios?

Thanks,
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Old Jun 20, 16, 5:41 pm
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* wrong post.*
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