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The 25% transfer bonus to British Airways Executive Club with American Express is one of the best promotions right now, running until November 12, 2017. The best ways to use Avios are for short-haul economy and business segments. However, another option are Avios multi-carrier awards. These AMEX cards qualify for the 25% transfer bonus:
- American Express Business Platinum Card: Get up to 75,000 Membership Rewards Points!
- American Express Business Gold Card: Get up to 40,000 Membership Rewards Points!
- American Express Platinum Card: Get up to 60,000 Membership Reward Points!
- American Express Gold Rewards Card: Get up to 30,000 Membership Rewards Points!
Since the Avios devaluation back in 2015, First Class has been 4x the price of economy, and Business Class is 3x the price of economy for redemptions over 20,000 miles. This makes long flights very expensive. However’s there an interesting alternative.
Avios Multi-Carrier Awards
Avios has a separate multi-carrier chart in addition to their regular award pricing. This is much more reasonable for premium flights. The Avios required is determined by the total flown distance. Business Class requires twice the miles and first class requires three times the miles. As you can see, the best value is with longer itineraries. You would book these awards via the phone with the same space that you find online on BA.com.
For example, take this routing: Vancouver – Tokyo – Taipei – Hong Kong – Doha – Zurich – London – New York – Vancouver. This total distance on this itinerary is 19,633 miles, so it costs 200,000 Avios in business class. Taxes and fees might be high, but vary significantly based on point of origin and other criteria.
There are many low-fee flight options allowing you to save money. These include Cathay Pacific Flights to/from Hong Kong, certain Japan Airlines routes, Qantas flights departing from Australia, all LATAM flights, and more. In addition to that, there no restrictions on stopovers, so you have up do 7 stopovers for the same price.
With a 25% transfer bonus, this itinerary will cost you 160,000 Membership Rewards points. That’s a heck of a bargain given that Aeroplan awards to Asia starts at 150,000 miles and only allow two stopovers. Keep in mind redemptions like this could get very tricky, so confirm that your itinerary is valid and bookable before transferring miles. This redemption option is a fantastic value for those planning longer trips.
Have you redeemed for an Avios Multi-Carrier Award? What’s your experience?