AVIOS OFFER: dream deal or big disappointment?
British Airways are currently running an offer for Executive Club members (aged 18 and over) to buy or gift (seriously, what?! Does anyone really gift their AVIOS?) up to 100,000 AVIOS in the 2016 calendar year. This is a whopping increase from the previous limit of 35,000 in a year.
In addition, if you buy before midnight on the 27th September 2016, you can earn up to 35% more AVIOS. Bonuses apply as follows:
- Purchases or gifts of 1,000 to 15,000 Avios earn 10% extra bonus AVIOS
- 16,000 to 34,000 Avios earn 20% extra bonus AVIOS
- 35,000 to 84,000 Avios earn 30% extra bonus AVIOS
- 85,000 to 100,000 Avios earn 35% extra bonus AVIOS
The true cost of the AVIOS offer
Now I have always personally thought buying AVIOS to be a bad idea but let’s see how this works out in practice before we write it off as a bad idea!
|Amount purchased||Bonus AVIOS||Total AVIOS||Cost for purchase||Cost per AVIOS|
Correct as at 14/9/16 – Source: British Airways
I examined the value of a redemption in a recent post and found it varied hugely between 0.35p to 2.24p (note the figures are shown as fractions of pounds) per AVIOS. This deal does not look overly attractive with the cost per AVIOS likely to exceed the value you might gain on redeeming.
These redemption examples do not suggest dream like qualities for the AVIOS offer either with the total cost of purchasing AVIOS added to the taxes exceeding the cost of simply buying flights outright!
|Route||Class||AVIOS needed||Taxes and fees||Cost for flight without using AVIOS||Saving||Cost for equivalent AVIOS using the offer||Total cost including AVIOS and taxes|
|London – New York||Premium Economy||52,000||£417||£827.45||£410.45||£895 for 55,000||£1,312 with 3,000 AVIOS remaining|
|London – Mexico||Club||125,000||£526||£2279.65||£1753.65||£1615 for max 100,000||£2,141 and a shortfall of 25,000 AVIOS|
|London – Athens||Economy||17,000||£35||£133.87||£98.81||£287||£322|
|London – St Lucia||Economy||32,500||£275.42||£531.42||£256||£543||£818|
|London – Dubai||Economy||26,000||£282||£357.25||£75.25||£431||£713|
|London – Delhi||Club||125,000||£475||£1674.65||£1199.65||£1615 for 100,000||£2,090 and a shortfall of 25,000 AVIOS.|
Source: British Airways as at 14/9/16 – off peak fares only departing 1/3/17 and returning 8/3/17
What’s the verdict?
So as you can see, in every example I looked at, it would invariably be cheaper to buy the flight and not pay taxes, fees and the AVIOS cost. The only caveat to this is that I have ignored the bonus AVIOS as you have only until the 27th September to benefit from this offer.
Even with them, I doubt it will make this an attractive option so I recommend well and truly keeping your wallet in your pocket!
Have you ever bought AVIOS?
If so feel free to share your experience below. We’d love to know what value you got and whether you felt it was worthwhile.