Here we are again – you, me, and Avios.
I squawk a lot about Avios, but with good reason. They are easy to accumulate, and if you know what you’re doing, you can find Texas-hot value. It’s hot here, people.
I’ve written in the past about using Avios for domestic short hauls on American Airlines, flying to Ireland from Boston for pennies, getting over to Spain via Iberia, and now another treat for y’all: Using Avios on Air Berlin (hat tip to Dan Deals).
We all know that the British Airways Avios program is a distance-based program and has hefty fees and surcharges which make it unattractive to fly long haul flights with them in most cases. However, there are a few rare occasions where the fees are minimal (see above) and burning your Avios through Air Berlin is just one of those options.
Let’s look at some examples.
Here’s a one way routing from New York to Berlin in economy.
You can fly the route for only 20,000 Avios and $2.50! Yeah, it’s economy, but that’s smoking hot. Coming back from Berlin is a little more expensive it will cost you 20,000 Avios and $97.99. A round trip ticket in economy would be 40,000 Avios and $103.00.
Now, if we dare, let’s take a look at a business class ticket. Here’s what turned up when I went searching for New York to Dusseldorf in Air Berlin business class.
Looky there. 40,000 Avios and a whooping $2.50 for a one way business class flight on Air Berlin. Now that’s double the price of Avios in economy, but Air Berlin is rolling out a new business class that looks pretty slick. Here’s a link to their new business class product.
Alrighty, so some nice options. But lets not stop there – how about getting to Israel?
You can fly to Tel Aviv from New York one way in economy on Air Berlin for 30,000 Avios and $20.52. The fees are $60.75 for the flight back, so, a roundtrip ticket would be 60,000 Avios and $81.72.
If you were to book this flight on British Airways metal with Avios, it would cost you 32,500 Avios and $327.05 one way. Gross.
Here’s a link to the Air Berlin flight destination tool to see where they fly.
This is just another option of how you can use your British Airways Avios. And I like it. But it can be tricky to find the right dates, so having a flexible schedule is best when booking.
Don’t forget that June 7th is the last day to take advantage of the 35% American Express Membership Rewards transfer bonus to British Airways. You can also pad you Avios stash with the British Airways Visa Signature® Card, or by transferring Ultimate Rewards points into British Airways. Check out my sick deals page to stay up to date on the best Ultimate and Membership Rewards cards.
(Disclaimer: I do receive a referral credit for the card mentioned. Please only use my links if you’re satisfied with the service I provide. And thanks if you do!)
— Geoff Whitmore