Hogwash Update: BA Executive Club making available cheaper Avios redemptions on BA/Iberia flights

Earlier today, I wrote a post on British Airways Executive Club introducing changes into the earning side of the program. The summary is that if you buy cheap tickets, you get less miles and less tier points, however if you buy a high fare or a premium cabin ticket, things get better for you. Here is the official statement from BA. All these changes come into effect April 28, 2015.

From a burning perspective, the changes have gotten positive, not!. One of the sweet spots for BA’s program is redeeming for Short Haul flights, where they charge as less as 4500 Avios for an economy flight. This is due to their distance-based award chart.

Business Class & First Class in peak season is getting more expensive for long haul travel from 28 April 2015 across carriers who you can redeem with Avios on.  The best part is digging up the FAQs to find out that partner pricing will work on peak award prices year round.

BA is now dividing travel season into peak season and off-peak season. For the peak-season they retain the current chart, and for the off-peak season, which is roughly 60% of the year, they reduce the redemption rates even further. However, this is applicable only for redemptions on BA metal.

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Here is the redemption chart for off-peak and peak redemption periods.

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Iberia gets its own peak and off-peak redemption periods as well, which is different from BA’s own calendar.

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For these redemptions, here is how the process will work from April 28 onwards:

From a peak date to an off-peak date – can be made in Manage My Booking as normal but the Avios will be refunded at a later date. Alternatively, you can call your local Service Centre to make these changes and receive a refund.

From an off-peak date to a peak date – you will not be able to change your dates online; please call your local Service Centre to make these changes instead.

From a peak date to another peak date – no change; you will be able to makes these changes in Manage My Booking as normal.

From an off-peak date to another off-peak date – no change; you will be able to makes these changes in Manage My Booking as normal.

One key change is the UK domestic reward pricing. BA used to throw in the domestic segment free of charge for all international connections. Now, when you connect from a European destination, you won’t be able to get the domestic leg for free. For all long-haul destinations, you still get a domestic segment free of charge.

BA will also make available 9 million seats this year for redemption, and allow for redemption from Economy to premium cabins, however no insights into pricing at the moment.

What are your feelings on these changes? I feel overall meh about the redemption changes. Of course, earning has gone down over cheap tickets, but I am personally okay with that change.

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Comments

  1. As I see it s again the rich&the business people who benefits of the changes(who anyway have to money to buy tickets). But Simple people who travel now&then on economy will get less avios and less rewards….thanks BA for the support…..

  2. It looks like devaluation of miles to me . Only redemptions of economy segment has got cheaper which in my view was rarely used by any due to abnormal high fuel taxes . I was confused for my pm transfer between ba and etihad but now I will definetly select etihad miles as the final selection.

  3. I have a friend in Germany who visits the US 2-3x per year and usually flies american, us airways, or air berlin. I’ve advised her to bank those miles with BA to use for short-haul european trips or the DUS to JFK flights. Is there a change to the partner earning structure? I’ve looked at the BA site and haven’t seen anything about it. What do you think?

    I love the off-peak pricing, although the lack of free transit in London sucks because BA doesn’t fly into much anywhere else in the UK and I travel to Scotland fairly frequently.

  4. Triple miles required for long haul business class? Haha! They’re beating our domestic programs now. Double charged by jet/ ai seems so reasonable in comparison !
    Economy awards on BA never make any sense cause of the huge fuel surcharges and London APD.

  5. Those were 2 mighty quick posts !
    Btw, it was slightly surreal that I caught on this news when I was looking at ICICI British Airways card in another tab. 😀

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