The “Avios Redemption University” series is a good starting point for beginners, although I hope everyone will learn something from them. Click here to see the other articles.
This is your beginners guide on how to earn and redeem Avios points on Flybe.
It is now almost two years since Flybe abandoned its own reward scheme and adopted Avios as its reward currency. A lot of people still do not seem to know that it exists, especially when it comes to redeeming Avios points on Flybe.
As I haven’t looked at this in detail for a while, I thought it was worth spending some time going over the key aspects of this partnership. Flybe has its own FAQ as well if you want to know more.
Remember that you can only credit a Flybe ticket to avios.com and not to British Airways Executive Club or Iberia Plus.
EARNING AVIOS WITH FLYBE
How many Avios will I earn when I use Flybe?
When the Flybe partnership was launched, I was sceptical about the amount of Avios points you would earn from Flybe. At that time, you were guaranteed at least 500 Avios when flying on BA and you would rarely match that from a Flybe sector.
Since the Avios devaluation in April 2015, which reduced the minimum number of Avios earned to just 125 per flight, Flybe has looked a lot more competitive. On routes where Flybe and BA compete at London City, you are likely to earn more Avios taking Flybe!
The cheaper ‘Just Fly’ and ‘Get More’ ticket types on Flybe earn 2 per £1 / €1 spent. ‘All In’ flexible tickets earn 4 per £1 / €1.
As well as the base fare, from March 2015 you can also earn Avios on whatever you pay for hold luggage, standard and extra leg room, preassigned seating and Flybe Flex.
However, you will not earn anything on ‘Government charges’, primarily APD.
When do I receive my Avios?
Here is an interesting titbit. Unlike every other airline I can think of, you will only receive your points when you have flown your return journey. The outbound points will not be posted after the flight.
If you miss one flight on your itinerary, you will forfeit your Avios points for the entire trip.
Can I earn Avios in British Airways Executive Club or Iberia Plus?
No. You can only credit a Flybe flight to avios.com. The only exception is if you have booked a British Airways codeshare with Flybe under a BA flight number. You can credit such flights to BAEC.
Since you cannot credit Flybe flights to BAEC, you cannot earn tier points or any status bonus. Avios earned in avios.com can be moved across to British Airways Executive Club free and instantly via ‘Combine My Avios’.
Because you can only earn points in avios.com, earning Avios on Flybe is restricted to residents of the UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands because those are the restrictions on who can have an avios.com account.
SPENDING AVIOS ON FLYBE
Was Flybe a valuable addition to Avios from a redemption viewpoint?
If you live in the UK regions, yes. Flybe flies from over 40 locations in the UK and Ireland from Sumburgh in Shetland to Newquay in Cornwall. The full route map is here. They even fly to Barra in the Outer Hebrides where the planes land on the beach!
What is the key thing I might not know?
Availability on avios.com and ba.com does NOT match. You should check both sites if looking for a specific flight. Avios.com availability is better.
What else was I never told?
You receive one free 20kg suitcase when booking an Avios redemption on Flybe at avios.com. A standard cash ticket on Flybe does NOT include any luggage. This means that the value of a redemption varies depending on whether or not you would take a suitcase.
If you book at ba.com the booking process states: “Hand baggage only fare. No checked baggage allowance.” However, this is an IT error and you will receive a free suitcase – there is an extract from the relevant press release in the comments.
How many Avios will I need for a reward flight on Flybe?
The same rules apply as for other partner airlines. Flights under 650 miles per leg will cost 4,500 Avios points per leg and flights up to 1,150 miles will cost 7,500 points.
There is no ‘off peak’ pricing available – all dates are priced as peak dates.
Can I redeem Avios points for Flybe flights on ba.com or iberia.com?
Yes, at ba.com – although availability is worse. No, at iberia.com.
Are Avios redemptions worthwhile?
Reward Flight Saver is not available with Flybe so you are looking at a larger ‘taxes and charges’ figure than you would get from British Airways. Let’s look at a couple of typical redemptions.
Birmingham to Paris, Friday 11 – Monday 14 November
All three Flybe flights are available in both directions on both ba.com and avios.com which is good.
A ‘Just Fly’ ‘no suitcase’ ticket would be £107, picking obvious weekend away flight times. The ‘Get More’ price with luggage would be £155.
An Avios redemption is 9,000 Avios plus £52 tax.
Without a suitcase, you are getting 0.61p per Avios which is poor. With a suitcase (which you only get when booking at avios.com) you are getting 1.14p which is pretty good.
East Midlands to Edinburgh, Friday 25 – Monday 28 November
All three outbound and the one inbound flight were available for redemption on avios.com. NO flights were available for these dates on ba.com.
A ‘no suitcase’ ticket, assuming you fly Friday evening, would be £77. With a suitcase, you would pay £123.
An Avios redemption is 9,000 Avios plus £52 tax.
Without a suitcase, you are getting 0.27p per Avios which is truly appalling. With a suitcase, you are getting 0.79p. This is just about OK – I have done worse redemptions than this, albeit not many!
What conclusions can we draw from this?
I struggle to see a lot of value in redeeming your Avios on Flybe if you are a ‘hand baggage only’ traveller. 0.22p is obviously a ludicrous valuation to accept whilst 0.61p in my Birmingham example is still very weak.
You DO benefit from the option to cancel and get everything back less £35. This may make the Avios option more attractive than a cash ticket if you think your plans may change.
With a suitcase, the Avios option does look more attractive and worth considering. Whilst I only looked at two examples here, the results are in line with all of my other tests of Flybe pricing over the last two years.