I reported last week how Iberia had pulled Reward Flight Saver flights with absolutely no notice, replacing them with a new structure which charges full airport taxes plus a reduced fuel surcharge.
At the time, I wondered if BA and avios.com would follow suit. And now we know.
Avios and British Airways Executive Club have announced a new pricing structure for Reward Flight Saver, effective from 11th July.
The price for Eurotraveller / Economy tickets increases from £30 to £35.
The price for Club Europe / Business tickets increases from £40 to £50.
(For Comair in South Africa, the increase takes effect from 1 July and moves up to £56 in Economy and £64 in Business.)
In addition, Reward Flight Saver will no longer be available on Iberia flights, when booked via avios.com or ba.com.
Now, compared to what members of Iberia Plus have faced, this does not seem too bad. However, it still represents the second increase since the Avios programme was launched in November 2011, which is just over 18 months ago.
It is also worth remembering that the ‘fuel surcharge’ on BA flights is a purely arbitrary number which means nothing at all, and certainly bears no resemblance to the cost of fuel.
The increase in the differential between Eurotraveller and Club Europe is also a little odd, given that BA has massively devalued its lounge offering in recent weeks with huge cuts to the food available.
Ironically, over at the Avios Advisory Hub in recent weeks, Avios has been asking members for guidance on a potential renaming of Reward Flight Saver. It appears that Avios members simply don’t ‘get it’. To which the obvious response would be – since Air Miles members were used to paying no surcharges, then £27, then £30 and now £35 – you can hardly blame them if they have lost track of what is happening ….
We need to keep things in perspective, of course. Reward Flight Saver is still a good deal. In fact, as you can get over 1p per Avios quite easily, it is probably still the best use of Avios. This continual ‘chip, chipping away’ of the programme does not inspire confidence, though.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (December 2023)
As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!
In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.
You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:
There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:
You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points. These points convert at 1:1 into Avios.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive 30,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 30,000 Avios) with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold. You receive 25,000 points if you spend £3,000 in three months and a further 5,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive a huge 100,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 100,000 Avios) with The Platinum Card. You receive 75,000 points if you spend £10,000 in six months and a further 25,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
American Express Preferred Rewards Gold
Your best beginner’s card – 30,000 points (TO 9th JANUARY), FREE for a year & four airport ….. Read our full review
The Platinum Card from American Express
Crazy 100,000 points (TO 9th JANUARY) and a huge range of valuable benefits – for a fee Read our full review
Run your own business?
We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.
You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.
There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.
Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.