Over the course of the nine articles below, I have managed to pick apart the details of the Avios changes that take effect from April 28th. I thought the best way of drawing all the strands together was a summary of the winners and losers, both for earning and spending. Which are you?
You may, of course, be a ‘winner’ from earning but still a ‘loser’ overall because of your spending pattern – or vice versa!
(If you are new to Head for Points, welcome! Please consider bookmarking the site or sign up for our daily emails via the box in the right hand margin.)
Here are the other articles in this series you may have missed:
EARNING AVIOS POINTS AND TIER POINTS
When earning, you are a winner – or at least unchanged – if ….
you collect your Avios points from credit cards, Tesco and other partners rather than flying. Tesco and Amex may even be forced to offer bonuses or improve their conversion terms if they see a backlash from customers.
you fly on full fare tickets in any BA travel class – your earnings go up
you fly on discounted tickets in First and Club World – your earnings go up in First and are unchanged in Club World
you fly on oneworld partner airlines except American and Iberia – earning rates will not change
you believe that the BA Heathrow lounges are overcrowded – they will quieten down by late 2016
you fly over 50 segments a year – you will qualify for a Silver card based on 50 flights irrespective of how few tier points you earn under the new structure
you have a Silver card but mainly fly oneworld partner airlines – you never received a tier bonus when flying the majority of these airlines in the first place, so the halving of it does not impact you
When earning, you are a loser if ….
you collect most of your Avios points and tier points from flying on discounted economy fares – your tier points are being halved and the Avios earned reduced by 75%
you fly on discounted World Traveller Plus tickets – you will earn 20% fewer Avios
you credit discounted economy flights on American or Iberia to BA – the Avios earning rate is being cut by 75%
you have a British Airways Executive Club Silver card – your tier bonus when you fly is being halved to 50%
you fly the London City to New York JFK service, as your tier points are being cut from 210 to 140 each way
SPENDING AVIOS POINTS
When spending, you are a winner – or at least unchanged – if ….
you fly on short-haul European redemptions from London – these will actually become cheaper at off-peak periods and are unchanged at peak periods
you fly long-haul redemptions in economy from anywhere in the UK – domestic connections are still free and off-peak economy redemptions have got cheaper. Peak redemptions in economy are unchanged.
you struggled to find redemption seats on the dates you wanted – you are now guaranteed to get some availability. Big winners will include contractors who fly to London for the working week and would previously never see availability on peak Monday and Friday services.
you are able to switch long-haul business class redemptions to Iberia via Madrid, booking via Iberia Plus. Some long-haul redemptions on Iberia in business class have got cheaper (eg 34,000 Avios each way to New York) and Iberia still adds minimal surcharges.
you buy non-flexible World Traveller tickets on British Airways – most of these will be upgradable with Avios to World Traveller Plus from December 2015. Very little World Traveller Plus availability is opened up, however, so in practice this will rarely be possible.
you use your Avios to upgrade from Club World to First Class – the cost is unchanged at peak periods and actually gets cheaper at off peak periods
you are Avios-rich – you can book all your holiday flights until April 27th 2016 at the current rates whilst benefitting from improved availability. Date changes will be allowed after April 28th 2015 without repricing.
When spending, you are a loser if ….
you redeem for short-haul European flights with a UK domestic connection – these are no longer free and you would be foolish to redeem for them under most circumstances
you redeem for long-haul services in World Traveller Plus, Club World or First – the Avios required for these services has jumped sharply at peak times (up to 50%) and up to 25% at off-peak times
you redeem for partner awards in premium classes – the lack of off-peak pricing means that they have all increased by 50% in business class and 33% in first class
you use your Avios to upgrade from World Traveller to World Traveller Plus or from World Traveller Plus to Club World – the cost has gone up dramatically. Upgrades from World Traveller Plus to Club World will actually cost more at off peak periods than at the peak.
So there we have it – as good a summary of the changes as you are likely to find. No doubt more details will emerge as April 28th gets closer.