Some slightly trivial news in brief!
New PR shot of the improved Club World bedding
I was sent a new PR photo of the improved ‘The White Company’ Club World bedding which is soon to be rolled out on the JFK route – see below.
It does, you have to admit, look good and an improvement on what has gone before. It will be 2018 before it rolls out on the rest of the network, however, which is odd. I can understand why they may want to trial the new food service before committing to all of the new serving trolleys etc, but surely bedding is bedding?
However …. spot the difference. Here is the new photo:
…. and here is the original one supplied earlier in the year:
It seems … allegedy … that the original design failed a safety test. Apparently the navy colour was too close to the colour of the carpets in the Club World cabins. This meant that it was deemed a trip hazard, so the whole project was sent back to the drawing board.
Pigeons in the Terminal 5 First lounge
Meanwhile, the pigeon problem on the Terminal 5 Galleries First lounge terrace continues! Here are a few shots sent in by a reader:
Should you buy Avios with a 50% bonus?
A few people have contacted me this week about a targeted 50% ‘buy Avios’ bonus that is being emailed to some Executive Club members.
(Avios.com has also been emailing a weaker 35% bonus offer, which I would dismiss out of hand.)
There are a few permutations, with the most generous being a 50% bonus on any purchase.
Here are a few price points:
5,000 Avios – was £95 (1.9p), now 7,500 Avios for £95 (1.26p)
10,000 Avios – was £175 (1.8p), now 15,000 Avios for £175 (1.16p)
20,000 Avios – was £335 (1.7p), now 30,000 Avios for £335 (1.12p)
50,000 Avios – was £815 (1.6p), now 75,000 Avios for £815 (1.09p)
100,000 Avios – was £1,615 (1.6p), now 150,000 Avios for £1,615 (1.07p)
The cheapest price is therefore 1.07p per Avios point.
Is this a good deal? Well, it is fair to say that you won’t lose money at this level. I have a spreadsheet showing the last few million Avios I redeemed and my average value is 1.15p per point, based on what I would have personally paid for the same flights.
It would be crazy to pay 1.07p per Avios if you were going to redeem them for 1.15p. Avios points are obviously not as flexible as cash and are issued by The Central Bank of IAG which, frankly, has an inflationary track record to rival many third world countries. (And even in countries of high inflation, you can usually spend your cash whenever you want – unlike an Avios point.)
Personally, I would be targetting somewhere closer to 0.66p before I would be a speculative buyer – but that is based WHOLLY on my personal circumstances.
This is my long ‘what is an Avios point worth?’ article (click here) which takes a more scientific view based on different ways you may spend your points. These valuations tend to come out at nearer 1.5p in the best cases. On this basis, paying 1.07p – with no more effort required than picking up your credit card – may work you.
If you are only topping off an account with the last few thousand you need for a redemption, the price per point doesn’t really matter anyway. Many people are offered a version of this deal which gives the 50% bonus however few points you buy, even the minimum of 1,000.
Before you buy, though, think about the options. Could you or your partner take out an American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card instead? The card is free for the first year and you’ll get 20,000 Amex points (= 20,000 Avios) when you spend £2,000 within 90 days. That is a better deal than spending around £250 buying points under this deal. If you’ve got a BA Amex and a Gold or Platinum, how about the Starwood Preferred Guest American Express card? The 10,000 points you get for signing up convert to 10,000 Avios and you only need to spend £1,000. (The Starwood Amex has a representative APR of 36.2% variable including the annual fee based on a notional £1200 credit limit.)
The deadline to buy is 29th September. If you want to see if you are targeted, the ba.com ‘buy Avios’ page is here.
(Want to earn more Avios? Click here to visit our home page for the latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios from current offers and promotions.)