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Bits: BA drops Kos, good BA luxury European deals, upstairs on a BA 747

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News in brief:

British Airways drop Kos

British Airways has decided to cancel the Kos route next year.  This is unfortunate, because tickets have been on sale for 5 months ….

The service was due to run between 5th May and 29th September 2018.

Cash passengers will be offered a re-route via Vienna, changing onto the Austrian Airlines service to Kos.  There is also an option to fly to Athens and then change to an Aegean service.  In both cases, business class passengers will be downgraded to economy for the second leg as they are ‘one class’ flights.

Note that Vienna is an 80 tier points route and Athens – like Kos – is a 160 tier points route.  If you have booked in Club Europe then it is easier to go via Athens if you want to be sure of your tier points.  BA should ‘make you square’ if you go via Vienna but it is likely to require a few emails back and forth.

Avios passengers will not be re-routed.  Your Avios will be refunded and you will have to make other arrangements at your own cost.

Passengers who are on a codeshare and not travelling on BA-issued tickets (ie a ticket number which does not start 125-) will also not be re-routed and will have to claim a refund from the airline with which they booked.

British Airways launches short haul Club Europe holidays sale

If you are planning a short break over the Winter, BA Holidays has launched a ‘Club Europe holidays’ short break promotion.

The special deals are listed here on ba.com.

These offer excellent value for money compared to the cost of booking flights on their own.  You will also get at least 80 tier points each – more for longer routes – which makes this a cheap way to help your plans to earn or retain your British Airways Executive Club status.

This article lists the BA Club Europe routes which earn 160 tier points return.

You need to:

book by midnight on Monday 23rd October

travel between 1st November 2017 and 18th March 2018

These are the headline prices being promoted by British Airways Holidays, although there is no guarantee this price will be available on the dates you want.  All hotels are four or five star.

  • Bilbao business class flights + 3 nights hotel £272 pp
  • Paris business class flights + 3 nights hotel £284 pp
  • Amsterdam business class flights + 3 nights hotel £286 pp
  • Istanbul business class flights + 3 nights hotel £299 pp
  • Athens business class flights + 3 nights hotel £420 pp
  • Palermo business class flights + 7 nights hotel from £308 pp
  • Larnaca business class flights + 7 nights hotel from £585 pp
  • All inclusive Malaga business class flights + 7 nights hotel from £421 pp
  • Palermo business class flights + 7 nights hotel £308 pp
  • Malaga business class flights + 7 nights hotel £370 pp
  • Mallorca (Palma) business class flights + 7 nights hotel £374 pp
  • Larnaca business class flights + 7 nights hotel £585 pp
  • Krakow business class flights + 3 nights hotel £311 pp
  • Berlin business class flights + 3 nights hotel £340 pp
  • Prague business class flights + 3 nights hotel £345 pp
  • Vienna business class flights + 3 nights hotel £353 pp
  • Budapest business class flights + 3 nights hotel £383 pp

Take a look at BA Holidays here for more details.

British Airways 747 stairs

Upstairs on a British Airways Boeing 747

Finally, a random personal picture.  We flew down to Dubai on a Boeing 747 last week and sat on the upper deck.

If you have been flying BA for as long as me then this may not be a novelty, but younger readers may never have experienced it.  Whilst BA remains the biggest global operator of the Boeing 747, they are being shuffled towards the retirement home one by one.

If you get a chance to try a 747 in Club World, on the upper deck, you should.

There is no doubt that some of the planes are well past their prime, and the cabin environment is not as classy as the new Boeing 787 Club World cabin.  However, as you can see from the photo below and the picture above of the stairs, it is a unique experience with such a small cabin.  The only BA experience that compares is the BA1 service on an A318 from London City to New York.

British Airways Boeing 747 upper deck

 


How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (October 2022)

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:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points (SPECIAL OFFER), £200 travel credit and unbeatable 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 10,000 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company Read our full review

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.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

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.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (130)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Anthony says:

    When I was a child I thought the upper deck was where the VIPs travelled and I am still excited about it today. I’ve already booked seats in the UD for our return from Chicago in July – including seat 64K which is my favourite. Though my children aren’t as excited as I am about it.

    Also – thanks Rob for the news about the closure of the Toronto lounge. I moved our flights from Toronto to Chicago when I heard the news. We are staying in Michigan so either airport works for us. Though I wish BA would fly to Detroit again.

  • Bill says:

    Thanks Harry

  • Liz says:

    Our first ever CW flight last year was to Chicago on a 747 and someone here recommended we try to secure UD seats which we did! We loved it – but we didn’t have anything else to compare it to. We did the same flight again this year for our Rte 66 trip and sat in the same seats. We recently flew UC with Virgin to Atlanta and hated the individual seats that face the centre.

    • Mark says:

      My first ever flight in CW was on the UD to Chicago, in 2001. In fact it was my first ever longhaul flight. Much as we are justifiably critical of BA from time to time, that wasn’t a bad way to get into longhaul travel 🙂

      The reason I like UD window seats (747 and A380) over any other CW seat is the extra space to spread out on the floor cabinets by the window. Of course if all CW seats had decent storage space that wouldn’t be so much of a bonus…..

  • Drav says:

    I’m clearly in a minority… but i quite dislike 747s… ugly creatures and the interiors are usually so tatty

    • Liz says:

      The one we traveled on last year had just been refitted out the month before. The UC Virgin plane in August was tired and grubby. Food and service was great but much preferred the UD on the 747.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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