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Bits: Club Eurostar Shop opens, has the Avios reward chart vanished?, Cathay Pacific sale

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News in brief:

The Club Eurostar Shop opens for business

One aspect of the new Club Eurostar programme I haven’t touched on yet is the new Club Eurostar shop.

This offers a new redemption option for those travellers who are – in the nicest possible way – sick to death of Eurostar after weekly commutes and would prefer to use their points for something totally different!

The Club Eurostar Shop is only available to mid-tier Avantage and top-tier Carte Blanche members.  You will find a link on your home page after you log in.

There is certainly a lot on offer and the quality level seems to be pitched right given the target Eurostar market.

Regular readers won’t be surprised to know that the value you get is not great.  I ran a few examples and you seem to be getting around 3p per point.

This isn’t Club Eurostar trying to rip you off, it is simply logical because of how these schemes work.  If you redeem for, say, a Pure Evoke H3 DAB radio (3,460 points) then Eurostar has to buy it for you for £120.  They would be happier if you redeemed for a Eurostar ticket which costs them virtually nothing in comparison.  This is why you get around 10p to 15p per point for train redemptions.

That said, I am always in favour of giving people more choice when it comes to redemptions and the Club Eurostar Shop does add a lot of new options.

Has the Avios reward chart vanished?

I was trying to find the Avios pricing chart on ba.com yesterday.  Since the site had its revamp, however, I can’t find it anywhere.

If you want to know how much a redemption costs, it seems that you need to plug in your route into the redemption flight calculator here.

I also looked on avios.com.  It still has a zonal map but nothing as simple as the table below.

This is, of course “not a good thing”.  An unwillingness to be upfront about what redemptions actually cost is the first step to removing reward charts altogether and moving to some form of variable pricing.

Redemption chart 2

The zones relate to the distance flown:

  • Zone 1:  1 – 650 miles
  • Zone 2:  651 – 1,150 miles
  • Zone 3:  1,151 – 2,000 miles
  • Zone 4:  2,001 – 3,000 miles
  • Zone 5:  3,001 – 4,000 miles
  • Zone 6:  4,001 – 5,500 miles
  • Zone 7:  5,501 – 6,500 miles
  • Zone 8:  6,501 – 7,000 miles
  • Zone 9:  7,000+ miles

Cathay Pacific launches its winter sale

The Cathay Pacific sale is now on, with headline prices to Asia from £489 in Economy.

Business Class deals start at £2999 to Australia and New Zealand, £2359 to China, £2469 to Japan and Korea and £3619 to Hong Kong.  (Hong Kong is never a great deal with Cathay because it is a direct flight from the UK, other destinations require a change of plane.)   These are for travel from 9th January to 30th September 2018.

Cathay Pacific is a member of oneworld, so you will earn Avios and British Airways tier points when you fly with them.

Don’t forget that Cathay also flies from Manchester as well as Heathrow and Gatwick.

Full details are on the Cathay Pacific website here.

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