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Is British Airways running down Flight Pass?

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After making a fresh attempt to breath some life into Flight Pass last year, it looks like British Airways may be running it down.

Flight Pass is no longer available for sale for use beyond 31st December.  All 12 month passes have been withdrawn – we need to see if 9 month passes are withdrawn on 1st April.  OptionTown, which runs the scheme for BA, is not responding to queries.

If you don’t know about Flight Pass, via this OptionTown linkyou can buy route passes for economy travel on flights from Heathrow, Gatwick and City.

There are a huge number of pricing permutations based on how many people would share your pass, how many tickets you want, what expiry date you are willing to accept and how close to the date of travel you want to book.  You can buy a pass for one route or for an entire country.

For example, you can buy 12 one-way flights from Heathrow to Newcastle for £605so £50 each.  This includes taxes.  You must use them within 3 months AND must book 90 days in advance.  At the other extreme, 12 one-way tickets bookable up to 4 hours in advance will cost you £131 per seat.

Given the huge number of pricing options, it is impossible to say if this offers decent savings or not but I know many frequent air commuters use it.  Note that you can only book return flights with Flight Pass which means that it is less flexible than you may think – you may be able to book your outbound with just four hours notice but you need to lock in the return at the same time (changeable for a fee).

You have last seat availability.   If there are still seats for sale, irrespective of the price, you can book them – as long as you are inside the booking window of your Flight Pass.  There are no blackout dates or minimum stays.

All of this is irrelevant, of course, if the product is now on its last legs.


How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (October 2021)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

There are two official British Airways American Express cards. Both have increased sign-up bonuses until 2nd November 2021:

British Airways BA Amex American Express card

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British Airways BA Premium Plus American Express Amex credit card

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

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The 30,000 points bonus on Amex Gold runs to 9th November 2021. The 60,000 points bonus on The Platinum Card runs to 2nd November 2021.

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We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card:

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You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies. This card has a limited time offer of 60,000 Avios when you sign up:

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express card

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

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)

Comments (81)

  • AriseSirGenghis says:

    OT: If I book 4 Hilton nights (advanced non refundable purchase rate) using the Amex £50 off £250 spend, would it work? Thanks in advance.

    • John says:

      It isn’t meant to work, but provided that the hotels charge your card before the offer expiry (you can call them to ask if they don’t), it has worked in the past.

  • Arielle Albon says:

    It’s a real shame about the Flight Pass, it is a really useful product for maintaining a consistent cost. I hope that IAG/BA consider implementing something similar with BAEC or Avios.

  • Genghis says:

    OT. Any recommendations for a solid 4-5* hotel in Seoul for 2 nights? I’ve not yet done my planning but we don’t want to be too far from good restaurants (and if you have any tips for Korean restaurants (inc BBQ), please let me know). I have the usual Hilton, IHG (and will have another AMB cert), SPG/Marriott and MR currencies. Thanks in advance.

    • Relaxo says:

      Conrad Seoul is great if you dont mind being in the business district. Easy 1 hr bus ride from airport; great riverside views; didnt get charged for 10am checkin (useful for redeye flights); massive gym; grand breakfast. Not much around in terms of sighseeing but easy enough to get a taxi /subway into more central areas. There is an area about 20 mins walk away with loads of restaurants.

    • Mark says:

      We’ve booked Plaza Seoul, easy to get to, close to restaurants and as Marriott gold we get lounge access and breakfast.

    • Gavin says:

      My wife suggests Samwon Garden and Siksinhot for BBQ, it’s a little pricey, but in reality most restaurants will do you good food. Often restaurants specialise in one type of Korean food. Be prepared for the staff to be concerned that it’s too spicy for you, there is an assumption that westerners can’t handle spicy food.

      My favourite food in Korea is probably korean fried chicken and beer ordered to the park by the Han River though!

      Conrad Seoul is quite nice from what I saw, only been for a drink however.

      • Gavin says:

        For traditional approach you can stay at a Hanok Hotel, perhaps one is available on hotels.com

      • Michael Jennings says:

        It’s a city containing a great deal of good food. Choosing randomly is mostly fine.

    • johnny_c-l says:

      I’ve stayed at the IC Grand Parnas and really liked it. It’s a solid hotel, but location is a little further out than you may be wanting.

      • Jeremy says:

        Would also recommend the IC Grand Parnas if you need to be in Gangnam (for work), was there two weeks ago. I think it’s a bit far from the rest of the city otherwise.

    • Cate ⛱️ says:

      The Seoul Courtyard (Marriot) has been mentioned positively on HfP a few times.

    • Pangolin says:

      Courtyard Namdaemun has an excellent location and is right next to the street markets where food is served. They have an EL (Gold/Plat access) and the staff were great during my 5-night stay there last spring.

      The rates were a lot more reasonable than the true 5-star places but this is Asia and I felt the service levels were definitely 5-star in any case. Bear in mind that Seoul is an expensive city these days and you can put it in a similar bracket to Tokyo, HK and Singapore.

      • Genghis says:

        Thanks all. Taking everything into consideration I went for the Courtyard. Great value (£100 a night on hotels.com, used Tesco voucher as better than 25k Marriotts a night) with a cracking location and EL access. Fantastic.

        • Genghis says:

          Though maybe I shouldn’t have. Just cancelling a booking I had previously made at IC Parnas and it noted, “Thank you for booking direct with IHG®. You are on your way to earning 15389440 points for this stay.” Obviously tracking KRW, not USD. Chances of it paying out? 🙂

  • Daniel says:

    OT. Are there any sign up bonuses for Heathrow Rewards scheme at the moment?

    • Liz says:

      There is still the offer on the Avios site for 3000 pts for £150 spend till the end of the year.

  • Ben says:

    I’m not sure that lack of availability for 2019 means this is about to be killed. I’m pretty sure that each year this has run, availability for the next calendar year doesn’t open up until quite late on. Optiontown are pretty poor at responding to queries so I wouldn’t take that as a signal either – Rob, have you heard other murmurings about this? I hope it’s not being killed off, I find it very useful for my regular trips.

    • Save East Coast Rewards says:

      I was just about to say the same. It happens every year for some reason so there’s no reason to panic just yet. Now there’s CE on domestics I really want to see a CE flight pass. What’s more annoying is they rarely update the destinations list (e.g. they still offer LCY-ABZ despite that route no longer being operated by BA).

      It’s worth noting that the 4 hours notice Flight Pass gets 20 tier points rather than 10 with the other fares. Both can be a good deal. You’re effectively getting 10 TP rather than 5 if you take the 90 day option for dirt cheap fares and if you go for the flexible option then you still save money while getting the top rate of economy TP.

      Neither are good value solely for the TP but if you needed to make the trips anyway these will likely save you money. Also you get On Business points on these, just remember to manually add your number to manage my booking.

  • Dave says:

    Hopefully aerlingus will operate out of Bournemouth, its in great need of some decent connections

  • Louise Allen says:

    I looked at Flight Pass but if I remember correctly, you can’t book in Business and you can’t earn tier points (or avios?) on the flights. So I never signed up to it.

    • Save East Coast Rewards says:

      See my earlier post, you do earn tier points, Avios and OnBusiness points on Flight Pass. I’d never have used them otherwise!

  • Graham Walsh says:

    OT Anyone else having issues logging into Avios? Error on site said to ring them, guy told me best to use Internet Explorer. Well done, I’m on a Mac!!!

    • JamesB says:

      Are you on the UK site? I’ve had issues with it defaulting to the USA site but when I change location to UK it works fine.

    • Intentionally Blank says:

      Every single time. I have to spawn a private window and use that

      Paul

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