Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Last call for flight bargains in the British Airways Winter sale

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31st January is your last chance to book in the British Airways Winter sale. You can take a look at what is available via this special page of

(It may or may not be a coincidence that the BA promotion above starts one day later on 1st February.)

Nashville, pictured below, is the star deal, with Club World return seats available for £1,376 in March.  New Orleans is also looking attractive with Club World fares as low as £1,541.

The Caribbean looks interesting – Kingston £1,214, Punta Cana £1,493, San Jose £1,494 and so on.

Don’t forget BA Holidays

As usual, don’t book a Club World flight before pricing it up via BA Holidays – see here.  Adding a hotel or car can often cost little more, and sometimes less, than the flight itself.  BA Holidays also lets you lock in your trip now by only paying a small deposit, with the balance only due five weeks before travel.

British Airways Winter sale

And don’t forget ‘part pay with Avios’

Sale flights are still valid for ‘part pay with Avios’.  How much you save now varies by route and by class, and the value per point tends to get worse the more you try to discount, but it is always worth taking a look at what is on offer for your particular ticket.

A Nashville Club World booking offered me:

  • £50 off for 6,250 Avios (0.80p per Avios)
  • £110 off for 16,000 Avios (0.69p)
  • £150 off for 24,750 Avios (0.61p)
  • £190 off for 34,000 Avios (0.56p)
  • £280 off for 55,000 Avios (0.51p)

There are also deals in Economy and short-haul Club Europe, including short break deals via BA Holidays.

As usual, travel dates are all over the place depending on whether you are travelling short haul or long haul, whether you are flying from Gatwick, City or Heathrow, and what travel class you are flying in.  In general you’ll find you can book up to either May / June 2019 or mid December 2019.

To maximise your miles when paying, your best bet is the British Airways American Express Premium Plus card which earns double Avios (3 per £1) when you book at or via BA Holidays.  You do not get double Avios if you book with the free British Airways American Express card.  Another option is American Express Preferred Rewards Gold which offers double points – 2 per £1 – when you book flight tickets directly with an airline.

(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.)

Comments (177)

  • Shoestring says:

    O/T the good news for flyers – if you *want* GBP to be strong, of course – is that the alternatives, esp EUR & USD, are looking IMV to have a far weaker outlook than sterling. Fed is going to stop its interest rate increase cycle & may even reverse it. Eurozone still a basket case with even N Europe going into recession this Q, on the cards at least.

    GBP not exactly primus inter pares but more like best of a bad bunch with a lot already in the price. Bad Brexit would change all that.

  • @mkcol says:

    OT: My passport surname & current surname are different, as I’ve not updated my passport following marriage yet. I’m considering getting a new BAPP AMEX & wonder if anyone knows if I’ll be ok to just apply using my old surname (it’s part of my current double barrelled surname) to then make the transfer of Avios to EC straightforward?
    AMEX did once, as an exception, do something which circumvented the problem when the card was in current format, but by goodness that was a ridiculous palaver so want to avoid any of that faffing around again.

    • Shoestring says:

      You can perfectly legally carry on using your old surname as long as you like – my wife does after nearly 20 years 🙂

      • Anna says:

        Yup, me too. It’s perfectly fine to carry on using both, e.g. your maiden name professionally and your married name in private life.

    • Nick_C says:

      I went to a lot of trouble with BA and Amex on my partner’s behalf, getting his names to match up on his Passport, Esta, BAEC, and Amex. Then when I referred him for Amex Gold, he applied using his short surname instead of the full surname (his full surname doesn’t fit in the surname field on an Amex application, or on the Amex change of name form, so he used the shortened version.) I only found out when I asked him to transfer some MRs to BAEC and they bounced back. I’ve created a new BAEC member with the short version of the surname, added them to the household account, and the points have now gone across.

      Oh, and although his 24 character surname has three spaces in it, the spaces are stripped out when his boarding pass is printed, making the whole thing unreadable. The cabin crew never know what to call him.

      Keep it simple. And consistent!