This is our review of the ‘new and improved’ Reward Flight Finder website.
There are only a handful of third-party miles and points ‘tools’ that I actively recommend. These include:
AwardWallet – the ‘one click’ way of keeping track of ALL your miles and points balances, even non-travel ones
WhereToCredit – the ‘one click’ way of finding out which frequent flyer schemes let you credit a flight taken on an airline you rarely use
StatusMatcher – the easy way of finding out from real case studies who is currently matching your existing airline and hotel cards
The most useful for UK residents, however, was arguably BA Redemption Finder.
BA Redemption Finder was the quickest way of checking Avios availability for British Airways flights.
The great news is that, as of last weekend, it is also the quickest way of checking Virgin Flying Club availability for Virgin Atlantic flights.
This has meant a change of name, so BA Redemption Finder is now Reward Flight Finder and lives at rewardflightfinder.com.
The best bit is that the site is free if you don’t need the advanced features.
How does Reward Flight Finder work?
Reward Flight Finder is a website not an app, but is optimised for both mobile and desktop.
It is simplicity itself. Type in where you want to fly from, where you want to fly to, how many seats and what cabin and you will see – instantly – full availability for the next 355 days. On mobile it looks like this:
Here are some results for two British Airways Club World seats from Heathrow to Tokyo. Dark blue means it is a peak date, light blue means it is off-peak pricing. The left column is outbound, the right is return – click to enlarge:
It gets even better. You can set up hourly email alerts for a fee of £3 per month. Set a date range, route, class and number of passengers and you will be notified when seats become available. Free email alerts are also available if you are happy with daily checking – although to be absolutely certain of getting any seats that come up, the £3 per month route is better.
Reward Flight Finder is so smart that it even, for British Airways searches, shows the extra economy Avios seats made available to BA Gold members.
There are a few issues:
It cannot handle connections, only direct point to point searches
It does not show oneworld or Virgin Flying Club partner airlines – so for BA it is best used to check availability when you want to use an Amex 2-4-1 voucher. If you are not using a 2-4-1 voucher you should use ba.com instead as it will show you Qatar, Finnair, Royal Jordanian, American etc as well. For Virgin, you will need to use their website if there are also Delta services to your destination.
There is still a slight delay on the data feed compared to real time availability, but very modest
These are mainly trivial points, however, in the context of what is an amazingly fast and usable site.
Reward Flight Finder also works in reverse
Tim, who runs the site, added a new feature late last year. You can now search BY DATE. The site will show you EVERY BA or Virgin route which has Avios or Flying Club availability in the class of your choice for those dates.
Go to the “I don’t know where I want to go” page, select your dates, number of seats and travel class and run the search:
You will get a map showing you every possible destination on the British Airways or Virgin Atlantic networks which has seats available, in the cabin you want, for those dates:
Obviously you still need to do some work. As well as searching Saturday to Sunday, for example, you would also want to check Saturday to Saturday, or possibly Friday to Sunday. For BA, I would also want to look at First Class as well as Business Class.
There is no option to mix classes, so if you would be happy with that you’d need to do separate one-way searches and try to match places where you can get, say, Business outbound and First back.
This is a real breakthrough for everyone who complains “I can’t find anywhere to go”. If you are restricted on when you can travel, this service will solve your problems.
The “I don’t know where I want to go feature” is NOT free. You need to sign up for the £3 per month subscription (but see our HFP reader offer below) which also gets you hourly searching of your redemption requests instead of daily.
A special Reward Flight Finder subscription offer for HfP readers
Tim has set up a special offer for Head for Points readers which will let you have a month of Elite membership for just £1.
This will give you plenty of time to try out the “I don’t know where I want to go” feature and also to benefit from hourly checking (instead of daily) of your redemption requests.
If you don’t want to carry on after a month, there is a big “Cancel my Elite membership” button on the site home page – Tim doesn’t make it tricky to cancel.
The link you need for the HFP £1 trial offer is https://rewardflightfinder.com/head-for-points.
BA Redemption Finder was already an excellent tool and, now that Virgin Atlantic functionality is added, it is doubly useful. I think Tim has done a great job in creating something in his spare time which is better than anything British Airways or Virgin Atlantic have managed to create with full time IT teams ….
How to earn Virgin Points from UK credit cards (September 2021)
As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Virgin Points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.
You can choose from two official Virgin Atlantic credit cards (apply here, one has a bonus of 15,000 Points):
You can also earn Virgin Points from various American Express cards – and these have sign-up bonuses too.
American Express Preferred Rewards Gold is FREE for a year and comes with 20,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert into 20,000 Virgin Points:
Until 2nd November 2021, there is a special offer on The Platinum Card from American Express.
You will receive a sign-up bonus of 60,000 Amex points which converts into 60,000 Virgin Points.
(Want to earn more Virgin Points? Click here to see our recent articles on Virgin Atlantic and Flying Club and click here for our home page with the latest news on earning and spending other airline and hotel points.)