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British Airways launches flights to San Sebastián from London City, now bookable on Avios

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Slightly closer to home after the big news that British Airways is launching Portland, Oregon is the announcement that BA is also launching San Sebastián next year.

The flights are set to take place over the peak summer season from July to September, twice weekly. Here is the schedule:

BA7335 Monday and Friday, departing London at 9:10am and arriving at 12:10.

BA7334 Monday and Friday, departing San Sabastian 13:13 and arriving in London at 14:25.

BA E190

The flights will be from London City with BA CityFlyer. The aircraft used is an Embraer E190, with a 2-2 configuration in both Club Europe and Euro Traveller (there is no blocked seat in Club Europe).

Unfortunately – unlike my Portland piece yesterday – I cannot give any personal recommendations for San Sebastián. Do leave a comment if you have any particular recommendations.

The city is nestled in the Basque region of Spain, in the crook of the arm where France and Spain meet. It is just over an hour from Bilbao (home of the Gehry-designed Guggenheim Museum) and just under an hour from the French border.

San Sebastián is famous for its high concentration of bars. Peter Downes, the Aviation Director at London City writes that “As well as the beaches and bars, San Sebastián is a food and cultural capital – home to pintxo delicacies, a multitude of Michelin-starred restaurants and an international film festival. It will also serve as the perfect gateway to popular tourist spots such as the Basque region, Cantabria, Pamplona and the Pyrenees.”

If you’re looking for somewhere to stay, San Sebastián is also home to the Hotel Maria Cristina, which is part of Marriott’s Luxury Collection. For a week night in July you are looking at over €500. A redemption is 70,000 per night, so you are getting 0.7p+ per point.

This flight is now bookable on here – just make sure that you enter either a Monday or a Friday to see availability! Redemption availability should also be good as these flights have just been loaded into the timetable. Here are the Avios pricing options in economy one-way:

  • 6250 Avios + £10.50
  • 4500 Avios + £15.50
  • 3300 Avios + £35.50
  • 2800 Avios + £40.50
  • 2500 Avios + £45.50

The ‘traditional’ Reward Flight Saver fare is highlighted in bold and is the best value option of the five if you value an Avios at 1p. This compares with a hand baggage-only fare of £90 one way, or a return for about £120.

This article in our ‘Avios Redemption University’ series looks at how Avios Reward Flight Saver works on short-haul British Airways flights.

You can see more on the British Airways website.


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (March 2023)

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.

SPECIAL OFFER: Successfully apply for either of the Barclaycard Avios credit cards by 2nd April 2023 and you will be entered into a free draw to win ONE MILLION AVIOS! Full details are on the application forms here (free) and here (paid). This competition is exclusive to Head for Points readers. T&C apply.

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 famous annual 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.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

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

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and unbeatable travel 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 10,500 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers 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.

Until 30th March 2023, the sign up bonus on American Express Business Platinum is increased to 120,000 Membership Rewards points – click here. The bonus on American Express Business Gold is increased to 60,000 Membership Rewards points – click here. T&C apply, see the application forms for details.

American Express Business Platinum

Crazy 120,000 points bonus (to 30th March) and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

60,000 points sign-up bonus (to 30th March) 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 (52)

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

  • Mike says:

    San Sebastian is an amazing city to visit, walk around the old town from Pintxo (tapas) bar to bar or go to one of the many top restaurants.
    I did Ryanair to BIQ and then just over an hour on a direct bus but this extra option looks much better!

  • Nick says:

    Given how far the airport is from the city, looks as if the traditional route of doing a dual-centre stay of Bilbao and Donostía from LHR is still the best way to go (although shamefully I think I did it on sleazy way back when). That said, either way I thoroughly endorse Donostía, it’s a beautiful place I’d be happy to go back to, for all the reasons given above.

  • mradey says:

    Awesome. Just bagged two for the first week (Note: July 13th seems to be the first available date).

    Any recommendations for nice hotel? Will have 9 year old with me?

  • Dan Early says:

    Doesn’t look like any long weekend Fri-Mon availability left already in Economy or Biz!

  • Andrew says:

    Other Bits

    Logan Air’s Dundee – Stansted route (operated under UK
    Government Public Service Obligation) is expected to switch to London City in the Spring.

    This might be of keen interest to users in the Fife area who are being stung for multiple £100 “fines” by Edinburgh Airport for picking up relatives from the £2 drop-off zone rather than the immediately adjacent £5 pick-up zone. It’s just as easy to head North to Dundee as it is to head South to Edinburgh.

    Much discussion about the topic in the Capital and Kingdom’s press.

    • Mr(s) Entitled says:

      Is an easier solution simply to comply with the Airport’s rules to avoid said fines?

      • iain miller says:

        They aren’t fines of course. And unless the airport know who was driving are unenforceable.

    • Lady London says:

      Is there no end to rip-off Britain?

  • Joseph’s mum says:

    OT as no bits – I am travelling on A380 plane LHR- to Singapore , looking for seat selection advice please – looking on seat guru , seems like the only downsides are no windows for some seats . Are there any recommendations please? Travelling as a couple . I don’t want to pay for seat selection…my husband has a serious health issue so I’m hoping that some kind hearted BA rep will allow us to pick for free ..,! Any I bring too hopeful ..? If not what’s the chance of getting the seats I want 24 hours before…! It’s our first long haul Club World flight, and booked using a 241 , I want to make the most of it!
    Thanks 🙂

    • Mark says:

      See here for guidance:

      My personal recommendation would be the upper deck, although there tend to be fewer of those left 24 hours before. If your preference is for a window seat pair the upper deck is better because of the floor level window storage which gives window seat passengers extra space to store and put stuff. The upper deck also has the big toilets at the front (which depending on your husbands health issues, may make it particularly worth pointing out). That said I wouldn’t hold your breath on getting freebie selection….

      The only real benefit to the downstairs cabin is if you’re happy with a pair of rear facing centre seats, those don’t exist on the upper deck and are often among the last to be taken as they are far from ideal if sitting next to a stranger/

      Our last A380 CW flight (to Miami) we were lucky to get a window seat pair downstairs for the outbound (none available upstairs at T-24). On the return we got two centre block seats next to each other on the upper deck (aisle and middle). If you do that the E and F seats are slightly closer together though ours were D and E seats as that was all that was left by way of upper deck pairs. The middle (E) seats aren’t bad (again, assuming you’re happy in the middle) as they have a little more space and are relatively private with the dividers up.

      • Joseph’s mum says:

        Thanks Mark that’s really useful ! And the toilet issue is a factor so will point that out . Thanks again !

        • Mark says:

          No problem. Also worth considering that with most of the window and centre seats you may need to take a step over someone’s legs to get in/out if their bed is extended. The way the seats are laid out, if you’re next to him and he’s in a window/centre seat it will be someone else that he has to step over.

          There are some exceptions for window/centre seats at the back of each cabin section (and, conversely no-one has to step over aisle sets at the front of each cabin section), but otherwise if he can’t manage to lift his feet very high he may need to be in an aisle seat.

          • Joseph’s mum says:

            Thanks- who knew it was so difficult to pick! Hadn’t realised you needed to step over someone either…

          • Mark says:

            The Club Suite seats will be better with all direct aisle access… Will be a while (a few years) yet before those are on the A380s though. In the meantime a lot of people without status pay the inflated seat selection fees to ensure they get what they want.

            Personally I refuse to do it. If you’re selecting at online check-in my recommendation is to have a look at what’s left a day or two before, draw up a preference list based on what’s left and then be on the online check-in at exactly 24 hours before departure to get the best seats that you can from your preference list.

            That way, you’ve still got a good chance of getting two seats together that work for you. In the meantime, it’s worth reading through the comments in the flyertalk article I linked above.

  • Nicholas Blair says:

    SAN Sebastian is a fantastic city. Loads of cafes/tapas bar, lovely architecture and walks by the sea. Would be a super weekend venue 👍
    Merry Christmas to all

  • ChrisBCN says:

    I was in San Sebastian two weeks ago. It’s a lovely place to spend a couple of days, and bar hop taking pintxos in each. There’s a hill with a castle to climb, a promenade to walk along and a small old town to explore. Recommended for a weekend break!

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