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SeatSpy fixes Avios reliability and adds American and United reward searches

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For just over a year now, SeatSpy has been a convenient way of finding reward seat availability on British Airways and Virgin Atlantic.

It is by far the easiest way of seeing Avios and Virgin Points reward seats across an entire year without having to search for dates individually.  It is the only service of its type with Virgin Atlantic availability since Reward Flight Finder lost access.

Seatspy logo

Today SeatSpy is launching a number of improvements and additions:

Improved Avios availability data

For a number of months SeatSpy’s Avios availability data has been frustratingly patchy, with a number of outages.

The good news is that this is now over, and SeatSpy has moved to a brand-new data collection system.

SeatSpy will now display accurate Avios availability. There should be no ‘ghost availability’ going forward.

Two new airlines – American Airlines and United Airlines

SeatSpy started with Avios and Virgin Atlantic reward availability before adding KLM and Air France in April 2020.

It now lets you search for reward availability on United Airlines and American Airlines and a beta test of Etihad Airways has recently gone live.

The addition of American Airlines is particularly useful as it offers low-tax domestic US redemptions using Avios.

New Whatsapp alerts

SeatSpy has rolled out Whatsapp availability alerts to Premium and First Class tier users.

This is a good option for snapping up the reward availability that airlines drip feed throughout the year, and should hopefully allow you to react more quickly than if you received an email.

Save over 50% with annual membership and Founder Offer

The addition of American Airlines and United Airlines means SeatSpy has now officially launched in the US. There is a limited-time ‘Founder Offer’ that significantly reduces the monthly or annual cost of membership:

  • First Class membership is $4.99 per month under the Founder Offer ($9.99 normally)
  • Premium membership is $2.99 per month ($3.99 normally)

More information on the membership benefits of SeatSpy are in this HfP article.

These Founder Offers are available for anyone – you don’t have to live in the US – although you will pay in US Dollars. You’ll make a significant saving even if your card charges foreign exchange fees.

Further savings can be had by paying for a year upfront: you’ll save on two months’ membership this way. This also stacks with the Founder Offers, which means you can get First Class membership for 12 months for $49.90.

Conclusion

Perhaps the biggest news here from a UK perspective is the improved British Airways Avios data collection, which means that all searches should be accurate and up to date going forward.

The addition of American Airlines and United Airlines reward availability – on top of Virgin Atlantic, KLM and Air France – now means you’ll also be able to search for availability on many of the world’s largest airlines in one place. American Airlines is a particularly valuable addition as redemptions can also be booked with Avios.

You can sign up for the Founder Offers here.

Comments (31)

  • Liam says:

    I’m just not flying enough right now to sign up to a service like this but the addition of AA and UA availability is very welcome and will be useful when I do start flying a lot more.

  • Mouse says:

    Rhys, do you know whether the UA search also covers UA patners, so that it can be used as a back door to search for availability on ANA and Air New Zealand that can then be booked with Virgin points?

  • Louie says:

    I’d be interested in this for booking Etihad using AA miles.

    However a quick look shows that SeatSpy shows availability in business from LHR-AUH pretty much every day from mid-April to mid-Feb at either 62,613 or 75,015 miles (do Etihad have peak and off-peak?), whilst a quick look on Etihad’s own site shows 114,892 (or thereabouts) or 127,055 (though the lower SeatSpy figures don’t always correlate with the lower Etihad ones).

    I vaguely recall that Etihad’s site works on the basis that you will want to use miles to pay for taxes and charges, but I’m not sure about that. Does that explain the difference or have SeatSpy got something wrong?

    Incidentally, if SeatSpy are right, there is amazing availability for LHR-AUH !

    • Louie says:

      Replying to my own comment, after posting it I had a quick look on FT’s Etihad board and coincidentally, there’s been a relevant post on there in the last few days – https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/etihad-airways-etihad-guest/2035890-115-292-guest-miles-lhr-auh.html. Looks like SeatSpy is pretty accurate at the moment, which is good to know.

    • Rob says:

      Most legacy airlines globally, except BA, put their rewards seats into a designated GDS ‘bucket’. This means that any travel agent can see the numbers, as can anyone with access to a GDS. SeatSpy should be able to jump to 20 airlines very quickly since the IT is simple. It is BA that was difficult because reward seat availability is not visible in the booking system.

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