The mystery of the missing British Airways First Class Avios redemptions over the past year is one that even Sherlock Holmes himself would have struggled with.
Personally, I assumed that this was due to First Class now only being available on part of the long-haul fleet. With aircraft being moved around at short notice, BA may have avoided releasing Avios seats because it was on the hook for hefty downgrade compensation if your aircraft type changed.
Whether true or not, First Class seats have now opened up to selected US cities for July and August – if you are happy paying almost £1,000 per seat in taxes and charges.
The image above is the new First Suite which you’ll only find on selected aircraft. Here is our overview of First Suite.
The screenshots below were taken mid-afternoon on Wednesday when this article went up. If you are reading this via email on Thursday, you are likely to see less.
The images are from SeatSpy which is our preferred tool for searching British Airways reward space. You can even set it up to email you when seats become available on specific routes.
The left hand column is outbound, the right is inbound. These are days when at least one BA flight has at least TWO First Class seats available. Solo travellers will find it even easier.
These are mainly to/from Newark so do not search for ‘JFK’ on ba.com, search for ‘NYC’.
San Jose, California:
You will not see anything for Boston, Miami, Los Angeles or San Francisco. I’m not sure what other US routes currently have First Class.
There appears to be a loosening up of Club World seats too so it is worth looking for those if you are thinking about a US trip.
Remember one thing though. Now that British Airways has brought back its pre-covid cancellation rules, you need to cancel Avios bookings 24 hours before departure if you want a refund. On some routes this may make it tricky to take the required supervised covid test before the cut off point.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (June 2022)
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.
Until 18th July 2022 there is an astonishing special offer on these cards. You get 50,000 Avios on the Avios Plus Mastercard and 10,000 Avios on the free Avios Mastercard. You can apply here. We strongly recommend getting the Avios Plus card whilst this offer is running.
You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:
There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:
You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.
SPECIAL OFFER: The sign-up bonus on Amex Gold is increased from 20,000 Membership Rewards points to 30,000 Membership Rewards points until 19th July 2022. This card is free for the first year.
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 10,000 Avios.
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.
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.
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.)