Aer Lingus has launched an Avios flash sale. Until Sunday night, you get a 50% discount on the number of Avios required when you use ‘Part Pay With Avios’.
You are getting 1.06p per Avios point you spend – and I consider that a decent deal.
You can find out more on the Aer Lingus website here.
This offer caused some confusion in the HfP comments section, because Aer Lingus hasn’t done a great job of describing how it works.
The discount is only available when you do ‘Part Pay With Avios’. It is NOT available if you try to do a standard Avios redemption booking, either via ba.com or avios.com.
Part of the reason BA flyers are confused is that the site says ‘save 50% when you book a flight partially or fully with Avios’. Because British Airways does not let you fully pay for a flight using ‘Part Pay With Avios’, people assume that the offer is referring to standard redemptions. It isn’t.
When you do ‘Part Pay With Avios’ with Aer Lingus or Vueling, you can pay EVERYTHING with Avios. This includes seat selection fees and baggage charges. If you want to pay literally nothing for your trip, you can.
(You can’t pay for car hire or travel insurance, added during the booking process, with Avios as these are third party services.)
What value per Avios do you get with this offer?
Until Sunday night, you will get 1.06p per Avios when you use them to part-pay for an Aer Lingus flight.
This value may have changed by the time you read, if the £ has tanked / surged against the € …..
Here are some example to prove it:
Long-haul Business Class from Dublin to New York (pricing in €):
Short-haul Economy Class from Dublin to Madrid (note how you can pay 100% of the fare with Avios, pricing in €):
Long-haul Business Class from Manchester to New York (this is a direct flight, pricing in £):
1p per Avios is our target valuation, so I’d say that getting 1.06p via this promotion is a decent deal.
You’ll earn Avios back too ….
Because you are booking a cash ticket, reducing the cost by using Avios, you earn Avios and Aer Lingus status credits when you fly.
Despite Aer Lingus recently joining the transatlantic joint venture with British Airways, Iberia, Finnair and American Airlines, there is no sign of British Airways Executive Club tier points being offered yet.
You can earn status credits in Aer Lingus AerClub, but this is unlikely to be much use for a one off trip.
You CAN earn Avios. There are two options:
- credit to an Aer Lingus AerClub account and then move your Avios into British Airways Executive Club via ‘Combine My Avios’ or
- credit directly to a British Airways Executive Club account
The amount of Avios you earn will differ between the two options.
- AerClub – click here – awards Avios based on the amount you spend. For flights from Dublin it is 3 Avios per €1, with Government taxes excluded from the calculation.
- British Airways Executive Club, as you can see here, awards 150% of miles flown for discounted Business Class tickets
However, be careful.
Heavily discounted business class flights do not qualify for Avios in British Airways Executive Club.
The lowest fare class for business tickets is ‘P’, and ‘P’ earns nothing with BA. Your e-ticket receipt will show the booking class as ‘P/Business’. Unless your ticket is issued in ‘D’ and shows ‘D/Business’. you must credit your flight to AerClub otherwise you will receive nothing.
How do you transfer Avios to Aer Lingus?
I left this to last, even though it is clearly key to being able to book these fares.
Here are the steps you need to follow:
- Go to avios.com and log in with your new Aer Lingus AerClub details
- Under ‘Manage My Account’, select ‘Combine My Avios’. As long as you used the same email address and home address on your Aer Lingus account as you use on your British Airways account, you’ll be able to move Avios across. You can move them back to British Airways via the same route. The transfer is free and instant.
- Go back to the Aer Lingus website, log in and your Avios balance in your Aer Club account will be available to use when you reach the payment page for your flight
If you are thinking about booking a long haul flight with Aer Lingus under this offer, you might want to look at some of our 2022 coverage:
- I tried out Aer Lingus Business Class on the Dublin to New York route, which uses a single-aisle A321LR aircraft
- Here is my review of the US pre-clearance process in Dublin, allowing you to clear immigration in Ireland and land in the US as a domestic passenger, and the ’51st & Green’ lounge at Dublin Airport, used for US departures
1.06p per Avios is a decent deal, especially as you will earn a handful of points back.
You won’t get any bargains – a £1,750 business class flight from Manchester to New York would still require 165,000 Avios – but you can book any flight, any day and of course you can choose to pay £0 towards the taxes and charges, plus seat selection and luggage fees, by using more Avios if you wish.
I want to flag one thing – because these are cash fares at the end of the day, they cannot be cancelled or refunded. Just because you can reduce the fare to £0 by using Avios does not change that. The underlying fare rules of the original cash ticket still apply.
You can find out more on the Aer Lingus website here.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (December 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 with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.
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.
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.
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.