Aer Lingus has launched an Avios flash sale. Until Sunday night, you get a 50% discount on the number of Avios required when you book a cash ticket and use ‘Part Pay With Avios’.
You are getting 1p+ per Avios point you spend – and I consider that a decent deal.
You must book by Sunday to travel by 13th March 2024.
You can find out more on this special page of the Aer Lingus website here.
This deal is for cash tickets and not standard reward flights – every flight is available
This offer has run before and tends to confuse people who don’t understand how the Aer Lingus redemption system works when you book via aerlingus.com.
The discount is only available when you book a cash flight and 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 ‘50% off Avios on all flights’. 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.)
Because you are booking a cash ticket and reducing the cost with Avios, potentially to zero, it cannot be changed or cancelled.
What value per Avios do you get with this offer?
Since this offer ran last year, Aer Lingus seems to have introduced tapering.
Put another way ….. the more Avios you use, the slightly worse deal you get – but only slightly. This wasn’t the case in the past, where you got a flat pence per point offer.
Here’s a short haul example:
I can redeem 1,695 Avios for €22 (£19.65) off this example short haul flight, worth 1.12p per Avios.
At the top end – where I am paying for 100% of the flight cost, including taxes and charges – by redeeming 7,765 Avios for €89.82 (£77.65) I am getting exactly 1.0p.
I would still be perfectly happy redeeming for 1p per Avios though.
The Manchester flights are included
For clarity, the Aer Lingus direct flights from Manchester to New York, Orlando and Barbados are included in this offer.
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 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 reviews from last year:
- 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
1p per Avios is a decent deal, especially as you will earn a handful of points back.
You won’t get any bargains but you can book any flight, any day and of course there is nothing to pay for taxes and charges. You can also use more Avios to cover seat selection and luggage fees 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.
Remember that you must travel by 13th March 2024.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (December 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.
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. These points convert at 1:1 into Avios.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive 30,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 30,000 Avios) with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold. You receive 25,000 points if you spend £3,000 in three months and a further 5,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive a huge 100,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 100,000 Avios) with The Platinum Card. You receive 75,000 points if you spend £10,000 in six months and a further 25,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
American Express Preferred Rewards Gold
Your best beginner’s card – 30,000 points (TO 9th JANUARY), FREE for a year & four airport ….. Read our full review
The Platinum Card from American Express
Crazy 100,000 points (TO 9th JANUARY) and a huge range of valuable 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.
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.