Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

BOOK NOW: BA relaunches Abu Dhabi, wide open for Avios redemptions

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British Airways is returning to Abu Dhabi after a four year break.

Flights will operate year-round and start on 20th April 2024.

For the summer 2024 season it will be operated with a Boeing 787-9, which means the old Club World seat unless you get lucky. Only the 787-10 fleet came with Club Suite installed on delivery. It is implied that the aircraft type may change for the busier winter season although it currently shows a Boeing 787.

British Airways Abu Dhabi flights resume

Even better, British Airways will be using the brand new Terminal A at Abu Dhabi, as seen in the latest Mission Impossible film. This is due to open to the public in two weeks after a bizarrely long construction period.

Whilst Abu Dhabi is well worth a holiday in its own right, it is also a surprisingly quick and cheap taxi ride to Dubai as the airport is on the Dubai side of the city. I have have done this many times, either due to cheaper fares or better Avios availability into Abu Dhabi vs Dubai, or because I managed to use Etihad Guest miles on Etihad.

There will be no change to the existing Dubai flight pattern, with up to three daily flights continuing.

Special cash deals are available

To promote the new route, British Airways is offering discounted fares for bookings made by 12th November 2023.

World Traveller fares will be offered from £449 whilst Club World will cost from £1,999. Amusingly, because there is no World Traveller Plus offer, Club World is cheaper on some dates.

The 12th November cut-off should mean that you could lock in a deal for October half term 2024, as you would be able to book for travel up to 2nd November 2024 by that point.

What is the service pattern?

Flights will operate daily.

The big problem is that the outbound flight is overnight. You will find yourself in Abu Dhabi in the early morning with a good chance of not having access to your hotel room for another seven hours.

The upside is that the return flight time is civilised.

Outbound flights depart Heathrow at 22.25, arriving in Abu Dhabi at 08.30 the next day.

The return flight leaves Abu Dhabi at 10.10, landing at Heathrow at 15.20.

Avios flights are now bookable

Flights are already bookable for cash or Avios.

Remember that there are four guaranteed Club World seats per flight available, plus two guaranteed World Traveller Plus seats and eight in World Travellers.

Club World pricing on a typical off peak date is:

  • 160,000 Avios + £350
  • 130,000 Avios + £640
  • 100,000 Avios + £850
  • 88,000 Avios + £1,240
  • 64,000 Avios + £1,480
  • 50,000 Avios + £1,790

Using a notional 1p per Avios valuation, the best value option would be 100,000 Avios + £850. However, if you are using a British Airways American Express 2-4-1 companion voucher, the first option is the best deal.

If you wanted to lock in a break for late September next year you can do so now. Tickets for later dates will open up at the usual 355 days before departure.

You can check out pricing and availability on here. BA Holidays packages will also be available here.

PS. The image at the top is the Emirates Palace hotel which is now run by Mandarin Oriental


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:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

Get 25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £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. 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.

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.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus 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 (60)

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

  • PB2 says:

    Don’t forget the route to AUH via Doha on Qatar, with the short haul flight to AUH booked as First, so Al Safwa lounge access (in both directions). In-direct obv not for everyone but a nice experience.

    N.b. Lounge currently shut until December.

    • memesweeper says:

      737 crash-max on the short connection. First seat is not an ejector.

    • Thegasman says:

      I thought they had scrapped Al Safwa access for short haul connections in First? It’s essentially a PE style seat & J level food/drinks as well so not worth adding a connection just to sample.

      • Blair Waldorf Salad says:

        It quietly came back

      • Chaz says:

        You can absolutely access Al Safwa (when open) on a First short haul ticket, which is what J books into. I had 7 hours in Al Safwa due to a delay – even managed to get in the hot tub. Q-Suite the rest of the way.

  • Danny says:

    Absolutely no premium economy reward flights available.
    How can this be if BA promise at least 2 on every flight?
    Maybe @rob can help

  • Blair Waldorf Salad says:

    Love an overnight to the Gulf. Means a long weekend from work is a possibility. I am straight into my pyjamas once boarded, and back at my seat with slippers and the duvet over me while Y passengers are still boarding. Maximises the sleep time to tide you over in case early check in is unavailable. One just needs to ensure anything useful for first half-day is packed together for easy access on arrival at the hotel if the luggage store needs to be used. I’d probably then return via DXB to minimise the use of precious holiday allowance.

    • lumma says:

      Completely agree, two of the BA flights to Dubai have similar flight times and the other one lands at 23.45, so with that one you’re paying for an extra night in a hotel when you’re likely to be checking-in at around 1.30 in the morning.

      Even if Emirates/Etihad have a morning flight that will get you there early evening, I’d rather fly in the evening on this timing that drag myself to Heathrow early doors.

  • Ross says:

    Prices are ludicrous in WT+ or J exAUH to LHR. Saving almost 75% going from DXB.

  • Alex Sm says:

    You can always slot in a slow breakfast / museum / business meetings in the morning and get to your hotel at noon / early lunchtime with a good chance for complimentary early check in as the hotels are often operate well below capacity

  • Michael C says:

    Is there no love for the Hilton London Heathrow Airport, with (I believe) a covered walkway to T4?! We’re actually going to T5, but in no great rush.
    Have done the HfP fave of HGI before, but it does have the walk to the tube in what, pursuant to Murphy’s Law, will be pouring rain!
    Option 3 will be old fave Premier Inn T5 with the bus in the morning.
    All similar prices.

  • will says:

    What’s BA’s position presently on e-vouchers?
    I’ve just tried to make a holiday booking using them and been told I cannot use them on a holiday booking and that they will instead be refunded.

    They were acquired as a cancelled part avios booking so I very much doubt they’ll be able to refund them.

    Had to pay the holiday balance on cc as I’d left it to a few days before to sort.

    • Bill says:

      I had all of my part Avios vouchers refunded in cash. Built up from the wonderful quadruple value weekend deal in august 21.

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

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