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BA Euroflyer confirmed as not qualifying for ‘double Avios’ Gold Priority Rewards

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If you have British Airways Executive Club Gold status, the ‘Gold Priority Reward’ was one of the most valuable but least known perks.

Most of the value in it disappeared when the ‘£1 taxes and charges’ Avios redemptions were launched. On top of this, after a period of contradictory behaviour by phone agents, it is now confirmed that BA Euroflyer services have joined BA Cityflyer as being blocked from Gold Priority Rewards.

Let”s go back to first principles however ….

British Airways Gold Priority Rewards Avios

What is an Avios ‘Gold Priority Reward’?

Very simply, a British Airways Executive Club Gold member can book a seat on ANY British Airways flight using Avios.  The catch is that you have to use DOUBLE the normal amount.

You cannot use an American Express 2-4-1 voucher, a Barclays Avios upgrade voucher (albeit the T&C do not exclude this) or a Gold Upgrade for One or Gold Upgrade for Two voucher.

Your flight must be booked more than 30 days before departure.

Your flight must be booked via a BA call centre.

There is some further information on the BA Gold benefits page here.

There was one other rule with BA Cityflyer

There was one other rule, which is only vaguely covered in the T&C by the line ‘Only available on British Airways marketed and operated flights.’

You can’t use a Gold Priority Reward on a BA Cityflyer service. This means all of the short-haul services from London City Airport.  This is because, technically, BA Cityflyer is a separate business inside British Airways and not treated as part of the ‘mainline’ operation. 

But what about BA Euroflyer?

BA Euroflyer is the new British Airways short haul operation from London Gatwick. Whilst, to the naked eye, it looks identical to the London Heathrow short haul operation, it is run as a stand-alone business.

The key difference is in pay and conditions of cabin crew, which are poorer than those enjoyed at Heathrow and have reportedly led to high rates of staff attrition.

When BA Euroflyer launched, you could book Gold Priority Rewards on its flights. Not all agents would do it, but enough would. When we last wrote about Gold Priority Rewards in May we said – based on reader feedback – that they could be booked on BA Euroflyer and that you should call back if you got an unhelpful agent.

Something has now changed, potentially in the guidance given to agents rather than the policy itself.

It is now not possible to book BA Euroflyer services as a Gold Priority Reward. BA HQ has confirmed this to me.

Using Gold Priority Reward on BA Euroflyer

That said, you’re not missing much now

A few years ago, British Airways added the option to use lots more Avios but pay only £1 of taxes for short haul flights. This is the default pricing option that now gives you.

This is usually a bad deal. My personal view is that British Airways made a mistake here, because most people are more Avios constrained than they are cash constrained. There is no point saying how wonderful it is to pay just £1 in taxes and charges when the Avios component is ludicrous.

Using the Hamburg as an example, you can – for Economy – choose to pay for a peak return flight:

  • 19,500 Avios + £1 or
  • 10,500 Avios + £35 (this is old taxes and charges figure)

…. or various other options.

Gold Priority Rewards price off the £1 rate. This means, if we stick with the Hamburg example, a Gold Priority Reward in Economy would cost you 39,000 Avios + £1 per person.

You can’t use a British Airways American Express companion voucher, so you’d need 78,000 Avios for two people. To Hamburg, in Economy.

You need a pretty big microscope to see the value in that.

Want to fly Club Europe? A Gold Priority Reward to Hamburg will now cost you 65,000 Avios plus £1, return. Bargain.

British Airways Gold Priority Reward

Don’t even think about using a Gold Priority Reward for long haul

There never was any value in using a Gold Priority Reward for a long haul flight but now it has just got silly.

In late 2022, British Airways extended ‘Reward Flight Saver’ to long haul too. The ‘taxes and charges’ element was reduced to fixed rates, starting at £350 return in Club World.

Let’s take one of my regular family runs to my sister-in-law in Dubai. The base rate for a Business Class seat on Avios is now 180,000 Avios plus £350.

Want to use a Gold Priority Reward? You are looking at 360,000 Avios plus £350, return. For one person.

A family of four would be looking at 1,440,000 Avios + £1,400 to fly to Dubai in Club World, return.

Clearly there is some value left – but it was often on BA Euroflyer

It is unfair to say that there is never a way of getting value from a Gold Priority Reward. After all, our readers are still booking them occasionally – it was a reader enquiry which triggered this article after all.

The best use of Gold Priority Reward flights is arguably for ski resorts at February half term.  We have done this a number of times over the years.

This is what is costs to fly to Salzburg for February half-term in 2024, assuming you want well-timed flights travelling Saturday to Saturday which is what ski hotels usually insist on:

British AIrways BA Euroflyer Gold Priority Reward

It’s still a great deal to pay 39,000 Avios plus £1 in taxes and charges to avoid paying £990. It arguably justifies a push for a British Airways Executive Club Gold card on its own if you are getting close.

But, but, but …..

Take another look at the screenshot above. You’ll see that the flight is from Gatwick on BA Euroflyer, which means that it can’t be booked as a Gold Priority Reward.

Not all of BA’s peak season ski flights are from Gatwick. However, many are and they are now unavailable for booking via this route. The same goes for the ‘summer sun’ routes which could also have value as a Gold Priority Reward on peak dates.

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards

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 (41)

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

  • apbj says:

    What, are you suggesting that having a cabin crew member awkwardly address you by name from a list on 1 in 100 flights isn’t enough of a difference for being Gold? 😉

  • alma says:

    Funnily, there is a different kind of “double avios” offer as of yesterday (first I thought this article was about that).

    Earn double avios on up to 10 flights booked between 24 Oct – 21 Nov.
    Not sure if this is interesting for HfP or has already been discussed, but linking here just in case:

  • Richie says:

    How many consider going Friday evening BA LHR-MUC, stay overnight (hotel points benefit) in Munich, then get the train to Salzburg Saturday morning. Avoids crack of dawn hell at Gatwick with all the other families.

    • Londonsteve says:

      It’s so easy it’s a wonder why more people don’t do it considering the obvious savings. Even renting a car is a possibility rather than paying train fares and taxis to get to resort. There are a ton of alternative airports to access the main Austrian resorts and they won’t attract much half term premium: Munich, Memmingen, Nurnberg, Vienna and Linz. I’d even consider flying to Budapest which offers an easy transfer onto an Austrian Railjet at Kelenfold station, just over 5 hours direct to Salzburg on one of Europe’s best trains with regular departures throughout the day. Cheap tickets, too. Budapest accessible from 4 of 5 London airports and from most regional airports in the UK. Combine with a lovely city break before flying back, loosening aching muscles in the myriad thermal baths. £1000 for a Salzburg flight would fund flights to Budapest, 2 nights in the Four Seasons Gresham Palace hotel and all the baths, Michelin starred food and drink you can possibly consume during your stay.

      • Harry T says:

        I’m not sure you’ve seen the price of Budapest hotels recently!

        • Londonsteve says:

          I’m fairly well informed. I take it you consider them expensive? I was looking for a hotel for tomorrow night (a Saturday night booking a day ahead) and for 100 Euros I was spoiled for choice with some excellent options. I wouldn’t call that expensive in the scheme of things. The luxury hotels have increased in price compared to pre-pandemic, that appears to reflect the increased interest in Budapest from the monied traveller who was hitherto a rare species in a city best known for good value partying and cheap beer (rather unfairly, I might add). I still think you can get a night in the Four Seasons on a February weekend (which is very low season for Budapest, it can be bitterly cold and dark) for 350 Euros per room, while travellers content with the Kempinski or Intercontinental will certainly be able to get a room for under 200 Euros. More generally room rates have doubled compared to five years ago, but so have the cost of restaurants, taxis and indeed, local wages and property prices, so the increases are not unreasonable and are reflective of a beautiful city that is increasingly on the radar of the discerning traveller and being whispered in the same breath as Florence, Milan, or indeed, Vienna.

        • Londonsteve says:

          I think the maths still works fine if flights to Salzburg are £1000 return. Assuming a return to Budapest is £200, that leaves £1600 to play with for 2 people. That’ll certainly buy 2 nights at the Four Seasons or Matild Palace and Michelin starred dinners each night, but you might be able to stretch to 3 nights with that sort of budget and enjoy things like spa treatments in the thermal baths and a private guide one of the days as well as executive car transfers.

  • Bernard says:

    And so the steady drip feed of devaluation of avios and reduction in usefulness continues.

  • David says:

    Is there a reason for this? (Other than just “because they can”)

    It’s a strange outcome to allow it on mainline from LHR but not the subfleets from LCY and LGW, especially for something that is used relatively infrequently. Why not just eliminate it completely if that’s what they want? Is there some issue about accounting between the different legal entities?

    • Londonsteve says:

      I suspect it’s partly ‘because they can’, since Euroflyer is a subsidiary, partly because an aspect of Euroflyer’s business model is charging astronomical sums for flights to leisure destinations at certain times of the year (Salzburg during Feb half term, Dalaman and Malaga in the first two weeks of the school summer hols, etc.). Mainline predominantly serves business and VFR traffic which tends to be stable year round, whereas Euroflyer is cyclical to the point that they won’t even fly to half their destinations during the winter timetable. They expressly want to exclude people getting a bargain on key dates, depriving them of the opportunity to sell seats for £500, whereas they cannot exclude it from mainline BA within removing the perk altogether. On paper it’s valuable, until you discover it’s based on the Avios + £1 price x 2, which on short haul can virtually always be beaten for cash, if not with BA then flying with another airline.

  • Jumpers says:

    When I tried to use the Barclays Upgrade Voucher, I was also told that BA Euroflyer was not included.

  • Alex says:

    Euro flyer also doesn’t allow Silver members to have a second checked bag for free.

    • CynicalOne says:

      According to the website, the extra checked bag for silver is indeed included.
      Pulled from the website today, 28/18/2023

      Membership tier Baggage allowance for you and those travelling on your booking reference
      Gold or

      oneworld Emerald

      In any travel cabin:

      1 additional checked bag up to 32kg (70lb). Up to 32 kg (70lb) per checked bag
      This does not apply on a Basic fare, where there is no baggage allowance in any cabin.

      Silver or

      oneworld Sapphire

      2 checked bags up to 32kg (70lb) in any travel cabin

      This does not apply on a Basic fare, where there is no baggage allowance in any cabin.

      The above allowances apply to British Airways, BA Cityflyer or BA Euroflyer flights only.

      You, as the Executive Club Member, must be travelling on the booking for those on your booking to get these benefits.

      These allowances are not available on group bookings or to infants travelling without their own seat. Infants get one 23kg checked bag, no matter their cabin of travel.

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