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LOTS of British Airways First Class Avios seats to Cincinnati available – often five per flight

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In June 2023, British Airways launched flights to Cincinnati. Because having just 26 existing routes to the United States wasn’t nearly enough …..

Cincinnati is in Ohio, although the airport itself sits just over the state line in Kentucky.

This is the only direct flight between the UK and all of Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana.

The service launched with a Boeing 787 without First Class. More recently it has been operated by a three class Boeing 777.

Between 8th January and 30th March, however, it is switching to a four class Boeing 777. This means that eight First Class seats will be available per flight.

Here is a SeatSpy screenshot – SeatSpy is our preferred reward flight finding service – showing days with FIVE First Class seats available for Avios redemption:

If you want to travel in January, there are some days with six seats!

If you don’t need five seats, you have additional days of the week to choose from. There are four flights per week and virtually all of them between January and March have two First Class Avios seats on offer.

Club Suite vs First Class?

One thing to note is that I expect that these Boeing 777 aircraft have the new Club Suite business class cabin – with a door – but the old 2010 First Class seat.

(You could get lucky and get one of the 777 aircraft with the new First Class Suite, but there are only a handful of those in service and Cincinnati is probably not top of the list to get one.)

In fact, it’s the same First Class seat that I reviewed on the A380 – click here.

This means that the gap between what you get in Club Suite and what you get in First Class isn’t huge. Club Suite is actually better in some ways – you get a door to your suite, you get a huge high definition TV, you can watch TV during take-off and landing etc.

Looking at flights next spring, the cash difference between Business Class and First Class is only £200 each way, reflecting the very modest gap in what you get.

However, if you want to give British Airways First Class a try – especially if you want to bring your family – this is a great opportunity.

What can you do in Cincinnati?

According to British Airways:

Affectionately nicknamed Cincy or the Queen City, the area is home to world-class museums, more than 50 breweries, the USA’s largest Oktoberfest, three major sports teams spanning American football, basketball and football, and the Krohn Conservatory, an Art Deco greenhouse featuring 3,500 plant species from all over the world.

It’s renowned for its Cincinnati Chili, handmade ice cream and beer, whilst acting as a gateway to Northern Kentucky and the famed Bourbon Trail, a playground for bourbon-lovers. In addition, Kentucky is also synonymous with gorgeous rolling hills and bluegrass music.

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (March 2024)

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.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

40,000 bonus points 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

Crazy 120,000 points bonus (to 9th April) and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

Huge 60,000 points sign-up bonus (until 9th April) 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 (49)

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

  • Brendan says:

    They switch to the 787-8 with the old Club World seats during peak season 🙁

  • PH says:

    Rob – what makes you think it won’t be an unrefurbished 777 with 14 old F and old CW? (Meaning F is more of a step up).

    In any case, surprised they are operating F and not just holding the cabin back for J overspill

    • Rob says:

      I did a couple of dummy bookings and it came up with 8-seat F aircraft. That’s not to say that every flight will be like that. In theory the 777 refurb programme is done any day now anyway.

      • Mark says:

        Except who knows what is happening with the three 777-200ERs that were refurbed with a 14F cabin for Gatwick services before BA abandoned F from Gatwick and switch them to Heathrow services, still with the old CW.

  • Alex W says:

    Any frequent flyers going to Cincinnati MUST take the 75 minute drive to the National Museum of the USAF near Dayton. Far and away the best aircraft museum in the world.

  • Stuart says:

    At the rate BA is focusing on USA destinations we’ll be getting direct Heathrow to Brockway, Ogdenville and North Haverbrook (and HfP will have articles about F/J seats/F&B, lounges etc.) before directs to the metropoleis of Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Seoul, Osaka etc. (all of which other European legacies fly to from their hubs). Has it been officially announced yet that Qatar Airways is also British Eastbound Airways? Come on Rob/Rhys please more articles about the UK’s true national airline: AFKL (and their partners).

    • JDB says:

      Why wouldn’t BA focus on what it deems the most commercial routes? It’s in the interest of passengers for BA to make as much money as possible that can be reinvested into new aircraft, Club Suite, service, lounge refurbishment etc. so while they are short of aircraft they are going to focus on the most profitable routes. The Asian routes you mention are significantly less profitable, tying up aircraft for twice the time vs many US routes, fares are less good and on some routes cargo opportunities are less.

      The UK has very close business, cultural, language and family/friends ties to the US which creates big premium demand vs Asia. The fact that other European legacy carriers fly there (some as part of deals following privatisation) shouldn’t be relevant to BA’s route planning and have you seen some of those carriers margins vs IAG?

      • Joe says:

        I think the point is that BA as a business flies to many US cities that most points collectors just don’t want to visit. There is a disconnect isn’t there. Industry/commercial/oil/finance centres don’t generally make attractive points redemptions. If BA only flies routes that are guaranteed profit makers (business routes) at the expense of marginal profit routes (leisure) then what choice will people have to spend their Avios? It makes Avios much less appealing when the only destinations with regular premium availability are second tier US cities.

        • PH says:

          There is an advantage to starting a trip in Pittsburgh, namely you can be through US immigration in 30 seconds with the right CW seat. Even if you were last off the plane, the wait would be fine as BA is the only long haul international route and there aren’t any other international arrivals at the same time. Officers also much more pleasant than EWR/JFK and some other larger cities. Unfortunately BA arrives a bit late for same day domestic connections

          • Londonsteve says:

            With such a paucity of international flights, I’m surprised some of these airports in the US maintain an immigration service. Someone, somewhere is paying the price to keep adequate staffing of their immigration and customs capabilities in order to process a handful of flights. I guess that for some of these secondary cities having a direct flight to London (with its plentiful onward flights to the continent) is important for reasons of prestige or hoped-for future economic development and therefore some subisidies are involved which might extend to paying the wage bill for US immigration staff that wouldn’t be justified by the number of flights alone. Must be a pretty cushy job for those employees.

    • Bernard says:

      BA is a business. It uses its assets where returns are best. Why would it fly low yield, long expensive route ( both in fuel and aircraft utilisation)?
      Contrary to belief in places like Flyertalk, airlines don’t plan based on planting flags on maps.
      Seoul already has two airlines running direct, KL is a bit of backwater nowadays, and Bangkok also has both Thai and (the superb) EVA Air on it. Plus there’s so many connections over the Middle East why would BA want to commit aircraft to probably profit marginal routes like these (at best)?
      Frankly it’s more surprising they still bother with Sydney. Though I wonder how that will last when Qantas go non-stop

      • Matt says:

        The Simpsons reference made me smile.

        • Stuart says:

          That was the aim 🙂
          As the BA to US only rather than to mega-cities eastbound had been done to death – but some still jump in with the “BA only flies profitable routes/aircraft usage” but fail to notice the other big Euro carriers can manage it.

          • JDB says:

            @Stuart – I don’t think anyone has failed to notice that some other European carriers fly to more Asian cities but maybe you haven’t noticed just how poor their profitability is. Some of those routes are also only flown to comply with obligations imposed when state carriers were taken over by foreigners.

            I’m sure you have noticed that Virgin operates a similar route policy to BA. The UK government offered no support to airlines beyond that available to all during Covid, unlike continental European airlines. This makes it all the more necessary for VS and BA to focus on profitability and cash generation rather than any vanity routes.

        • Lev441 says:

          Monorail… monorail.. monorail..

    • Paul says:

      As someone said, it’s but a few hours from Cincinnati to Knoxville and the Sun Sphere – which is still there, but empty of wigs, at least when we went.

    • lumma says:

      I’d be more worried about direct flights to Tahiti having brief layovers in North Haverbrook

  • cin4 says:

    Absolutely not worth it with the absurd surcharges.

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