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Do I get additional Avios seat availability as a British Airways Gold member?

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Do you get additional Avios seat availability as a British Airways Gold member?

Today I want to look at whether British Airways makes additional Avios seats available for booking for Executive Club Gold card members.

In short, yes, it does.

Do I get additional Avios seat availability as a British Airways Gold member?

For the general membership, British Airways guarantees to offer four business class, two premium economy and eight economy tickets available for Avios redemption per flight.

In addition, British Airways typically releases supplementary seats (including First and World Traveller Plus where there are no guaranteed seats offered) depending on the performance of the route. In low season you may be more likely to find such availability as British Airways has fewer full-fare paying customers vying for the same seats.

Avios availability is opened to booking at midnight GMT 355 days before departure though, as stated above, they may add additional seats incrementally throughout the year.

Gold card members see better Avios availability in Economy / World Traveller than other members.  If you are in a Household Account and only one of you is Gold, make sure that you search for seats via the Gold cardholders account to maximise your chance of finding something.

British Airways Executive Club Gold members do NOT get better availability in World Traveller Plus, Club World / Club Europe or First Class.

What happens when there are no Avios reward seats available?

There are two further options available if British Airways is not showing any available seats for Avios.

As a British Airways Executive Club Gold card holder, you can force British Airways to open any seat for Avios redemption as long as it is available for cash.  The snag is that each seat acquired this way costs double the Avios of a usual redemption. This offer is not available online – you must call your Executive Club service centre.

This is possible up to 30 days before departure.  It can be exceptionally good value at peak times, especially over half term when flight pricing is exceptionally high to popular destinations.   This is called a Gold Priority Reward and I explain how they work in this article.

If you are a Gold Guest List holder, which admittedly requires a crazy amount of British Airways flying, there is another option.  (You can learn about Gold Guest List in this article.)

Twice a year, Gold Guest List members are given a redemption ‘joker’, allowing them to open up to five seats for Avios booking at the standard rate. Crucially these jokers give you the opportunity to redeem in all four cabin classes on British Airways and you can use it alongside a British Airways American Express 2-4-1 voucher.  Such redemptions are only permitted once across an entire flight – if someone else has used their ‘joker’ on that aircraft, you will have to select an alternative.

(This article is part of our ‘BA Q&A’ series which explains how British Airways Executive Club works.  You can see all of our ‘BA Q&A’ articles here. )

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How to earn Avios from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (April 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 £15,000 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

Huge 30,000 points bonus until 12th May 2024 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 sign-up 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.

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