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Forums Frequent flyer programs British Airways Executive Club Adding positioning flight to companion redemption from Madrid

  • Iainm

    Hi there.

    I have a 2-4-1 redemption From Madrid to South America later in the year.

    I’m in Scotland so my positioning flight would start in Glasgow.

    Is it possible to add the GLA-LHR + LHR-MAD to the booking and enjoy the savings?

    It seemed impossible when I booked. It did let me add MAD-LHR on the way back, but not to GLA as well, and in any case the amount of avios seemed excessive.

    If that isn’t possible, and I use another voucher for GLA-LHR-MAD, would it be possible to link the bookings? Would be great if we could check bags right through, or at the very least have some comfort that if there is an issue with flights to MAD then we won’t run the risk of being a no show for the long haul from Madrid.

    Aston100

    Regarding the last part, I made a similar enquiry recently and Iberia CS told me that they won’t through-check bags made on separate bookings (nor where there is 10+ hours between flights) even on Iberia to Iberia flights.

    Scott

    If you add the outbound positioning flight, then you lose the cost benefit of flying from MAD, you’d be charged long haul APD plus other spurious surcharges.

    For inbound it should be possible if there’s reward availability for your dates, I’ve been able to price it up ok on iberia.com but as you’ve found out, the ba.com booking engine doesn’t offer this option, so would require a phonecall.

    I’ve done pretty much what u are trying to do.

    Booked return Madrid to Santiago on iberia using 2-4-1 (400 pounds and 75000 all in off peak)
    Separate reward flight saver from UKto madrid for 1 pounds. And I know I’ll have to collect bags and check them in.
    As for the return, it’s probably cheaper to get a cash ticket.
    I guess in theory I could add a reward return leg to voucher, but with cash flights as little as 35 quid for one way from madrid to the UK it’s not worth it for me,(I am BA silver) when factoring in tier points and avios on cash ticket.

    ChasP

    go the day before and start your holiday in Madrid !
    excellent museums, dinner in Plaza Mayor; the sort of train links to city centre that LHR will still be dreaming of in a hundred years time

    Iainm

    Thanks for the responses.

    Yep, I had forgotten about APD, so that does indeed mean I wouldn’t be wanting to do it on one booking. (Cheers Scott).

    Point taken on just booking a cash flight to get home, problem is I have no status, it’s two segments and I’d like business so I can relax and get a shower when I get back to Madrid.
    It’s probably worth a call to BA to see whet the cost would be to add the flights on the way back

    The other thing I was wondering about about linking the two bookings is in case there was any issues or delays getting out to Madrid for the flight down to Montevideo. Could I phone BA to do so on the off chance I end up missing the flight?
    The other option is to go to Madrid the day before, but with the flight leaving there at midnight, it would be a long day.
    Also probably worth a call to ask.

    Thanks for the advice!

    NorthernLass

    BA won’t link the bookings. You’d be fairly safe with an early flight to MAD if your connection doesn’t leave until midnight, but these things can always go wrong as one reader discovered last week on returning from the US and finding his domestic flight home had been cancelled.

    I think @Kiley meant book a cash ticket from MAD-LON, cash fares one-way on long haul flights are astronomical – you’d be better booking the whole thing with cash and saving your 241 for another trip.

    I think @Kiley meant book a cash ticket from MAD-LON, cash fares one-way on long haul flights are astronomical – you’d be better booking the whole thing with cash and saving your 241 for another trip.[/quote]

    Obvs!

    Iainm

    Yes, I got that, my point on the segments was that I was going to Glasgow and not London.

    Scott

    I recently priced up the additional cost of adding the two inbound connections to a long haul on Iberia (halved the Avios reqd as it would be on a 241) vs standard BA reward flights vs cash cost, and valuing Avios at .67p all 3 options came out fairly similar, about 200-230 in economy for 2 people.
    The one benefit of adding to your 241 booking would be luggage checked right through, the downside it requires a phonecall.
    Also you could fly direct to Edi on Easyjet.

    Colin MacKinnon

    We often go from Scotland to the Americas via Madrid. So much cheaper – and nicer – than Heathrow!

    We take Easyjet from Edinburgh – both ways.

    Now, it may seem like there is a long wait between the arrival and the 6pm-ish Easyjet flight. And there is! But it is not as long as a delayed flight to Heathrow because of winter fog etc and then a delayed flight to Edinburgh – so arriving after the Easyjet flight!

    So now we take the inter-terminal bus to T1 and check in our Easyjet bag. Even though it is five hours before the flight, it has never been an issue. They have even checked in a large cabin bag free too.

    Then we take an Uber (c 5 euro each way from the pick up area outside T1 above the car hire offices) to https://www.deleiterestaurante.es/ – a fabulous tapas style local restaurant, husband and wife operation. They cook what you want and just make as much as you want to eat – and some interesting Madrid (! yes!) wines.

    Nice Priority Pass liunge in non-Schengen T1 – good food and nice view of the airfield.

    Easyjet direct to Edinburgh misses Heathrow hell and French ATC strikes! And if you are the last to board, you can often spot an empty row of three seats, so get that Club Europe experience for the cost of a meal deal!

    Colin MacKinnon

    For a shower, there is a day room hotel in T4, but it gets booked up well in advance. The Iberia arrivals lounge – which was in that hotel – was a Covid casualty.

    There is a sign for a VIP lounge near the left luggage office in T4, but I don’t know if it is Private Jet or general public – the Spanish seem to label all lounges as VIP!

    ps to edit: just seen the T1 Cibeles lounge says it has showers! They take Priority Pass.

    https://www.aena.es/en/madrid-barajas-adolfo-suarez/vip-services/vip-lounge/cibeles-vip-lounge.html?p=1575047980791

    Vit

    @Colin MacKinnon Thanks for such useful info and insight. We have been to Madrid once back in 2015. We have booked F from INV-LHR-SCL using 2-4-1 for Q1 2024 but now looking for options to get back.

    1st question, we are not sure if we can use tag IB flight to the existing BA flight and thus use another half of 2-4-1 to save on avios? As we live in Scotland, EZE from MAD – EDI would do. 🙂

    2nd question, we are also looking to save on tax and surcharge if possible. Been looking at GRU but actually want to visit EZE and fly out of there.

    Vit

    Also has anyone experience similarly? when trying to book flight from exGRU? When click on the flight option it shows avios + very little tax but when selected and on to the next page, the tax and surcharge increase massively?

    NorthernLass

    @Vit – hasn’t BA kiboshed the low-tax option from GRU by bringing in RFS pricing? Same for Hong Kong IIRC.

    Vit

    @NorthernLass IIRC as I have been looking at that exGRU for quite some time even before the RFS pricing late last year, it has always been (strange) like that. Basically showing low tax and non-surcharge until you selected the flight option to the next screen where the high tax + surcharges are presented. 😀

    But I don’t think it will affect us as such as mentioned fairly above, we will stick with IB from either SCL or EZE to MAD and EZY home but we need to know if we can combine BA (outbound) flight from INV with IB (inbound) flight into MAD and get 50% avios back.

    Hopefully someone with similar flow of itinerary can confirm.

    NorthernLass

    It’s still early days for using the 241s on IB so nobody might have booked this kind of itinerary yet – the easiest thing might be to call BA and ask them what the charge would be in terms of avios and cash. It’s probably worth calling to book in any case given that some CS agents are rather vague about the process and there have been cases recently of people (including me) being refused the 50% refund (I eventually got it by calling the Silver line but only after 30 minutes going round in circles with a very unhelpful chat agent!)

    Omegaman

    I’ve done pretty much what u are trying to do.

    Booked return Madrid to Santiago on iberia using 2-4-1 (400 pounds and 75000 all in off peak)
    Separate reward flight saver from UKto madrid for 1 pounds. And I know I’ll have to collect bags and check them in.
    As for the return, it’s probably cheaper to get a cash ticket.
    I guess in theory I could add a reward return leg to voucher, but with cash flights as little as 35 quid for one way from madrid to the UK it’s not worth it for me,(I am BA silver) when factoring in tier points and avios on cash ticket.

    Sorry to jump in but are those flights business or economy ? I’m looking at doing something similar
    Thanks

    Iainm

    If Anyone is interested, I’m just off the phone to BA.

    I didn’t ask about adding the positioning flight to Madrid in the first place, as was pointed out above that would impact the APD.

    I did ask if they could add the MAD-LHR-GLA flights to my 2-41 booking from GIG to MAD. They could indeed do that, and I would save half the Avios. However, they said that doing so meant I would be charged would be charged BA taxes and charges for the entire journey.

    That would take my taxes from the £175 for 2 (GIG-MAD) to over £1100 !

    Even the guy on the phone said I’d be mad to do that.

    So it’s a separate booking.

    I did look at Easyjet as suggested above by the way, but I’ll be travelling on a Sunday and the flight back isn’t till 2130…too late.

    Scott

    I reckon a different agent, or the pricing team, should have been able to come up with a different result, as Iberia’s site will show a flight back into MAD with onward connections to LHR and GLA at a sensible price.

    I don’t think you’ve lost out though with a standalone flight, you’ll use a few more Avios from not using the 241 but offset by lower RFS surcharges, roughly cost neutral.

    zapato1060

    Sorry to jump in but are those flights business or economy ? I’m looking at doing something similar
    Thanks

    I think it’s biz. If I’m not wrong MAD-SCL return is 85k but guessing they chose second option to pay a bit more tax and less Avios.

    Sorry to jump in but are those flights business or economy ? I’m looking at doing something similar
    Thanks

    I think it’s biz. If I’m not wrong MAD-SCL return is 85k but guessing they chose second option to pay a bit more tax and less Avios.[/quote]

    It’s Biz! Off peak! And was 100 quid per person each way. And a total result as far as redemption goes

    Vit

    @Iainm thanks for the info. I assume you use the exact 241 voucher on your outbound but if I may ask if it is on BA or IB? I am trying to add an IB inbound flight and EZY to EDI. The plan is book full avios on BA site and call in to ask for 50% avios refund.

    Vit

    @NorthernLass agreed. I think data is still very limited. I still have some time left but will try to call into BASilver or maybe can just use YouFirst based on my outbound flight and revert back with any useful info.

    Iainm

    Yep Biz.
    Mad-mvd then gig-mad about 92k avios I think and £400.

    Game changer

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