Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Forums Frequent flyer programs British Airways Executive Club Should I resist or yield to urge for a spreadsheet?

  • John 1,095 posts

    You just can’t see enough info at one time on a phone-sized device. I have 3 monitors and sometimes I still need to use a piece of paper as a 4th “screen”, it’s also helpful when I want to draw arrows or stuff (yes there are apps for that).

    Although it doesn’t matter in practice, a spreadsheet is not really the correct tool to store dates (for expiry/cancellation deadlines), the correct tool is a calendar or just a list.

    My life is complicated enough that I can’t be bothered to do intricate “maybe” calculations for avios.

    I just use two simple rules: buy avios for less than 0.65p and sell avios for more than 1p. Though the buy price used to be 0.79p due to nectar and I really want to reduce it to 0.49p but that’s difficult. I still have 600k avios and no idea how to use them though

    AJA 1,158 posts

    Nah just stick with the A4, spreadsheets are for work!

    This retired beancounter begs to disagree. Spreadsheets are wonderful things. And I still use them even though I no longer work.

    Ihar 237 posts

    “To fly. To spreadsheet”. (Actually that’s quite accurate for BA now 🙂 ).

    Whilst not necessary if you are calculating 1p/Avios, it can be used for predicting how many Avios you will have in the future – and to relate that to 241 or upgrade voucher collection/expiry.

    runnerbean 56 posts

    You just can’t see enough info at one time on a phone-sized device. I have 3 monitors and sometimes I still need to use a piece of paper as a 4th “screen”, it’s also helpful when I want to draw arrows or stuff (yes there are apps for that).

    Although it doesn’t matter in practice, a spreadsheet is not really the correct tool to store dates (for expiry/cancellation deadlines), the correct tool is a calendar or just a list.

    My life is complicated enough that I can’t be bothered to do intricate “maybe” calculations for avios.

    I just use two simple rules: buy avios for less than 0.65p and sell avios for more than 1p. Though the buy price used to be 0.79p due to nectar and I really want to reduce it to 0.49p but that’s difficult. I still have 600k avios and no idea how to use them though

    Huh?
    ‘No idea how to use them though’? Are you talking practicalities or destinations?

    Optimus Prime 74 posts

    How do people work out the value of their redemptions?

    What I mean is that when booking CW tickets during school holidays, do you write down something like “120k Avios + £850 vs £9500”? Because some people say you shouldn’t if you’d never pay those prices.

    Also do you compare against the cost of the cheapest and non-cancellable Club Europe/Club World ticket available on your desired dates or a flexible fare?

    ChrisBCN 295 posts

    You just can’t see enough info at one time on a phone-sized device. I have 3 monitors and sometimes I still need to use a piece of paper as a 4th “screen”, it’s also helpful when I want to draw arrows or stuff (yes there are apps for that).

    Although it doesn’t matter in practice, a spreadsheet is not really the correct tool to store dates (for expiry/cancellation deadlines), the correct tool is a calendar or just a list.

    My life is complicated enough that I can’t be bothered to do intricate “maybe” calculations for avios.

    I just use two simple rules: buy avios for less than 0.65p and sell avios for more than 1p. Though the buy price used to be 0.79p due to nectar and I really want to reduce it to 0.49p but that’s difficult. I still have 600k avios and no idea how to use them though

    I suggest you are doing something wrong if you need 3 screens and it’s not enough.

    I suggest you are doing something wrong if you don’t know that you can make a list in a spreadsheet.

    I suggest you are doing something wrong if you have collected that many Avíos with no idea how to use them.

    meta 1,465 posts

    I have a really big spreadsheet which I update once a month mainly because if something happens to me, my partner wouldn’t have a clue. Otherwise, I remember approximate balances (in 1000s) in all our accounts (both airline and hotels and there are a lot), including for example how much is not yet transferred from Amex. I am also well aware where we are with triggering 241 vouchers and expiry dates.

    Metty 88 posts

    I gave up spreadsheets after a secondary inspection at US immigration.

    Transatlantic travel is/was the ideal time to do admin – esp pref-wifi – so I had a hard copy of my numerous Tesco Clubcards .xls spreadsheet with me and worked on it during the flight. Having had a fairly rigorous interrogation and going through all my luggage and iphone photos, the spreadsheet was the thing that caused the most angst. I had to explain to three or four different officers what they were looking at; they were convinced that they were looking at some sort of covert message and once they ‘got’ what a Clubcard was, why would I bring this into the USA where (at that time) there were no Tescos 🙂

    can2 580 posts

    You just can’t see enough info at one time on a phone-sized device. I have 3 monitors and sometimes I still need to use a piece of paper as a 4th “screen”, it’s also helpful when I want to draw arrows or stuff (yes there are apps for that).

    Although it doesn’t matter in practice, a spreadsheet is not really the correct tool to store dates (for expiry/cancellation deadlines), the correct tool is a calendar or just a list.

    My life is complicated enough that I can’t be bothered to do intricate “maybe” calculations for avios.

    I just use two simple rules: buy avios for less than 0.65p and sell avios for more than 1p. Though the buy price used to be 0.79p due to nectar and I really want to reduce it to 0.49p but that’s difficult. I still have 600k avios and no idea how to use them though

    I suggest you are doing something wrong if you need 3 screens and it’s not enough.

    I suggest you are doing something wrong if you don’t know that you can make a list in a spreadsheet.

    I suggest you are doing something wrong if you have collected that many Avíos with no idea how to use them.

    Made me laugh

    can2 580 posts

    I gave up spreadsheets after a secondary inspection at US immigration.

    Transatlantic travel is/was the ideal time to do admin – esp pref-wifi – so I had a hard copy of my numerous Tesco Clubcards .xls spreadsheet with me and worked on it during the flight. Having had a fairly rigorous interrogation and going through all my luggage and iphone photos, the spreadsheet was the thing that caused the most angst. I had to explain to three or four different officers what they were looking at; they were convinced that they were looking at some sort of covert message and once they ‘got’ what a Clubcard was, why would I bring this into the USA where (at that time) there were no Tescos 🙂

    I’d not give up on anything based on TSA/CBP’s judgement — not the sharpest sticks in the world.

    can2 580 posts

    How do people work out the value of their redemptions?

    What I mean is that when booking CW tickets during school holidays, do you write down something like “120k Avios + £850 vs £9500”? Because some people say you shouldn’t if you’d never pay those prices.

    Also do you compare against the cost of the cheapest and non-cancellable Club Europe/Club World ticket available on your desired dates or a flexible fare?

    I don’t think there is an exact formula. I am a bit relaxed on this, I write:
    “85k Avios + BAPP voucher + £49, for two of us vs £1999 cash price”, for instance, where I only consider the cheapest Club fare.

    NorthernLass 8,494 posts

    I don’t pay any attention to people who say it’s only valid if you were going to pay cash prices! Sometimes I do pay cash but that has no bearing on it.

    I calculate the value by taking the cash price at the time of booking, subtracting surcharges and the BAPP fee (if using a 241), then divide the remainder by the number of avios used. It works for me! I like to get at least 2p per avios, but I think my best redemption value ever was for economy MAN-NCE during the Monaco Grand Prix – over 4p per avios. It was in the brief period of the CityFlyer services from MAN – the value would have been a lot lower if we’d needed to route through LHR.

    can2 580 posts

    Wauw @NorthernLass, Monaco GP sounds fun!

    annabh 48 posts

    Can I ask those who work out avios valuations what kind of formula they use? Struggling to get my maths right? So I booked a single from BLL to LCY for avios of around 3500 plus £50 cash. So I value that as £85 single? The cash price is £230 so then how do I work out the cost per avios? Definitely will be setting up a spreadsheet myself.

    AndyGWP 279 posts

    I just:
    – look at the cost of what I’m buying (cash and notional)
    – look at my bank account
    – look at my avios balance

    and then steer towards using whichever has the most sacrificial value… 😂

    Optimus Prime 74 posts

    Can I ask those who work out avios valuations what kind of formula they use? Struggling to get my maths right? So I booked a single from BLL to LCY for avios of around 3500 plus £50 cash. So I value that as £85 single? The cash price is £230 so then how do I work out the cost per avios? Definitely will be setting up a spreadsheet myself.

    I’d do (230-50)/3500 = £ 0.0514 = 5.14p

    If my math is right that’s a very good redemption value 🙂

    Ihar 237 posts

    I’d do (230-50)/3500 = £ 0.0514 = 5.14p

    If my math is right that’s a very good redemption value 🙂

    Me too, if that was the right/best flight. Personally I normally use them only on 241 AMEX for Club/First, where the fees/surcharges start to rack up. So rather than calculate p/Avios, I just decide a. is it a good price vs a cash fare, and b. am I happy to pay it.

    annabh 48 posts

    I’d do (230-50)/3500 = £ 0.0514 = 5.14p

    If my math is right that’s a very good redemption value 🙂

    Me too, if that was the right/best flight. Personally I normally use them only on 241 AMEX for Club/First, where the fees/surcharges start to rack up. So rather than calculate p/Avios, I just decide a. is it a good price vs a cash fare, and b. am I happy to pay it.

    Thanks for the calculations.

    Yes is very good timings as avoids the journey back from LHR as we live in se London especially for May holidays. We are flying from LHR on club Europe out as well as wanted to try the lounges out but no point in business back as this flight will be catered anyway.

    redethernet1 94 posts

    Can I ask those who work out avios valuations what kind of formula they use? Struggling to get my maths right? So I booked a single from BLL to LCY for avios of around 3500 plus £50 cash. So I value that as £85 single? The cash price is £230 so then how do I work out the cost per avios? Definitely will be setting up a spreadsheet myself.

    Cmon no-one would pay £230 to go Denmark

    annabh 48 posts

    Can I ask those who work out avios valuations what kind of formula they use? Struggling to get my maths right? So I booked a single from BLL to LCY for avios of around 3500 plus £50 cash. So I value that as £85 single? The cash price is £230 so then how do I work out the cost per avios? Definitely will be setting up a spreadsheet myself.

    Cmon no-one would pay £230 to go Denmark

    That’s not return, that’s coming home! Think is because flies back to LCY on sun air the smaller dornier. Yes is cheaper to LHR but as is half term and is legoland there isn’t cheap for those dates.

    NorthernLass 8,494 posts

    That’s probably a better deal than going to Legoland Windsor! Also there is apparently a Viking place in Billund which looks really interesting.

    BBbetter 821 posts

    Although it doesn’t matter in practice, a spreadsheet is not really the correct tool to store dates (for expiry/cancellation deadlines), the correct tool is a calendar or just a list.

    A calendar for such things is highly limiting. Limits the ability to add comments, notes etc.
    There are subs that you need to renew with a new email id to get the new user discount.
    Or, car insurance, you need to research 25 days before renewal.
    Many subs, you don’t need to wait until the last day to renew.
    In fact it’s risky to leave it to last day (Virgin credit card annual fee is non-refundable). You need to start planning ahead.
    List them on a spreadsheet, sort them by renewal dates and you can focus on tackling them one by one. As simple as that.

    zapato1060 719 posts

    I have a one way to PVG in J (returning Y via KUL) which is coming in at 14p. I dont know if I should even be counting it as its quite ridiculous. Return draws a 5p so ive gone with that.

    marshy11 248 posts

    Although it doesn’t matter in practice, a spreadsheet is not really the correct tool to store dates (for expiry/cancellation deadlines), the correct tool is a calendar or just a list.

    A calendar for such things is highly limiting. Limits the ability to add comments, notes etc.
    There are subs that you need to renew with a new email id to get the new user discount.
    Or, car insurance, you need to research 25 days before renewal.
    Many subs, you don’t need to wait until the last day to renew.
    In fact it’s risky to leave it to last day (Virgin credit card annual fee is non-refundable). You need to start planning ahead.
    List them on a spreadsheet, sort them by renewal dates and you can focus on tackling them one by one. As simple as that.

    I love a good spreadsheet but disagree that a calendar is limiting. I use ical and it’s the best tool for all those things you mention it can’t do.

    I set up a category (colour coded) and can share with anyone in my contacts/email addresses. The calendar for the cars for example can include anything – purchase dates, mot & vel reminders. There is plenty of space for notes, so you can record new tyres at 40000 miles for example, which garage, how much they cost and can search by word for all those entries.

    I wouldn’t be without excel (may have a look at Numbers as lifelong mac user) but I would never go without ical.

    can2 580 posts

    Who is going to develop a quick tool to sync Numbers coloumns with iCal?

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