Insights > How to Book British Airways Flights with Points 

How to Book British Airways Flights with Points 

9 minute read 07 April 2024
united kingdom
Written by: Jordan Rozum

British Airways Avios are some of the best points currencies a traveler can have. Not only are Avios incredibly easy to earn, even if you’ve never flown with British Airways or even traveled to the United Kingdom, but they are also easy to redeem.

Partner flights — such as short-haul domestic flights on American Airlines, a Oneworld alliance partner — are often a great deal. Take a look at the best ways to book British Airways flights with Avios points.

About British Airways Executive Club

British Airways Executive Club is the frequent flyer program for British Airways Avios. When you sign up for an account, you can earn and spend Avios on a flight operated by British Airways or its partner airlines, as well as hotel stays, car rentals, and other purchases.

Transferring points to British Airways Avios

British Airways Avios are perhaps one of the easiest airline currencies you can earn. That’s because the program is a transfer partner of most major travel partners: American Express Membership Rewards, Bilt Rewards, Capital One Miles, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Marriott Bonvoy. 

All of these programs transfer to British Airways Avios at a ratio of 1:1, except for Marriott, which transfers at a 3:1 ratio.

You can also transfer points from several hotel programs to your Avios balance. Here’s how they transfer:

  • ALL Rewards: transfers at a ratio of 4,000 ALL Rewards to 2,000 Avios (may take up to six weeks)
  • Hilton Honors: transfers at a ratio of 10,000 Honors points to 1,000 Avios
  • IHG One Rewards: transfers at a ratio of 10,000 IHG One Rewards points to 2,000 Avios (10,000-point minimum)
  • MeliáRewards: transfers at a ratio of 100 MeliáRewards points to 30 Avios
  • Radisson Rewards: initial transfer of 10,000 Radisson Rewards points to 1,000 Avios
  • World of Hyatt: transfers at a ratio of 2.5 World of Hyatt points to one Avios (5,000-point minimum)

Avios family pooling and setting up a household account

Avios gives you the ability to pool accounts with up to six people who live with you. To get a household account, you’ll need to first decide who the head of household will be, as that person will need to fill out an application. That person will receive communications about the account and will be the only person able to add or remove members and change the home address.

To set up a household account, navigate to “My Executive Club menu” and select “My Household Account.”

Then select “Create a Household Account.”

Fill out the information for each member of your household, and then you’ll have a household account.

Note that everyone in the household account will have the ability to spend Avios from the pooled points. However, members will collect Tier Points and earn and maintain elite status individually.

Benefits of Reward Flight Saver

Reward Flight Saver offers flights at a discount, which comprises a flat fee to cover taxes, fees, and carrier charges and a fixed amount of Avios. You’ll typically pay less in cash plus the difference in Avios on Reward Flight Saver tickets.

Other benefits of booking Reward Flight Saver tickets:

  • Baggage is included
  • Change or cancel bookings ($55 per person)
  • At least 14 reward seats are available on every long-haul flight

To be eligible to book a Reward Flight Saver ticket, you’ll need to have collected at least one Avios in the past 12 months. In practice, this means that anyone transferring points from a credit card program can be eligible for Reward Flight Saver pricing on their first redemption.

British Airways award pricing

British Airways is one of the few airlines to have an award chart for its own flights as well as its Oneworld partners. As you’ll see below, British Airways uses what’s known as a distance-based award chart. That means you’ll pay fewer Avios for shorter-distance trip and more Avios for travel farther away.

So if you were traveling between Zone 1 destinations on British Airways, you could expect to pay as little as 4,750 Avios one way for an off-peak economy ticket.

British Airways award chart

As you see, British Airways Avios are incredibly valuable for short-haul flights across the U.S. Flights booked between Washington (DCA) and New York (JFK) or from Los Angeles (LAX) to Phoenix (PHX) can be found as low as 8,250 Avios each way in economy, as these destinations are within 650 miles of each other. This is some of the best value you can get by using British Airways to book award flights in North America.

Searching and redeeming award travel on British Airways

Once you’ve settled on travel dates, it’s time to search British Airways for your desired flight and book awards. To find availability and book online, you’ll navigate to the home page and select “Book.”

You’ll then select “Book a flight with Avios,” which will take you to the page to book an award flight. Input your travel details and select “Get flights,” which will take you to the award availability.

You’ll see whether the travel date is during peak (blue box) or off-peak dates (red box) by selecting the box at the top of the screen that says “Show peak and off-peak periods for British Airways.” Generally, you’ll pay fewer Avios when booking off-peak award tickets. 

Next, you’ll see a box with flight details and cabin-class availability. Select your cabin preference for each flight segment — economy class, business class, or first class — which will then show you the number of Avios needed for booking.

Note that you’ll typically incur high taxes and carrier-imposed surcharges on award tickets for flights departing from London airports, like London Heathrow or London Gatwick.

If you’re short on Avios, you may select “More pricing options,” which will show you alternatives requiring fewer Avios but more cash. After selecting your itinerary and ensuring enough Avios are in your account, you can book the ticket.

Of course, the magic of point.me is that all of this is handled for you. Our real-time search and booking engine combs through more than 100 different airline reward programs to determine the best use of points based on your specific situation, freeing you up to plan the rest of your trip.

Using Avios points for flights on Oneworld partner airlines

Even if you don’t plan to fly to the United Kingdom, British Airways Avios are incredibly important to have. That’s because British Airways is a Oneworld member, an alliance that also includes American Airlines. 

That means you can book American award flights with Avios, as well as flights operated by other Oneworld partners: Alaska Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, Qatar Airways, Royal Air Maroc, Royal Jordanian, and SriLankan Airlines.

The airline is also a codeshare partner of Aer Lingus and Iberia, so you can book flights with those carriers as well.

Read our guide to airline alliances to learn more. 

Avios chart for British Airways partners

If you’re unsure about the distance between two destinations, you can use the Great Circle Map to calculate the distance.

Other benefits of British Airways Executive Club

When you join the British Airways Executive Club program, you won’t just earn and redeem Avios for reward flights. You’ll become a Blue member simply by signing up, giving you the ability to collect Avios and Tier Points, plus take advantage of members-only offers. And as you progress in the program, you’ll earn even more benefits, such as priority check-in and boarding, airport lounge access, and free seat selection.

How to join British Airways Executive Club

Joining the British Airways Executive Club is pretty straightforward. You’ll visit the British Airways website and select “Log In.” You’ll then select “Join Executive Club” on the bottom right-hand part of the screen.

You’ll fill in your identifying details, and you’ll then have a British Airways Executive Club account, giving you the ability to earn British Airways Avios for flights!

Using point.me to redeem Avios points

To use point.me to spend Avios points on a reward flight, you’ll search for your flights by inputting your starting and ending locations, dates, number of passengers, and booking class.

You can then isolate British Airways flights by selecting British Airways, or any other Oneworld partner airline you’d like to book with. Once you’ve settled on an itinerary, point.me guides you through the points transfer and booking process with step-by-step instructions. You can then add your six-digit confirmation number so we can monitor your trip.

Frequently asked questions about booking British Airways flights with points

How do I pay with Avios points on British Airways?

You can spend Avios points on British Airways by using Avios to cover the entire cost of a flight (minus taxes and fees) or just part of one with as little as 1,000 Avios.

Are flights cheaper with Avios?

Flights can be cheaper with Avios, especially on short-haul domestic flights flown by American.

How do I connect British Airways to Avios?

You no longer need to connect British Airways Avios on Avios.com. However, you’ll have to use the same information for all of your Avios accounts — British Airways, Iberia, Qatar etc.

Read more about airline loyalty programs and how to use points

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