MileValue is part of an affiliate sales network and receives compensation for sending traffic to partner sites, such as This compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers. Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Enrollment may be required for select American Express benefits and offers. Visit to learn more.

Note: Some of the offers mentioned below may have changed or are no longer be available. You can view current offers here.

Hey there, you’re reading an outdated post! The updated series from April 2015 can be found here.

This is the twenty-fifth post in a monthlong series. Each post will take about two minutes to read and may include an action item that takes the reader another two minutes to complete. I am writing this for an audience of people who know nothing about frequent flier miles, and my goal is that by the end, you know enough to fly for free anywhere you want to go.

Knowing how to use is crucial for making award bookings with British Airways Avios and American Airlines AAdvantage miles.

Why? displays award space for more oneworld partner airlines than does This post will teach the basics of how to use to book with either currency.

First, you need to sign up for the British Airways Executive Club to be able search. The link is on the top right of Next, you must log in.

Along the left side of the screen after logging in, click on Spending Avios. Several choices will emerge beneath where you clicked. Choose Book Flights with Avios.

On this screen, type in the details of your potential award trip. One trick is that if you’re willing to fly either of two classes, select the higher one. will always display worse classes with space available if the class you want doesn’t have space.

If you’ve selected a route that BA doesn’t fly, a calendar will appear noting that fact. Click the red button that says Include Partners, and you are on your way.

BA doesn’t fly LAX-JFK

If you’ve selected a route BA does fly, a screen will pop up asking if you want a stopover in London. Leave No Stopover selected, and click Continue.

BA does fly LAX-LHR-BUD

If for some reason your dream award does involve flying BA and stopping over in London, you should just search segment by segment anyway. And most likely you are trying to avoid flying BA because of the insane fuel surcharges American and BA impose on awards on BA planes.

Hopefully, if you’re trying to avoid BA, you have selected a date when no award on BA planes is available on your route. In this case, you’ll have the option to click the blue Search button in the Partner airlines box on the left.

If the date you select does have BA availability, it will be shown to you automatically. The trick in this case is to figure out a date that doesn’t have BA availability, search that date, and click the blue Search button in the Partner airlines box.

If the exact date you’ve selected has no availability in any class, you can click to search up to seven days later or earlier. You can continue clicking those buttons to see the availability in your desired date range.

If you find a desirable award booking, and you’re using Avios to book, click continue and book.

If you click on the little “i” icon, you will see why BA wants $311 in addition to the Avios needed to get from LAX to Budapest.

If instead you were just using the search engine but will book the award with AAdvantage miles, note the times, flight numbers, and classes of your desired award and call American, which will have access to the exact same space.

(I wouldn’t recommend using AA miles to book this itinerary. But if you had found space on airberlin for example, this is where you would call AA.) has access to airberlin, AA, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, LAN, Qantas, Royal Jordanian, and S7, which is all of oneworld.

(As of 9/7, JAL availability has not been displaying on for weeks. Hopefully it will be resolved soon. Also shows tons of phantom LAN space that AA can’t book.) is not intuitive, not user-friendly, and not good for visualizing when availability is wide open or hard to find. But it does have great coverage, so it’s an important place to know how to search.

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

Just getting started in the world of points and miles? The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best card for you to start with.

With a bonus of 60,000 points after $4,000 spend in the first 3 months, 5x points on travel booked through the Chase Travel Portal and 3x points on restaurants, streaming services, and online groceries (excluding Target, Walmart, and wholesale clubs), this card truly cannot be beat for getting started!

Editorial Disclaimer: The editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuers.

The comments section below is not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all questions are answered.