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Maximizing the redemption value of rewards and perks is often a question of timing, as well as of finding the sweet spots. This couldn’t be more true when it comes to the British Airways Travel Together Ticket, which gives you the potential for significant discounts on British Airways-operated flights.

Understanding when to redeem the voucher can be the difference between saving hundreds vs. saving thousands of dollars.

Let’s take a look at what the British Airways Travel Together Ticket is and the best strategy for redeeming it.

What Is the British Airways Travel Together Ticket?

The British Airways Travel Together Ticket gives you two options for redeeming discounted reward flights. Either you can pay only 50% of the Avios (British Airways’ reward currency) required for a fare when travelling solo, or you can receive a second seat for a plus-one on the same flight and cabin for British Airways flights originating in and returning to the United States.

However, there’s a catch. You’ll need to pay for the carrier charges, fees and taxes. These can really add up, depending on the route and season you choose. 

For example, British Airways currently cites a peak return flight from Los Angeles to London costing up to $651.33 in economy (World Traveller) and $1,984.57 in business (Club World) in taxes, fees and carrier charges.

However, with the right strategy, you can still save thousands of dollars and Avios, even with the taxes on top (more on this later).

How Best to Redeem the British Airways Travel Together Ticket

How to Earn the British Airways Travel Together Ticket

The first step for earning your Travel Together Ticket is applying for the British Airways Visa Signature® Card issued by Chase.

The British Airways Visa comes with an annual fee of $95 and allows you to earn a generous Avios welcome bonus, as well as accelerate Avios earnings on flights, hotels and everyday purchases. It’s also free of foreign transaction fees and gets you 10% off British Airways mainline revenue flights originating in the U.S. 

Once you’re the proud owner of the British Airways credit card, there’s one final step toward earning your British Airways Travel Together Ticket. Namely, you need to spend $30,000 or more in a calendar year with your British Airways Visa Signature® Card to receive the Travel Together Ticket. 

To qualify, the spending has to take place between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31 and exclude balance transfers, withdrawals, fees and interest. Once you’ve reached the required spending threshold, you should expect to receive your British Airways Travel Together Ticket as an e-voucher in your Executive Club account within four to six weeks.

The British Airways Visa Signature® Card also comes with a $200 statement credit toward reward fares on business and first-class flights, which can help reduce the taxes and fees British Airways charges.

Just keep in mind that the British Airways Visa Signature® Card is issued by Chase, meaning that the 5/24 rule applies. The 5/24 rule prevents you from being approved for a card if you’ve opened five or more credit cards with any banks, including Chase, in the last 24 months. This could limit your ability to benefit from and maximize credit card points and offers with other banks.

How Best to Redeem the British Airways Travel Together Ticket

Redemption Rules for the Travel Together Ticket

Firstly, the British Airways Travel Together Ticket is issued in the name of the Executive Club account member whose card reached the spending threshold. This means that only that person can redeem the Travel Together Ticket—it can’t be transferred to another account.

The companion has to travel on the same outbound and inbound flights in the same cabin of service as the member. However, the companion doesn’t need to be associated with the member via a household account or any other affiliation. 

Secondly, the reward flight must originate and return to the United States as part of a round-trip itinerary. Keep in mind that nothing is stopping you from traveling on an open-jaw ticket, which means you’d fly into one city and out of another or back to a different U.S. airport.

Your Travel Together Ticket is valid for 24 months from the date of issue. When booking using your Travel Together Ticket, both the outbound and return flights must be booked at the same time. However, only the outbound journey needs to take place before the voucher expires—the return can happen anytime after expiry, giving you added flexibility when booking. 

Similarly, you can cancel and redeem your voucher again up to 24 hours before your reward flight, enabling you to find greater flight availability without risking your voucher.

Unlike with British Airways’ points currency (Avios), which can be redeemed for reward flights with all airline members of the Oneworld alliance, the Travel Together Ticket can be redeemed on flights operated by British Airways only. Likewise, you won’t be able to redeem your Travel Together Ticket for codeshare flights operated by a British Airways partner with a British Airways flight number. 

How Best to Redeem the British Airways Travel Together Ticket

You also should remember that the British Airways Travel Together Ticket can’t be redeemed in conjunction with other reward perks, such as Gold Priority Rewards. 

Keep in mind that you’re restricted to earning only one British Airways Travel Together Ticket per year. So even if you were to spend $90,000 with the card, you’ll still only receive one companion voucher—not three. 

That being said, there’s nothing stopping you from having two vouchers in your Executive Club account simultaneously and redeeming them on the same flight. 

For example, if you plan your spending so that you can earn one voucher near the end of 2023 and the next one at the beginning of 2024, then you’ll have the maximum amount of time to find flight availability and thus maximize redemption freedom. This could work perfectly for a family of four, enabling your partner and/or kids to travel together.

Availability of seats is sometimes a limiting factor when redeeming the Travel Together Ticket. Many flights don’t have reward seats available, especially for both you and your companion (or more if you have multiple Travel Together Tickets), which can make redemption harder in reality than it appears in theory. 

However, if you can overcome this hurdle and find flight availability, then you can save thousands of dollars in the process. British Airways is one of the few carriers that guarantee four Club World (long-haul business class) award seats per flight, meaning the opportunity for finding seats is much higher compared to other airlines.

Best Ways to Redeem the British Airways Travel Together Ticket

The best way to redeem the Travel Together Ticket is on business- and first-class fares to maximize your savings.

Let’s first take a look at why long-haul economy redemption is not the best option. For instance, an off-peak economy return reward flight from New York (JFK) to London-Heathrow (LHR) costs 50,000 Avios plus $200 per person.

The cash price of this return ticket costs $718.75 per person. So if you redeemed the Travel Together Ticket solo on this flight, you’d save 25,000 Avios and pay only $200 in surcharges. In contrast, if you used it with a companion, you’d save 50,000 Avios and pay a total of $400 in surcharges.

Compared to paying the cash price of this fare for two travelers ($718.75 x 2 = $1,437.50), you’d save $1,037.50 when using the Travel Together Ticket. And if you used the Travel Together Ticket instead of paying for one award flight with Avios and one return fare in cash, you’d save $518.75.

In either case, your savings are significant, and $1,037.50 is no small feat.

However, considering the $30,000 spending threshold that’s required to earn the Travel Together Ticket, there are even better ways to maximize the value of the voucher. For this reason, redemption on business- and first-class flights is often the best option.

For example, an off-peak business class return reward flight from New York (JFK) to London-Heathrow (LHR) costs 160,000 Avios plus $700 per person.

The cash price of this round-trip fare costs $7,377.55 per person. If you redeemed your Travel Together Ticket for a solo flight, you’d save 80,000 Avios and pay only the taxes. If you redeemed it as a companion voucher for a second person, you’d end up saving 160,000 Avios and pay a total of $1,400 in taxes for the both of you.

Again, if you compare the cash price of $14,755 for the same fare for two travelers to the price you’d pay when using a Travel Together Ticket ($1,400), you’d avoid paying a massive $13,355. Likewise, if you were planning on paying for the flight with Avios while your companion paid the full fare, redeeming the Travel Together Ticket in this instance would still save you a whopping $6,677.55 .

How Best to Redeem the British Airways Travel Together Ticket

Is the British Airways Travel Together Ticket Worth it?

If you fly business or first class from the U.S. on long-haul British Airways flights regularly and can meet the annual spending threshold, the Travel Together Ticket could save you thousands of dollars as well as hundreds of thousands of Avios. 

As long as you can redeem the voucher on the flights you wish to take within two years, committing to the spending threshold makes sense.

However, if the spending requirement is already a challenge to meet and you aren’t planning on redeeming on business- or first-class flights, then the Travel Together Ticket doesn’t make much financial sense. 

There are many ways to redeem Avios, which enable you to get discounted cash prices on British Airways and Oneworld member-operated flights. 

American Express Membership Rewards points, Bilt Rewards, Capital One Miles and Chase Ultimate Rewards can all be transferred to Avios. And apart from Chase Ultimate Rewards, all allow you to save on British Airways flights without committing yourself to the 5/24 rule associated with Chase cards—as applied to the British Airways Visa Signature® Card offered by Chase.