Unlimited Free Stopovers on British Airways Awards, But No Free Oneways

You get unlimited stopovers on awards booked with British Airways Avios

But you can't get any free oneways on awards booked with British Airways Avios.

Huh? How can that be?

For some people, those concepts are hard to untangle, so let me state the concepts as clearly as possible.

A free stopover is the absence of a flight. It is being in a place. Let's use yesterday's Anatomy of an Award as an example.

Cash & Avios Analysis

When you get to the payment page of booking an award with British Airways Avios, you're offered a rare proposition in the world of frequent flyer miles:

pay the stated amount of Avios + taxes and fuel surcharges
pay 50-90% of the stated amount of Avios + taxes, fuel surcharges, and an extra cash co-pay.

This extra-cash-plus-Avios option is one to consider in advance, so I'll do the work, so you can do the travel.

What's your best play?

I tried to price out the 12 oneworld partners in different cabins on domestic and international routes.

For some routes, no

Anatomy of an Award: intra-Argentina Flights with Avios and SkyMiles

I spent five hours booking a roundtrip from Buenos Aires to Bariloche this week. But at least I avoided an hour and a half in taxis to pick up paper tickets! HUH!?

Bariloche is 851 miles to the southwest of Buenos Aires as the plane flies.

Image from gcmap.com

I decided to book a last-second economy award for two because Bariloche is on the northern edge of Patagonia, and summer is over.

Anatomy of an Award: Membership Rewards to Argentina

I recently booked a family of four an economy award from Miami to Buenos Aires with their Membership Rewards. It was an interesting award that I think demonstrates the complexities and fun of booking with American Express points.

I won't talk about that award specifically, but I'll use it as a jumping off point for discussion since it illustrates a typical Memberhip Rewards situation.

The Big Trick for Searching BA.com

Yesterday I said you can't search Lima to Cuzco on ba.com. It turns out I was wrong! To search Lima to Cuzco, though, you do need to use a trick.

Reader Coleman emailed me to say:
Just wanted to let you know that although you cannot search LIM-CUZ, you are able to search CUZ-LIM. Obviously this will still need to be called in since nobody originates in CUZ, but at least you can view availability ahead of time by playing with the dates.
Coleman is right that you can search Cuzco to Lima on ba.com and be shown results.

Anatomy of an Award: Sidetrip to Hong Kong from Tokyo

Part I: The Main Award & Finding a Free Oneway

Part II: US to Asia via Europe for 90k Miles in Business

Part III: Adding a Great Sidetrip

This is the third and final installment breaking down my trip to Asia using US Airways miles. The main award is posted below:

Washington-Dulles -> Istanbul (23 hour layover) [Turkish]
Istanbul -> Seoul-Incheon -> Tokyo-Narita [Asiana]
Tokyo-Narita -> Washington-Dulles [All Nippon Airlines]

US Airways is extremely relaxed with their routing rules as you can see above.

Avios intra-Europe Redemptions are a Joke

I was looking at some intra-Europe flights for my seven-week loop next summer. I had the brilliant idea that maybe I should oneworld-hub hop.

Munich to Berlin (airberlin)

Berlin to Oslo (airberlin)

Oslo to Helsinki (Finnair)

That would be all new cities for me and all direct flights. I priced out the Avios awards. Berlin to Oslo was 4,500 Avios and $45. That's a bad deal, since the same revenue flights are only $63.

Avios 30% Transfer Bonus from Membership Rewards

Through January 14, you can transfer 1,000 Membership Rewards to 1,300 Avios. The transfer are hard-coded into the Membership Rewards transfer page, meaning you don't have to know any special codes.

All my posts about Avios are contained here: milevalue.com/category/avios.

Iberia 25% Off Transatlantic Awards and Low Surcharges

British Airways is offering a 25% discount on its longhaul awards--flown by BA or Iberia. That would be great except British Airways charges humungous surcharges that make any redemptions an awful deal in my mind. To wit, British Airways business class from New York to London:
As the screen shot indicates, this is normally a 40,000 Avios award, so there is a 10,000 Avios, or 25%, discount. But the taxes and fees of $438 oneway make this an award I would not purchase.

Award Space on American Airlines’ Brand New Routes

A few weeks ago, One Mile at a Time was all over the new American Airlines international routes:

Dallas (DFW) <-> Seoul (ICN)
Dallas (DFW) <-> Lima (LIM)
Chicago (ORD) <-> Dusseldorf (DUS)
New York (JFK) <-> Dublin (DUB)

Those flights went on sale yesterday, meaning that they were added to the award calendars. I decided to take a look at the award-space picture, and I found some surprising results.