British Airways Avios

British Airways 100,000 Avios Offer is back!!

British Airways 100K Offer

For a limited time you can really earn some big miles and use them for a lot of free travel. Chase has raised the offer to 100,000 Avios on the British Airways Visa Credit Card

Screenshot 2015-09-17 at 11.03.47 PM

To receive the full 100,000 Avios bonus, there are three tiers of spending requirements to meet. You will receive 50,000 Avios after spending $2,000 in 3 months, an additional 25,000 Avios if you spend $10,000 in 12 months, AND an additional 25,000 Avios if you spend $20,000 in 12 months. The annual fee is $95.

While I wish you could receive the full 100,000 with one simple minimum spend, it’s nice that you have 12 months to meet the 2nd and 3rd tiers. Even if you just committed to spending $10,000 in 12 months, you would receive 75,000 Avios. That’s a lot of Avios.

Can you apply? 

The terms on the application say that you’re eligible to apply and receive the bonus if you don’t currently hold the BA card, and it’s been 24 months from the last time you received a bonus on the card.

Note: If you don’t have the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, you may want to apply for it first, since it’s a harder card to get approved for now.

Other Benefits

You will earn 3x Avios per $1 on British Airways purchases and 1x on all other spending. There are no foreign transaction fees and it’s equipped with smart chip technology, so it’s good for international use. The British Airways card is also a Visa Signature card, which comes some sweet additional benefits likefree wine tastings.

If you spend $30,000 in a calendar year on your British Airways Visa, you will receive the Travel Together Ticket. This ticket lets you bring a passenger on an award ticket for the Avios price of one, but you will still have to pay the fuel surcharges and fees.

Here are the full marketing details on the British Airways Visa Signature® Card:

  • 50,000 bonus Avios after you spend $2,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.
  • Plus earn an additional 25,000 bonus Avios when you spend $10,000 on purchases for a total of 75,000 bonus Avios.
  • Plus earn another 25,000 bonus Avios when you spend a total of $20,000 on purchases within your first year for a total of 100,000 bonus Avios.
  • Every calendar year you make $30,000 in purchases on your British Airways Visa card, you’ll earn a Travel Together Ticket good for two years.
  • In addition to the bonus Avios, you will also get 3 Avios for every $1 spent on British Airways purchases and 1 Avios for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • Pay no foreign transaction fees when you travel abroad.
  • Chip Technology allows you to use your card for chip based purchases in Europe & beyond, while still giving you the ability to use your card as you do today at home.

Why I love Avios

It’s true that British Airways has recently devalued their award chart for premium cabin flights. That being said, I usually only burn my Avios for short haul flights. BA has a distance =-based chart, so short flights are a darn good deal.

I can fly Richmond to New York for only 4,500 Avios and $5. Or, I can fly to Chicago for 7,500 Avios. I’ve also used my Avios for cheap flights to Mexico from Miami for only 7,500 Avios and $25 one-way. So basically you could earn 20 one-way tickets from Richmond to NYC from just one credit card sign-up.

cancun

Celebrating Babymoon in Cancun at Secrets Vine Resort. Thank you Avios Photo Courtesy : MonicaLopez Photography, Cancun

Avios are great for getting to Hawaii on Alaska or American airlines from the east coast. You book LAX to Maui for only 12,500 Avios and $25 one-way.

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Get to Hawaii for just 12,500 miles one-way from West coast

You can also get cheap flights to the Caribbean from the west coast with Avios. Miami to San Juan, Puerto Rico is only 7,500 Avios and $5.

And don’t forget the popular Boston to Dublin route on Aer Lingus that’s only 25k Avios round-trip in economy.

If you do now worry about the heft Fuel surcharge that British Airways charges on Award tickets you can consider using you Avios and the companion ticket to fly First Class From North American to Europe. The fuel surcharge will run approximately $1000 per award ticket and you would also pay the same on the free companion ticket. So basically two tickets in Firts Class will cost you 120,000 Avios and $2000. If you are an expert manufacture spender you know the tricks to drop the cost of $2000 to almost half. You can fly hapily in the BA First class and enjoy loungs access and other goodies as my friend Steve and his family did on a recent trip to Italy

Bottomline

Chase has raised the offer to up to 100,000 Avios on the British Airways Visa card for a limited time. If you’re eligible for the card, it’s one that deserves consideration since Avios can be very valuable. They aren’t my favorite award points, but they are up there because of how practical they are. If this offer is right for you, the link to apply and view all the details is below. Remember, only apply for credit cards if your credit score is in good condition, and you’re comfortable with the minimum spending requirements.

Categories: British Airways, British Airways Avios, Chase, Credit cards | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Master List of Airline Award Fees – Change Fees, Cancellation Fees, & Phone Booking Fees

Using airline miles for award flights is one of the best ways to travel for less, however if you have to change or cancel an award ticket you’re often hit with high fees. Each airline program has its own award ticket fee policy and may charge you for anything from date or destination changes, refund/redeposit of miles on cancelled tickets, phone booking, and close-in booking. In general airline award fees range from $0 to $150+, but it’s a good idea to know exactly what you’d have to pay before booking so you’re not surprised by any fees if your plans change.

Planning ahead is often the best way to keep fees to a minimum and you’re less likely to have to pay close-in booking fees or change fees if your plans were not set in stone. Of course you’ll want to keep these fees to a minimum to save money on award flights, but in either case when you are using miles for a free flight you sometimes just have to bite the bullet and pay certain fees (such as phone booking) to get the flights you want.

Often times these fees are buried within the airlines website, so I have created a master list of airline fees across the majority of larger airline programs. Included in the table are the most common date and destination fees, cancellation fees, close-in booking fees, and phone booking fees, however some programs have unique policies that don’t fall into these clear-cut categories. There are also links to the airline’s own webpage where the fees are outlined in their verbiage.

As the list will be a work-in-progress I’ll continue to add more information to complete the list. If you see any mistakes, missing information or have helpful information or experience with an airline on the list, please feel free to leave a comment below and I will make updates.

Airline Alliance Change Date Fee Change Destination Fee Refund/Redeposit Fee Close-in Booking Fee Phone Booking Fee Mile Expiration Length Waivers (all fees unless noted) More Details…
AeroMexico Club Premier SkyTeam $26 $26 $26 None N/A 24 months Fees waived for Platinum Club Premier members. See full details at AeroMexico.com
Air Canada Aeroplan Star Alliance $90 $90 $90 up to 22 days prior to departure None $30 CAD 12 months Fees waived for Super Elite 100K members. See full details at Aeroplan.com
AirBerlin OneWorld Domestic awards within Germany or Europe = €50, awards within all other regions = €75 Domestic awards within Germany or Europe = €50, awards within all other regions = €75 No refunds None None 36 months See full details at AirBerlin.com
Air France / KLM Flying Blue SkyTeam €45 (changes not allowed on ‘Promo Awards’, no fees for ‘Flex Awards’) €45 (changes not allowed on ‘Promo Awards’, no fees for ‘Flex Awards’) €45 (changes not allowed on ‘Promo Awards’, no fees for ‘Flex Awards’) None $25 20 months See full details at FlyingBlue.com
Alaska MileagePlan N/A Up to 60 days prior to departure =$0, within 60 days of departure = $125 Up to 60 days prior to departure = $0, within 60 days of departure = $125 Up to 60 days prior to departure =$0, within 60 days of departure = $125 None $15 24 months Fees waived for Gold MVP members. See full details at AlaskaAir.com
Alitalia Mille Miglia SkyTeam None €55 or 5,000 miles €55 or 5,000 miles None 24 months See full details at Alitalia.com
American AAdvantage OneWorld Up to 21 days prior to departure = $0, within 21 days of departure = $150 $150 $150 for first award reservation, $25 for additional reservations $75 $25 18 months All fees waived for Executive Platinum members. Close-in booking fees waived for Gold and higher members. See full details at AA.com
ANA Mileage Club Star Alliance None None 3,000 miles None $25 36 months See full details at ANA.com
Asia Miles Multiple $25 or 1,000 miles $100 $120 or 12,000 miles None 36 months See full details at AsiaMiles.com
British Airways Avios OneWorld $55 $55 $55 None $25 36 months Fees wavied for Gold members. See full details at BritishAirways.com
Delta SkyMiles SkyTeam $150 $150 $150 (must be completed 72 hours prior to departure) None $25 Miles do not expire Fees wavied for Platinum and Diamond Medallion members. See full details at Delta.com
El Al Matmid N/A $60 $60 – $125 $60 – $125 None $10 36 months Fees waived/reduced for Platinum and Top Platinum members. See full details at ElAl.com
Emirates Skywards N/A $25 $75 $75 None 36 months Fees waived for Platinum members. See full details at Emirates.com
Frontier Early Returns N/A Up to 8 days prior to departure = $0, within 8 days of departure = $75 $75 $75 None None 18 months Fees wavied for Summit members and Standard Awards. See full details at FlyFrontier.com
Hawaiian Airlines HawaiiMiles N/A $50 ($30 for interisland flights) $50 ($30 for interisland flights) $150 ($30 for interisland flights) None $25 18 months Interisland change fees waived for Pulani Platinum members. See full details at HawaiianAirlines.com
Iberia Plus Avios OneWorld €25 €25 €25 None 36 months
JetBlue True Blue N/A More than 60 days prior to departure = $75. Less than 60 days prior to departure = $75 for fares of $100 – $149, $150 for fares $150+ More than 60 days prior to departure = $75. Less than 60 days prior to departure = $75 for fares of $100 – $149, $150 for fares $150+ More than 60 days prior to departure = $75. Less than 60 days prior to departure = $75 for fares of $100 – $149, $150 for fares $150+ None $25 Miles do not expire. Fees waived for Mosaic level members. See full details at JetBlue.com
Korean SkyPass SkyTeam None None Within 1 year of ticket issue date = $0, if ticket was issued over 1 year = 10,000 miles None 5 years See full details at KoreanAir.com
LifeMiles Avianca / TACA Star Alliance $150 $150 $50 $25 fee for all bookings 24 months See full details at LifeMiles.com
Lufthansa Miles & More Star Alliance $60 $60 $60 None No fee 36 months Fees may be waived or reduced only for date and time changes. See full details at Miles-and-More.com
Gol Smiles N/A $40 to $50 36 months
Singapore KrisFlyer Star Alliance Singapore awards = $0, partner awards = $20,within 24 hours of departure = $75 Singapore awards =$12, partner = $20, within 24 hours of departure = $75 More than 24 hours prior to departure = $30 None $0 36 months See full details at SingaporeAir.com
Southwest RapidRewards N/A None None None None None 24 months N/A See details at Southwest.com
Spirit FreeSpirit N/A $110 $110 $110 $100 $25 3 months None See full details at Spirit.com
United MileagePlus Star Alliance More than 21 days prior to departure = $75, within 21 days of departure = $100 $200 $200 $75 $25 18 months All fees waived for Platinum, 1K, Global Services. Some fees waived for Silver, Gold, and United Club cardholders. See full details at United.com
US Airways Dividend Miles OneWorld $150 $150 $150 $75 (additional $25 to $50 processing fee) $30 to $40 18 months Fees waived for Chairmans members. Close-in booking fee waived for Gold / Platinum members. See full details at USAirways.com
Virgin Atlantic FlyingClub N/A More than 24 hours prior to departure =$50 More than 24 hours prior to departure =$50 More than 24 hours prior to departure =$50 None 36 months See full terms at VirginAtlantic.com
JAL OneWorld Free if reservation for new flight is confirmed before boarding. (Changes of flight number and date can be made through the JAL website by 12:00 4 days prior to the day of departure.) Changes not allowed to traveler’s name, flight sector, class of service, routing, or the direction of travel and exchange. “Mileage Reinstatement Service for Unused Awards” is applicable in case of cancellation of unused award tickets. Members are responsible for all the mailing costs of award tickets $21 36 months See full details at JAL.com
LAN OneWorld Fee varies from $35 – $75 depending on flight distance and days prior to departure. Fee varies from $35 – $75 depending on flight distance and days prior to departure. Fee varies from $40 – $125 depending on flight distance and days prior to departure. None Domestic flights = $15, International flights = $25 36 months See full details at LAN.com
Virgin America N/A $100 $100 $100 None $20 18 months Fees waived for Silver and Gold members. Full terms at VirginAmerica.com
Thai Airways Royal Orchid Star Alliance Flights within Thailand = $16, international flights = $40, Star Alliance Awards = $95 Flights within Thialand = $60 (International awards are not eligible) Regional awards = $120 or 10,000 miles, international awards = $190 or 15,000 miles None 36 months See full details at ThaiAirways.com
Categories: Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Award fees, British Airways Avios, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How I earned 723,000 miles and points in 2014 and where all did we travel

Where all did we travel in 2014?

I am glad to end 2014 on a very happy note . By implementing several strategies, credit card sign-up bonus and bonus miles via referral I was able to acquire more than 700,000 miles and points without flying.We used some of these miles and points to travel for almost free  to destinations like Washington D.C, Myrtle beach, Miami, NYC, Baltimore, Cancun and the highlight of this year was our 10 days Trip to Europe (Spain and France) which costed me barely  $500 (airfare+ lodging) for two people while flying business class on US Air (more details in next week posts) and staying at some top-notch five star hotels in the best of the locations. A one way-business class from North America to Europe itself  costs average $5000 per person for which I paid 50,000 miles and $15 in award fees . You could easily earn 50,000 US Airways miles by applying for the soon to be discontinued US Airways Premier World MasterCard

View from the revolving restaurant at Double Tree Crystal City we stayed in August 2014

US at The Eiffel Tower, Paris

Enjoying authentic delicacies in Madrid

Yum Yum Chocolate raspberry cake in business class of US Air travelling from Philadelphia – Madrid

Segwaying in Madrid with the Royal palace in background

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Enjoying drinking Bailey’s in US Air business class while watching Dawn of the planet of the Apes

 

Can I get one of everything please???? – Business Class US Airways

View from our beautiful suite at Le Meridien Barcelona right in the heart of La Ramblas

How I earned 723,000 miles and points in 2014?

The question you may ask – did you sign-up for like 20 credit cards? The answer is NO!!! Between my wife and I we signed up for a total of nine credit cards in 2014. As we also purchased a house I did not want a lot of hard inquiries before securing our most important investment and I also recommend you do not apply for any credit cards or loan applications at least six months leading into any home or car mortgage. Read more about it on my post on Credit 101. Here is a summary on how I earned all those miles –

Credit Card, Account or Spend Miles or Points Type Cost / Minimum Spend
Citi AA Executive Card X 2 (Expired now)

220,000

AA miles $450 account fees, $200 statement credit
United MileagePlus Explorer

55,000

United miles $1000 spend in 3 months, annual fee waived 1st year
Barclaycard Arrivalplus Mastercard x 2

88,000

Travel Credit of $880 $3000 spend in 3 months, annual fee waived 1st year
US Airways Premier World Mastercard x 2

100,000

US Airways miles After 1st purchase, no minimum
Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card American Express

35,000

AA miles $3000 spend in 4 months, annual fee waived 1st year
Chase Ink Plus business card

55,000

UR points $5,000 spend in 3 months, annual fee waived 1st year
Chase Ink Plus Refer a friend promo

50,000

UR points None. I referred five friends who all got approved
British Airways VISA Signature

50,000+70,000+Free Companion Ticket

BA Avios $3000 spend in 3 months, 50 K bonus (after 20 k spend) and companion ticket after spending total of $30,000 in one calendar year, $95 annual fees not waived

The total comes out to be 723000 miles. I would have to circle the earth many a times  if all those miles were to be earned via flying. I also earned several thousand miles and points (not accounted above)  via shopping through online portals  my personal favorites being  the Ultimate Rewards mall and BarclayBoost.

Questions?

Would you like to earn over 500,000 miles in 2015? Don’t know how to redeem the miles to get best value? How to get upgraded to a suite? I’d love to show you how you can implement several strategies to get to your dream destination for real cheap. Follow my blog or drop me a line and I’d love to answer your questions and help you plan your next trip.

Bucket List – Mystique Hotel Santorini where a room typically costs $600/night I plan on staying for almost free in 2015.

Bucket List 2015- British Airways B777-300 First Class – Retail cost $10,000 per person round trip from IAD to most places in Europe. I plan to redeem 120,000 British Airways Avios along with the free companion ticket to travel in this beauty for pennies!!

Bucket List 2015 – Andaz Maui, Hawaii yet another top class hotel where you can easily score free nights

PS – I get commission from some of the links mentioned in the post here. You don’t have to but I am grateful if you plan to  use my referral link to sign up for any of these cards

Categories: British Airways Avios, Credit cards, Ultimate Rewards Points | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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