This article first appeared in December 2018. Now that British Airways has a good Wolrd Traveller Plus fare to Abu Dhabi (as well as a great Club World holiday deal), I thought it was worth updating Paul’s article with the current prices and details.
We get told by readers of success hitting Silver and even Gold, but what about doing it in one hit cheaply? Interested? Keep reading.
Thanks to some very good pricing from Sri Lankan and a good sale fare from BA you can construct some excellent Tier Point runs around Asia.
How about 1400 Tier Points in one trip for £2124? That’s an amazing ex UK price per point of £1.41/TP. Yes, I am aware Gold needs 1500 points, so at the end I’ll give some ideas for around the last hundred.
If you are not sure if Gold is worth it for you have a read of this article which explains the benefits of the different tiers.
Let’s start putting this together then.
The “Main Fare” starts in Inverness, so unless you are local you will need to position there. Inverness is a very small airport which makes doing a “Back-to-Back” very easy.
What is a back to back? Well put simply, you get off the plane and get back on the same one. At Inverness, you will walk off the plane into the terminal, straight into the security queue and voila – back in departures waiting to board the plane, in likely the same seat! You can read more about back to backs in this article.
So in my examples below you will be doing two back to backs, at each end of the trip. If you wanted you could overnight at Inverness instead, although the choice of hotels near the airport is limited and expensive. The Holiday Inn Express is easy to reach via public transport. There is also a Premier Inn nearby. The Courtyard by Marriott is due to open in January 2020.
The following flights are just suggestions on random dates for the sake of ease. You can make up your own itinerary within the rules allowed. Remember you can always add a stopover of fewer than 24 hours for free.
The Positioning Ticket (Ticket 1)
This is a straight point to point BA fare to Inverness in Club Europe and can be bought on ba.com from £191 to £350. It can also be reduced in price by using Avios. This will net you 80 tier points total for the flights.
The “Main” Fare (Ticket 2)
This is a very good value Premium Economy fare from Inverness to Abu Dhabi via Heathrow which will get you 200 TPs. This is a special Expedia fare (always worth checking Skyscanner too) so you will struggle to find it on ba.com.
Restrictions are currently –
- Minimum stay 3 days
- Changeable for a fee
Tier Point Run 1 (Ticket 3)
A good value 560TP run to Jakarta on Sri Lanka – I must stress that this is currently not on lie-flat planes. You will get full business class service, however. Sri Lankan are now starting to introduce new lie-flat seats for regional business class.
Current restrictions are –
- Travel dates: Travel is not permitted mid-May 2020 to end of July 2020
- Ticket changeable or cancellable for a fee
Tickets can be booked through Sri Lankan or via an online travel agent.
Tier Point Run 2 (Ticket 4)
The same run as above, the following days!
Now as with most complex Tier Point runs this one will require overnights to prevent doing “dangerous” back to backs where the connection with security is too much of a risk. Remember you must keep the stopover to less than 24 hours to avoid extra charges.
So here are TLFL’s recommendations for each location –
Shangri-La Qaryat Al Beri: I love this hotel and you can read my review here. If you book through our new travel partner Propeller on you would get additional benefits on your stay such as:
- Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
- Daily Buffet breakfast, for up to two in room guests
- Complimentary one-way car transfer from the airport to the hotel
- $100 USD equivalent Spa Services credit to utilize during stay
- Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
- Complimentary Wi-Fi
- With minimum 4-night stay receive Round trip transfer
You book via the special TLFL Propeller page here.
Hotels are generally very cheap so you can afford to splash out a bit. The closest one to the airport that is decent is the Bandara International Hotel which is part of Accor hotels. I have stayed there and thought it was fine if a little worn for being close to the airport with a free shuttle to the airport.
If you want to splash out a bit more there is the Four Seasons hotel which can also be booked through Propeller travel for additional benefits on your stay.
Extending the trip
It is possible on these fares to split the time, even more, to allow a few days in Abu Dhabi, Sri Lanka and around Indonesia – so perfect for a little Asian jolly! Have a play with the dates and trips in ITA Matrix and if needed check my articles here for more info. and part 2.
The last 100 TPs!
Well, 100 is an awkward number to gain in terms of tier points. A Club Europe return will get you 80, unless its one of the longer ones for 160. You can read this article for suggestions of all the current cheapest tier point earning flights.
There are some good Club Europe fares in the current British Airways sale. Some of the cheapest and easiest options are: