News & offers: BA Avios RFS from £1, Malaysia Airlines sale + Dubai under £900 & Rio £1084

baby orangutan hangs in a tree in the jungles of Borneo

Malaysia Airlines sale

We have covered the Malaysia Airlines sale previously but since they have launched a flash internal sale too, it is worth a recap. I will also look at the Business Class Suite vs Business Class and how to bid for an upgrade.

Malaysia business class on A350

The UK sale finishes on the 18 July for travel 1 Aug 2019 – 30 Jun 2020 Malaysia Airlines are part of oneworld and therefore you earn tier points and Avios like on BA. They have a good business class product out of Heathrow with a dedicated lounge, A350 aircraft and good seats. Whilst the fares are nowhere near the current ex EU Qatar sale fares, they are hassle-free in terms of positioning if you live in reach of Heathrow.

The business class fares from London are:

  • Adelaide £2925
  • Auckland £3205
  • Bangkok £2317
  • Brisbane £3005
  • Denpasar-Bali £2589
  • Hanoi £2529
  • Ho Chi Minh City £2529
  • Kota Kinabalu (Borneo) £2849
  • Kuala Lumpur £2829
  • Langkawi £2849
  • Manila £2489

Malaysia previously had First class but like many airlines, they got rid of this not long ago. However, they still have the seats on the aircraft and are now calling it a Business Suite. You can read Paul’s review of Malaysia First class here since it is not really much different to Business Suite. The product is basically identical in terms of onboard service, food and amenities to the old First class. Lounges have been rebranded as Business Suites Golden Lounges in Kuala Lumpur and London.

Malaysia Airlines A350 Business Plus

The prices for the business suites in the sale are:

  • Adelaide £4225
  • Auckland £4505
  • Brisbane £4305
  • Kota Kinabalu (Borneo) £3569
  • Kuala Lumpur £3389

You can find the Malaysia Airlines UK offers page here. 

You could, of course, buy business class and bid to upgrade to the Business Suite Here is how to do that:

If you are eligible you will receive an offer email, just click on the link provided. If you have not received an offer email, you may check your eligibility by entering:

    •  Airline Booking Reference and
    •  Last Name/Surname in the Check Your Eligibility box.

You then chose your offer price from a preset range and enter your credit card details to enable payment upon successful upgrade. No charges will be applied unless the upgrade offer is successful. You will be notified by Malaysia Airlines whether your upgrade offer is accepted 48 hours before your flight departure. You will be provided with a new ticket and your offer price will be charged to your credit card.

Borneo sunset

Borneo sunset

There is also a domestic Malaysia sale on until 19 July for travel until 19 November 2019. If you are travelling within Malaysia or fancy adding on a side trip, it is worth a look at the offers. Destinations you may be interested in include Langkawi, Penang and Kota Kinabalu (Borneo).

You can find the Malaysia Airlines offer page here.


British Airways extends RFS redemptions for £1Avios bonus

Earlier in the year, we reported on a trial allowing BA Executive Club Members to book a reward flight using Avios and pay as little as £1 return instead of £35.  This was only on selected longer European destinations.

BA have now extended the trial which started yesterday. The new Avios pricing options can be redeemed on flights in the UK and Europe.  With the new option, Members can fly to destinations such as Edinburgh or Venice for £1 and 16,000 and 22,000 Avios respectively.  For these same destinations, flying return, customers with a lower Avios balance have the option to use 9,000 Avios and pay £31 to Edinburgh and 15,000 Avios and £35 to Venice.

Niall Rooney, British Airways’ Loyalty Manager said: “We’re always looking for ways to give our Executive Club customers more options to redeem their Avios.  Trialing £1 Reward Flight Saver prices means Members can explore the UK and Europe on very little cash and use more Avios.  It’s easy to join Executive Club, sign up for free and start collecting Avios.”

Obviously, if you look at the extra Avios you are paying, it does not make sense for most people to use this option unless you are Avios rich and cash poor. However, there is one potential upside. If you had to cancel the current penalty is a £35 fee or the taxes and charges, whichever is lower. In this case, it would mean it only costs £1 to cancel your booking (free for GGL as usual).

To book a Reward Flight Saver ticket, you need to have collected at least one Avios in the last 12 months.  British Airways is testing this pricing option in addition to the previous flat rate of £35 for taxes, fees and carrier charges along with the Avios needed for their destination.

You can find more details on Reward Flight Saver rules here.

Dubai for under £900 ex EU

finnair northern lights theme business class cabin

A350 business class with Northern lights mood lighting. Photo supplied by Finnair

Although Dubai is only a short flight from the UK, if you want to save some money and perhaps try a new airline, you could look at the current Finnair offer from Helsinki. There appears to be a bit of a price war currently on this route with offers from Turkish and too. Finnair used to use short haul seating on this route but now it appears their very nice A350 with long haul seats is now scheduled on the route over the winter on some days. (Best to check before booking). You can read our review of the business class A350 here.

The price starts from £899 and the rules are:

  • Book by: n/a
  • Travel: Monday, Saturday, Sunday departures
  • Minimum stay: None
  • Maximum stay: None
  • Transfers: Unlimited
  • Stopovers: 2 free stopovers permitted on the pricing unit – 1 in each direction.
  • Refundable: For a fee
  • Changeable: For a fee

You can find the cheapest online prices via Skyscanner here.

Rio De Janeiro for £1084

Claudio in Rio de Janeiro

One of the easier places to start an ex EU is Paris due to the numerous regional connections and short flying times. The price of this flight to Rio is extremely good. You can fly on a mixture of Lufthansa, Swiss and Edelweiss with a stop in Germany or Switzerland. Personally, I would go for SWiss as their business class product is better in my opinion.

  • Book by: 19 July 2019
  • Travel: Before 30 June 2020
  • Minimum stay: 3 nights or a Friday Saturday night
  • Maximum stay: 3 months
  • Transfers: Unlimited
  • Stopovers: 1 at €100
  • Refundable: No
  • Changeable: Yes for a fee

You can book direct with Swiss or Lufthansa or find the cheapest online travel agent price with Skyscanner.


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