Reader’s BA Amex companion voucher example
Yesterday I wrote about whether it is worth continuing using BA Amex companion vouchers. A reader kindly supplied their thought process for a recent companion voucher trip which I think sums up the situation well.
The reader wanted to go to New York in August in BA Club World and went through all the options before deciding to bite the bullet and use the companion voucher. This cost £850pp plus 120,000 Avios plus the voucher. I thought this was a good example of why sometimes using a voucher can make sense despite the high taxes and charges.
The reader told TLFL,
“We thought about doing Dublin – Heathrow – JFK but we wanted the day flight back from New York. But as soon as we put Dublin as the starting point, all I Class disappeared from both day flights for the full week we looked, yet starting in London had 9 in I class. So that ruled out starting in Dublin. NOTE: The new companion vouchers (issued from September 2021) allow for extra availablity in Club World by allowing you to book an Avios ticket if there are I class fares for sale. You can’t do that with the old vouchers.
We then looked at World Traveller Plus cash tickets but upgrading to Club World. The base fare was £1,009 plus an extra £200pp in taxes / charges plus 80,000 Avios. That would have earned us 180 tier points pp.
On balance, we went with the Avios booking because:
- We couldn’t start in Dublin and take the day flight which was a priority
- I’ve already got enough tier points booked this year to secure Gold so the 180 extra didn’t really add anything
- We had a companion voucher expiring
- We have 800,000 Avios in our BA household account
- We can get a full refund of the cash on the Avios booking if we don’t fly, whereas the WTP fare would have meant £2,400 in a voucher.
IHG hotel offer
IHG hotels have a new long stay offer, but the discount is fairly paltry. If you stay 3 consecutive nights or more you qualify for the Stay Longer Pay Less rate. The discount is available on hotels in the UK, Ireland, and the rest of Europe.
The Promotion offers a discount of up to 10% off the hotel’s Advance Saver Rate. IHG Rewards members will be eligible to receive an additional 5% discount on bookings made directly through IHG. Some participating hotels may require a minimum length of stay of five or seven consecutive nights. Bookings must be made at least three days in advance of arrival. The main drawback is that a non-refundable one-night deposit is required at the time of booking. You can change the dates up to the cancellation deadline of the hotel but if you cancel even before the deadline you will lose your deposit.
If you’d rather something more flexible it’s worth checking with our partners GTC as they offer rates on many of the luxury IHG properties that include:
- Guaranteed late check-out
- $100 hotel amenity
- Complimentary breakfast for 2
You can find the offer page here.
Business and First class fares round up
Following on from last week’s update that looked at Dublin, here are some more ex-EU deals.
- Dublin to New York in First class £2350 (British Airways)
- Amsterdam to
- Madrid to
- Auckland £2720 (Air New Zealand/Air Canada)
- Dubai £969 (Air France)
- Rio de Janeiro £1351 (Air France)
- Lima £1344 (Air France)
- Montreal £1251 (Air France)
- Los Angeles £1374 (Air France)
- Las Vegas £1446 (Air France)
- Paris to
Waiting for that amazing elusive Qatar ex eu sale, so we can book for awakening Asia…
None of this is great though is it? We shouldn’t be second guessing that which most of us used to think was a superb opportunity: 2 tickets for the price of one. An on line forum yesterday from a friend who still works in the wonderful travel industry: “British Airways- where has all the love gone? From unsmiling staff to any opportunity to charge for anything they can and get away with it to baggage going astray and no one really caring”. Whist the above is interesting to compare, these BA barriers are up before we’ve even stepped foot on an aircraft. This is the worst mess I have ever seen BA in, having observed them over 50 years. My prediction on availability is that it will open up because I know from insiders that the negative PR is massively affecting sales. Doyle is worse than Walsh and Cruz combined.
We did the same last month to Dubai, two business class tickets 100,000 Avios points, £1,200, & a 2 for 1 voucher. We arrived back on the 20th March at Heathrow disaster day. But the only issue we had was a 1 hour 55 minutes wait for our luggage, but at least we did get ours. No more flight plans until the autumn.
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