Virgin and BA increase redemption bookings costs again
Only a few weeks after they raised prices by approximately £100 both Virgin and British Airways have raised prices again, taking them to ridiculous levels when you compare with redeeming on many other airlines. The prices have been raised by up to another £100. One thing to note is that when Qatar moves to Avios it will be cheaper to move Avios across to them to redeem! If you want to read other ways of redeeming Avios on other airlines to save hundreds of pounds, have a read of this article.
Here are the latest increases on a flight to Las Vegas for BA:
- Previous taxes and charges £671
- New February 22 taxes and charges £788
- New March 2022 taxes and charges £842
This is a similar price for most US destinations. Not quite as bad as the last price rise but in addition to the last one, it combines into a heft increase. There is also a(nother) glitch on BA’s IT so it originally quotes a much higher or lower price until you click through. Each destination varies with some with even higher price increases!
- Previous taxes and charges £542
- February 22 taxes and charges £605
- New March 22 taxes and charges £707
- Previous taxes and charges £616
- February 22 taxes and charges £728
- New March 22 taxes and charges £833
- February 22 taxes and charges £643
- New March 22 taxes and charges £746
Virgin has gone even further and flights to New York are now showing at £988 in taxes and charges. Las Vegas as a direct comparison with BA is at £984. Now we see why they are offering tier points on redemption tickets. It was not that long ago that both airlines were offering cash fares for £999!
Other routes are not as bad with Johannesburg at £746 and Antigua at £684.
Does this put you off collecting Avios or Virgin Points with these price increases? Let us know in the comments below.
BA mask clarification
BA today confirmed that instead of only requiring masks to destinations with a mask mandate, they will also require them on return flights as well.
BA said “To ensure a consistent approach for our customers. If there’s a requirement to wear a mask on flights to a particular destination then we also require one to be worn on flights from that destination.”
That’s a big disappointment for me seeing as I have a return from the US just before the current mask mandate expires. I had been looking forward to being mask-free when trying to sleep!
British Airways also confirmed they will stop disembarking by row number on Wednesday too. I quite liked this. Today on short haul they called rows 1-12 in one go and it reminded me what a rugby scrum it used to be…
Virgin confirm mask policy change
Virgin has today confirmed its mask policy with the removal of mandatory mask-wearing for most flights. From Wednesday 16 March it will be customers’ personal choice to wear a face mask depending on the route.
This policy is being introduced gradually on routes where international regulations around mask-wearing do not apply, beginning with the Caribbean services from London Heathrow and Manchester airports.
Routes where face masks onboard are a personal choice from 16 March:
Services to or from Barbados, St Lucia, Antigua, Grenada, The Bahamas, Jamaica, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Trinidad & Tobago.
This list will expand as regulatory requirements for destinations allow.
Routes where face masks onboard must be worn:
For all services operating to or from the United States, where the federal mask mandate on aircraft has been extended until 18 April, customers aged 2 and above must still maintain masks at all times, unless exempt.
For the following routes to or from the UK, masks are still required for customers aged 12 and above until further notice: Delhi, Islamabad, Hong Kong, Johannesburg, Lahore, Lagos, Mumbai, Shanghai, Tel Aviv.
Maybe BA need the extra money to buy a new telephone and employ someone to answer it hahaha
They have been devaluing these for some time, with availability never easy to find what you want and increasing fees all the time. For me collecting them is just an incidental byproduct of using their service now and not a reason to fly with them. It’s sad as in the past you could get some amazing holidays for less. I am past caring what they offer now, cash (well credit card) is king as you get exactly what you expect when you want it.
This is a crazy back track and one that I think is unfair to put on passengers and flight attendants. As it currently stands, compliance is not amazing and not enforced other than in announcements. I have a feeling compliance will get less and less and the ones who get angry are the ones who like the mask rules. I can see more people declaring themselves “exempt” to get away from these out of date and contradictory rules.
Forcing people to wear masks on return legs to the UK is RIDICULOUS. What possible justification on the grounds of health can there be to force me to wear a mask next week from LAX to LHR, and then, when I step off the plane, take it off before mingling with hundreds of others entering the UK. All so that BA can avoid “confusing” people. What a farce.
This story should be shouted from the rooftops, not hidden away as an afterthought. Crazy.
I agree. Even if passengers had to wear it for boarding (which I think they would legally have to) there’s no reason why they couldn’t say at a certain point that people could take them off. Be interesting how strongly it’s enforced on the way back.
Looks like the best redemptions will now be cheap prem-eco seats (if you can find them) and upgrade with Avios to business , then use a 2 for 1 voucher to half the points (so making them worth £500 if you save Avios on the second person upgrade Avios’ say to nyc)
Unfortunately you can’t use a 2-4-1 voucher to upgrade a cash ticket But using Avios on an upgrade could be a better way forward since it’s unlikely to cost much more than the charges and you get tier points and Avios. It will all depend on the extra taxes payable.
Relating to your posting singapore airl inesbusiness deals to SYD out of CDG of two days ago.
Where I can I book these, I cannot find any access anywhere ? Singapore sire quotes over 5000 Euro.
Those were the advertised lowest fares but often they are only available on a small number of days. It could be worth trying Skyscanner or Google flights if you can be flexible on dates. However it could be there are none left at that price.
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