British Airways Upcoming Award Redemption Changes

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British Airways has announced that effective May 30, 2019 it will be making changes to their partner award chart. However, they have not made an available the exact changes until the end of May.

The airline emailed passengers the following statement:

“As you’ve previously used your Avios to book reward flights with our global network of partner airlines, we wanted to let you know about some changes we’re making.

From 30 May 2019, we’ll be changing our Avios prices on reward flights with some of our partner airlines.

Don’t worry if you have an existing Avios booking with a partner airline. It’s still valid and you can make changes or cancel it if you need to*. Our new Avios prices will apply to any changes or new bookings you make after 30 May 2019.”

Additionally, a link was included at the bottom to provide a little more information. The website states:

“There will be no change to our Avios prices for reward flights and upgrades with British Airways, Aer Lingus, Iberia or Vueling. The Avios prices for our other services are also unaffected, so you can continue to benefit from spending your Avios on our wide range of hotels, car hire and experiences.”

It’s important to note that these changes appear to only be aimed at their partners which includes; The coming changes will only apply to partner redemptions. Almost all British Airways award partners are part of the oneworld alliance: Air Italy, American Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Japan Airlines, LATAM, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, Qatar Airways, S7, Sri Lankan, Royal Jordanian Airlines, and Alaska Airlines (not oneworld member).

Speculation on what the award chart will be indicate varies, but the consensus is that it will be a devaluation. Given how valuable British Airways Avios can be are for short-haul domestic flights in the United States, this area will probably see a substantial increase in required Avios.

As of the writing of this post, Chase is offering a 30% transfer bonus to British Airways Avios which could possibly offset by the changes to partner award redemptions. While helpful that British Airways is giving notice of change, the lack of specific details making planning future travel before the change uncertain. In the meantime, all flights booked before May 30th will price at the current award rates.

What’s your thoughts on the upcoming changes, will it be a significant devaluation?

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