Which British Airways Avios Partners Have the Best Business Class Products From the UK?

Jun 20, 2019

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If you’ve flown British Airways Club World business class, you may have loved it — or you may have left the flight feeling a little disappointed. While a lie-flat bed, Champagne and multi-course meal is a great way to travel, the Club World seat is very outdated, and other airlines have improved their business class products considerably in the past decade.

Fortunately, there’s plenty of partner airlines with which you can redeem Avios, including some of the world’s very best products. With so many partner airlines operating proper international business class products from the UK to choose from, here are our top five.

1. Qatar Airways

TPG considers Qatar Airways to have the world’s best business class of any airline, not just of those airlines that partner with Avios.

Qatar operates several different business class products on its numerous daily flights from the UK. At worst, you will receive a 2-2-2 configuration with lie-flat seats and leg room for days. At best, Qatar Airways’ Qsuite product is a lot more like first class than business class. Double beds, closing doors and plenty of privacy. There’s a dine-on-demand option, meaning you can eat what you want, when you want to and the airline’s service, lounges and route network are absolutely world class.

After flying Qsuite you may never be able to look at Club World again.

(QSuite. Photo by Zach Honig/TPG)
(QSuite. Photo by Zach Honig/TPG)

With the new BA partner award chart, one-way flights in business class with Qatar Airways from the UK to Doha (DOH) and will cost 62,000 Avios.

2. Japan Airlines

JAL offers a double daily service from London (LHR) to Tokyo (HND) on its Boeing 777 aircraft, which feature the excellent Apex Suites in business class, which you will also find on the likes of Oman Air and Korean Air. These seats have everything you want in business class — lie-flat bed, direct aisle access, excellent privacy and plenty of storage.

Combined with the very professional, consistent (even if reserved) Japanese service and intricate, beautifully presented gourmet meals — especially if you like Japanese food — and you have an all-round excellent product.

Try JAL's new business SkySuites aboard flights from the US to Japan.
JAL’s business class. Photo by Japan Airlines

With the new BA partner award chart, one-way flights in business class with Japan Airlines from London (LHR) to Tokyo (HND) will cost 92,750 Avios.

3. Cathay Pacific

Cathay has had a consistently good business class product for many years. The carrier perfected 1-2-1 reverse herringbone before many other airlines even realised the advantages of the design. Expect excellent privacy, product consistency, direct aisle access and great storage. Cathay also has fantastic lounges both at its hub in Hong Kong (HKG) and around the world like Heathrow’s Terminal 3. Cathay has four daily Boeing 777 flights from Heathrow (LHR), as well as daily Airbus A350 services from Gatwick (LGW) and Manchester (MAN).

So why did Cathay not make the top of the list? Cathay service is somewhat distant and less proactive than some other leading airlines, and its business class food presentation is not restaurant quality. That said, Cathay is still a very reliable way to ensure a comfortable trip in business class.

Updated business class seating on a Cathay Pacific A350.
Updated business class seating on a Cathay Pacific A350. Photo by JT Genter / The Point Guy

With the new BA partner award chart, one-way flights in business class with Cathay Pacific from London (LHR and LGW) and Manchester (MAN) to Hong Kong (HKG) and will cost 92,750 Avios.

4. Finnair

Finnair is one of the lesser known members of the Oneworld alliance. Its A350 aircraft operates on select London (LHR) services to its hub in Helsinki (HEL) and beyond to various destinations in North America and Asia. Its A350 has reverse herringbone 1-2-1 lie-flat seats with direct aisle access (similar to Cathay Pacific’s business class) together with tableware by Finnish designer Marimekko.

With the new BA partner award chart, you can try out this product with one-way flights in business class with Finnair from London (LHR) on the short hop to Helsinki (HEL) for 22,000 Avios.

5. Qantas

The Flying Kangaroo operates daily flights from London (LHR) to Australia, but the carrier has very different business class products. Avoid the A380 QF2 service to Sydney (SYD) via Singapore (SIN), as the seats are very outdated in a 2-2-2 layout with little storage. These seats will eventually be refurbished, but that program will take some time.

Instead, look for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner nonstop QF10 service to Perth (PER), which continues on to Melbourne (MEL). This aircraft has the airline’s latest seating, which is a more spacious 1-2-1 layout with more privacy and storage. As this is one of the longest flights in the world, Qantas has developed a special wellness menu in its business class to help passengers changing so many timezones with so many hours in the air.

Business class board Qantas' 787-9. (Photo by JT Genter / The Points Guy)
Business class on board Qantas’ 787-9. (Photo by JT Genter / The Points Guy)

With the new BA partner award chart, one-way flights in business class with Qantas from London (LHR) to Perth (PER) will cost 154,500 Avios.

Featured image by The Points Guy

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