Which British Airways Avios Redemptions Can’t Be Booked Online?
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The British Airways Executive Club website has a pretty decent search and booking function. It shows different options on different carriers in different fare classes. It will also prompt you to choose between choosing a stopover or flying straight through to your destination.
But it does have a few restrictions to be aware of that may require you to call in to book.
The program prices per flight using a distance-based award chart. The great thing about this model is that one-way itineraries are allowed, and there are minimal routing rules. You can book a one-way or a return redemption online (including using a valuable Companion Voucher), however, a limitation of the website is booking an open-jaw flight where you fly into one city and out of another. For example, London (LHR) to Los Angeles (LAX) and returning San Francisco (SFO) back to London (LHR).
You can book this as two separate one-ways, but you can’t use your Companion Voucher for this because it can only be used once and would therefore only apply to the first LHR-SFO booking.
Certain Partner Flights
Of all of the partner airlines for which you can use your Avios, most will show up on BA.com in redemption searches and can be booked this way, including:
- American Airlines
- British Airways
- Cathay Pacific including Cathay Dragon
- Iberia including Iberia Express and Air Nostrum
- Japan Airlines
- LATAM (most flights)
- Malaysia Airlines
- Qantas including QantasLink and Jetconnect
- Qatar Airways
- Royal Jordanian
- S7 Airlines
- SriLankan Airlines
However, redemptions on the following airlines will not show online:
- Alaska Airlines
- Aer Lingus
- Some LATAM flights
It’s also worth noting that redemptions cannot be booked online (or by phone) more than 355 days in advance. So if you’re booking a return redemption 11 months in advance for a two-month trip, you’ll need to wait until the return flights are loaded 355 days in advance. You can book the second lot of flights online as a separate one-way redemption, however, if you want to use the return portion of a Companion Voucher, you’ll need to call for this to be booked manually — this can’t be done online.
Also, if you are trying to book a particularly complex redemption and it’s not showing online but does not otherwise meet one of the exceptions above, try searching for each flight separately. The Avios site is good, but can’t necessarily build the same itinerary your creative brain can — especially when using a tool like ITA Matrix. If you can find the separate segments but want to book it as a single redemption, then you may wish to call Executive Club to explain you couldn’t book it online and they will do it for you.
The Executive Club phone number is 0800 597 7580.
Featured image from British Airways.
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