How many times have you heard about that great British Airways Avios Boston-Dublin award on Aer Lingus?
Pre-2015 this had been 25,000 Avios one-way in business. The April 2015 devaluation increased that to 37,500 Avios.
Head for Points buried the lede in his Aer Lingus AerClub launch report, noting that Boston has now transported 14 miles west. This pushes Boston from Avios Zone 4 to Zone 5.
Further, there are now peak and off-peak award dates, similar to BA and Iberia.
The peak dates for Aer Lingus are:
- January 1-4
- April 7-23
- June 17 – September 10
- December 16-31
The AerClub award chart mirrors BA:
Boston-Dublin New Avios Pricing:
Now in Zone 5, Boston-Dublin costs:
- Off-peak economy: 13,000 Avios each way
- Peak economy: 20,000 Avios each way
- Off-peak business: 50,000 Avios each way
- Peak business: 60,000 Avios each way
In a year and a half business class pricing has more than doubled!
Avios.com shows Aer Lingus Flights (BUT):
The Avios.com website shows Aer Lingus flights. BritishAirways.com still does not.
Avios.com indeed shows much more availability that when calling British Airways. Multiple test searches I found seats on Avios.com, in both cabins, than British Airways phone agents can see.
I called British Airways Executive Club and had them price both peak and off-peak dates. Their pricing and peak/off-peak dates for Aer Lingus match Avios.com. But the cash fees are higher!
Booking Boston to Dublin through Avios.com taxes and fees of £72.40 ($91) in economy and £89.20 ($112) in business are added, both peak and off-peak. The return is £98.20 ($124) in economy and £115 ($145) in business.
It will save money to book by phone through British Airways, though the process is very slow and you need to remind them to waive the $25 booking fee since Aer Lingus cannot be booked on BritishAirways.com.
The flip side is if you really need a specific flight, Avios.com may be your only Avios option if British Airways agents cannot see it.
Note: United MileagePlus can also book Aer Lingus awards, which can be search on United.com.
Bonus: you can now earn AerClub Avios on United flights, the cheapest economy tickets earn 50% mileage flown. You can’t redeem for Avios for United flight.
What is Avios.com?
Avios.com is separate from BritishAirways.com. It has different earn and reward options than British Airways. For instance, Avios.com has flight awards on Air Malta, Aurigny, Flybe and Monarch. You can also redeem for Eurostar trains.
Avios.com is convenient also for instant transfers between British Airways, Iberia and Avios.com. It is less fussy than the transfer option within British airways.
How to Open an Avios.com Account:
The old way to open an Avios.com account was to go to the UK or South African Avios.com website and open an account using an address in that country. Perhaps a friend’s address or a hotel you frequent.
The launch of Aer Lingus AerClub suggests a new way. If you register by January 7, 2017 you are supposed to receive 250 Avios. Those of us who pre-registered got emails to register today. The website does not mention the 250 Avios and the Avios do not post instantly.
AerClub registration ties either to an existing Avios.com account, taking on the same account number, or creates a new Avios.com one. There will not be an AerClub account separate from Avios.com.
If you don’t have an Avios.com account, you might as well try the AerClub route. Let me know in the comments if that gives full Avios.com functionality such as Avios transfer and Eurostar awards.
For those with an Avios.com account, I am not sure if you should give your original UK/South Africa address or current if that is, say, in the US.
- Through slight of hand, and unbeknownst to residents, British Airways has moved the city of Boston 14 miles west.
- The famed Boston-Dublin Avios business class award just got a whole lot more expensive.
- Set up and Air Lingues AerClub account for 250 bonus Avios and access to Avios.com.
- Learn the cool things you can do with Avios.com.
- Don’t forget you can redeem United MileagePlus for Aer Lingus.
- You can also earn AerClub Avios from United flights, but not redeem for United.