British Airways Executive Club: Your Guide To The Best Redemptions

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Sections:
How To Find Your Flight Distance
British Airways Partners
Middle East
Asia
Europe
Americas

British Airways Executive Club is one of the best programs for shorter distance redemptions in the world. Given that the program has a distance based chart, as opposed to the common zone-based chart, there is no cheating the system in that aspect. This makes Executive Club excellent for multi-zone redemptions. Below I’ve listed some of my favorite redemptions for flights under 4,000 miles, which is usually where the best value redemptions are with British Airways.

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How To Find Your Flight Distance

I always use the tool Great Circle Mapper to find the approximate distance of a flight I’m interested in. Al you do is enter the airport codes in the search field, for example, DOH-ARN, and the distance will appear.

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As you can see, the website lets us know that Doha to Stockholm is just under 3,000 miles, which is great for maximizing value from Avios. You always want to try to reach the upper bounds of each distance category.

British Airways Partners 

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You can redeem Avios on all oneworld airlines above, as well as Aer Lingus and Alaska Airlines, among others.

Best Redemptions: 

Europe

Europe, oh Europe. The continent where a one hour flight can cost €50, but the mileage cost is a ridiculous 15,000 points one-way. Thank goodness for British Airways (and Finnair + Iberia). 

When redeeming points in Europe, no program is better than the British Airways Executive Club if a oneworld airline operates to your destination. All flights on British Airways and Iberia cost only 4,000 miles one-way. During peak season, or on Finnair, they’re still a mere 4,500 miles one-way in economy. This is the cost for all flights under 600 miles, and those over will cost 7,500 miles one-way. Surcharges are usually low if you avoid the UK, and there is an excellent value to be had. I’ve redeemed 9,000 Avios one-way from Gothenburg to London for British Airways Club Europe, although I’d rather save miles and book economy roundtrip instead given how bad Club Europe is. 

Flying outside of Europe, there is also excellent value to be had on British Airways partner airlines Iberia, Finnair, American Airlines, Qatar Airways, S7, and Royal Jordanian. 

Sorted by carrier originating in Europe, here are some of the best values you can get:

Iberia

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Some of the best value routes in Europe on Iberia.

 

Route color:Economy price:Business price:
Red4,500 miles (5,000 during peak) + taxes9,000 miles + taxes
Blue7,500 miles (8,250 during peak) + taxes15,000 miles (16,500 during peak) + taxes

Finnair

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Some of the best value routes on Finnair.

Finnair offers many great values within Europe, and to two Asian destinations. Dubai is just under 3,000 miles from Helsinki, meaning you can get there from 12,500 miles in economy one-way. Some of these flights are operated by their beautiful A350s. Astana is just under 2,000 miles from Helsinki, so there is also excellent value to be had on this seasonal route.

Route color:Economy Price:Business Price:
Red4,500 miles + ~$709,000 miles + ~$70
Blue7,500 miles + ~$7015,000 miles + ~$70
Purple10,000 miles + ~$7020,000 miles + ~$70
Black12,500 miles + ~$7037,500 miles + ~$70

Middle East

There are two oneworld airlines based in the Middle East – Royal Jordanian and Qatar. Of the two, the former is definitely preferable. That’s not to say Royal Jordanian should be ignored. They offer some fantastic redemptions to Jordan, which is my favorite Middle Eastern country I’ve visited.

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Me, Aprilyn and Oskar on The King’s Highway, Jordan.

I’ll start with the best value redemptions on Qatar to Doha. Keep in mind that these can be used for connections, for example going from Frankfurt to Nairobi via Doha. Just add the cost of the award to Doha and onward to get the total.

Pro tip for Qatar:

Qatar is inconsistent with award space. Sometimes there is tones, sometimes there is none. A pattern I’ve noticed is that there is rarely any space available originating in Doha. However, if you search the full segment (i.e. Stockholm – Delhi, instead of Stockholm – Doha + Doha – Delhi) award availability will show up on the connecting flight. This is called married segment logic, and it does not mean there is availability on the Doha – Delhi sector individually. You can only snag a seat on that leg if you book the whole journey as one ticket.

Best redemptions on Qatar

Eastern Europe, Nordics (excluding Norway), Germany, Italy, and Switzerland:

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Some examples of routes from Europe to Doha under 3,000 miles.

Route color:Economy price:Business price:
Red12,500 miles + ~$25037,500 miles + ~$250

Africa

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The best redemptions to/from Africa.

All these following redemptions to Africa are valuable, in my options. There are three different categories: flights under 2,000 miles (black), flights between 2,000 and 3000 miles (red) and flights between 3,000 and 4,000 miles (blue).

Route color:Economy Price:Business price:
Black10,000 miles + ~$17520,000 miles + ~$175
Red12,500 miles + ~$25037,500 miles + ~$250
Blue20,000 miles + ~$25060,000 miles + ~$250

Middle East and India

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Some of the best destinations for redemptions in the Middle East and India.

Note: 

In most cases, Qatar sells business class as First Class in the Middle East. Redeeming miles for intra-Middle Eastern “First Class” is not worth the additional cost in my opinion, considering that you have to pay First Class prices. Also, it can be extremely difficult to find award space to or from India – you’ll likely need to marry the segment with a connecting flight.

Route color:Economy Price:Business Price:First Price:
Muscat and Kuwait4,500 miles + ~$90N/A18,000 miles + ~$90
Red7,500 miles + ~$90N/A30,000 miles + ~$150
Blue10,000 miles + ~$10020,000 miles + ~$300N/A

Best redemptions on Royal Jordanian

Royal Jordanian is another great British Airways partner, and luckily they release tones of award space. While their product isn’t quite as good as Qatar, they’re a great option for travel to/from Jordan, or connecting to smaller Middle Eastern destinations.

Europe

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Best redemptions to Amman from Europe, or vice versa.

Route color:Economy price:Business price:
Red10,000 miles + ~$20020,000 miles + ~$200
Blue12,500 miles + ~$15037,500 miles + ~$200

As you can tell, you’ll get far better value taking the red routes in business class. The benefit of the blue routes is that they are often served by 787s with lie-flat seats, which is worth the additional miles in my opinion.

Middle East

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Best redemptions to Amman from the Middle East, or vice versa.

Route color:Economy Price:Business Price:
Red4,500 miles + ~$509,000 miles + ~$50
Blue7,500 miles + ~$10015,000 miles + ~$100
Black10,000 miles + ~$10020,000 miles + ~$100

There are several excellent redemptions on Royal Jordanian in the Middle East, and award availability is excellent. Just know that the taxes will vary significantly from airport to airport.

United States, Canada, Mexico and Central America

Let’s start with the bad news – on these routes you’re usually limited to flying American Airlines unless your travel involves the West Coast. Other than that, one-way Avios redemptions are one of the best usages of points in the Americas. 

All flights under 1,150 miles cost 7,500 miles one-way with minimal surcharges. You can fly from Miami to a bunch of Caribbean paradise islands for that price! Here’s a list of some excellent redemptions within North America sorted by cabin:

Economy:

First (priced as Business within North America):

A First Class Redemption:

As you’ll know if you’ve seen my review, Cathay Pacific flies daily between New York JFK and Vancouver on a long-haul 777-300ER featuring fantastic First and Business Class products. You can redeem Avios for this flight at the following cost:

First: 50,000 miles one-way
Business: 37,500 miles one-way
Premium Economy: 25,000 miles one-way
Economy: 12,500 miles one-way