Trying to Book a US Airways Flight with British Airways Avios Miles?

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Last week I wrote a post titled “What 50,000 British Airways Avios Points Will Get You…” and received some backlash in the comments section that readers were looking to redeem their Avios points and there were hardly any flights available for months. Many readers left comments or emailed me stating that they were looking to take flights from US Airways hubs. I went ahead and checked the system and saw that many flights were marked Available although they read “0 seats available”. I didn’t actually try to book the flights but it did let me select them. I advised readers to call British Airways to book their flights as they were showing as having availability on both American Airlines and US Airways website. British Airways should always show the same availability as those two sites for the desired non-stop sites.

British Airways AviosWhile I didn’t look into it any more, I read a few days ago at One Mile at a Time that British Airways was NOT showing must US Airways flights. So this was a system wide issue that many were experiencing. It seems as though that this might be due to US Airways adjusting some of their fare classes, but the issue should be totally resolved by February 1st. Folks have reported to be able to call British Airways (1-800-452-1201) to book their flights and have the agent waive the online booking fee. Make sure to request that the phone booking fee is waived. If you get an agent that isn’t willing to help and book you the flight that you see available on Americans site, hang up and call again! I have read many reports, however, that folks are being charged a little more on the taxes than they should be, so keep this in mind when speaking to the agent.

If you’ve had experience calling British Airways before, you already know that you might be on hold for a very very long time! They also are not open 24/7! Blogger Mommy Points just listed out some suggestions this morning on how to get through easier. She suggests calling immediately when they open at 7:30am ET. She also suggests calling their Singapore number at +65 6823 2095. Just remember though, calling Singapore will result in long distance phone charges.

Anyone else have any luck booking these flights?

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  1. Unless one lives in New York or another major BA gateway, Avios are almost always useless. One can occasionally find a flight from, say, Phoenix to San Diego on US Airways. But almost all the time, month after month, there are no seats to anywhere, domestic or foreign, from most U.S. airports. Even Phoenix, with one daily non-stop to London, is rarely offered on desired dates or in business and first. Further, the “carrier imposed fees,” formerly known as fuel surcharges, add hundreds or thousands of dollars to any flight going to or through Heathrow. If you can find an outbound flight, you most often will not find a return flight. Try Phoenix to New York in February, as I just did. BA has not responded to these issues, and no one should be fooled by the promise of free Avios flights.

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