THE CLUB'S GUIDE TO • December 2019

How to upgrade with Avios

There are many ways you can make your Avios stretch, but the most exciting one might just be on an upgrade to the next cabin. Whether you fancy a whirl in First or Club World, or just want a quieter, more spacious experience in World Traveller Plus, we tackle the FAQs to help you make the move

Is it worth using Avios to upgrade?

Yes! It’s a fantastic way to upgrade your flying experience which, depending on the cabin you choose, can include dedicated check-in areas, access to our global network of lounges and an enhanced meal service.

Can you use Avios to upgrade on all tickets? 

Most cash bookings can be upgraded with Avios either at the time of booking or later on, depending on availability. Only the lowest economy (World Traveller) fares (Q, O and G) cannot be upgraded with Avios at any time. There must be reward flight availability in the next cabin for you to be able to upgrade to it using Avios. You won’t be able to upgrade with Avios at the airport or on board.

How do I know which tickets can be upgraded with Avios?

There are several ways to check availability:

  • If you have an existing booking – log in to Manage My Booking, select your flight and choose ‘Upgrade this flight with Avios’ to see if your flight can be upgraded.
  • If you’re just making plans – use our ‘book and upgrade’ form to search for specific flights and dates to see if you can upgrade as you book. Or, use our reward availability tools to search for inspiration and availability.

How many classes can I upgrade?

An Avios upgrade is always to the next cabin, which can vary depending on the route and airline. For example:

Is there a limit on the number of people on each flight who can upgrade?

We offer a limited number of reward seats on all our published flights and so they are subject to availability. There must be reward flight availability in the next cabin for you to be able to upgrade to it using Avios.

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Can I use my Avios to upgrade flights on other oneworld airlines?

Yes, you can use your Avios to upgrade on British Airways, Iberia and American Airlines flights.

When can I upgrade – do I have to do it when I make the initial booking? 

You can upgrade either at the time of making your initial booking or you can upgrade an existing booking.

Do I need to upgrade both stages of my journey? Do they need to be done at the same time? 

We offer the flexibility to upgrade some or all of your eligible flights in your booking, and they can be done at different times.

I’ve got a companion voucher. Can I use Avios to upgrade to a different cabin?

Companion vouchers are used in conjunction with standard redemptions, so though you cannot upgrade using Avios, you can rebook in to the higher cabin.

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What is an example of how an upgrade would work? 

The formula goes as follows: the Avios for the cabin you wish to upgrade to, minus the Avios needed for the cabin you make your booking in. This equals the Avios required to upgrade one way.

Here’s an example for a peak one-way upgrade from London to New York, upgrading from premium economy (World Traveller Plus) to business (Club World):

Club World: 60,000 Avios – World Traveller Plus: 40,000 Avios = 20,000 Avios to upgrade

How much does it cost to upgrade?

An upgrade with Avios consists of:

  • a cash amount for the flights
  • an Avios amount for the upgrade
  • taxes, fees and carrier charges

The Avios amount required for the upgrade is based on the Avios costs for reward flights in the cabins you are upgrading from and to and will depend on whether your flight is scheduled on a peak or off-peak date.

I’m ready to upgrade. How do I do it?

To upgrade an existing booking:

To upgrade a new flight as you book:

  • Use our ‘book and upgrade’ form to search for availability and make your booking. Select the class of travel you wish to upgrade from when searching.

This article has been tagged BA, Travel Tips