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British Airways points are known as Avios and can be a versatile frequent flyer currency to have. The U.K.-based airline is a member of the Oneworld Alliance, which includes American Airlines and Alaska Airlines.
How much are Avios worth?
Based on our analysis, the short answer is: 0.8 cent each.
This is a baseline value, drawn from real-world data on hundreds of economy routes, not a maximized value. In other words, you should aim for award redemptions that offer 0.8 cent or more in value from your Avios.
What does this value mean?
Our estimated value of 0.8 cent per Avios provides a lower-end value you can use to determine the relative value of your own redemptions. It is based on comparing main cabin fares using both cash and miles, across several dates and destinations.
In other words, this is the value you can expect to get from your British Airways Avios without seeking particularly high-value redemptions. This means you can get more value by looking for sweet spots and using more advanced award techniques. It also means you can end up getting lower value than this if you’re not careful.
» Learn more: Should I book award travel this year?
How much are Avios worth in dollars?
With the calculator below, you can figure out how much your British Airways Avios are worth in dollars based on this value.
How does the value of Avios change when booking business class?
British Airways Avios are worth an average of 1.9 cents per Avios toward business class redemptions, based on our analysis.
That puts British Airways' Avios points value behind the pack compared with the average redemption rate for business class awards on other U.K. and U.S. airline loyalty programs. For example, American (2.5 cents), United (2.4 cents) and Virgin Atlantic (2.1 cents) are all more valuable. British Airways only comes out ahead of Flying Blue (1.8 cents) and Delta (1.5 cents).
British Airways business class awards provide a much more valuable redemption than economy awards. The business class redemption rate of 1.9 cents per Avios is more than double than the poor 0.8 cent per Avios economy redemption rate.
When is the best time to use Avios?
British Airways Avios are a bit more valuable when you book in advance. We looked at redemption rates for awards booked 15 days before departure, 180 days before departure and award flights during peak winter holiday times.
For economy awards
For economy redemptions, the redemption rate was the same 0.8 cents per Avios rate for both close-in and advanced purchase bookings. However, for holiday economy award flights, we found an abysmal average redemption rate of 0.4 cents per Avios.
For business awards
In business class, we found an average redemption rate of 1.5 cents per Avios when booking 180 days out versus 1.3 cents per Avios for awards booked 15 days to departure. Again holiday dates lagged with an average business class redemption rate of 1.2 cents per Avios.
How flexible are British Airways Avios?
As a member of the Oneworld Alliance, you can redeem Avios for award flights on any of the alliance's 14 members. This includes the ability to move your Avios between the other two Avios-earning airlines, Iberia and Aer Lingus.
While British Airways Avios aren't very valuable for awards on its own flights, there are some lucrative redemptions available on its partners. British Airways Avios sweet spots include routes between the U.S. West Coast and Hawaii for 26,000 Avios round-trip, flights from Dallas/Fort Worth to Cancun, Mexico, for 18,000 Avios round-trip or flights to Japan for just 25,750 miles each way.
» Learn more: The beginner's guide to points and miles
How did we determine the Avios points value?
We collected hundreds of data points comparing the cash value with award (Avios) value for the same routes and dates. That is, we compared the cost of a given ticket in either cash or Avios, across many tickets.
This method differs from others in that it looks at actual redemptions rather than hypothetical, maximized redemptions. The advantage of this approach is that it provides a real-world indication of how much these Avios are worth, on average. That said, it doesn’t take into account the high-value redemptions that points enthusiasts seek.
Wondering what you can do with those Avios? Check out our points collector's guide to British Airways, and learn which credit card is best for international award travel.
How to maximize your rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2021, including those best for:
Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card