Is BA companion ticket worth the extra spending?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Credit Cards' started by brucewil, Feb 8, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. brucewil

    brucewil Silver Member

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    I signed my wife and myself up for the BA cards last spring. I made the mistake of not paying attention to the fine print. I thought I had the same one year to spend the $30K to get the companion ticket as I did to earn the 100K miles for a $20K spend. As it turns out, you have a year to spend $20K to earn the 100K mile bonus, but you to have spend the 30K in a CALENDER year to earn the companion ticket.
    I was trying to time the last $10K in spending so that the two year clock on the companion ticket wouldn't start ticking until spring of 2015. I spent almost $9K in January, bringing me to 29K in spending during my first year only to find out I have to start over again for the 30K spend.

    My question is it worth it to spend another $21k on the BA card just to earn the companion ticket. We have over 275K combined Avios in our family account. Should I forget about the companion ticket and use the $21K for other sign up bonuses? I think I know the answer to this, but I want to hear advise from the members of the board

    Thanks
     
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  2. tondoleo
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    tondoleo Gold Member

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    This is a personal decision you and your family will figure out.

    I found the savings on airmiles worth the expense of the companion ticket since it allowed my bride and me to fly F to Europe. We enjoyed it so much we are doing it again via the companion ticket this year too.

    The taxes and fuel surcharges are expensive. However, you and your companion may crunch the numbers and determine it is a great value for you to be able to fly in BA F to reach your destination.

    Good luck.
     
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  3. Surface Interval
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    Surface Interval Silver Member

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    For me it made sense to spring the few hundred for the fuel surcharges. I took my family of four to Italy with a stopover in London all for about what we would have paid in coach. Part in first, part in biz. Loved the BA001 LCY-JFK (was almost as good as first with only 32 seats in the entire aircraft). It really depends on your personal situation.
     
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  4. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    I read on some blog that stopovers were removed, I guess that is wrong?

    I think my goal is to do BA from IAD - Africa in Biz or First, as long as a stopover in London is an option I think my wife will go for it (to make the flights shorter)... I don't like the idea of fuel surcharges, but I hope they will be close the price of a coach seat so it’s probably worth it.
     
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  5. Surface Interval
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    Surface Interval Silver Member

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    I must admit my trip was just before the Adios updates :oops: . However, you can still get some value by being creative and breaking things up. Along those lines: http://travelisfree.com/2012/09/08/breaking-ba-avios-by-adding-stopovers/

    Even with the new program, I would not hesitate to take a very similar trip.
     
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  6. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    Is there a difference is mile accounting between:
    IAD - LHR - depart first flight - LHR - CPT
    and
    IAD - LHR - stop in days - LHR - CPT
     
  7. Surface Interval
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    Surface Interval Silver Member

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    I poked around the BA website and while it would let me book with a stopover (it gave me LHR and JNB as possible stopover cities). However, I could not find any availability without a stopover????
     
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  8. Steven Schwartz
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    Steven Schwartz Gold Member

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    No brainer for me in your case. You already are committed to using Avios points for two tickets so you obviously know that you will have to pay the fees. Spend some extra and you save half the points for other trips - right?

    We've had the pleasure of flying First Class on BA a few times thanks to the card and the companion passes. While others compare different FC cabins (and we've been fortunate to fly on some of the best), BA is no slouch and it's a lovely way to travel. More to the point, the change to Avios made some trips very, very expensive points-wise but using the Companion Pass brings it back to reality and BA has had pretty good availability. Bon voyage!
     
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  9. brucewil

    brucewil Silver Member

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    Congrats. It figures that you are the first to actually provide an opinion to my question! As you know, with our unique situation as a small business owner, it's no problem meeting minimum spend requirements. We are planning a couple of RTW vacations in the next two years and I am trying to set everything in place as I learn the ropes here. Thanks for your help.
     
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  10. Boraxo

    Boraxo Silver Member

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    What are your other options? Basically you can do 2for1, use for other short-haul BAflights, or use on AA or other partners. The latter might be worthwhile if you plan to fly to South America as there are no fuel surcharges.

    I faced the same dilemma after discovering the heinous fuel surcharges (which were never disclosed when Chase ran the first 100k bonus promo). I have since concluded that the 2for1 is basically the equivalent of buying cheapo TATL economy and getting a C/F upgrade for 25k miles each way - for 2. Kind of like the old days, but without getting the EQM. For me that is worth it as I can't find advance upgrade inventory on UA international flights so it's the only option as Mrs. B and I refuse to fly economy class on TATL or TPAC. But for others the AA flights may be a better redemption option as they don't require much cash, and $2000 is no small sum (even for 2). Also the 2for1 allows you to leverage your miles - many people would need years to accumulate 200k on another carrier.

    At this point I am working on another 2for1 cert so I can fly my family of 4 to Europe in C in 2014. Or maybe beyond. :) The other major downside is that you must go via London - but there are many worse hubs.
     
  11. Whatwasthat...
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    Whatwasthat... Silver Member

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    My wife & I have found the 2-4-1 to be very worthwhile. We've used them twice for Business Class trips from LAX to Europe (France and Italy). And we'll be taking our first First Class trip on BA (to the UK) in May - and really looking forward to it).

    I agree, it's a personal call. Personally, for us, it works. :)
     
  12. Slow_Mustang
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    Slow_Mustang Silver Member

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    We did LAX to South Africa last year on BA in F with a companion ticket. That was the best use of AVIOS miles and the companion ticket. BA service and food in F is at par with most other major carriers that we have taken. So, I do believe we got our money's worth, even with the fuel surcharge. A stopover in London for a couple of days, on the way out helped us to adjust to the jet lag so that we could hit the ground running when we got to S. Africa. My TR for those interested, is posted in the other section of the forum.
     
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  13. pilotb757

    pilotb757 Silver Member

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    This is my 4th free companion ticket earned - 2 cards- used 2 already and enjoyed the BA first class trip to LHR.
    As long as they offer the free companion tickets ill go for them.
     
  14. robmac

    robmac Silver Member

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    Just as a suggestion, you can cross the pond in another airline (less points and fuel surcharges) and use the cert to go from EU to South Africa on BA FC/BC (not as heavy surcharges).

    The key problem with BA is that you still have to pay fuel, even of paying all with Avios...
     

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