The Most Powerful Feature of the British Airways App… that you’re NOT using!
As the general public moves away from desktops and onto mobile devices, the need for companies to develop powerful apps has grown. No longer is the mobile version of a website going to suffice for most users. Airlines in general have been slow to advance beyond booking trips, managing bookings, and seeing your mileage balances. British Airways has come leaps and bounds ahead of its competition with this amazing feature that every points enthusiast should be using.
Searching for Award Flights
The most frustrating part of trying to use your airline miles is finding flights with availability. We’ve heard it, and you’ve probably said it before as well. “Why the hell can’t I find flights on the dates that I want when I want to go? It’s such a scam. I can’t even use my miles once I earn them.”
Wouldn’t it be grand if an airline showed you availability to use your miles by day, week, month, and even year? How about if they could show you flights not only to the city that you want, but also to every other city in your country, or… why not… an entire continent? British Airways can do that.
In the BA app you can search for flights one of two ways, either a standard Avios search OR a reward flight finder. The standard avios search is great when you have a route you know you want to fly, but the reward flight finder is where the magic happens.
This nifty tool allows you to search for flights from any city to any continent, region, country, or even city you’d like. For us, using this tool over the past year has saved us countless hours. No longer do we need to search which cities the airline services on wikipedia, then search date by date, route by route, wasting time and banging our head against the wall.
Put into Practice
Let’s say that you want to fly from Seattle to Europe round trip. We know that British Airways services only London from the USA, so let’s find out what dates and flights are available for us using our Avios on BA.
I like searching in the reverse because sometimes getting home is just as much of a challenge TO Europe. In fact, what if flights out of Seattle were limited but flights out of nearby Vancouver or Los Angeles were available?
Set your destination city as London and your region as USA. Choose the dates you want to fly, class of service (is there anything other than first class?) and fire up the search engine.
A list of all the cities that BA services will show with the number of dates available to use your miles.
How. Freaking. Amazing. Is. This?
Atlanta – 18 days, Boston, 27 days, Denver, 13 dates, Austin, 23 days… no more searching or guessing which dates have space and which don’t.
Click on the city that you want (in this case San Francisco) and you can see that flights from SFO-LHR are available on Saturday the 21stand Monday the 23rd… just before the Christmas Holiday! Who says that peak season award tickets aren’t available?!
How to use this to your advantage
Remember our post that we did a few days ago about how to upgrade using Avios on your British Airways flights? Now you have a simple and easy way to find all the flights that have space to upgrade before you make your booking!
Find a deal out of LAX or SFO? Now you can see which dates have first class space and therefore you can upgrade from Business to First Class!
You’ve saved yourself hours and hours of mindless clicking and searching. Want to connect out of London to Europe? Just change the destination from USA to Europe and all the cities that BA services will show up.
If only other airlines made this kind of transparency available to the general public. But that’s not really the point, is it? While the majority of airlines are making It harder to use your miles, British Airways is creating a customer friendly tool and giving it away to the masses.