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Avios award chart operates under distance based and is divided into zones. Back in the day when redeeming Aer Lingus from Boston to Dublin and vice versa was such as a great sweet spot to use Avios because the distance between those two cities is only 2,993 miles, which falls under the zone 4 that requires only 31,250 Avios for a business class seat off-peak or 37,500 Avios for a business class seat peak. Unfortunately, that route then was decided to move to zone 5 and thus requires more miles: 50,000 Avios for a business class seat off-peak or 60,000 Avios for a business class seat peak. See the award chart below.
|1||0 – 650||London, Edinburgh, Paris, Amsterdam|
|2||651 – 1151||Barcelona, Berlin, Nice, Venice|
|3||1152 – 2000||Malaga, Lanzarote, Rome, Dubrovnik|
|4||2001 – 3000||NA|
|5||3001 – 4000||New York, Boston, Chicago, Toronto|
|6||4001 – 5500||Miami, Orlando, Los Angeles, San Francisco|
|Photo Credit: Aer Lingus|
Aer Lingus New Route Montreal – Dublin
I just got off the phone with British Airways to price out a Business Class seat on Aer Lingus new route from Montreal to Dublin that will commence on August 8, 2019. The agent quoted me for 37,500 Avios + $69.65 on the peak date. Apparently, the distance between Montreal and Dublin is only 2,973 miles which falls under the zone 4 band like Boston and Dublin route. What’s confusing is that the new published Aer Lingus award chart has Montreal in zone 5. I have no idea when Avios is going to remove this sweet spot like they did with Boston route, therefore if you have been wanting to fly to Ireland for fewer points, you should consider this. Keep in mind, this route does not start until August 2019 and August is peak time. Some dates in September is off-peak time, but you can’t search availability that far just yet. Go here to view the peak/off peak calendar.
|New Published Aer Lingus Award Chart Has Montreal in Zone 5|
23,000 American Express Points
Up until November 15, American Express is having a 40% bonus transfer between Amex points and Avios family such as British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus. Your best is to transfer Amex points to British Airways because the fuel surcharges are much lesser than using Aer Lingus loyalty miles to book. Because right now Avios considers Montreal to Dublin and vice versa under zone 4, you will need merely 23,000 Amex points for a one-way business class ticket on an off-peak date or 27,000 Amex points on a peak date. If you don’t mind economy, you only need 8,000 Amex points on an off-peak date and 9,000 Amex points on a peak date each way.
How To Book?
All things comes down to a simple question, how to book this? It’s pretty easy. First you need to make sure there’s an award availability. To accomplish this, simply head over to United website and plug in the route and date. If you see there’s a saver award available (ignore the 70k United miles), you can go ahead and call up British Airways and feed the agent with the flight you found. Currently, you cannot book Aer Lingus flight using British Airways Avios online, you have to call in. But British Airways agents are pretty competent and the time getting to them is pretty quick, so the entire process is pretty much hassles free. It is worth mentioning that you can book online via avios.com to book using Aer Lingus Avios, but the fuel surcharges are a lot higher than using British Airways Avios.
|Use United Website To Find Award Availabiilty|
After personally working with British Airways agent today, right now Avios considers Montreal to Dublin and vice versa under zone 4. With the current American Express 40% transfer bonus promotion, you will need merely 23,000 Amex points for a one-way business class ticket on an off-peak date or 27,000 Amex points on a peak date. For those that just want to get to Dublin in economy, you only need 8,000 Amex points on an off-peak date and 9,000 Amex points on a peak date each way. I have no knowledge of when Avios is going to get rid of this sweet spot and move this route to zone 5 like what’s shown on Aer Lingus’ new published award chart, but as the old sayin goes “strike the iron while it’s hot!”
This post has been added to our Maximize Points section.