It almost feels like a slap in the face. All that hard work to earn enough Avios (miles) to redeem for a so called “free” flight, and then you get hit with fuel surcharges, government surcharges, airport taxes, flying pig taxes, one direction taxes and all sorts of things that don’t seem real, but somehow, some are. There are a few ways to avoid some of these dreaded surcharges when using your British Airways miles, so we’ll spell them all out!

If You’re Flying British Airways, One Of The Only TWO Ways To Duck Some Of The Surcharges Is By Starting And Finishing Somewhere That’s Not London…

That’s right. Although British Airways is a London based airline, of of only two ways to avoid being gouged on surcharges is to start and finish somewhere that’s not London or Manchester. How can you do this? By starting or ending with a flight that doesn’t get charged UK passenger duty, like starting or ending in Inverness, Belfast or any other nearby city in Europe which avoid the ÂŖ200 tax. You could turn the savings into a mini trip in one of these other cities, before using miles or a cheap separate flight to get home. Whether it’s worth it all depends on your definition of fun, adventure or meaningful savings. 

Flying On Partners Means Virtually No Surcharges, As Low As $5.60…

Now here’s the important distinction: you cannot use your BA companion voucher to fly on any airline other than British Airways, so no partners allowed. If you want to fly on partners, and pay as little as $5.60 compared to $560, you’ll need to cough up the full Avios (miles) needed per person. You can however use your Avios for flights starting all around the world on Qatar, Japan Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Qantas, Iberia, Finnair, American and so forth. Cathay Pacific First Class between Hong Kong and Tokyo, for example, is only 40,000 Avios and less than $80 in surcharges per person. You’ll see partner availability directly BENEATH any British Airways availability, on any route you search. It’s best to search routes where you know partners fly, like Doha to Sydney for Qatar, or New York to Miami for American, and so forth.

If You Want To Fly British Airways, You Can Avoid Tax By Starting In Places Where It’s Illegal To Add Surcharges…

Has Rio De Janeiro been on your bucket list? It should be, because all in taxes and surcharges for First Class from Rio to London are just $34.66. Brazil is a country where surcharges are not allowed, which saves you over $400 by booking two one way tickets to the beach capital of the world. British Airways would incorrectly correct the surcharges if you book these as a round trip, There are other countries and cities around the world  that don’t allow surcharges, but you’ll have to go out and find them on your own, we’re not THAT nice…