We are going to get excited anytime we start to see this kind of exciting “centurion” offer. It’s been a while since credit card companies have been this frivolous with their mileage rewards. We anticipate that, just like last year, this opportunity won’t last long, so if it fits for you, don’t hesitate.
If you’re wondering if this card and its benefits “fit for you,” first off, play with the BA Avios Usage Calculator, chances are it will either start to get really exciting for you, or your interest will stall out. These miles are best for direct flight routes, so if you live near SEA, DFW, LAX, MIA, JFK, or ORD, it won’t take long to see the power in this program. Even still, we found some killer deals with Avios out of our closest major Airport, SLC: 25k to LIM, 10k to ORD, 7500 to DFW (all each-way).
Once you’ve done that, ask yourself these questions:
Am I interested in using thes miles on British Airways or on OneWorld Partner flights? I’ll be straight up with you – if you’re wanting to fly on British Airways, you’ll be looking at some steep costs relative to other redemption programs. BA’s fuel surcharges are not cheap. On the other hand, there are some phenomenal uses for these miles with OneWorld Partners.
Would I like to make some short, direct, domestic flights at radically reduced levels? Most other programs want 25k of your miles regardless of whether you’re flying from SEA to MIA or from SEA to PDX. It just plain doesn’t make sense to waste 25 large on a flight that short – enter Avios. Anything under 650 miles will run you 4500 Avios each way. Yes, that means your 100k will get you 11 trips like that.
Are there any Alaska Airlines routes I’d like to fly? If the answer is “yes,” this is certainly a program you need to take a good look at. There’s a post from last November about the value-added in using BA Avios to book Alaska Air flights. Take a look at where Alaska Airlines flies, and if something there works for you, put some serious consideration into the Chase British Airways 100k offer.
Am I plotting any intra-country routes in South America? The most likely of these is the Lima to Cuzco route you’d probably need to take to complete a bucket-list journey to Machu Picchu. A mere 4500 Avios each way will get you that little flight.
Can I spend $20k on this card over the next year without making purchases I wouldn’t otherwise make? If you can’t, you may only bring in 50k (75k if you spend $10k) - still a nice benefit, but not as alluring if that’s not an option. If you can spend $30k in the next year, you’ll also get a companion ticket – something that may also be a very big draw on this card. But remember, the moment you start to make frivolous purchases is the moment you start to lose this game.
Will it bug me to drop $95 on the annual fee? So many cards have the annual fee waived for the first year that we pretend that they don’t have one. The fact is that the benefits probably justify it, but you need to be sure that’s not an issue for you.
As you can see, it doesn’t take long to make you a lover or a hater of this deal. As I’ve been writing, the wanderlusting has begun and I’m daydreaming up all kinds of amazing ideas for cross-country treks and family getaways.