87% Of The Way To Oneworld Sapphire Status For $1,370


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Once upon a time (in a galaxy far far away) I was a big fan of mileage runs, status runs and any other kind of run that would improve my trips. Nowadays I’m a little happier flying to destinations I want to visit or on aircraft I’d like to try out and my days of flying around just to earn status or miles are mostly behind me.

That’s why it’s a little surprising that an earlier blog post of mine gave me an idea.

A few hours ago I wrote about a very good oneworld Business Class fare that’s currently available between Gothenburg and Miami.

That particular fare routes through London Heathrow and, if you’re crediting the flights to the British Airways Executive Club, will earn you 360 Tier Points (you need 600 Tier Points for BA Silver status which is the same as oneworld Sapphire status).

But what happens if you tweak the routing a little? Can this trip be made more lucrative from a status earning point of view?

Oh yes!

The key here is the fact that a Business Class fare between Helsinki and London earns 80 Tier Points so, if that particular segment can be squeezed into this trip in both directions, the tier point earnings would increase very nicely.

It turns out that this isn’t all that hard to do…and here’s an example itinerary I pulled together:

Annoyingly, there are two problems here.

Firstly the connection in the UK is far too tight at just 1 hour in length. Finnair will arrive into T3 and the next flight departs out if T5 and that’s not a connection I’d like to attempt.

Secondly there aren’t all that many booking engines that allow you to specify 6 separate segments – most of them seem to stop at 5.

I managed to price up a five segment itinerary on Google Flights (this would earn 440 Tier Points)…

…but it wasn’t until I used Flight Network that I managed to price up a full 6 segment itinerary that doesn’t involve an almost guaranteed missed connection in London:

If you’re happy to take an overnight layover in London on the outbound journey you can book a 520 Tier Point trip for just $1,370.

Here’s how that breaks down:

  • Gothenburg – Helsinki – 40 Tier Points
  • Helsinki – London – 80 Tier Points
  • London – Miami – 140 Tier Points

That’s 260 Tier points one way or 520 Tier Points roundtrip.

Ok, yes, I know…

We used to be able to do even better than this with Qatar Airways Business Class flights between Europe and Asia which only needed 4 segments, earned 560 Tier Points and offered considerably better Business Class service than you’ll ever get with BA or AA…but that was a long time ago.

It’s been well over a year since I last saw a series of fantastic Qatar Airways Business Class fares so deals like this one are the next best thing.

BA Silver Status

As I’ve already mentioned, you need 600 Tier Points to hit the threshold for BA Silver status…but you also need 4 segments booked though BA and on BA flights.

I haven’t had time to see if the 520 Tier Point Itinerary can be booked on BA (and not just through AA) but, if it can, you can check off all 4 segments in this trip. otherwise you’ll have to check them off as you earn the remaining 80 Tier Points needed for BA Silver status.

British Airways Silver status get you priority check-in, Business Class lounge access worldwide (including Admirals Club lounge access in the US), free seat selection for you and your traveling companions at the time of booking and more (see here for full details).

It’s definitely a status worth having.

Bottom Line

What started out earlier today as just a very good transatlantic Business Class fare has now morphed into a very nice Tier Point earning fare if you don’t mind a long-ish trip.

The was been a time when I would had booked this trip before I had even written about it but I’m enjoying a more sedate lifestyle nowadays….but hopefully someone else can make the most of this in my place 🙂

2 COMMENTS

  1. Double check the Finnair flight number. Two years ago I got nothing for the flights from MAD to HEL. Some flight numbers are treated as “charter flights”, so you get miles only for Finnair. My numerous calls to AA and Finnair resulted in nothing. Nobody (not AA nor Finnair) gives information in writing, it is somewhere in a small print.
    Just give a call to AA Customer Service and verify before booking how many miles you will get, and keep the records of phone calls (that advise gave me AA, when I was complaining). Finnair miles to OneWorld accounts may be tricky within Europe !!

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