With daily flights to Australia and a broader network spanning Asia, the Middle East, Africa, The Americas and right across the UK and Europe, British Airways offers an extensive range of flights: and all of them can potentially be booked using Qantas Points.
Whether it's the airline's Sydney-Singapore-London trek, flights from London to points across Europe or even BA's exclusive all-business-class flights between London and New York, if your journeys take you to the UK financial capital, or you find yourself there and want to relax somewhere close by, a BA reward flight booking could be just the ticket.
Here's what you need to know to turn your hard-earned Qantas Points into a first class, business class, premium economy or economy seat with British Airways, wherever your travels may take you.
Booking British Airways flights with Qantas Points: key routes
Naturally, the most popular British Airways journey for Australian travellers will be the Kangaroo Route from Sydney to London, which British Airways runs via Singapore.
Sydney is the only Australian city served by BA, and the airline doesn't fly to New Zealand, but you don't need to be London-bound to board a British Airways flight: you can fly solely between Sydney and Singapore, without travelling anywhere else.
Known as a 'fifth freedom' route, it's the same concept as taking an Emirates flight from Sydney to Bangkok or Christchurch, or from Melbourne or Brisbane to Singapore without travelling to Dubai, and can be a handy option to keep up your sleeve when planning to spend your points.
Another popular path for booking BA flights using Qantas Points is for travellers taking advantage of their London location – such as when they're already visiting the UK on a business trip – and using Qantas Points to book flights out of BA's Heathrow, Gatwick or City Airport hubs to Europe, or even Northern Africa.
That could be as a simple day return on one free day in London, or as a mini-break at the beginning or end of a work trip, perhaps putting a weekend or a few days of annual leave to great use by seeing a new city, without losing 24 hours of your own time flying all the way from Australia for the same holiday.
Out of Heathrow, BA's route network is unmatched, with non-stop flights to a huge range of cities within a reasonably short flying distance of London – some naturally better-fits for overnight stays, of course:
BA also serves a large number of cities across Asia, the Middle East and Africa, including Singapore, Hong Kong, Tokyo (Narita and Haneda), Abu Dhabi, Bangkok, Beijing, Doha, Dubai, Istanbul, Johannesburg and many more – so under the same idea, if you find yourself in one of these places and want a little break, without having to travel all the way there from Australia to get there, you could use your Qantas Points to fly to London and back, lining up with your other travel plans.
Finally, British Airways also jets across the Atlantic, linking the UK with many places across the United States, Canada, and Central and South America: but if you're planning to travel between London and New York, there's one particular return flight to keep an eye out for.
That's BA1 from London's City Airport to New York JFK (via Shannon, Ireland), and BA2 from JFK back to London City non-stop. This is British Airways' all-business-class flight, which can also be booked using Qantas Points, and certainly makes for a unique flying experience, given you're flying across the pond on a plane carrying only 32 passengers at most!
Booking British Airways flights with Qantas Points: how many points you'll need
British Airways provides up to four classes of service on long-range international flights such as to Sydney and Singapore, where economy is sold as World Traveller, premium economy as World Traveller Plus, business class as Club World and first class simply as First.
BA also uses terms like Club Europe and Club World London City for business class, and Euro Traveller for economy, but when it comes to using Qantas Points for BA flight bookings, the cabin 'brand' doesn't matter: only whether you're flying first class, business class, premium economy or economy class, and the distance of your flight.
Given how many destinations BA serves from London, we won't show you how many Qantas Points are needed to book flights to each one, but here's what you'd need to secure a booking on some of the more popular routes for Australian travellers, noting that premium economy and first class are generally only offered on long-distance international flights.
|Route (one-way)||First class
||Business class||Premium economy||Economy|
||95,000 Qantas Points||65,000 Qantas Points||52,500 Qantas Points||35,000 Qantas Points|
||134,000 Qantas Points||92,000 Qantas Points||75,000 Qantas Points||50,000 Qantas Points|
|Sydney-London (via Singapore)
||203,000 Qantas Points||139,000 Qantas Points||112,500 Qantas Points||75,000 Qantas Points|
|Heathrow to Amsterdam, Dublin, Frankfurt, Milan (Malpensa), Paris
||Not offered||18,000 Qantas Points||Not offered||10,000 Qantas Points|
|Heathrow to Copenhagen, Madrid, Milan (Linate), Rome, Venice||Not offered||26,000 Qantas Points||Not offered||14,000 Qantas Points|
|London Heathrow to New York
||78,000 Qantas Points||53,000 Qantas Points||42,000 Qantas Points||28,000 Qantas Points|
|London City to New York (BA1/2)
||Not offered||53,000 Qantas Points||Not offered||Not offered|
From the table above, you'll notice a few interesting things – for example, booking BA's all-business-class flight doesn't cost you any extra points than a 'regular' BA business class flight, provided you can find availability.
Also, when travelling between Sydney and London, you can save some points by making sure both legs of your voyage are booked together on the one ticket: either as a continuous journey on BA15/16, or when spending less than 24 hours on the ground in Singapore in between flights, if changing flight numbers (such as taking BA16 from Sydney to Singapore, then BA12 onward to London).
If you choose to spend more time in Singapore, such as flying in from Sydney but jetting off to London a few days later, your ticket will be priced as 'Sydney-Singapore' plus 'Singapore-London' using points at the rates above (229,000 Qantas Points in first class, for example), rather than the more generous 'Sydney-London' rate (203,000 Qantas Points in first class), which is only offered to connecting passengers.
Finally, given the number of Qantas Points needed to book a flight is always based on the distance of that flight from airport to airport, and that BA sometimes flies into and out of several airports in the same city, there can be opportunities to save some points while still travelling between the same cities.
One such journey is from London to Milan, where you have three options, and each flight measures up slightly differently:
- London Heathrow to Milan Linate (611 miles)
- London Heathrow to Milan Malpensa (583 miles)
- London City to Milan Linate (595 miles)
As Qantas Frequent Flyer charges more points for flights of 601-1,200 miles than it does for flights under 600 miles, and London to Milan is right on that line, business class passengers could save 16,000 Qantas Points round-trip by flying from Heathrow to Malpensa or City to Linate, rather than Heathrow to Linate.
For flights on all other British Airways routes not covered above, here's the full Qantas Classic Flight Reward table showing how many Qantas Points are needed to book each travel class (where available):
Booking British Airways flights with Qantas Points: making that booking
As with reward flight bookings on most of Qantas' partner airlines, points-based bookings with British Airways can be easily made via the Qantas website.
Just key in your travel plans, and select the "Use points..." option:
If your travel dates are flexible, you can also click into the date field and check the "flexible with dates" box to see more results over a one-month period, which could reveal options you may otherwise have missed.
In this example, we're searching for a straight Sydney-Singapore flight – but keep in mind that this flight booking process shows all known available options, not just flights operated by British Airways.
Naturally, Qantas prioritises its own flights at the top of the results, which are then followed by an endless list of connections: and at first glance, you'd be forgiven for thinking your only option was to fly economy...
... but, if you persist and scroll all the way to the very bottom – beyond odd suggestions like domestic transits of 7+ hours to still fly economy – you'll spot any available British Airways flights, and on the date we searched, BA had reward seats open for booking in first class, premium economy and economy:
The process is the same for all other BA flight bookings, including for the elusive BA1/2 all-business-class flights – but it does help to book in advance for the best availability:
That said, booking at the last minute, particularly on shorter routes within Europe, can still yield results, as BA often releases extra reward seats approximately three days before travel.
For last-minute business trips in particular, but where there's a spare day built in, that can be great for jetting off on a whim, and avoids buying last-minute tickets at generally high prices.
However, be aware that British Airways levies rather high 'carrier charges' on reward bookings – often around $50 on short flights and the equivalent of hundreds of dollars on international flights – and when combined with the United Kingdom's APD charges on flights from the UK, this can quickly add up.
As such, you might also consider your other airline options, such as Cathay Pacific from Hong Kong to London, Japan Airlines from Tokyo to London, Malaysia Airlines from Kuala Lumpur to London, American Airlines across the Atlantic and of course Qantas on routes like Sydney-Singapore-London.
This could save you money on those pesky co-payments – and although extra charges on Qantas-operated flights also tend to be quite high, the number of Qantas Points needed to fly with Qantas is less than to book British Airways flights on the same routes, which could keep extra points up your sleeve for your next trip: provided you can find availability, of course.