I have long maintained the best bang for your buck when using Avios is on Qantas domestic business class flights. The cash savings are quite substantial, no matter which way you slice it. Since I’m Australian, I have cause to head back home periodically to visit the family. While there, I usually take a trip within the country with either my Mum or my Dad.

Why only one at a time? “She doesn’t want to go where I want to go, and I don’t want to go where she wants to go”. Lucky me gets no choice in the matter, but I do get to pick the flights! Since my parents would never pay for business class for themselves (and why would they, when you see the prices below?), I use my points for their tickets.

Qantas Domestic Business Class

Anyway, let’s get back to the matter at hand and I will use a very recent example. Next time I’m down under, we are flying a return from Sydney to Launceston in Tasmania. For two people, that comes to 50,000 Avios and €109.96.

Today, economy class from Sydney to Launceston and back is A$398 per person. Looking at the Qantas domestic business class pricing, it is A$1,869 per person. So, for two people, it’s either A$796 in economy or A$3,738 in the big seats.

(I’ll pause here a moment to point out this route is 914km / 568 miles long and a 1 hour and 45 minute block time. Business is A$1,869 per person return – that is €1,147, £1,000 or US$1,252 – per person. Qantas domestic business class is always priced like this, which is quite normal for them – and thoroughly outrageous!)

Now where do the Avios come in? Australia’s Qantas is a member of the oneworld alliance, meaning members of the other airline’s programmes can usually snag frequent flyer seats. Avios are the British Airways (and Iberia and Qatar Airways) frequent flyer currency, so I can redeem those points for Qantas flights. Simple, right?

Now I didn’t have enough Avios, so I bought 45,000 points for €570.00. That meant that I had the 50,000 required, plus I had to pay €109.96 in taxes, bringing my total outlay to €679.96.

That means I paid €339.98 (A$554, £296, US$371) per person for the tickets instead of €1,147. In percentage terms, I paid 30% and saved a whopping 70% of the total online cash fare. In fact, the A$554 per person I paid all in is only A$156 more (€95, £83, US$104) than the return economy airfare. I’m quite happy with those numbers!

Overall Thoughts

This is the biggest travel hack when it comes to a straight cash saving with British Airways Avios. Every time I go to Australia, the business class tickets start at around A$1,800 return and every time I use my points to slash that to almost nothing. Of course, when I have Avios in the bank, which I normally do, I don’t even have to pay to buy points. In those cases it’s almost a 90% saving.

As I’ve demonstrated here, even buying the points for cash results in a huge discount. I did cheat a little though, as Qatar Airways were having a buy Avios and get 50% extra free (so the €570 was for 30,000 Avios and I received 15,000 free). Before you cry wolf, you should never buy Avios when there is no bonus, because all the airlines using Avios routinely sell them with a 40 or 50% bonus two to four times each year.

Qantas domestic business class has the big seats the American’s love, the full meals and lounge access Europeans love, and free fast Wi-Fi which we all love. While some elements are not crash hot, all round it is worth using your miles on. Just never ever pay full price for it, as it is a complete and utter rip off at rack rates.

What do you think of all of this? Do you rate Qantas domestic business class? Have you used your points for it or do you pay? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.

Like planes? See my “Does anyone remember” series.
Flight reviews your thing? Mine are all indexed here.
Follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.