The Lesser Known British Airways Visa Perks: Priority Boarding, 10% Off and Free Bags

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Update: The current sign-up bonus offer for the British Airways Visa is 50,000 Avios when you spend $2,000 within 3 months of account opening.

I got the British Airways Visa 100,000 mile offer last year and since have used some of those miles for friends and family members for short-haul flights. Without fail, each time these people, who don’t have elite status with American, are given Priority AAccess (boarding and seat assignment) for these flights. This is not a published benefit, but is a nice little perk for those who like to redeem their BA miles for American Airlines awards – made even better since short- and mid-haul flights can be huge bargains – plus there are no last minute ticketing fees and only $2.50 in taxes per segment.

10% Off BA Tickets

Another little-discussed benefit is the 10% off any British Airways flight feature when you book tickets with your card. I wrote about this back in November, and that promotion is now a full-time feature of the card. You get 10% off any British Airways flight when you use your Chase British Airways Visa card. The great thing about this promo is that the 10% comes off of the total ticket price, including taxes and fees. On top of all this, you also earn an 2.5 miles per dollar spent on BA miles when you use the BA Visa card.

Here’s info from the promotion page.

Receive a 10% discount1 on every British Airways round-trip flight booked through ba.com/Chase10 when you use your British Airways Visa®card with promotion code: CARDOFFERU. Flights must be booked and outbound travel completed from now through December 31, 2012. You always get a great deal when you book with us directly and now that deal will be even better.

10% off when you book through ba.com/Chase10:

  • Discount is off the total cost of the fare (including taxes, fuel and surcharges).
  • Choose from any of British Airways 300+ destinations.
  • Travel in any cabin—World Traveller, World Traveller Plus, Club World or First.
  • Book up to eight friends and family members travelling on the same flight.

Promotion code: CARDOFFERU

Free Bags?

A third benefit that used to be accidentally offered on AA award tickets was two free checked bags. There are reports that this benefit is no longer being offered and indeed the Britishairways.com booking screen confirms 0 checked bags now. I’m curious to see if anyone has any recent experiences getting free checked bags on BA economy awards on American Airlines. The AA system still gives PriorityAAccess by accident, so I wouldn’t be surprised if the system thinks people are elite and doesn’t charge for bags. I’ve only recently redeemed for first class awards before the Avios change, so I don’t have any experience yet redeeming for domestic coach AA awards.

Potential 2.5 miles
British Airways is also offering many of the people who got the card last year 2.5 miles per dollar spent on all purchases for this quarter. I suppose this is a way to keep current cardholders engaged while they promote the new 100,000 mile offer. Even if you don’t get the piece of mail, it will automatically register your account so check your statements to see if you are indeed enrolled in getting the 2.5 miles, or call Chase to see if your account is eligible.

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