Finding Award availability for BA and Virgin
So you have done a fair amount of flying (or shopping) and have collected those precious miles for a dream trip to a far away exotic place. You have reached a milestone and now feel ready to actually plan and book that dream business class flight.
Congratulations! Next hurdle, finding the space! Award availability on certain routes are akin to gold dust. It sure can seem hopeless trying to find one when the methods usually available are manually crawling through BA/Virgin’s website, date by date, super time consuming.
I covered some interesting usage of avios a while back to give you some ideas on possibility.
UPDATE: January 2020
Seems the site below is having some issues with Virgin availability, but a new tool has popped up offering similar functionality, go to SeatSpy
Finding your award availability
Your alternative options are to either use a paid service to check availability like expertflyer.com.
Well, luckily for some, we have baredemptionfinder.com to save some of that pain. Its been developed by another developer, Tim Rogers. Virgin Atlantic has been a recent addition too!
Its a simple free tool where you enter the routes, and class of service, and voila, you can a birds eye view of availability across the rest of the year.
Results also show the taxes you need to pay, along with the number of Avios needed.
Additionally, if the desired dates have no availability, you can set up an alert, which will notify you via email once a day.
There is also a premium membership option for £3 per month, offering enhanced services, such as hourly notification and additional search tools.