Don’t fall for the Illusion of Free Travel to Britain with Airmiles

There’s a big movement out there of people who claim to travel for free using airline rewards miles. I’m sure there are people who do this and can do quite well at it. But they are the exception, not the rule.

When it comes to traveling to Britain, our experience has been the airmiles are not worth the trouble.

Here’s why: when you buy a plane ticket from any of the major airlines to Britain, you’re airfare is the smallest part of the ticket. For example, when we recently booked tickets to London from the USA, we spent, $900 on each ticket with only $150 of that actually being our airfare – the rest being eaten up by taxes and fuel surcharges.

How does this effect flying for free with airmiles?

Well, even if you have saved up enough miles to book a trip to Britain for free, you’ll get sticker shock as only your actual airfare is free – you’ll still have to pay all the taxes and fuel surcharges.

While you can save a little money this way, it’s our opinion that the effort and expense required to take advantage of this is not really worth it. It can take years to earn enough airline miles. There’s no way to travel for free these days at least to Britain.

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  1. Denise Thompson says:

    Yes…..was going to use my 65,000 miles to get a round trip ticket to London in May. (I need 50,000 for a ticket) I was told i had to pay $656 (for the fees & taxes) of the $948 fare. Decided to just buy my ticket & go when & as long as i wanted without the restrictions of the airlines calendar. What a huge disappointment.

    • R Stickler says:

      …and, unfortunately airmiles are only good for air travel. Some cards in the last few years have gone to enabling users to apply miles to all sorts of things — car rentals, gas cards, &, yes, airmiles. We’ve been saving trying to get enough to upgrade to business, but I’m not sure that’s gonna happen either!

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