British Airways are currently running a 25% bonus on Avios purchases of the maximum annual purchase amount of 24,000, bumping it up to 30,000 Avios for £399. Given the GBP:AUD exchange rate is currently running at around 1.5, this would set you back somewhere around the low $600 mark.
The 30,000 Avios could be turned into, say, 3 short domestic sectors such as Sydney – Melbourne on Qantas in Business Class at 9,000 Avios each – with 3000 left over – so at a cost of around $200, plus some minimal taxes, per segment. I’m not suggesting this is a good redemption, just using it to demonstrate the value proposition.
Used in more useful ways, you could head across the Tasman in Business for 20,000 Avios one way, or over to Perth from the East Coast for 25,000 Avios. Taxes on Trans-Tasman bookings normally run $100-$200, so don’t forget to factor those in, along with the lost points or status credits in your calculations – say if you were going to just pay for an Economy booking.
Either way, it’s worth considering. You can sign up for the BA Executive Club but you’ll need a non-Australian address to do so until BA figure what they are doing with Australian resident members after their JSA with Qantas ends in March. Pick a relative or friend somewhere else around the world to get your membership pack sent to during the sign up process and you’ll still be able to sign up and purchase points online.