Previously, I wrote about deals that Groupon Spain offers every now and then on Avios miles. While through that offer, the miles usually cost about 1.25 Eurocent per mile, currently it is possible to buy Avios for even less – for as little as 1.14 Eurocent per mile using Vente-Privee, a French shopping portal.
While the deal was available for more than a week now, before posting this article, I wanted to make sure that everything worked properly and that the 20,000 miles I bought credited to my account.
So, now that I can confirm that the below worked for me, let’s dive into the details.
What Are the Packages Offered and How Do They Compare with the Groupon Deal?
Just like with Groupon, it’s possible to buy packages of varying amount of miles at a varying cost per mile through Vente-Privee. Below is a comparison chart of the packages offered on Vente-Privee versus the ones usually offered through Groupon:
As you can see, there are some packages that only either of the companies offers, but in general, the Vente-Privee deals offer a better cost per mile. In fact, they offer the same or better CPM in all instances except for the 2,000-mile package – which is not a big deal given that only two of those can be bought with either vendor and the fact that they tend to sell out very quickly.
What Are Some of the Uses of Avios Miles?
Personally, I buy Avios miles mainly to use them on Japan Airlines domestic flights. With British Airways Executive Club, domestic awards within most of Japan (except for Okinawa) can be bought for 4,500 miles plus about 2 dollars in taxes one-way.
While low-cost carriers can often match or beat that price when booking in advance, the great thing about booking JAL domestic flights with Avios is that they can be booked right up until the flight’s departure.
Furthermore, they can be canceled up to 24 hours before the departure for no fee except for forfeiting the 2 dollars paid in taxes. (The 4,500 miles are credited back to the account instantly.)
Other than that, I also used Avios to book a flight from Tokyo to Seoul for 7,500 miles in economy and from Busan to Tokyo for 9,000 miles in business class.
For more ideas on how you could spend Avios miles – and to see whether it’s worth it for you to buy the miles or not – check this article by Upgraded Points.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Buying British Airways Avios Miles Through Vente-Privee
Now that you have the background, let me take you step-by-step through the process of buying the miles. While on Groupon you have to go through the process in Spanish, with Vente-Privee you have to do it in French.
Step 1: Make a French Vente-Privee Account
To be able to buy Avios through Vente-Privee, first, you will have to make an account on the French version of the site. To do so, go to the Vente-Privee website and click on “Inscrivez-vous maintenant!” to go to the enrollment page.
If the button is showing in any other language than French, switch your country to France in the bottom right corner of the screen.
On the next page, fill in your personal information. As for postal code – unless you live in France – you can use the code of one of Paris’ hotels. Also, keep in mind that the city will get auto-filled once you put in the postal code.
Once you click the registration button, you will be redirected to a “processing” page and then you will be taken to the Vente-Privee homepage.
Step 2: Buy a Coupon for the Amount of Avios You Want
After you register, go to the Vente-Privee main page and search for “avios.” Then, click on “Avios” in the “Suggestions” section under the search box.
Once on the British Executive Club Avios page, select the package you want to buy, and the number of packages you want to buy, and click “Ajouter au panier” to add it to your cart.
On the popover that shows up, click on “Afficher le panier” to proceed to payment. That is unless you want to add some more mileage packages to your cart.
After you are taken to your cart, click on “Valider ma commande” to confirm the contents of it and proceed to payment.
On the next page, you will have to enter your personal details again. And, for the address and phone number, you will have to use the hotel address (and phone number) again as they need to be in France as well.
Once you fill out the details, click “Valider” to proceed.
After entering the address, you will be taken to an overview page that would have all the addresses if you had more than one saved. There, just click “Valider” again to continue.
Next, you will be presented with the purchase summary screen. Rather than just confirming the contents and continuing to payment – at least assuming it is your first time using Vente-Privee – make sure you use a 10EUR first-time user discount coupon.
To do so, click on “Bon d’achat ou bon de reduction” button under the contents of your cart.
In the popover, first select the “Bon d’Achat: 10EUR pour vous faire plaisir” coupon, and then click on “Valider.”
After doing so, you should be taken back to the summary page – except now it should reflect the 10EUR discount as pictured below.
Scroll down to the payment section of the page, choose your preferred payment method, and fill out the necessary payment information. Click on “Valider et payer” to confirm the payment information and process the transaction.
Not long after that, you should be taken to the page confirming your purchase.
Step 3: Retrieve Your Coupon
After finishing your purchase, go to the “Mes commandes” page through the menu in the upper left part of the screen.
On that page, your purchases will be listed with the link to the coupon located under each purchase.
Now, the thing to keep in mind here is that the coupon might not be ready right away. Instead, you might see a note saying “Titre de reservation bientot disponible.” If that happens, check in a couple of days.
In my case, it took a week for the coupon to be available.
Once the coupon is available, the note described above will be replaced by a button saying “Titre de reservation.” Click on the button to download the coupon.
The coupon itself is a PDF looking like the image below. Towards the bottom of it is a seven character code – “Code personnel” – that you will need to redeem later on the Avios website. As such, note it down before proceeding to the next step.
Step 4: Redeem Your Coupon
(If you do not have a British Airways Executive Club account, create one before proceeding.)
With the code retrieved, the last thing you need to do is to redeem it on the Avios website so that the miles get credited to your British Airways Executive Club account.
To do so, go to the Vente-Privee version of the Avios Vouchers page and fill out the form that shows up. You will need to enter your Executive Club membership number, first and last name, email, and one or more of the codes you retrieved from Vente-Privee.
After entering the information, click “Submit” at the bottom of the page.
Finally, you will be presented with the page confirming your submission of the coupon(s). Separately, you should also receive an email confirmation stating the same.
From there on, it will take up to 5 days for the miles to get credited to your account.
In my case, it took two days for the miles to appear in my account.
Buying Avios Through Vente-Privee Summary
At 1.14 Eurocents per mile, Vente-Privee might be the cheapest way to buy Avios miles. And, while in many cases it will not be worth it for you, it might also be a great deal if you have a specific use case for them – just like I find them valuable for last minute domestic flights within Japan.
As such, before buying the miles, I suggest you spend some time researching what the miles can be used for and whether there are any instances where they might be valuable to you – whether in the short term or in the near future. (Don’t look too far ahead into the future as the redemption rates, etc. might change without notice.)
Also, keep in mind that the whole process takes more than a week – and so you cannot buy the miles today and use them tomorrow.