Whenever I tell folks that I have an AARP membership card, the first response I usually hear is, “don’t you have to be a senior citizen to sign up?” The answer is no, young folks can sign up too. I signed up because I wanted to take advantage of the AARP discount on British Airways flights, which can be a significant discount. AARP members get tons of other cool discounts, but I’m mainly interested in the cheap flights. Memberships cost $16 per year (for one year) and the price drops if you sign up for longer memberships.
The above pricing discounts stack with other deals such as discounted British Airways business class tickets or 10% off redemption coupons. In an earlier post I explained how to stack these deals to get $1,350 round-trip business class tickets to Europe. The advertised fare discounts are accurate; below is an example of a round-trip economy flight from Washington DC to Johannesburg, South Africa:
British Airways ($780)
Since British Airways is a One World member, you can credit your miles to American Airlines (discount fares only transfer .5 elite miles per mile flown) and you’ll receive 100% redeemable miles through the end of January 2016. American Platinum and Executive Platinum members will receive 37,000 redeemable miles for the above-mentioned flight which is almost enough for a round-trip flight to Europe. If you value American Airlines redeemable miles at 1.8 cents (based on the price of the ticket that you could redeem the miles for), then 37,000 miles is worth about $666–almost the price of the ticket to Johannesburg.
AARP confirmed that the British Airways discount will exist through 2017 which increases the likelihood that you’ll fly on British Airways at least once before the deal runs out.