Traveling with an infant (less than 2 years old) comes with its own planning, excitement and anxiety. Infant ticketing is most inconsistently defined by various carriers and the rules for the award cost for infant vary wildly specially for international travel. The good news is having knowledge of infant ticketing rules on awards can help decide whether its worth the comfort of traveling on award ticket.
There are 3 ways in which carrier want to charge for the infant's on award tickets:
It is important to note that most often it is the ticketing airlines which decides the price of the infant ticket and on an award flight the ticketing carrier might be different than the operating carrier. Also if you have multiple carriers on award ticket than it might complicate ticketing the infant and best advice would be to avoid such award tickets.
So, given the above costs and "gotcha's" for premium cabin award it is best to go with the ticketing carrier which either charges in "miles" for infant or has a flat dollar or mileage cost. Given that premise below are the best carriers for award ticket solely based on "Infant" ticket cost (Note: You will still need to weigh if it is best carrier based on award ticket cost for the parent and award availability).
Aeroplan (Star alliance):
Aeroplan charges flat mileage or dollar amount based on class of service for international travel on any of star alliance partner awards:
British Airways (Oneworld alliance):
British Airways charges 10% of mileage cost of Adult award ticket + taxes & fees. Do note that the taxes & fees are typically same as what would be applied to adult ticket, so depending on the operating carrier it may or may not be the best deal but definitely better than paying 10% of revenue fare.
Virgin Atlantic (No alliance):
Virgin Atlantic charges below amount depending on class of service:
Most other carriers charge 10% of revenue fare which can make it prohibitive for infant tickets if you are looking for Business class or First class awards. You can always book an award ticket for the infant but you will need additional award seat available and have to shell out the same mileage amount as the adult award ticket. So, choose wisely the ticketing carrier for award when travelling with infant otherwise it may well break your budget.
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