Not camera related in any way, but needed to write this to get it off my chest.

Dear British Airways. In the email you sent to me this morning the very first sentence stated: 

“We’re constantly improving the British Airways Executive Club for our Members, which is why we’re making a change to the way you collect Avios on flights”.

This led me to expect to find something that would mean the benefits that I gain through being a long standing member of the BA Executive Club and frequent BA flier were going to improve. But alas, the reality of your changes mean that I will now actually be significantly worse off than before. Because I mostly fly long haul and  I don’t buy your most expensive fully flexible business class and first class tickets, instead buying more affordable and less flexible tickets,  as a reward for flying with you and being a loyal executive club member, on average on the same flights as I have flown for decades I will earn between 1/3rd and half of the Avios that I used to earn. 

I’m really struggling to understand how this is an improvement. Now you have chosen to dramatically reduce my ability to save up enough Avios for a decent saving on a future special treat holiday flight, perhaps you would prefer it if I started looking elsewhere for better flight deals with other airlines and then use the money I could save for my holiday flights instead?

I realise the BA Executive Club is your club, so you can change the rules as you please. But don’t expect me to remain a member if you take away the benefits that directly affect my choice of airline when looking for the best flight deals.

Alister Chapman.

If you are still reading…. BA are changing the way you earn reward points when you fly. Previously you earned points (Avios) based on the distance you fly plus the cabin you fly in, plus a multiplier based on your frequent fly status. From October BA will now give you 6 Avios for each £1 you spend for an entry level member increasing to 9 Avios for the top tier Gold card holders (and above). BUT there is a catch, you only get the Avios for the fare+BA imposed charges, all other taxes and fees are excluded. So if I take one of my return flights to the USA earlier in the year as an example:

Under the old scheme I earned 20,000 Avios as I flew a total of 10,000 miles in premium economy and then got a 2x bonus because I am a BA Gold card frequent flyer bring up the total reward to 20,000 Avios.

That ticket cost me around £1.4K, of which approx £400 is taxes and other fees. So, with the new system I would only get my  9 Avios per £1 for the remaining £1000 giving me 9,000 Avios, less than half of what I used to get. And I only get that because of my Gold card.

For those that don’t fly so frequently things are possibly worse. In the example above currently a Blue member would earn just the base 10,000. But with the new scheme that would reduce to 6,000 Avios making it even harder than it was before build up a worthwhile Avios balance. 

And what if you fly short haul? It’s just as bad unless you buy much more expensive fully flexible or  business class tickets. I fly to Copenhagen frequently, in the past I would earn around 2000 Avios on a return flight, even if I booked the very cheapest ticket I would still get 1500 Avios.  An economy return will often be around £240 of which £65 is taxes and fees. So I will now get 1575 Avios, but again if I by the very cheapest ticket that excludes luggage etc for lets say £200 then that drops to 1215 Avios. 

One thought on “”

  1. yes Alistair – I am in full support of calling out such b&l*hit put forth by corporations, telling us we’ll benefit when in fact it’s the opposite. well done!

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