British Airways Increases Top Elite Status Qualification Threshold

British Airways’ top elite tier is Gold. But because theirs is an airline frequent flyer program, it’s more complicated than that. There’s an upper tier within the tier called Gold Guest List (and an invitation only Premier level as well).

BA is making it harder to earn ‘Gold Guest List’ status for the first time and for non-UK Europeans to requalify.

Presently, the requirement is to earn 5000 tier points in one year or 3000 tier points each of two consecutive years. This second method of two years of 3000 tier points each is going away.

It will still take the same 3000 tier points for UK members to re-qualify for this status. European members – who needed 2500 points in the past to requalify – will have to earn 3000 points going forward.

Now, everyone’s “member year” is different in British Airways. It isn’t a calendar year. There are some folks who just started a member year, earned 3000 points last year, and were on their way to 3000 more in the current member year. They get the rug pulled out from under them, sort of. British Airways will allow up through April 8th to earn 3000 tier points to qualify as the second year in a row. That’s the same deadline whether one’s member year ends in April or November.

Gold Guest List members get twice a year to book awards even when there’s no award space. (They can book for themselves and up to 4 passengers into revenue booking classes.) Another benefit is Hilton Diamond status. Although some might say that’s also a benefit that comes with merely eating breakfast or doing one’s own laundry.

Gold Guest List members who earn 5000 tier points in a year get Concorde Room access at London Heathrow and New York JFK even when not flying first class.

British Airways has made it a little harder to attain their top status within a status, although it doesn’t change things for those who already have it.


About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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