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BA tightens up on baggage rules for Gold and Silver cardholders

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I posted last week about the new benefit for Bronze members of British Airways Executive Clubthe ability to board via the Priority Boarding line.

At the same time, it seems that BA has quietly downgraded one of the benefits of Gold and Silver membership.  Historically, in the same way that you only need one Silver cardholder per booking for everyone to get free seat selection, your whole party used to benefit from the higher Silver baggage allowance.  This allowed you to take a 32kg suitcase for no charge, whereas you would normally have to pay extra for any case above 23kg.

British Airways

A beady-eyed Flyertalk poster spotted that BA has changed the rulesOnly the Gold or Silver cardholder can now check in a suitcase for free that weighs between 23kg and 32kg.  All other family members are limited to a case of 23kg or less, if they are unwilling to pay £40 per case each-way for excess baggage.  This is likely to lead to more careful packing in future, with heavy items now needing to be predominantly in the same suitcase.

Here is the new wording from ba.com:

Executive Club Gold and Silver members and oneworld Emerald and Sapphire members receive additional checked-baggage benefits when flying on British Airways and oneworld member airline flights.

Executive Club Gold and oneworld Emerald members:

An additional free checked bag in any class of travel for the cardholder and any customer travelling on the same booking (excludes hand-baggage only fares and special group rate bookings).

A weight allowance of 32kg (71lb) per checked bag in any class of travel for the cardholder only.

Executive Club Silver and oneworld Sapphire members:

A minimum checked baggage allowance of two pieces in any class of travel for the cardholder and any customer travelling on the same booking (excludes hand-baggage only fares and special group rate bookings).

A weight allowance of 32kg (71lb) per checked bag in any class of travel for the cardholder only.

Now, in reality, 23kg is still a lot.  It is about the maximum that I feel happy carrying around.  That said, plenty of people who carry heavy equipment around for their job will find themselves up against the 32kg limit – as would anyone normal person with a very large, full, suitcase!

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Comments (10)

  • Phillip says:

    I’m not sure if I am misreading this, but this to me still says that everyone in the booking benefits from an extra suitcase if Gold, or a minimum of two pieces if Silver – it’s only that the cardholder is allowed the extra weight (which I actually wasn’t aware of, so still a bonus)!

    • nux says:

      Yes which is exactly what the article states.. The overweight baggage allowance of 32kg used to apply to all members of the booking if one was BA Gold/Silver, now only the cardholder.

    • Rob says:

      Correct – but previousy everyone got the extra weight

  • Jamie says:

    On a similar sort of note., I am currently in the lounge at NCL and have been informed by the agent that here they no longer give priority luggage tickets or fast track security to non status pax traveling in club. I normally travel club from MAN where these benefits were always given.

  • Jus says:

    Do you get any additional luggage allowance when flying BA economy if you have a Cathay Gold card? Thanks

    • Phillip says:

      Marco Polo Gold is OneWorld Sapphire, therefore “a minimum checked baggage allowance of two pieces in any class of travel for the cardholder and any customer travelling on the same booking (excludes hand-baggage only fares and special group rate bookings).

      A weight allowance of 32kg (71lb) per checked bag in any class of travel for the cardholder only. “

    • Rob says:

      The oneworld website lists the benefits alliance partners give each other – these are not always the same as what BA gives its own elites.

  • RogerWilco says:

    Another interesting thing is that as GCH and head of HHA I booked a redemption for my daughter in Y – she got the extra luggage allowance, too! The c/i agent was a bit confused, but when she heard that “Dad booked this for me, he’s got a gold card” she just said “that explains it, then”

  • Mark says:

    Well this is a significant bump in respect of OW benefits as I am almost certain there was previously no additional baggage allowance for alliance status, good for the CX crowd.

    • Rob says:

      I agree, this discussion came up a few months ago, I checked and I’m sure oneworld’s did not get it.