A Head for Points reader was passing through Terminal 5 over Easter when he found a copy of the daily British Airways ‘Premium Brief’ document on the floor, so he sent me a photo of it.
It is for a Saturday, so it is not representative of a normal business day. The proportions are interesting though.
The long-haul load factor was a hugely impressive 96%, although that would have been skewed by holiday traffic as it was the Saturday after the schools broke up. Short-haul was over 80%.
The number of card holders in Terminal 5 on that particular day was:
The proportions here are interesting. There are, obviously, substantially higher numbers of Bronze members compared to Silver and Gold. However, by definition, a Gold flies more than a Silver and a Silver flies more than a Bronze. This is why Gold card holders was the highest % of status passengers.
It is also gives you a glimpse into the number of people using the British Airways lounges. On that particular Saturday, there were 5,400 people able to access the lounges via status. These could all bring a guest. There would also been oneworld status members who could use the lounges plus non-status passengers flying in Club World, Club Europe or First.
It is very easy to see how 10,000 people could have passed through the British Airways lounges in Terminal 5 on that particular day.
These numbers also given an insight into why priority boarding is now so chaotic. Allowing Bronze members to have Priority Boarding added about 40% to the number of people who were allowed to use it on the back of their status, which is why some flights have very few people on them who do not qualify for it.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (December 2023)
As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!
In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.
You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:
There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:
You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points. These points convert at 1:1 into Avios.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive 30,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 30,000 Avios) with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold. You receive 25,000 points if you spend £3,000 in three months and a further 5,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive a huge 100,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 100,000 Avios) with The Platinum Card. You receive 75,000 points if you spend £10,000 in six months and a further 25,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
American Express Preferred Rewards Gold
Your best beginner’s card – 30,000 points (TO 9th JANUARY), FREE for a year & four airport ….. Read our full review
The Platinum Card from American Express
Crazy 100,000 points (TO 9th JANUARY) and a huge range of valuable benefits – for a fee Read our full review
Run your own business?
We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.
You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.
There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.
Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.