Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

How many British Airways passengers with status use Heathrow Terminal 5 in a day?

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

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:

Premier:  55

Gold:  2,982

Silver:  2,416

Bronze:  2,081

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 credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (June 2021)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

There are two official British Airways American Express cards:

British Airways American Express card

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up, no annual fee and a companion voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

BA Premium Plus American Express card BAPP

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable credit card perk – the 2-4-1 companion voucher Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points, such as:

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

We also recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card:

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

The most generous Avios Visa or Mastercard for a limited company Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)

Comments (53)

  • Adam W says:

    “However, by definition, a Gold flies more than a Silver and a Silver flies more than a Bronze.”

    “In general” or “typically” maybe but certain not “by definition”. It is even possible to be a Blue member and fly more than a Gold.

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.