The current charge is a flat fee of £5 per booking, with no fee on award bookings or when debit cards are used. This is obviously unattractive on low value bookings, although in those scenarios you would presumably have no liquidity problem if you used a debit card anyway.
The new structure is a flat percentage rate of 1%. This is obviously attractive for a £39 one-way economy flight to Manchester, but a nightmare for anyone paying for a number of premium tickets.
Whilst the card fee is capped at £20, this is per ticket and not per booking, so a family of four could still be faced with an £80 bill for four Club World tickets.
It is hard to claim that the new structure is ‘unfair’. I would only point out you are more likely to put an expensive ticket on a credit card and may not have the option of using a debit card if you do not have the money immediately available.
There does not appear to be any discount for British Airways credit card holders.
It is not clear if the fee will continue to be waived for anyone who states that their credit card is registered outside the UK.
Whilst Virgin Atlantic scraps its card fee …..
It is possible that British Airways chose to do this because Virgin Atlantic has always had a similar – higher, actually, at 1.5% – card pricing structure.
However, with great timing, Virgin Atlantic dropped all credit card fees when it relaunched its website last weekend.
Whether this survives now that British Airways is charging up to £20 per ticket remains to be seen.
Want to earn more points from credit cards? – September 2021 update
If you are looking to apply for a new credit or charge card, here are our September 2021 recommendations based on the current sign-up bonus.
The following offers will end soon:
- 2,000 Virgin Points on Virgin Atlantic Reward Mastercard (ends 15th October)
- 30,000 Virgin Points on Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard (ends 15th October)
- 10,000 Avios on British Airways American Express (ends 2nd November)
- 40,000 Avios on British Airways American Express Premium Plus (ends 2nd November)
- 60,000 points on The Platinum Card from American Express (ends 2nd November)
- 30,000 points on American Express Preferred Rewards Gold (ends 9th November)
Here are the top current deals:
British Airways American Express
10,000 Avios for signing up, no annual fee and an Economy 241 voucher for spending ….. Read our full review
British Airways American Express Premium Plus
40,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable credit card perk – the 2-4-1 companion voucher Read our full review
American Express Preferred Rewards Gold
Your best beginner’s card – 30,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review
The Platinum Card from American Express
60,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review
Virgin Atlantic Reward Mastercard
The UK’s most generous free Visa or Mastercard at 0.75 points / £1 Read our full review
Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard
30,000 points bonus and the most generous non-Amex for day to day spending Read our full review
Earning miles and points from small business cards
If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers.
American Express Business Gold
20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review
American Express Business Platinum
40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review
British Airways Accelerating Business American Express
60,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review
Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa
The most generous Avios Visa or Mastercard for a limited company Read our full review
For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending: