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 scraps their 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? – December 2020 update
If you are looking to apply for a new credit or charge card, here are my December 2020 recommendations based on the current sign-up bonus.
British Airways American Express
5,000 Avios for signing up, no annual and a companion voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review
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
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
The Platinum Card from American Express
30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review
Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard
15,000 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:
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
Earn both Avios and BA On Business points with your business spending 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
Disclaimer: Head for Points is a journalistic website. Nothing here should be construed as financial advice, and it is your own responsibility to ensure that any product is right for your circumstances. Recommendations are based primarily on the ability to earn miles and points and do not consider interest rates, service levels or any impact on your credit history. By recommending credit cards on this site, I am – technically – acting as a credit broker. Robert Burgess, trading as Head for Points, is regulated and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a credit broker.