Why some people are missing their 15,000 Avios BA Amex loyalty bonus

I wrote earlier last week about the generous bonus of 15,000 Avios points which British Airways has awarded to anyone who has held a British Airways American Express card since it launched in 2001.

Well, not quite ‘anyone’.

I have had a few emails from people who have held the card since 2001 and have not received the bonus.

Almost all of these people have one thing in common:

At some point between 2001 and today, they upgraded from the free BA Amex to the Premium Plus card.

BA Premium Plus Amex

So, the situation is:

If you have had the free card for 15 years, and are actively using it, you got 15,000 Avios

If you have had the Premium Plus card for 15 years, and are actively using it, you got 15,000 Avios

If you upgraded or downgraded from one card to the other during the past 15 year, you did NOT got a bonus

I genuinely do not believe that British Airways intended this to happen.  They will have asked Amex for a list of everyone who has held a card continuously since 2001 and this will have excluded people who upgraded or downgraded during that time.

Plenty of Avios, Amex and BA employees will read this, so hopefully they can take another look and issue the bonus to those people who do deserve it but have been tripped up on a technicality.

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

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  1. Georges Pharand says:

    Well I still have my first statement, it was dated 10 February 2001 and the first charge was £120 for the Premium Plus Card which I’ve kept and used faithfully ever since and so has my business partner with his own card. Neither of us got this 15,000 Avios bonus so we will be furious if we don’t get it because it turns out to be some random selective thing. Alex Cruz will be receiving a letter soon. I strongly encourage everyone who didn’t get it to do the same.
    Alex Cruz, CEO
    British Airways
    Waterside, Po Box 365, Harmondsworth, West Drayton UB7 0GB
    [email protected]

    • Johnnycl says:

      Subject line of email: Show Me The F****ing Avios ??

      • the real harry says:

        heh heh

        where’s my compo for the 30 tickets I bought advertised as having free F&booze?

    • Flyer248 says:

      Lol ‘Furious’??

      If this is the worst thing that happens to you this week then I’d say you’ve done OK.
      A bit of perspective is needed here I feel……

  2. Tim tinsley says:

    This reason does not appear to be why I’ve not received it – only ever held the premium card.

  3. When I upgraded, I was told that it was a new application and underwriting including a new credit check and not merely a formality and computer change.

  4. dicksbits says:

    I have had a BA Amex card since 2000 but have not received the 15,000 avios. It is true in some years it was not used, but the account was never closed. Would this make a difference? I joined BAEC in 2009.

    • Yes, it makes a difference. BA has specifically excluded ‘inactive’ cards although there was no definition of ‘active’ in the document I saw.

  5. I have the Premium Plus card with no annual fee because I also have a Platinum Card. I started spending on the Premium Plus card in February 2001 and have used it every month since then. I didn’t receive the 15,000 Avios. Yesterday I phoned Amex, who knew about this but said I needed to speak to BA. When I phoned the Executive Club today, I got through to someone who knew nothing about this. She consulted senior colleague. She then asked if I had switched between card types (I hadn’t) and whether I had read about this on Head for Points! She said she would send a request to their back office to get the points credited.

  6. I too haven’t received the 15,000 Avios bonus, despite having my card since Feb 2001. I spoke with Amex and BA, neither of whom seemed to know anything about the bonus! However, BA said it would investigate and get back to me within 7 to 10 days.

  7. I’m not sure why companies offer these bonuses. There’s always a group of people who don’t get their share and then vent their “furious” reactions like this. Companies are going to be less inclined to give out freebies in future to avoid the hassle.

  8. I have had the Premium Plus card since 2001 and it has always been very active, but I received no loyalty bonus. Called Amex who told me to call BA as it was their promotion (it was the second call the agent had received today on this subject!). BA Exec Club say they know nothing about it and to call Amex as they are the card issuer!!

  9. Rob – given that this seems to be a complete mess by BA and/or Amex, is there anything in writing that you are able to post that we can use to “prompt” BA/Amex if the 15,000 Avios fails to appear please?

  10. OT. Does anyone know if you book a BA flight through Avios using the Lloyds upgrade voucher does that count as BA spend by Amex?

  11. Have Premium Plus continuously since 2001 and no bonus. Only change was a change to the account number halfway thorough this period due to having to have a 9th replacement card in between the regular replacement ones.

    • Chris Rasteiro says:

      That’s not a valid reason. I’ve had many replacement cards (ice scraping windscreens 🙂 ) and received the bonus.

  12. Rob I’m not sure this is 100% correct – I had the free card for c. 5 years and took out the premium plus card about 10 years ago and got the 15k points. And judging by some of the other comments it seems those who have so far missed out are victims of something quite random!

    • It is not the full story, but at least 2/3rd of people who have complained about not getting it are people who upgraded at some point.

  13. Regardless, the way it’s been administered is appalling. The BA (and Amex) guys I spoke with yesterday had no idea about the bonus. To be fair, the BA guy said he would pass it on to be investigated – I will post the outcome “as-and when”

  14. Hi, I didn’t receive the 15,000 bonus Avios either. However…. on checking my account I have:
    Car Hire – Avis – Avios Winner 18,000
    This seems to relate back to the Avis competition in October – thanks Rob for promoting it, I would not have entered otherwise! (I completely missed the email that I had won!)

  15. Alexandra says:

    My husband has had the BA Blue Amex card since 2001 and when I saw the various posts about the loyalty reward from BA for 15000 Avios I asked him to call up and check it out as he had not received these promotional Avios. He has spoken to Amex 3 times and BA Executive club twice and each time referred them to the HFP website. Both BA & Amex categorically said each time that they have not heard about this promotion (having referred to promotions dept, supervisors etc etc). My husband is not one to give up easily he will pursue something to the bitter end if he thinks he should be getting it. We know that BA play hard ball but based on our experience it is difficult to believe that this promotion does exist. Why is there such a wall of silence if they have it “on their screens” or maybe we are missing something?

    • the real harry says:

      resilience is a good quality to possess

      or as we call it: just try another agent until you get what you want

  16. Roger I* says:

    Not good news. 🙁

    E-mail just now from BA:

    Thank you for getting in touch with us about the Amex Loyalty 15 Year Anniversary bonus Avios promotion.

    If you qualify for the award your account will be credited with 15000 bonus Avios.

    However, due to the sheer volume of customers eligible for the promotion, it has taken longer than expected to credit all accounts.

    If you have not received your award by the start of January 2017, please contact us again.

  17. I was too busy to chase this up with Amex or BA, but I received my 15k email anyway, today.

  18. I promised to revert – and am pleased to say, following my call to Amex and then to BA last month, my 15,000 Avios arrived today!

  19. Just to say a BIG thanks to you, Rob, for pursuing this for us – my own 15k finally arrived (without my contacting BA again) in the last week – hubby’s not yet arrived, but he didn’t join till a few months later in 2001 (vs my Jan01 start) so hopefully they are going through in date order and these will appear by the early Jan mentioned above 🙂