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BA domestic Club Europe – book with Avios today, check existing flights

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As we revealed exclusively on Head for Points two weeks ago, British Airways will launch Club Europe business class on domestic flights from 1st April.

Some behind-the-scenes work was going on yesterday to get things ready.  No domestic flights could be booked for travel from 1st April.  Normal service was meant to resume at 8am this morning.

British Airways club europe domestic flights

Firstly ….

If you have an existing domestic sector booked, take another look at it.

You may find that it now shows Club Europe.  This is especially likely if you are connecting to or from a premium class flight in London.

Anyone with a standalone Business UK ticket should also be upgraded.

Secondly ….

Take a look at your seat allocations over at ba.com.

As of last night BA had not rearranged seating on existing bookings.  However, I would expect it to be done by the time you read this.

If you have an existing domestic booking and were sat towards the front of the aircraft, you are likely to have been moved towards the middle or back.  You may want to check and move yourself if you aren’t happy with where you ended up.

If you were moved into Club Europe, you should check to see if the window or aisle seat you have been given is suitable.  If you are travelling with other people, check that they are still near you – remember that Club Europe seating is 2×2 rather than 3×3 in Euro Traveller.

Thirdly ….

Avios redemption seats for Club Europe on domestic flights should be available from 8am today when the booking system reopens.

I would expect two Avios seats in Club Europe to be showing on every flight.  If I’m right, this is a great opportunity to bag yourself some seats for peak dates – Edinburgh during the Festival, anything you may need for Christmas, New Year, Easter or Bank Holidays etc.  Yes, you’ll be paying 9,000 Avios each-way but that is still probably a better deal than paying cash.

Cash tickets for business class – which we assume will earn 80 tier points return – are pricing at around £199 at ba.com.  If you after a quick tier point run, they may be worth a look.  If you’ve got more time, however, you can get weekend breaks to certain European destinations for similar money and which are likely to be more fun.  A key difference is that these domestic tickets do NOT appear to require a Saturday night stay.


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EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

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Comments (185)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • John Ritchie says:

    Was checking in online for a BA RFS flight tomorrow ABZ-LHR, and saw some Oct flights I had booked had been cancelled. Phoned in, confirmed glitch in system, not cancelled. 10 mins later get text from BA saying tomorrow’s ABZ-LHR flight had been cancelled. Glitch again ? Phoned in nope really was cancelled. Accepted alternative flight leaving 2 hrs earlier. Unable to check in online for alt flight. 3rd call to BA. Have to check in at airport. After approx 1 hr on hold. BA are just awesome. Even though BA are getter me to LHR earlier does EU 261 still apply? Assuming reason for cancellation isn’t extraordinary.

    • Ian says:

      No EU261 – the cancellation is because of the strike action

  • Alex says:

    On your last point Rob – is it possible to write a separate article on the Saturday night rule? It appears to be such a relic which only BA still applies. Or am I wrong?

    • Rob says:

      BA drops it when faced with competition. I imagine the Saturday night rule on long haul economy will soon go, given that Norwegian does not impose one.

      • Alex says:

        Good point re Norwegian! Many other airlines have dropped it long ago. Perhaps it’s still a cash cow for BA from business travellers flying midweek and paid for by their employer

  • Martin says:

    Some discrepancies with it. I have a long haul redemption EDI-MIA back MCO-EDI, outbound in F and inbound in CW. My outbound domestic has now booked into CE but my inbound domestic is ET. We’re not flying till Sept but If it doesn’t rectify in a few days I’ll need to call them

    • Ian says:

      Which aspect exactly do you believe requires to be rectified?

      For clarity, the domestics attached to an Avios long haul redemption ‘should’ be assigned as ET, so your outbound domestic is current erroneous (not that that should concern you, its BA’s error, nothing more)

      • john says:

        Well that depends on booking class of the domestic. On redemptions, U is CE and X is ET

        • Ian says:

          Yes, but that is now old skool. My point remains valid for flights on/after 1st April 2017. If you wish to disagree, I strongly suggest you converse with BA.

      • Martin says:

        If I book a business redemption tomorrow for travel after April 1st my domestic will book into CE (U) and my long haul into CW (U), why should t existing bookings do the same?

        • Ian says:

          Will it? Have you actually tested this?
          BA provide a ‘free’ (that is, free of Avios, not £) domestic connection to LH redemptions. Domestic will in future equate to ET as of 1st April.

  • Derek Scott says:

    Here’s what’s been emailed out to Travel Agents today:

    “February 2017
    For travel from 1 April 2017, Club Europe will be introduced on all BA mainline and BA CityFlyer UK&I domestic services. We are also replacing UK Domestic with Euro Traveller as the economy cabin.

    This change aligns our cabins across the shorthaul network and enables customers connecting to or from a longhaul destination to enjoy a consistent premium experience throughout their journey. Domestic customers will be able to benefit from lounge access, more personal space to work or relax, complimentary food and drink, dedicated check-in desks, priority boarding and a generous baggage allowance of two cabin bags and two checked bags.

    The Club Europe cabin features a 2:2 configuration with the middle seat kept free. From 28 February, all UK&I domestic routes will start to show 2-cabin configuration, Club Europe and Euro Traveller. Once this conversion has taken place you will be able to see both cabins available to book in the schedule display.

    Existing bookings on UK&I domestic services

    The following changes have taken place for customers already ticketed on UK&I domestic services for travel from 1 April 2017:

    Original booking class: J,C, D, R, I , U
    New booking class: No change
    Cabin change: Economy to Club Europe
    Changes to itinerary: No change
    Changes to seating: Reserved seating will remain as booked or an equivalent seat booked in Club Europe
    Changes to baggage: Now eligible to 2 pieces. Ticket will still show 1 piece but BAGA keyowrd will be updating to show 2PC.
    **********

    Original booking class: Y
    New booking class: J
    Cabin change: Economy to Club Europe
    Changes to itinerary: Y sector will show UN status. J sector added as TK status
    Changes to seating: Reserved seating will remain as booked or an equivalent seat booked in Club Europe
    Changes to baggage: Now eligible to 2 pieces. Ticket will still show 1 piece but BAGA keyowrd will be updating to show 2PC.

    *************

    Original booking class: B, H, K, M, L, V, N, Q, O, S, G, X
    New booking class: No change
    Cabin change: No change remains in Economy (Euro Traveller)
    Changes to itinerary: Original sector will show UN status. New TK sector added with the same booking class
    Changes to seating: Reserved seating will remain as booked or an equivalent seat booked in Euro Traveller
    Changes to baggage: Remains as 1 piece

    **********

    Emails or SMS messages have NOT been sent to customers but please reassure them that their flight is not cancelled – the status has been changed to enable our systems to disclose the correct cabin they are travelling in. We will automatically revalidate the BA-125 ticket for the affected sector(s). Other carrier’s tickets will need to be revalidated or reissued for the ticket to match the itinerary.

    Reserved seating
    The Club Europe cabin is located at the front of the aircraft. Customers with seats already booked in the front rows who now have a cabin change into Euro Traveller will be allocated a seat further back in the aircraft. If the new seat is not suitable then any paid seating requests may be refunded and any free seating may be changed dependent on availability in the Euro Traveller cabin.

    Meal requests
    Please check if customers travelling in Club Europe have any advance meal requests.

    Paid for excess baggage
    Club Europe customers may check-in two bags (max 32kgs each) Customers already ticketed in J, C, D, R, I or U classes will now be eligible to 2 pieces, although their ticket will still display 1 piece. The BAGA keyword should have been updated to show 2PC. Domestic customers now travelling in Club Europe who have already paid for an extra bag may have the one extra bag refunded.

    Redemptions
    For new bookings for travel from 1 April, U class is now for Club Europe on all domestics with the applicable Avios to pay. Customers already booked in U class will be sat in Club Europe, no extra Avios charged. X class customers are booked in Euro Traveller.

    Business UK fares
    These fares will no longer exist after 31 March 2017. All J class customers booked for travel from 1st April will now be seated in the Club Europe cabin (see table above) All Y class customers already booked for travel will be converted to J class and also seated in Club Europe. The Same ticketing terms and conditions apply, which match those for Club Europe Plus Flex fares

    Voluntary changes – for customers booked to travel up to 31 March who want to change their departure date for travel from 1 April
    Commercial fare rules apply with any difference in fare and taxes paid by the customer. For J, C, D, R or I class, these will need to be re-booked into a comparable Economy booking class and the itinerary re-priced. If you rebook into the same class as original then these will be re-priced into a Club fare. Bookings originally made in U Redemption class will need to be re-quoted into X, otherwise if they continue to be booked in U the higher Avios amount for Club will need to be charged plus higher APD.

    Read our ‘Club Europe available in the UK’ factsheet

    • Alan says:

      Very helpful to see what BA have sent out directly, Derek – thanks. Esp the bit about not informing pax (although this does seem a bit stupid on their part given the confusion it has caused!)

      • Derek Scott says:

        The only logical reason I can think of for not contacting customers direct, is to avoid the contact centres going into meltdown as emails or SMS messages land. By allowing customers to find out as they check their bookings online in the coming weeks, it spreads out the impact, when they have to deal with spikes in calls each round of strike announcements will be causing.

        Crisis management, in effect!

        • Alan says:

          Haha possibly – I like your faith that they’ve actually thought about passengers 😉

  • Peter Taysum says:

    From the regions it looks like NCL AMS on KLM or PAR on Air France is looking much more attractive; if I’ve got to change I prefer AMS (though prefer Heathrow lounges)…

    Night

  • the real harry1 says:

    BA is such a stealing cheat: ‘Reserved seating
    The Club Europe cabin is located at the front of the aircraft. Customers with seats already booked in the front rows who now have a cabin change into Euro Traveller will be allocated a seat further back in the aircraft. If the new seat is not suitable then any paid seating requests may be refunded and any free seating may be changed dependent on availability in the Euro Traveller cabin.’

    So a passenger has paid to sit at the front but has an economy ticket. He gets moved down back but BA don’t give him an automatic refund of the seat booking fee? Only on request means BA is acting like a thief.

  • Justin says:

    For my upcoming redemption flights, long haul in First with domestic connections (X fare bucket) which ended up in the new Euro Traveller cabin after these changes: spoke to BA and they have moved us into the Club Europe cabin for no extra Avios or APD (although there was the £35 change fee).

    Seems you have to have to be a bit proactive though as if you were originally booked in X for your “free” domestic connection (back when it didn’t matter which fare bucket you were in), you won’t be moved automatically. I’m happy with my booking now.

    • Kinkell says:

      Personally, I think BA should be moving all their pax that are on connecting CW/F flights into CE automatically. not sure I want to part with £35 for complimentary G&T ! Status does get you a few perks which will do me, but I am narked about it!

    • Adam says:

      Justin – I’m on the phone with BA at the moment with exactly the same scenario as you. Domestic X class connecting to a First redemption.

      Interestingly BA are refusing to do for me what they have done for you – instead they have charged me an additional 7500 avios to upgrade the domestic sectors into Club Europe (for me and companion on the Amex voucher). Worth noting no additional APD, no change fee.

      Complete lack of consistency – this seems to have caught the call centres out by surprise.

      • Justin says:

        Wow that’s worrying! The agent I spoke to did explain they were struggling with the changes and did have to put me on hold for 10 minutes while she found out how to handle the request – she specifically said she was finding out if the change would require Avios or not and came back saying not. It’s a shame these bookings haven’t been updated automatically, which should have addressed the consistency issue.

        There’s always the hang up and call back later option!

    • Anon8 says:

      I tried to do that yesterday and BA didn’t have a clue what I was talking about and didn’t even know about the introduction of CE on to domestics. As it is only one leg of my return journey this time I really can’t be bothered to change this but my travels later in the year I may consider changing for a £35 fee. I just wish they would work consistently – fat chance.

      This is a copy of an email I received today:-

      We are making some changes to the experience we’re offering on flights within the UK that will affect your upcoming booking with us.

      From 1 April, we’re introducing our business cabin, Club Europe, and changing the economy cabin from UK Domestic to Euro Traveller to align with our short haul network.
      What this means for you
      Don’t worry, your flight will depart as planned but the name of your cabin will now show as ‘Euro Traveller’, e.g. on your boarding pass or signs at the airport.

      All other elements of your journey will stay the same, such as your baggage allowance, free seating, M&S food options and, if you’re a Member of the Executive Club, your Avios and Tier Points.

      We have already adjusted your booking and you can view it in Manage My Booking.

      If you want to make any changes to seats you paid to reserve, please contact us; if you’d like a refund, please apply online.

      If you have requested disability or mobility assistance, we will make sure your request remains unchanged in the system.

    • Ian says:

      So, you spent the £35 change fee for what exactly?

      You would have lounge access before. So £35 for an empty seat beside you? Or for a drink onboard?

      Am I missing something?

  • Artimus says:

    I just spoke to BA (11:18am GMT) and was informed that due to my BAEC status, the domestic leg of redemption ticket will be upgraded FOC to CW (no change fee or Avios required) to match the long haul ticket class of First.

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