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Some BA ex-160 tier point routes from Gatwick only show 80 points from Heathrow! (Updated)

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The switch of British Airways Gatwick short-haul services to Heathrow has led to an interesting but annoying quirk – some routes which offered 160 tier points now appear to only offer 80.

EDIT: following our article, it now looks like British Airways has updated its system and the destinations that dropped to 80 tier points are now back up at 160 tier points return. All is well!

I often get emails from readers who say “I need XXX tier points in the next few weeks to reach British Airways Bronze / Silver / Gold status – how can I do it?”.

If you need to earn a small number of tier points – between 80 and 160 – the easiest way was a weekend break to one of the few destinations flown by British Airways which offer 160 tier points return in Club Europe.  This is twice as many tier points as the usual Club Europe return which earns 80.

If you made such a booking for Summer 2020, however, you might be in trouble.  You may now only receive 80 tier points for your flight!

Club Europe British Airways 160 tier points flights

This is the list of ALL British Airways routes which used to offer 160 tier points.  Most of these routes were ALWAYS Heathrow routes and so still earn 160 tier points.

Some of the Gatwick routes have now dropped to 80 tier points following the switch of all short-haul Gatwick flights to Heathrow.  Is this an accident or not?  We don’t know.

The data is taken from the BA tier points calculator here.

  • Algiers – still 160 tier points
  • Athens – still 160 tier points
  • Bucharest – still 160 tier points
  • Catania – still 160 tier points
  • Chania – still 160 tier points
  • Corfu – still 160 tier points
  • Dalaman – still 160 tier points
  • Funchalnow only offers 80 tier points return from Heathrow

British Airways tier points Funchal

  • Gran Canaria – still 160 tier points
  • Heraklion / Crete – now only offers 80 tier points return from Heathrow
  • Istanbul – still 160 tier points
  • Kalamata – still 160 tier points
  • Kefalonia – still 160 tier points
  • Kiev – still 160 tier points
  • Kos – still 160 tier points
  • Lanzarote – still 160 tier points
  • Larnaca – still 160 tier points
  • Malta – still 160 tier points
  • Marrakech – still 160 tier points
  • Mykonos – still 160 tier points
  • Paphos – now only offers 80 tier points return from Heathrow

British Airways Paphos tier points

  • Reykjavik – still 160 tier points
  • Rhodes – still 160 tier points
  • Santorini – still 160 tier points
  • Sofia – still 160 tier points
  • Tenerife – still 160 tier points
  • Thessaloniki – still 160 tier points
  • Tirana – now only offers 80 tier points return from Heathrow
  • Zakynthos – still 160 tier points

Don’t dispair if you do have one of these routes booked.  It may post correctly once you have flown it, with the number thrown up by the calculator simply being an error.

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Comments (44)

  • Suspect this is an error – most likely by the person, updating the flight data that feeds the calculator and Executive Club systems, not realising these route accrue 80 tier points instead of the usual 40 for Europe. Will get fixed when someone flags this to BA.

    • Julian says:

      I agree with you that this seems to be most likely. Just don’t let the person responsible anywhere near refuelling BA’s aircraft………….

  • Anna says:

    I’ll be flying MAN-LHR-GCM return next July on a cash ticket. This usually earns 360 tier points. Will this still be the case then and will it fall within the reduced requirement limit to get silver for 450 points? Just wondering if it worth pushing for silver. My membership year end date is July 8th and the flight will be after that.

    • Lumma says:

      Should be no change of tier point earning rates or there’d be no point in lowering the thresholds

      • Anna says:

        Yes but does it fit the timescale? How long do people have to earn status at the reduced rate?

        • Jonathan says:

          There’s no change to Tier Point earning periods. Even if you have status extended to 24 months your TP’s will reset start at end of usual TP year (ie. after 12 months).

          • Anna says:

            I’m not making this clear enough am I?! How long does the reduced tier point requirement last? So if my year resets in July 2021, can I still get to Silver by earning 450 tier points after that?

    • AJA says:

      HI Anna BA’s website says:
      “All members will benefit, starting with those who have a Tier Point collection end date of July 2020, through to June 2021.

      What’s more, it will be even easier to retain your status next time you’re up for renewal, as we’ve decreased the amount of Tier Points needed by 25%.”

      The way I read that is that you only need 450TP to either gain or retain silver in the year after your 1year extension. In my case my current TP year ends on 8 Feb 2021 meaning I only need 450TP in the year 9 Feb 2021 to 8 Feb 2022 to maintain Silver after March 2022 which is when my current extended Silver status runs out.

      If I read corectly your current TP year ends tomorrow 8 July 2020 meaning you will have a 1 year extension of to status until 8 July 2021 and from 9 July 2021 to 8 July 2022 you only need 450TP to gain or retain Silver.

      • Anna says:

        Awesome, thanks AJA! You may see me doing my first tier point run next year…

  • Mr. AC says:

    I think as of last year, BA no longer flies to Kiev (Kyiv), so the number of TPs is a bit moot.

  • Gin and Tonic Please says:

    Must be an error. Heraklion and Chania are both on Crete, and Heraklion is further away from UK.

    • Ian says:

      Confusingly, isn’t there also a Chania in Sicily? Don’t know if that could be the source of the mix-up on that route, though it doesn’t explain the anomaly of the Cyprus routes.

    • Julian says:

      Kefalonia and Mykonos are clearly very substantially nearer to Heathrow than Heraklion so obviously an error somewhere.

      Or more extreme is Paphos, which is clearly the furthest of all away of the places that BA is now strangely only offering 80 points to.

      And don’t forget that I’m the person who made it on to fastest finger on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire for giving one of the most accurate answers to the telephone eliminator question (they telephoned you back without warning) to get on the show of what is the distance from London to Calgary………….

      • Julian says:

        Also clearly absurd that Funchal is considered to be nearer to the UK than Kefalonia by BA

        It makes you worry for your safety in terms of how much fuel they are filling up the aircraft with to reach these destinations………….

        • Julian says:

          http://www.airmilescalculator.com looks like it can settle most of these questions, if of course it has accurate data. Google Maps unfortunately does not seem to hold flying distances between two locations that can also be reached over land……………….

        • Peter K says:

          Not really, no. I’m sure the people working out how much fuel to put in don’t use the number of tier points anywhere in their calculation.

  • Jay says:

    Hopefully an admin error which will be cleared up.

    • Julian says:

      Seems like somebody made changes using a Seat Of The Pants method rather than by referring to any actual data relating to the distance away of these destinations…………….

      • dgsupersonic says:

        I bet you don’t make all this fuss when there is an error fare advertised. People make mistakes so take it easy.

        • Jonathan says:

          Some of these destinations would only be 80 Tier Points based solely on distance so there’s plenty of precedent for destinations to be placed in different brackets then distance alone would suggest (not that I am stating this is not an error).

  • Jose Marques says:

    Since when is BA flying from Heathrow to Funchal? Anyone please.

    • Julian says:

      I don’t know since when but they are certainly flying there at the moment from Heathrow several days a week and that’s during the summer season, which isn’t the peak holiday time of year in Madeira……

      • Jose Marques says:

        Thanks for the info. I have been going to Funchal but had to travel from Gatwick which is far from me. I will give them a call. Thank you

  • Lady London says:

    I’d be asking BA for a promise of original routing credit and would cancel (or look into making them pay for another airline from LGW) if not

  • Lady London says:

    On how many miles BA origin and destination are, never forget that BA successfully moved the earth’s tectonic plates to move Boston further away from Heathrow so that it would fall into a higher band.

    The relationship between air distances and miles BA counts them as, is distorted in some cases so that BA can achieve its aims.

    • Jonathan says:

      Never one to miss an opportunity to put the boot in LL! There’s actually more examples of destinations earning TP’s at a higher rate than distance would suggest vs the fairly niche Aer Lingus Dublin-Boston redemption example you quote.

      • Lady London says:

        That was what I meant @Jonathan. Some routes ex-LGWdo seem to have always has 160 tier points historically as compared to the 80 you would have thought.

    • Nick says:

      80 TPs are only loosely related to distance anyway – BA have certainly never made a claim that suggests it is.

      For example PMO earns 80 but CTA earns 160, despite them being very close together. And HEL earns the higher rate despite being shorter than plenty of routes that don’t.

    • Genghis says:

      Sometimes works for the customer: e.g. South Africa redemptions