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How do you get a British Airways Executive Club Premier card?

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Most people think that the British Airways Executive Club tiers are Blue, Bronze, Silver and Gold.  There is also Gold Guest List – see here for how you get that – but it is a subset of Gold and does not have its own membership card, unless you count adding the letters ‘GGL’ to the corner of a normal Gold one.

There is, however, another elite tier you may not know about – British Airways Executive Club Premier.

This is the card you get:

How do you get a British Airways Executive Club Premier card?

How do you get a British Airways Executive Club Premier card?

This information is taken from official British Airways guidelines I saw, although the guidelines are now a few years old and may have been updated.

The aim of Premier is to keep on the good side of people who control the travel budgets at British Airways’ largest corporate accounts.

In order to get a British Airways Premier card, you need to control a travel budget which spends at least £2 million per year with British Airways.

Importantly – and this is taken verbatim for the guidelines – giving someone a Premier card:

“will not always reflect the revenue generated for British Airways by the company, but should be based upon the individual’s ability to influence travel policy”

How do I apply?

You don’t.  Based on the guidelines I have, you need to befriend a member of the British Airways board or a key sales manager.  They will submit an application on your behalf.

Five other BA executives (specified people, not random staff) must ‘second’ the application, including the British Airways Chief Operating Officer, currently Jason Mahoney.

How many British Airways Premier cardholders are there?

850, at the time of publication of the guidance notes I saw.  However, Alex Cruz made a decision to cull the ranks and that the current number is nearer 450.  The card was allegedly removed from various high profile celebrities and sports stars who had no commercial value to the airline.

What do you get if you are a British Airways Premier cardholder?

What you DIDN’T get, interestingly, was tier points according to the BA guidance, although I believe that this has changed.  Perhaps introducing lifetime status criteria meant that Premier members still wanted to track their points?

As a Premier, you receive all of the benefits of British Airways Gold membership plus:

use of the Special Services team at key airports

access to British Airways lounges at all times, even if the member is not flying on British Airways

ability to bring two guests into a lounge (a Gold member can only bring one guest)

access to The Concorde Room at Heathrow Terminal 5 and New York JFK, irrespective of class of travel

ability to give Gold status to a friend or partner

an annual upgrade voucher, allowing a single cabin upgrade for two people – this is the same as the Gold Guest List GUF2 voucher

Anecdotally, from crew reports on Flyertalk, British Airways will remove paying passengers from a flight if a Premier member wishes to travel on it, and will hold flights if a Premier customer is delayed.  BA ground staff are also known to reseat other passengers if a Premier has not been able to select their favourite seat in advance.

Not a bad deal if you can get it …. but don’t get your hopes up!

PS.  If you want to know more about the ‘standard’ Executive Club status levels, we have a number of articles of interest:  How do you earn British Airways Bronze status?, What are the benefits of British Airways Bronze status?, How do you earn British Airways Silver status?, What are the benefits of British Airways Silver status?, How do you earn British Airways Gold status?, What are the benefits of British Airways Gold status?, How do you earn British Airways Gold Guest List status?  Note that the tier point thresholds required are currently 25% lower to reflect the impact of coronavirus.

Comments (36)

  • Jimbo says:

    Do influential bloggers that might drive BA flight sales via Avois get the Premier Card?

    • Rob says:

      Sadly not. Don’t get anything off BA. (Disclaimer – the Dunhill aftershave I’m using was a freebie from the BA media party in 2019!)

  • Who cares about status? says:

    Interesting, I know someone who used to have a prem card – she was apparently one of two women to hold the card at the time (going back 3/4 years) and typically spent 40+ weeks a year flying for work

  • Adam says:

    There can be genuine operational reasons for the benefits too, which so far have only really been perceived as for leisure. I understand that when the 2010 ash cloud hit, the UK head of a large prof services firm was stranded in NYC, and was put on the first flight to take off again (his then-PA told me a few years later).

    • Lady London says:

      I was amazed they delayed Concorde for 5mins, I think there were limits IIRC up to 15mins max if they did. Having the Special Services number was jolly useful, for example if needing to get a message to boss in lounge that had deliberately switched their phone off.

  • Scott says:

    We are missing the point here – the key question has to be whether the budget spend has been reduced to £1.5m this year in line with all the other TP thresholds being reduced?! 😜

  • Lady London says:

    I wonder if Dominic Cummings has one?