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Does British Airways Executive Club have soft landings?

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I am often asked whether British Airways Executive Club has soft landings.  It does, and I will explain how the BA soft landings work.

“Soft” and “hard” landings describe the way in which you drop through tiers in loyalty programs if you do not hit the renewal requirements for a particular tier.

A soft landing is generally seen as preferential when it comes to frequent flyer programs, since it is more generous than a hard landing.

Does British Airways Executive Club have soft landings?

For example, with British Airways Executive Club, if you hold Gold status but fail to reach the 1,500 tier point threshold for renewal, you will be gently lowered through the elite tiers rather than being demoted immediately to Blue at the end of your membership year.

This is referred to as a soft landing since you can enjoy one year of Silver status and then a year of Bronze status even if you do not earn a single tier points after reaching GOld.

A hard landing, conversely, is when you do not transition through lower elite tiers but crash straight to the bottom of the tier ladder when your membership year (and elite status) expires.  This would be the equivalent of dropping from British Airways Executive Club Gold status to Blue status overnight.

Luckily, British Airways Executive Club operates soft landings, meaning that you are likely to enjoy at some benefits in the following membership year even if you don’t reach the requirements for renewal of your current tier.

There is only one exception.  Certain elite Gold Guest List members of British Airways Executive Club can gift Gold and Silver status to friends.  If you receive status in this way you will not receive a soft landing and will drop straight back to Blue.

You can read more about the different elite tiers with British Airways Executive Club in this article.

(This article is part of our ‘BA Q&A’ series which explains how British Airways Executive Club works.  You can see all of our ‘BA Q&A’ articles here. )

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How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (September 2023)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

Get 25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and a huge range of valuable benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

EDIT: Applications for this card are temporarily suspended due to IT issues with the British Airways On Business SME loyalty scheme.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

There are also good bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These are available to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

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