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It’s back: Get SkyTeam elite status (19 airlines) by matching your British Airways status

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ITA Airways, the ‘replacement’ carrier for Alitalia, has brought back the elite status match that it first ran last October.

This allows you, for free, to get elite status across the entire SkyTeam alliance – including Delta, Air France and KLM – by matching your British Airways status.

Even if you never plan to fly with SkyTeam, doing the match could even help extend your elite benefits with British Airways if another oneworld airline was willing to match your ITA status.

The offer runs to 15th April and you can apply here. Your new status will last until 15th April 2023, if I understand the wording correctly, although it is a little vague.

Match your British Airways to SkyTeam with ITA

I did the match last year when it ran. I’m looking forward to checking out KLM’s Crown Lounge in Amsterdam later this month on a flight to London, using my SkyTeam Elite Plus status.

Which 24 airlines are being matched?

It isn’t just British Airways status that is being matched. ITA is accepting applications from 24 airlines:

  • Aerolíneas Argentinas
  • Air Europa
  • Alitalia
  • Air France/KLM
  • American Airlines
  • ANA
  • Czech Airlines
  • Delta Airlines
  • EL Al
  • Emirates
  • Iberia
  • Korean Air
  • Lufthansa
  • Middle East Airlines
  • Qatar Airlines
  • Royal Jordanian
  • Saudia
  • Singapore Airlines
  • SWISS
  • TAP
  • Tarom
  • Turkish Airways
  • United Airlines

The absence of Virgin Atlantic is annoying, but of course it does not fly to Italy.

Some of the above airlines, such as KLM and Delta, are already members of SkyTeam. This is a little odd as airlines usually avoid poaching from their alliance partners.

ITA status match

Which airlines are in SkyTeam?

If you match your British Airways or other status to ITA Airways, your status will get you benefits with the following members of the SkyTeam airline alliance:

  • Aeroflot (if it returns)
  • Aerolineas Argentinas
  • AeroMexico
  • Air Europa
  • Air France
  • China Airlines
  • China Eastern
  • Czech Airlines
  • Delta
  • Garuda Indonesia
  • ITA Airways
  • Kenya Airways
  • KLM
  • Korean Air
  • MEA
  • Saudia
  • TAROM
  • Vietnam Airlines
  • Xiamen Air

How I do apply for the ITA status match?

You can apply for your match here.

Enter five random numbers where it asks for your postcode.

It will literally take you 1 minute to do. Once you’ve registered for Volare, all it wants you to email is a copy of your British Airways Executive Club status card (an online version is accepted) and a copy of your passport.

There is no requirement to send information on your flight history or to book any flights with ITA Airways.

ITA has an app which shows a ‘virtual’ membership card, which can also be exported to your mobile wallet. You don’t need to wait for anything to arrive in the post (if it ever will – I have never received anything).

Match your British Airways to SkyTeam with ITA

Will you get lounge access if you match from BA Silver?

Yes.

British Airways Silver is being matched to ‘Premium’ in Volare. British Airways Gold is being matched to ‘Executive’ which is the top tier.

Both ‘Premium’ and ‘Executive’ are ‘Elite Plus’ when it comes to SkyTeam alliance-wide status, which gets you lounge access with a guest at SkyTeam operated lounges.

Looking at the rules, which are complex, it seems that you do not get a guest at third party lounges. This would include the Plaza Premium lounge at Heathrow Terminal 2 which is currently being used by ITA.

There are reports of some lounges not accepting ITA status yet, so be warned. I will report back after my Amsterdam trip.

Conclusion

You have nothing to lose by requesting a status match from your British Airways Executive Club account to ITA Airways and its new Volare programme.

Elite members of 24 other schemes can also jump in.

At the very worst, you might be able to use it to match back to another oneworld or Star Alliance programme if your British Airways status slips.

Full details of the status match, and how to apply, are on the ITA website here.

Comments (86)

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

  • Comrade Chag says:

    Don’t bother people. They SkyTeam benefits are not recognised anywhere.

  • Braiden says:

    Don’t bother, like others have said, it’s not recognised on any other airlines.

  • VL says:

    I’ve done the match I’ve nothing with it at all. I’ve tried booking KLM flight no seat reservation no luggage allowance etc. I argued with both ITA & KLM each blame each other. KLM says nothing to do with us speak to ITA. ITA knows absolutely nothing, literally. I found a very small area on ITA website the status allow lounge access but mainly the few ITA ones. It is complete shambles. I don’t know why Sky Team or perhaps ITA wants to lure passengers with oneworld emerald to consider switching sides when I’ve access to nothing. Although I do appreciate in this case I’ve got status ‘for free’ and didn’t do anything to earn it. My KLM flights are in mid May will see if by then any further forward. But Michelle, may be you have contact in SkyTeam you can clarify with them.

  • Ikaz says:

    There is the ITA logo at the entrance of the non-Shengen lounge at AMS (I posted a photo on flyertalk), no issues accessing it with Volare status

    • Nick says:

      Shhh! You’ll have the first world problem posters here perplexed! 😉

      • Gloob says:

        Since this website is specifically dedicated to these sorts of topics, it’s pretty disingenuous to make virtue-signalling comments of that type…of course it’s a ‘first-world problem’ (whatever that cliched expression even means) in the big scheme of things, but this website isn’t about the big scheme, is it?

    • Alan says:

      Sounds like that might be the one place it works!

  • Matty says:

    They refused to match my two-year old daughter (BA Gold):

    ‘We are sorry to inform you that we cannot proceed with your request since Volare program currently does not allow the registration of children under 16.’

    Then, out of the blue, two months later:

    ‘We are pleased to send you the
    Volare Smart Club virtual card of
    ITA Airways’ Volare program. We thank you for choosing to join the
    Volare program and look forward to
    welcoming you soon on board our flights!!‘

    Which is it – Volare program does not allow the registration of children under 16, or welcome to Volare Smart Club..?

    • Nick says:

      Sorry, but it’s really not rocket science! If you look at the T&C it’s actually very clear…”All natural persons who, starting from 15 October 2021, have reached the age of 16 and whose transport by air is paid for with ITA, can participate in the Program…”

      Sorry, but maybe this is yet another ‘First world problem’ ?

        • Matty says:

          Nick, what were the rules on the 22 October 2021 when my daughter applied? The link you refer to state that those T&Cs came into effect on 26 October 2021. If it’s so clear then please provide details for 22 October 2021.

          • Nick says:

            In reply, I don’t have access to those, but I would suggest that the T&C’s are the same, unless you can provide something different, in which case I’m more than happy to be proved wrong. Alitalia always had a minimum age of 14 years for their MilleMiglia Young Program, so I’m pretty sure that a 2 year old would not be allowed. As I say, I’m happy to be proved wrong if you can post the T&C’s at the time you state.

          • Mike says:

            Matty – I doubt your 2 year old daughter did apply unless she is very advanced for her age !

  • Matty says:

    Nick you’re the one that said it was ‘quite very clear’ and that it ‘wasn’t rocket science’. I suggest you pipe down and give the keyboard a rest. I don’t have to prove anything.

  • Nick says:

    Matty, I’m just posting a reply to your comment. The T&C’s I posted covered the period, under Clause 3. DURATION, “From 15 October 2021 to 15 October 2024, unless extended.”, which would, in legal terms, cover the time that your 2 year old applied for membership. Anyway, let’s just beg to differ on this, as I’m not here to argue, just comment.

  • Vasco says:

    “KLM’s Crown Lounge in Amsterdam later this month”

    Curb your enthusiasm, it’s very underwhelming.

    • Rob says:

      I know …. but it’s the flagship so I think we ought to review it!

      • Vasco says:

        Fair enough, hope the inevitable negative review makes them do something to improve it, but I’m not holding my breath!

        Ever since “defecting” to Flying Blue the lounges have been the most disappointing change.

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

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