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Thursday, February 05, 2009

Can someone who understands marketing please explain British Airways miles to me?

Since I'm trying hard not to moan about South West Trains after their sterling work during the recent snow event situation, I'm going to moan about British Airways instead, because being a Gold Executive Club member isn't turning out as wonderfully as I had hoped.

Now, I've long since given up trying to redeem by BA miles. They have no incentive value to me at all, because you cannot redeem them on any route during any time that you might conceivably want to use them (ie, in the school holidays). Thus, if you have a family, they are essentially useless.

Today I noticed an e-mail from BA putting forward an interesting and potentially useful alternative. If you book a flight, the e-mail claimed, then you can use your BA miles to get upgrades. That sounded interesting. We're planning on going to States in the summer, so why not go BA? In fact, as I suggested to my good lady wife, why not spring for World Traveller Plus seats and then upgrade to Club for a real family treat. So I called BA, with every intention of spending a couple of thousand pounds more with them that I would otherwise have considered. After about fifteen minutes of listening to recorded messages about insurance and various menus, I got through to a nice lady who explained to me that no upgrade seats were available on the route I was interested from the first date that we could possibly travel (23rd July) until the last date that we could possible travel (26th August). When I asked why, she said that (of course) it was the school holidays. As a result, I'm now more annoyed with BA than if they'd never sent me the e-mail in the first place. What's the point of BA miles? They are not an incentive to travel BA, and now they appear to functioning as a disincentive. I guess I just don't understand marketing, so I'm off to check out the Virgin website later on. After all, they do have hotter stewardesses, according to the advert.

In the future, everyone will be famous to fifteen people.
[posted with ecto]

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