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Collective Complaints, Rants and Gripes Thread about Avios/BAEC

Collective Complaints, Rants and Gripes Thread about Avios/BAEC

Old Nov 16, 11, 9:48 pm
  #1  
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Collective Complaints, Rants and Gripes Thread about Avios/BAEC

I would like to make it quite clear that I did not start a thread called Collective Complaints, Rants and Gripes Thread about Avios/BAEC. My original post below was called Why I am dismayed with BA. I apologise to those who posted thoughtful replies to my post that this thread has now been renamed and designated a catchall thread for Complaints, Rants and Gripes Thread about Avios/BAEC.

HilFly


I am a long time US BAEC member. I am on the east coast, and most of my BA travel at the moment is to the UK. My usual reward bookings will require fewer miles in the future and I will earn more tier points on future paid intineraries. Apart from occasional reward trips to the former Europe zone 1, the changes are positive for me.

But I am absolutely dismayed at how badly this is affecting some other members and how this whole thing has been communicated and implemented.

This is taken from the web page that BA linked to in their first email on September 1 announcing changes to the program.

Straightforward pricing for reward flights
We’ve found a simpler, easier way to price reward flights and our reward flight zones will be enhanced in November.
On 97% of our routes there will be either no change or the route will require even fewer Avios than the current BA Miles. We will update you more on this nearer to November.


Link to whole page

http://www.britishairways.com/travel...t=BBBB55RRBBBD

If the sentence about 97% of routes not changing or requiring fewer Avios is not what BA intended to communicate I would like to know the names of the people whose heads are going to roll for that one. Clearly, 97% of routes are not staying the same or requiring fewer Avios.

And as for the "simpler, easier way to price reward flights" what could be simpler than what they had in place before? The replacement of an "award chart" with an "award calculator" speaks volumes!

Although I am not disadvantaged materially by these changes, the whole episode has left me feeling distaste for BA.


Moderator's Note - current at 15:33 (GMT) on 19 November 2011

We have decided to turn this thread into a "collective complaints and gripes thread" as there are currently many rant threads being posted and this thread contains a lot of complaints, rants and gripes. As a consequence, we have also changed the title to reflect that, and also moved some posts from other threads to this one. (At one point it was titled "Collective rants and gripes thread" but I received a complaint about the thread title so I have changed it). This thread was originally titled "Why I am dismayed with BA" by the OP.

You are welcome to complain or rant away on this thread, with two provisos - please make sure you observe the Terms of Service of this forum, and please be respectful to each other.

We also ask that complaints, rants and gripes about Avios/BAEC and associated issues are kept to this thread, so that they do not take over the forum and push other threads to the back.

If you want constructive help with using Avios, or wish to make a constructive suggestion about how things can be improved, this is likely not to be the thread for you. There are threads offering constructive help and tips that you will be able to find on this forum.
Also, if you do not want to read rants, this is also probably not a good thread to read.

Thank you everyone, now please feel free to rant away.

LTN Phobia
Moderator: BA Forum

Last edited by HilFly; Nov 19, 11 at 10:20 am Reason: Clarifying that the thread title is not mine.
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Old Nov 16, 11, 9:53 pm
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Try being an Aeroplan member for 20+ years for true dismay.
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Old Nov 16, 11, 9:56 pm
  #3  
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It says 97% of OUR routes. Not 97% of routes. Presumably, this is entirely true or they'd never have written it.

(However, IIRC Nicci has already said on the other thread that perhaps that wasn't clearest way for them to have pitched this...)
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Old Nov 16, 11, 10:02 pm
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Yet it is perfectly obvious they pitched it that way on purpose.
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Old Nov 16, 11, 10:12 pm
  #5  
nsx
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Marketing people get too clever by half when they indulge in clever wording like this. They believe that it benefits their company by putting the best light on the program. In reality it destroys customer goodwill.

The correct way to do this, IMHO, is to say "there is some disadvantage for A, but here's the great thing you get for B". Then the customer is on notice that a disadvantage exists. Otherwise the statement is deceptive, whether it was intended to be or not.

As to intent, please apply my own Corollary to Occam's Razor: Never attribute to malevolent genius that which can be adequately explained by ignorant incompetence.
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Old Nov 16, 11, 11:03 pm
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Originally Posted by Crampedin13A View Post
Try being an Aeroplan member for 20+ years for true dismay.
You mean Errorplan?
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Old Nov 16, 11, 11:13 pm
  #7  
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Originally Posted by G-BOAC View Post
It says 97% of OUR routes. Not 97% of routes. Presumably, this is entirely true or they'd never have written it.
I'm in a similar position as the OP, the changes themselves seems entirely reasonable and will not impact me greatly. No matter how you interpret the statement though it's still untrue, dishonest and misleading.

Had it said 97% of out FLIGHTS or SEGMENTS it would, perhaps, have been true but the vast majority of ROUTES has gone up in price, quite significantly.
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Old Nov 16, 11, 11:26 pm
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Originally Posted by HilFly View Post
And as for the "simpler, easier way to price reward flights" what could be simpler than what they had in place before? The replacement of an "award chart" with an "award calculator" speaks volumes!
It must be the only FF scheme in existence where the actual routing changes the number of miles required. Meshing that with AA's hub & spoke operation is a mess.

I also can't square the promise of fair warning in the BAEC T's & C's with a 2 1/2 month wait that slapping on changes overnight with zero notice.

I think I said in another thread that BA has become a business I no longer trust, where my first reaction is to comb the small print. This is sadly another example of fairly dirty behaviour.
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Old Nov 16, 11, 11:53 pm
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Originally Posted by HilFly View Post
Apart from occasional reward trips to the former Europe zone 1, the changes are positive for me.
That's good to hear ^

Originally Posted by HilFly View Post
If the sentence about 97% of routes not changing or requiring fewer Avios is not what BA intended to communicate I would like to know the names of the people whose heads are going to roll for that one. Clearly, 97% of routes are not staying the same or requiring fewer Avios.
But it doesn't say that '97% of routes are not changing', it says '97% of our routes are not changing'. I think that whether that is seen as being clear or not is dependant on what you normally use your Avios for. If it is for reward bookings on airlines other than BA, then you might have read and thought that it meant non-BA routes too, because, in your mind, that is what you wanted it to say.

Originally Posted by eae View Post
I'm in a similar position as the OP, the changes themselves seems entirely reasonable and will not impact me greatly. No matter how you interpret the statement though it's still untrue, dishonest and misleading.
Is it? What is misleading about BA saying 'our' routes? This is from BA, talking about BA, not about partners. I don't understand this massive obsession with getting hold of BA miles and then having no intention of using them to book BA reward flights, and then being totally up in arms when BA protects changes to it's own network to the disadvantage of partner rewards.

Originally Posted by bernardd View Post
It must be the only FF scheme in existence where the actual routing changes the number of miles required. Meshing that with AA's hub & spoke operation is a mess.
This makes perfectly logical sense to me. The more miles you have to fly, the more you should have to pay.

If I want to fly from Sydney to Melbourne, but end up going via Canberra, why should it cost the same as a direct Sydney to Melbourne flight?

Originally Posted by bernardd View Post
I also can't square the promise of fair warning in the BAEC T's & C's with a 2 1/2 month wait that slapping on changes overnight with zero notice.
I agree with you on this one. BA said that changes were coming, but they didn't explain those changes in detail. They should have given a warning, been explicit and then set the date that those changes would come into effect.
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Old Nov 17, 11, 12:40 am
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The only route that are of interest to me have gone up. From West coast US to anywhere, except London, the number of miles has gone up. An example:
All of SFO-EU except for UK has gone up from 25k for one way economy to 29.5k. I feel cheated. I say that 97% of the route I value have gone up and neither stayed the same or gone down. (Considering there are 26 other EU members outside of the UK, that's accurate within 1%) I call that false advertising!
I will definitely thouroughly reconsider how I redirect my business.
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Old Nov 17, 11, 1:05 am
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It really was never about 97% of the routes that people valued. This is a BA product aimed at BA customers on BA routes. I find it difficult to have sympathy.
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Old Nov 17, 11, 1:16 am
  #12  
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Some people have benefited from the recent changes and some have lost out. I can understand that people who lose out won't be best pleased, but some of the daily whining on this forum is starting to get a bit tiresome (not purely directed at the OP in this thread).

As others have already posted here, BA did not say 97% of any possible route, they cleary said "our routes". I think that is entirely fair. I don't have access to the facts, but I would assume that the vast majority of BA's redemptions are on BA metal. If you rarely use your BA points on BA flights, then you're probably collecting in the wrong scheme!

At the end of the day if you don't like the new rules vote with your feet. Start using another airline, take out a different credit card, or whatever applies to the route you use to collect your points.
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Old Nov 17, 11, 1:16 am
  #13  
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I think this is the umpteenth example of BA's communication machine at work. We have all complained about the lies before. Remember the sounds here when they communicated that the open door policy was taken away based on our feedback?

I have said it before and I will say it again: either BA is deliberately deceitful in their communication or they need a new communication director.

If we need to nitpick every communication for the use of words like 'our' to see what they really mean that says a lot about the company too.

And no, I am not that upset about the changes.
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Old Nov 17, 11, 1:18 am
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Thank you for posting this thread. It comes closest to summarizing how I feel, which is just a lack of confidence in collecting Avios going forward.

I am a US based flyer and I would actually like to collect Avios miles for short haul redemptions. However, the way BA handled this change creates tons of uncertainty for me.

I feel pretty confident about what my SkyPesos (insert many other programs here, not Aeroplan) are worth, even if next to nothing. But I have no clue what Avios might be worth because the program could change at any point in time.

I know all programs have a clause that the terms can change at anytime. But few actually change without notice, and even fewer change without notice and while using deceptive/untrue marketing messages.

Avios just seems like too risky of an investment for me right now to build points up there. If I need to, I'll transfer some points for each redemption I want.


On an unrelated subject...

Originally Posted by matthandy View Post
That's good to hear ^

This makes perfectly logical sense to me. The more miles you have to fly, the more you should have to pay.

If I want to fly from Sydney to Melbourne, but end up going via Canberra, why should it cost the same as a direct Sydney to Melbourne flight?
Unfortunately, in practice this is not exactly correct. If they added the miles for both hops together, and then priced it would be correct. Instead, they price each segment. There will be cases where two medium hops (with longer total miles) will be cheaper than long hop followed by short hop.
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Old Nov 17, 11, 1:19 am
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Thumbs down

Originally Posted by nsx View Post
As to intent, please apply my own Corollary to Occam's Razor: Never attribute to malevolent genius that which can be adequately explained by ignorant incompetence.
That'll be Hanlon's Razor then
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