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BA Gold Upgrade Voucher Discussion and Wiki Thread

Old Sep 16, 2017, 2:32 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: Prospero


Summary
This is a guide to gold upgrade vouchers which BA issues. In the wiki there are a number of frequently asked questions, and in the posts below there is a lot of detail and information on these vouchers.

Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is a Gold Upgrade Voucher?
Gold Upgrade Vouchers are awarded when you reach certain Tier Point levels and allow you to an upgrade to the next travel class.

Q: How do I qualify for a Gold Upgrade Voucher?
You will be awarded a Gold Upgrade Voucher for Two (GUF2) when you reach 2,500 Tier Points. Two Gold Upgrade Vouchers for One (GUF1) are awarded when you reach 3,500 Tier Points. You have the option to choose another two GUF1s at 7,000, 8,000 and 9,000 Tier Points.

Q: When will I know I have a voucher?
The voucher will appear on your BAEC homepage when you hit the required Tier Points in the same place as any Amex 241s that you may have.



Q: How long is the voucher valid for?
The voucher is valid for 12 months must be redeemed within one year of its issue.

Q: Do I have to travel by the expiry date?
No. You must book your ticket by the expiry date so you can travel up to 355 days after.

Q: Can the voucher be extended?
If you do not redeem the voucher within twelve months you can request an extension. Extensions are usually granted for a further six months.

Q: Where can I use the voucher?
You can use the voucher for a one class upgrade on any BA published fare on flights operated by BA.

Q: Can I use the voucher for a one way ticket?
Yes. The voucher can be used for a one way booking. FT opinion may say that this is not a good use but your individual circumstances will influence this.

Q: Where can I upgrade to?
You can upgrade to the next cabin on any BA flight:
  • Euro Traveller to Club Europe
  • World Traveller to World Traveller Plus
  • World Traveller Plus to Club World
  • Club World to First (where fitted on the aircraft)
Q: What cabin would an economy booking upgrade to?
As the voucher will upgrade you to the next available cabin, an economy (Euro Traveller / World Traveller) booking would upgrade you to Club Europe (from ET) on the short haul flight and World Traveller Plus (from WT) on the long haul flight.

Q: I havent got a companion. Can I still use a GUF2?
Yes. You can use a GUF2 on your own for a single or return journey. GUF2 can be divided to two GUF1 meaning that if you want to use it as a solo traveller, ask first through customer service to divide it.

Q: Does the voucher have to be used in conjunction with a paid fare?
No. Gold Upgrade Vouchers can be used either with a paid fare or a journey booked with Avios.

Q: Can I use the Gold Upgrade voucher with an Amex 2-4-1 voucher?
Yes. You can combine a GUF with a companion voucher (also known as a 2-4-1). This is a great way to really get a really good value use for the voucher as you will save a very large amount of Avios.

Q: Can I use the Gold Upgrade voucher with a Lloyds voucher?
No. A Lloyds voucher cannot be combined with a Gold Upgrade voucher.

Q: Can I UuA a ticket and then use my GUF voucher?
No. Tickets can only be upgraded using the Gold Upgrade voucher or Avios, not both.

Q: Are bookings made with the Gold Upgrade voucher flexible?
Only if the underlying ticket is in a flexible bucket. For example a J ticket upgraded to First will be flexible according to the original ticket rules. The same applies to redemption tickets.

Q: Can I use the Gold Upgrade voucher on another oneworld airline?
Yes, currently only with AA when certain conditions of use are fulfilled.

Q: Is the voucher valid on franchise operated flights?
Yes. Gold Upgrade vouchers are available for British Airways and franchise operated flights only.

Q: Can I use the voucher on an itinerary that includes non-BA flights?
With a booking direct with BA this is fine. For a TA booking you cant include non-BA flights. However, there are the occasional reports of a few slipping through where some Travel Agents have managed to apply a GUF to a booking which includes both BA and non-BA flights on BA codeshares.

Q: Can I upgrade an existing booking?
Yes. Please call the BA Service Centre to do this. If you have booked with a Travel Agent then the voucher must be used at the time of booking. Additional taxes and fees may apply. UPDATE - As of January 2018 the restriction to TA bookings no longer applies so if you book with a TA you can apply the GUF at any time by contacting BA directly up to 24 hours before your flight to process the upgrade - see post 3 for more details.

Q: Do I have to travel myself when I use the Gold Upgrade voucher like the Amex 2-4-1?
If you book with BA you can use the voucher for any other person or persons. However you must pay for the booking yourself either through your account on ba.com or through the Service Centre. If you book through a TA then the voucher owner must travel on the booking.

Q: If I cancel the booking will I get the Gold Upgrade voucher back?
If you cancel more than 24 hours before departure then the voucher will be reinstated to your account if the original validity has not expired. If you cancel within 24 hours then the voucher will not be available for further use. Any refund on the other part of the ticket will be subject to the original fare rules.

Q: Does there have to be Avios availability in the upgraded cabin to use the Gold Upgrade voucher?
No. There only needs to be discounted revenue fare availability in the cabin you are upgrading to (A for First, I for Club and T for WT+).
It used to be the case that you had to book through a Travel Agent to achieve this, and that direct bookings with BA required Avios availability in the cabin you are upgrading to. With changes to GUF2 made in 2019, this is no longer the case.

Q: Can I book the outbound leg using an Amex 2-4-1 and GUF2 and then add the inbound when it becomes available?
Yes. This can be done in the same way as adding a return leg to a booking using the Amex 2-4-1 voucher.

Q: Can I use the Gold Upgrade voucher on flights that do not originate in the UK?
Yes. Flights do not have to originate in the UK. A GUF can be used on an ex-EU booking - there is no requirement to start and finish in the UK or your Executive Club resident country.

Q: Can I use two GUF1s to upgrade two classes?
No. Nice try

Q: Can the Gold Upgrade voucher be used by anyone in the Household Account?
Any Household Account Member who earns Gold Upgrade vouchers must redeem them personally. Gold Upgrade vouchers are not part of the Household Account pool and cannot be redeemed by another Member of the Household Account. Household Account Members who earn Gold Upgrade vouchers are subject to applicable Household Account redemption rules, whereby the Gold Upgrade vouchers can only be used for members within the Household Account. These upgrades cannot be allocated to Executive Club Members under age 18. An upgrade earned by a member under 18 is allocated to the Head of that Member's Household Account, but the head must be a gold card holder. If the head is not a gold the voucher is effectively lost since it cant be allocated.

Q: Will I earn Tier Points and Avios with the Gold Upgrade voucher?
Yes. You should earn tier points and Avios in line with the original selling class of the booking and not based on the cabin you upgraded in to - although sometimes mistakes do seem to happen and you do end up earning based on the cabin you upgraded to. As a reward booking doesnt earn any tier points or Avios you wont earn anything from a reward booking to which you had applied a GUF.

Q: I have more than two people in my booking. Can I just upgrade two of them?
No. A GUF cant be applied to a selection of passengers on a booking, and has to cover all of them - you cant end up with a booking for four people where two are still in CW and the other two are upgraded to F. If necessary you can as BA to split the booking so that those not being upgraded are under one booking reference, and those being upgraded by the GUF are in a new separate booking reference.

Q: Does an infant use an available upgrade?
No. If an upgraded booking contains an infant travelling on an infant fare, the infant will be automatically upgraded with the adults. Child fares will be subject to the same rules as adults.
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BA Gold Upgrade Voucher Discussion and Wiki Thread

Old Sep 17, 2017, 10:31 am
  #16  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Hong Kong
Programs: BA Gold, DL PM, , Hilton Diamond (from being in a bed), SPG Plat, MR Plat
Posts: 922
Originally Posted by OldFruity
sitting in the T3 F lounge
Not fancy the CX F lounge?
ESFLYER95 is offline  
Old Sep 17, 2017, 10:47 am
  #17  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Paynesville, Vic
Programs: BA Gold AVIS Presidents Club
Posts: 360
ESFLYER95. I must admit that I am stuffed food and beverage wise as I have been travelling since Fri lunchtime. In order of appearance: V-Line train buffet cart, Mel J QF lounge, Syd QF F lounge, Sin Concorde room, Lhr Concorde room and finally BA T3 F lounge plus all the on board catering !! Had I gone to the CX lounge I would still be eating ; in here the food is less tempting (to me at least), although I still have an hour to reconsider and indulge in a BA burger !

OF

Last edited by OldFruity; Sep 17, 2017 at 10:52 am
OldFruity is offline  
Old Sep 17, 2017, 11:17 am
  #18  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: London
Programs: BA - Gold for Life, CCR & GGL; IC Spire Elite Ambassador; Diamond Hilton Honors; Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 6,720
Originally Posted by Prospero
This is fantastic - huge thanks to srbrenna and KARFA ^^
+1

Many thanks!
TravellerFrequently is offline  
Old Sep 19, 2017, 8:02 pm
  #19  
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: HKG
Programs: BA(GGL) QF LTS CX AM, Hilton Diamond, PPL(A)
Posts: 1,657
Quick question -

How are infants (without occupying at seat) treated under a GUF

e.g. 1 adult + 1 infant booked into revenue class - i only need to use a GUF1 correct to upgrade?
ermen is offline  
Old Sep 20, 2017, 2:25 am
  #20  
Ambassador, British Airways; FlyerTalk Posting Legend
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Leeds, UK
Programs: BA GGL/CCR, GfL, HH Diamond
Posts: 43,461
Originally Posted by ermen
Quick question -

How are infants (without occupying at seat) treated under a GUF

e.g. 1 adult + 1 infant booked into revenue class - i only need to use a GUF1 correct to upgrade?
I think in your example a GUF1 would be sufficient based on the rules:

15. Infants: If an upgraded booking contains an infant travelling on an infant fare, the infant will be automatically upgraded with the adults. Child fares will be subject to the same rules as adults.
You would pay the normal infant fare for the originally booked cabin, but you would only need a GUF1 for 1 adult + 1 infant.
KARFA is offline  
Old Sep 21, 2017, 9:01 am
  #21  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Programs: BA Gold, *A Gold, Marriott Ambassador
Posts: 241
I was under the impression that you could use this voucher with ANY revenue booking made through a TA? I asked my TA to book a flight using one and she said that on the dates I requested, there was no upgrade available. Is this correct?
hartwith is offline  
Old Sep 21, 2017, 9:07 am
  #22  
Ambassador, British Airways; FlyerTalk Posting Legend
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Join Date: Apr 2012
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Originally Posted by hartwith
I was under the impression that you could use this voucher with ANY revenue booking made through a TA? I asked my TA to book a flight using one and she said that on the dates I requested, there was no upgrade available. Is this correct?
What upgrade availability is she looking for exactly?

The TA use of the GUF depends on availability of the revenue selling classes listed in the guide, are they already at 0 on the flights you are looking at?
KARFA is offline  
Old Sep 21, 2017, 9:14 am
  #23  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Programs: BA Gold, *A Gold, Marriott Ambassador
Posts: 241
Thanks Karfa, I will check.

The flights in question FYI are Mon 23 October BA85 LHR-YVR and Sun 29 October BA48 SEA-LHR for 2 pax. Could someone check existing loads to see if there should be an issue upgrading these flights?

Thank you in advance!
hartwith is offline  
Old Sep 21, 2017, 10:54 am
  #24  
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Las Vegas
Programs: BA Gold; Hilton Honors Diamond
Posts: 3,243
This is an excellent guide - thanks for putting it together. I have a couple of small observations:

Firstly, if you try to use a GUF to upgrade from WT+ to Club the online booking engine on ba.com will not quote the dual-inventory WT+ fare as the base fare from which you're upgrading. It will quote the regular T class fare instead. The workaround is to book the WT+ fare online and then call the service centre to have the booking upgraded using the GUF.

Secondly, when trying to book and upgrade using a GUF via the tool on the left-hand pane of the BAEC home page the booking engine won't apply the upgrade to domestic flights. They will remain in ET and not CE and the itinerary won't price. The workaround there is to use the "Book and Upgrade" tab under "Book flights with Avios"
Geordie405 is offline  
Old Sep 21, 2017, 11:03 am
  #25  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Programs: BA Silver, several other less interesting cards...
Posts: 3,719
BA85 23 October F5 A4 J9 C9 D9 R9 I9 W9 E9 T5 Y9 B9 H9 K9 M9 L9 V9 S9 N9 Q9 O9 G6
BA48 29 October F9 A9 J9 C9 D9 R9 I9 W9 E9 T1 Y9 B9 H9 K9 M9 L9 V9 S9 N0 Q0 O0 G9

I don't see why you can't upgrade the flights.
srbrenna is offline  
Old Sep 21, 2017, 12:13 pm
  #26  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Programs: BA Gold, *A Gold, Marriott Ambassador
Posts: 241
Originally Posted by srbrenna
BA85 23 October F5 A4 J9 C9 D9 R9 I9 W9 E9 T5 Y9 B9 H9 K9 M9 L9 V9 S9 N9 Q9 O9 G6
BA48 29 October F9 A9 J9 C9 D9 R9 I9 W9 E9 T1 Y9 B9 H9 K9 M9 L9 V9 S9 N0 Q0 O0 G9

I don't see why you can't upgrade the flights.
Thanks. I need to change my TA.
hartwith is offline  
Old Sep 22, 2017, 2:58 am
  #27  
Ambassador, British Airways; FlyerTalk Posting Legend
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Join Date: Apr 2012
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Programs: BA GGL/CCR, GfL, HH Diamond
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Originally Posted by Geordie405
This is an excellent guide - thanks for putting it together. I have a couple of small observations:

Firstly, if you try to use a GUF to upgrade from WT+ to Club the online booking engine on ba.com will not quote the dual-inventory WT+ fare as the base fare from which you're upgrading. It will quote the regular T class fare instead. The workaround is to book the WT+ fare online and then call the service centre to have the booking upgraded using the GUF.

Secondly, when trying to book and upgrade using a GUF via the tool on the left-hand pane of the BAEC home page the booking engine won't apply the upgrade to domestic flights. They will remain in ET and not CE and the itinerary won't price. The workaround there is to use the "Book and Upgrade" tab under "Book flights with Avios"
Thanks Geordie405. I will add these points to the posts.
KARFA is offline  
Old Sep 22, 2017, 4:37 am
  #28  
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Milton Keynes
Programs: BA Gold
Posts: 202
I'll be on 2410 tier points and a few trips to make by early November so looking forward to the GUF2.

Can they be used with BA holidays? Mrs NP is thinking to join the other family on what is likely a Virgin Atlantic holiday to Orlando and would be great if the GUF can be applied to
Holidays.
NeilP is offline  
Old Sep 22, 2017, 3:43 pm
  #29  
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Houston
Programs: UA - 1K, Marriott - Gold, Hilton - Gold, Global Entry,
Posts: 634
Great thread and information. I have a GUF2 I'd like to use and a few questions.

How do I request and extension for my GUF2 and is it an automatic extension?

My GUF2 expires at the end of this month and I'd like to extend it. I moved from London to the US earlier this year and hadn't updated my BAEC membership address yet. Reading this thread, it looks like i can't use it on a flight originating in the US until I get my membership address changed and I'm skeptical that would be sorted in the next 8 days.

Is BA vacations considered a TA or booking through BA? Would i need reward availability or would it book into revenue class?
XCstud is offline  
Old Sep 22, 2017, 4:12 pm
  #30  
Moderator: British Airways Executive Club
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: TPA/ABZ
Programs: BA Lifetime Gold. GGL/CCR.
Posts: 13,334
Originally Posted by XCstud

How do I request and extension for my GUF2 and is it an automatic extension?
Call the Gold line to request the extension.

Originally Posted by XCstud

My GUF2 expires at the end of this month and I'd like to extend it. I moved from London to the US earlier this year and hadn't updated my BAEC membership address yet. Reading this thread, it looks like i can't use it on a flight originating in the US until I get my membership address changed and I'm skeptical that would be sorted in the next 8 days.
I'm not aware of any limitation on the use of a GUF in relation to your BAEC address and the starting point for your ticket. That limitation applies to the use of a Chase Travel Together ticket.
golfmad is offline  

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