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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 havenít 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 canít 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 canít 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 doesnít earn any tier points or Avios you wonít 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 canít be applied to a selection of passengers on a booking, and has to cover all of them - you canít 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 Feb 12, 2024, 1:26 pm
  #1021  
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Programs: oneworld, * Alliance, Marriott Bonvoy, HHonors, WoH
Posts: 2,161
Originally Posted by eugnk
Does anybody have any recent experience with dividing the 2500tp GUF2?
Asked to split GUF2 less than two weeks ago by calling and after four working days received an email with new voucher numbers and checked my account to found that those are there.
I asked the agent to send a request to relevant department, not to do it by herself.
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Jaenks is offline  
Old Feb 14, 2024, 7:06 am
  #1022  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: SYD
Programs: QF P1, BA GGL, AS GMVP
Posts: 516
For 2 class config aircraft on domestic AA, C class is required is that correct?
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Old Feb 14, 2024, 3:13 pm
  #1023  
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: San Diego
Posts: 2,765
Originally Posted by TheSYDTraveller
For 2 class config aircraft on domestic AA, C class is required is that correct?
Yes but special upgrade C class, not regular C class.
TheSYDTraveller likes this.
spanishflea is online now  
Old Feb 19, 2024, 11:25 pm
  #1024  
 
Join Date: Aug 2023
Posts: 44
Firstly, thank you for this hugely informative thread!

I have just returned from a USA trip, and with the double tier points (part of a BAH) I will exceed 2,500pts hence will receive my first GUF2 - which I am already planning to use.

Planning a week trip (via BA holidays) for 2 of us to the USA end of Jan, so am I correct that if I book revenue flights (CW) and hotels now, when my GUF2 comes through in a couple of weeks, I can phone BAEC and apply to be upgrade to First for the flights (BA metal out of LHR and returning there)?

There is revenue availability in the First cabin and the fare type is denoted A - so i think it should be okay to do this, but wanted to check.

Thank you.
Holy2000 is offline  
Old Feb 20, 2024, 12:06 am
  #1025  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 157
Originally Posted by eugnk

I usually travel alone, so I would be wasting one GUF without the split. Does anybody have any recent experience with dividing the 2500tp GUF2?
As a GCH I successfully split my 2500 GUF2 yesterday. I called the normal gold line last Friday, the CSR submitted an internal request to the admin team, and I got a message yesterday saying it was done. I used one of the new Guf1 vouchers immediately and it worked.
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Old Feb 20, 2024, 1:39 am
  #1026  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: LAX, SNA, LGB
Posts: 473
Originally Posted by aardvarkdave
As a GCH I successfully split my 2500 GUF2 yesterday. I called the normal gold line last Friday, the CSR submitted an internal request to the admin team, and I got a message yesterday saying it was done. I used one of the new Guf1 vouchers immediately and it worked.
I was denied calling the normal gold line when trying to split. The agent said it canít be done and when they asked the admin team, still said it couldnít be done. I guess it was a case of HUCA.
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Old Feb 20, 2024, 2:06 am
  #1027  
Ambassador, British Airways; FlyerTalk Posting Legend
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Leeds, UK
Programs: BA GGL/CCR, GfL, HH Diamond
Posts: 43,750
Originally Posted by hsumh316
I was denied calling the normal gold line when trying to split. The agent said it canít be done and when they asked the admin team, still said it couldnít be done. I guess it was a case of HUCA.
i suspect the agent didnít know or didnít want to do it. Itís not their decision, and I doubt they called the loyalty team to check. As noted, the normal process is the agent sends off the request, and the loyalty team will email you directly within a few days to say yes or no. And it definitely can be done.
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KARFA is offline  
Old Feb 20, 2024, 10:30 am
  #1028  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: LAX, SNA, LGB
Posts: 473
Originally Posted by KARFA
i suspect the agent didn’t know or didn’t want to do it. It’s not their decision, and I doubt they called the loyalty team to check. As noted, the normal process is the agent sends off the request, and the loyalty team will email you directly within a few days to say yes or no. And it definitely can be done.
Just called again and got denied again. He said it doesn't say anywhere that it is possible so they can't split. Just called a third time and got denied again, they mentioned that you used to be able to do it in the past, but they no longer allow it.

Last edited by hsumh316; Feb 20, 2024 at 10:43 am Reason: update
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Old Feb 21, 2024, 2:25 am
  #1029  
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Programs: BA Gold
Posts: 236
Originally Posted by hsumh316
Just called again and got denied again. He said it doesn't say anywhere that it is possible so they can't split. Just called a third time and got denied again, they mentioned that you used to be able to do it in the past, but they no longer allow it.
I managed to get through to one of the international call centres this morning hoping the answer would be different but alas I knew what was coming when he said he was going to "check with the back office". I did however request that the agent submit the request to the loyalty team on the off chance they had a different view, and he was happy to do so on the basis it would be at their discretion and not guaranteed - I'll report back in a few days...
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Mekko is offline  
Old Feb 23, 2024, 11:06 am
  #1030  
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 15
Quick question - when using a GUF1/2 on an underlying commercial booking, would there under any circumstances be an additional sum to pay for extra fuel surcharges?
SASFlyer is offline  
Old Feb 23, 2024, 11:10 am
  #1031  
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Leeds, UK
Programs: BA GGL/CCR, GfL, HH Diamond
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yes, you will always have to pay any additional taxes/fees/charges for the upgraded cabin compared to what you originally paid. you should be able to understand roughly what that will be by pricing up a dummy cash booking on ba.com for the upgraded cabin and comparing the taxes/fees/charges in the price breakdown to what you originally paid for the lower cabin.
KARFA is offline  
Old Feb 23, 2024, 11:32 am
  #1032  
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: FL390 or the iron way
Programs: BA GGL, SAS EBG
Posts: 2,137
Originally Posted by SASFlyer
Quick question - when using a GUF1/2 on an underlying commercial booking, would there under any circumstances be an additional sum to pay for extra fuel surcharges?
Yes, in fact something would usually be payable for all upgrades except J -> F. The additional carrier/fuel surcharge (YQ) is often on the order of hundreds of pounds, which has really reduced the value of the GUFs on commercial tickets.
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Old Feb 24, 2024, 12:57 pm
  #1033  
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 15
Thank you [MENTION=566057]KARFA[/MENTION] and [MENTION=10052160]flarmip[/MENTION] - very clear and helpful! I wasn't sure if only additional taxes are payable, but it is obvious now that additional YQ also is.
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Old Feb 26, 2024, 6:28 am
  #1034  
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Programs: BA Gold
Posts: 236
Originally Posted by Mekko
I managed to get through to one of the international call centres this morning hoping the answer would be different but alas I knew what was coming when he said he was going to "check with the back office". I did however request that the agent submit the request to the loyalty team on the off chance they had a different view, and he was happy to do so on the basis it would be at their discretion and not guaranteed - I'll report back in a few days...
Confirming all done over email, no dramas. Would encourage anyone in the same position to keep trying with an agent who is happy to submit the request to the loyalty team at their discretion.
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Old Feb 26, 2024, 9:22 am
  #1035  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: LAX, SNA, LGB
Posts: 473
Some agents refuse to make the submission. Iím on the phone now and she refuses to do so. She just said they(loyalty team) wonít do it. i also called a few minutes ago trying to upgrade(same agent for both calls) said there is no availability either way for BA 280 on 20 Mar and BA 269 on 25 Mar in F.

Last edited by hsumh316; Feb 26, 2024 at 9:29 am
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