Membership of frequent flyer programmes are usually not restricted in any way, due to the international nature of flying. In saying that, the British Airways Executive Club has been closed to Australian and New Zealand frequent flyers for many years.

All of this goes back to the 2003 when British Airways and Qantas had a joint venture. The close partnership meant that they didn’t want to poach each others frequent flyers, hence the restriction.

Australia And New Zealand Are Now Welcome!

Probably* as part of British Airways’ “Building Better Worlds” push (oh wait, that’s Weyland-Yutani Corporation – I mean “BA Better World”), they have loosened the shackles. The convicts from Down Under are eligible to join their prestigious programme.

There is a similar announcement on the New Zealand BA site, which will make the Kiwis happy I’m sure. I wonder if Jacinda will be signing up or whether she’ll stick with the local carrier.

How Did People Circumvent The Rules?

According to frequent flyer legend, Australians and New Zealanders who wanted to join the Executive Club had to do one of two things. They could use the address of a friend of colleague in Europe or anywhere else in the world as their home address.

Or, they could basically lie. Apparently the best way was to put Austria down as the country, and the postal service would invariably redirect any mail to the correct place. That way Australians could still get their cards and bag tags – I have no idea what the Kiwis did though! New Caledonia? I suppose that might have worked.

Overall Thoughts

Fantastic news all round for Australian and New Zealand members, I mean, future members of the British Airways Executive Club. One of the best ways to maximise the value of your Avios is to use them on Australian domestic business class flights, something I take full advantage of when I visit my former home country.

While opportunities to earn Avios within the two countries are limited, who knows, perhaps one day there’ll be a BA credit card in the region for people to use. Hell, I’m still waiting for BA to have one in Ireland as the Aer Lingus one is not much chop, so it could be some wait!

What do you think of this news? Will you be changing your Executive Club country from Austria to Australia – I mean, joining up now that you’re able to? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.

* Probably not! 🙂

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Featured image via British Airways.