The typical frequent flyer programme has four levels of membership. When you join you are obviously at the lowest level. Some airlines refer to this level by colour such as Blue on British Airways or Green on Aer Lingus, while others have no name for it at all. Once you start flying you gradually move up to levels such as Bronze, then to Silver and finally to Gold. The levels can have whatever name but each higher one is is named to make it seem better than the one before.
Made It To The Very Top?
Certain airlines found that many people reached their highest level and so created an extra tier for those who did a colossal amount of flying. At Qantas they created Platinum One for their very best Platinum customers while the very best Gold level flyers at British Airways receive Gold Guest List for their trouble. These provide special additional benefits over the regular people in the same tier and are the highest you can achieve in the programme. Or are they?
Invitation Only Frequent Flyer
You really haven’t made it as a frequent flyer unless you have been invited to an airlines secret invitation only level. At Qantas, this is the Chairmans Lounge while at British Airways this level is called Premier.
At Qantas, there are literally Chairmans lounges at the major capital city airports for card holders. These provide a private sanctuary for people such as politicians, celebrities and big spending clients. There are other benefits as well such as additional recognition on the ground and in the air. Needless to say, these people have amazing travel experiences as a result.
At British Airways, Premier card holders have excellent perks too. If the card holder is on a flight a little delayed and may miss a connection, the airline may delay the connecting flight by a small amount to ensure the person makes it. Card holders are guaranteed a seat on any flight even to the point of taking someone else off the plane. There are also upgrades and a car to take you from the terminal to the aircraft among other things.
Other airlines offer invitation only levels too. Emirates has iO (literally invitation only), American has ConciergeKey and there are many more. I am not particularly a fan of obsequious fawning so to me the Qantas Chairmans Lounge card would be the one I’d want. I would love to be given access to these lounges so I could enjoy all they have to offer – let’s face it, I enjoy a good lounge experience!
What do you think of these invitation only levels? Are they a good thing or a bad thing? Are you a member or know anyone who is? What’s the most outrageous thing you’ve heard of these people getting? Please leave your comments and questions below and thanks for reading!
Featured image via Oneworld Alliance.