…as airline launches mass-market loyalty scheme to woo leisure flyers

British Airways aims to launch a loyalty programme specifically targeted at its leisure passengers, in an attempt to overturn its image as a high-priced airline.

BA marketing director Martin George says leisure passengers often associate the airline with high prices, and this scheme will allow it to talk to them directly and change perceptions.

The airline has long operated an extremely sophisticated customer loyalty programme through its Executive Club of business travellers, but has never rolled it out to its leisure passengers.

George says the new programme will not necessarily be connected to the Air Miles reward scheme which is available to Executive Club members and which has also been rolled out to Sainsbury’s and some Nat-West customers.

Perhaps the best known loyalty scheme in the mass market is run by food giant Heinz, which has been running a loyalty programme for the past three years. It offers its customers special offers and money-back schemes through its Heinz at Home magazine, which is sent directly to millions of consumers.

British Airways will comment on whether its own plans include producing a magazine but says that it aims to keep customers on its new leisure passenger database informed about BA offers and price deals.

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