May I ask if you are an accountant? I don’t mean any disrespect, as it is an honorable profession, but not one noted for ranking customer experience over cost.
When you say “However from a pure business point of view, why would you give something to a person who is not buying from you. The argument that they are loyal customers doesn’t stack up as clearly they are not loyal at that stage.”
You miss the point that the benefit is based on heavy buying patterns.
I’ve made it clear why this benefit may be used by people for the right reasons, say I travel to LGW in NCW and then decide to connect to Malta via easyJet.
I don’t have a BA or even a Oneworld option.
So if BA decides not to let me use anytime advantage, I’ll just move to another airline with alliance connections (e.g. Star or Skyteam) and that will be the end of that.
That is the business driver for such access. Now BA has made a decision based on a calculation and we will see if it makes sense in the longer term.
But they have just lost the bulk of my middle eastern business to the new Air Malta/Etihad codeshare service, I spent 30,000€ or so on that route last year.
Not a big amount for an airline, but straight off the bottom line.