News in brief:
Groupon offering 50% off a Priority Pass
It is a little fiddly. You pay Groupon £6 for a voucher. The voucher entitles you to:
- 50% discount on Standard Membership (usually £69, pay £15 per visit)
- 50% discount on Standard Membership with first visit included (not advertised online!)
- 25% discount on Standard Plus Membership with ten visits included (usually £159)
The discount is clearly not 50% since you are also paying £6 for the voucher. You will make a saving, however. This is one way of keeping hold of a Priority Pass if you are cancelling your American Express Platinum charge card, which comes with two free Priority Pass cards. None of the cash versions are actually as good as the Amex version, oddly, which gives unlimited free visits for the cardholder and a guest.
Finnair to fly the A350 from London to Helsinki
Regular readers will know that I flew Finnair’s new A350 in Business Class earlier in the year. Finnair is the first European airline to fly this plane and it was testing out new aircraft on the short hop to London.
Finnair has now decided to roster an A350 permanently on the London to Helsinki route. This is primarily for cargo purposes and is part of a new cargo venture that the airline has launched with British Airways. A350 or other long haul Finnair aircraft have been flying into Heathrow for some time already but it was never formally promoted. The dates, times and aircraft type (ie A350) are now firm.
An A350 will operate on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday from 5th October. It will fly the 10.20 from Heathrow, arriving at 15.15. The return is less convenient, departing Helsinki at 08.00 and landing in London at 09.10.
You can now redeem your Avios points for a fully flat bed in business class between London and Helsinki! It is 30,000 points per person. If you were inspired by our recent trip to Tallinn in Estonia, via Helsinki, this is a good chance to give it a try.
You even get free wi-fi in business class and, according to the press release I saw, in economy class if you show your British Airways Silver or Gold card or similar oneworld card.
The downside of redeeming Avios on Finnair to Helsinki is that you don’t get the £50 Reward Flight Saver taxes cap. You will have to pay the full taxes of £126. Given that you will get a flat bed on a new A350, however, it is well worth the extra.
It is also worth checking out cash prices on finnair.com – you would earn Avios and BA tier points for the trip and, with the extra capacity offered by the A350, prices may soften a bit.