Bits: Cathay boosts Gatwick and Manchester, BA schedule changes, MOXY Aberdeen opens

News in brief:

Cathay Pacific boosts Gatwick and Manchester

Cathay Pacific has announced a further boost to its UK operation following the successful launch of its Gatwick service this year.

The Gatwick flight will increase to a seven day service from 1st June.  It currently operates four times per week.  In the same week, the Manchester route will move from four to five flights per week and will gain a brand new Airbus A350.

cathay-a350

British Airways announces Summer schedule tweaks

British Airways has announced some minor tweaks to its Summer 2017 schedules.

The main reason for mentioning this is that – irrespective of how tough it is to find Avios redemption seats on existing flights – all of these new services will have been loaded into ba.com with at least two Club Europe and four Euro Traveller seats available.

This is what is new:

Mykonos – additional Heathrow Thursday flight in June, July and August

Malaga – additional Heathrow Saturday flight in June, July and August

These are offset by cancellations to Athens, Bucharest and Rome.

Additional ‘shoulder season’ flights (26th March to 14th May, 10th September to 22nd October) added to Pisa (Saturday), Copenhagen (Tuesday), Basle (Sunday), Venice (Monday and Thursday), Porto (Wednesday), Edinburgh (Saturday), Hamburg (Tuesday), Munich (Tuesday) 

The new services are already bookable at ba.com.

moxy-aberdeen

MOXY Aberdeen Airport opens

Finally, the first UK outpost of Marriott’s new ‘funky’ chain, MOXY, has opened at Aberdeen Airport. 

MOXY, which is a joint venture with IKEA of all people, is decribed as “a budget hotel with the soul of a boutique hotel.”  The photos of the public areas do look impressive, see above.

Aberdeen is proving to be a hotel graveyard at the moment.  When oil prices were at their peak and hotel rates were through the roof, every major hotel chain decided that it needed a project in Aberdeen.  These are now starting to hit the market but – with the oil industry in a downturn – it is virtually impossible to see all these beds being filled.

The MOXY Aberdeen Airport website is here if you want to find out more.

The new Cathay Pacific lounges at Heathrow Terminal 3 reviewed
Ends tomorrow: Get 10,000 Mile & More miles with the UK credit card
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Comments

  1. Singapore are also apparently switching MAN to the A350 early next year. Sadly no increase in frequency (and thus more award seats! :P) though.

  2. Moxy best avoided, price just doesn’t work in current market. CP is nice new hotel and throws in upgrade, breakfast and lounge for spire for under £40 for advance weekend bookings. For similar pricing for those on other schemes treetops has been rebranded as doubletree and there is the marriott, both with leisure centres if I recall correctly.

  3. The Hilton Treetops Aberdeen has also just been refurbed & rebranded as a Doubletree, I may go check it out whilst the sale + triple points & 5k Visa offer is on, only £55 for DBB. sometimes use it to treat my parents when they are in the area.

  4. As this its Bits….

    O/T. Iggy IHG Advent calendar

    Iggy middle at foot of bridge arch

    Mookie Easel. 30000 pts

    Interest in this seems to have dwindled, so if this gets no thanks, I’ll stop posting them.

  5. Great for a bit mattress running at the airport hotels. Last weekend up for a running event and the CP was £40.50 and the next door Express at £36.50. We bagged our final Accelerate Challenge stays and got Lounge access as a Plat and a Spire.

  6. OT. Rookie Q but Mrs Genghis and I have the Lloyds avios Amex cards and each have an upgrade voucher in our avios.com accounts. Can we cancel the cards safe in the knowledge the voucher isn’t going anywhere?

    • not sure

      never cancelled it as find the FX free cards too valuable.

    • can you churn or do you just want to release some credit please?

      • Lloyds say they won’t let you churn – although sign-up offer is double points for 3/12 rather than a specific amount. I tend to keep the card anyway so I can delay triggering the voucher until as late in the 12 month period as I can!

        • We’ve just churned and our letter said the usual double points for 6 months. Is this not the case then?

          • I don’t think the Lloyds IT is always up to their promises 😀 I’d say it’s likely you’ll get them!

      • Can’t churn. We don’t use the cards and I just want to release some credit. We’ve built up an awful lot of unused credit and want to release it.

    • Yep, the voucher is safe in your Avios.com account.

  7. Sometimes I think it would be easier if you could post in the relevant post rather than random bits appearing in amongst threads that have nothing to do with them!

    Anyway, got 400 CC points in my Tesco account from PayQwiq this morning for the 4 transactions I’ve made so far. Took about 3 weeks.

  8. Wally1976 says:

    OT – Shop Small – it’s been mentioned on here a few times that if your Amex card is refused at a Shop Small retailer, a quick call to Amex will see them credit you with the fiver. Has anyone had success doing this for Amex cards which are not Amex issued (e.g. Lloyds, MBNA)? Thanks

  9. OT – Amex offer of £20 off £79 at Amazon when purchasing a year of Amazon Prime.

    I wonder if this will work with a normal Amazon purchase or if Prime subs get billed differently? If anyone is buying anything £79+ on Amazon today, could they experiment?

  10. The downturn in oil certainly hasn’t put off hotel development in Aberdeen. Hilton got approval a couple of months back for a new build 200 room full service hotel with lounge next to the AECC and apparently work has started on the site.

    As others have said the CP at the airport is a nice hotel and can be an absolute bargain, however having stayed here quite regularly when it opened the cutbacks have been significant and instead of being amazing it’s now good to really good and the staffing has been seriously scaled back.

    The car park is a disgrace as they have turned it into an airport car park and at £5 per day it’s significantly cheaper than using the airport and you struggle to get a space at 3pm on a Saturday when they are selling rooms at £35.

    • I was thinking the same about Aberdeen when booking yesterday. I got the Mercure on a Friday night for £28.80. Can’t argue with that and was cheap enough to sway me from the Doubletree which seems not to have an executive lounge :(

      • Which Mercure?

        If it’s Ardoe House it’s really nice. They started to refurbish it with a view to switching it to an MGallery but that never happened in the end.

        If it’s the Caledonian some of the rooms can be quite grim (Think a Travelodge at the side of the M6). Most of the rooms to the front have been refurbished in the last five years or so I think although at this time of year there is normally a funfair at the front of the hotel so it may be noisy.

  11. Snap on CP Aberdeen, it’s an amazing deal at £40.50 with Club Lounge access. Hit and miss with breakfast tho even with Spire I’ve been refused a couple of times, and got it knocked off my bill a couple more.

  12. OT hotels: Big thanks to those readers yesterday who warned me I would likely not get 5000 visa bonus on a Hampton redemption bar bill. When checking into my plans I also discovered that today, not tomorrow, is last day for IHG accelerate stays so cancelled that stay too. Back to the drawing board :)

    • I got the 5k bonus on a 10k redemption at a Hampton in Florida, I booked it via app paid with visa, just got 2x $1 pack of peanuts added to bill to trigger visa spend.

    • Thamks, may give it a try in January when I can combine with a stay for the next accelerate, a bonus if it works but no big loss if it doesn’t. Any idea if the 5000 visa bonus works for points and cash redemptions?

      • Seems a little variable but reports of success on Flyertalk for all points and cash+points. Worth charging small amount to room if you can.

      • The chances are higher if you only have Visa cards in your profile at the time of booking and staying (and don’t and haven’t previously given the hotel an Amex).

  13. Which terminal does CX use at LGW and which lounge?

    • South and No1 Lounge but i am presuming you will get access once the new BA lounge opens.

  14. OT: Cards Galore on London Wall (near Waterstones) is also in Shop Small. First Class (and only First Class) stamps available and without the queue at the Post Office a few doors down as an extra bonus. Had my confirmation very quickly despite using an MBNA Amex and not a proper one.

    • i was literally there in waterstones about 45 mins ago…probably walked past you!

    • Johnny_c-l says:

      ‘Journeys Friend’ stores in Euston station, Victoria Station and the foyer of Hilton Gatwick South are also good for 1st Class stamps if you’re passing through.

  15. OT:
    When do Amex transfer points earned from BAPP credit card to BAEC? I want to close my account and wonder about timings….

    • Around 5 days before statement date

      • Don’t cancel before the points post – I am currently having trouble getting 9133 Avios transferred to our BAEC account having cancelled the card before the points transferred. We were told they would definitely transfer but BAEC are rejecting the points as the Amex account is closed – just been on the phone again for over an hour trying to resolve it. Need to wait another week to see if it gets resolved between Amex and BAEC – I’ll never cancel before points post again!

        • Same thing happened to me Liz! I did get them in the end, but it was a pain in the arse! I was told that when you cancel it removes the ‘link’ to your BAEC account so the transfer fails. The guy I spoke to had to raise a ticket with Amex 3rd line support team to re-instate this link. They then got transferred the following month.

          • Thanks Andy – glad you got them in the end – I’m sure we’ll get them – just need to be patient. Never again though!

        • Thanks. I will wait until they transfer across then. I think I may have missed it, didn’t want to pay another month…

  16. the real harry says:

    British Airways cabin crew have voted overwhelmingly in favour of strikes in a dispute over pay, in a move that could result in flights from Heathrow being disrupted over the Christmas holidays.

    Cabin crew in BA’s mixed fleet unit – who represent about 15% of stewards at the airline – voted to strike after rejecting a 2% pay offer on what Unite has described as “poverty pay” levels.

    Union representatives will meet over the next two days to decide what action to take, with a strike possible at any date from 21 December.

    More than 2,000 staff at Heathrow were balloted, with a 79% vote to strike on a 60% turnout. All of BA’s new flight crew members are recruited into the mixed fleet branch, which was set up in 2010 on lower pay and conditions than existing crew.
    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/dec/14/british-airways-strike-pay-heathrow-christmas-ba

    • I’m not sure about this.

      First they join an industry with historic low pay and then complain because the pay is low ?

      Any statistics on the percentage of people surviving air crashes whose lives were saved directly as a consequence of cabin crew ?

      I tend to see it as them joining up as a “glamour” job and when they realise it isn’t, wanting more cash to offset the lack of aforementioned perceived glamour.

  17. OT

    Alaska Airlines have no officially merged with Virgin America see here http://www.differentworks.com/#routemap

  18. flyforfun says:

    Excellent news re Cathay going 7x from Gatwick. Just flew out from there a few days ago. Very nice seat in Y spoilt by lack of lavs. Didn’t help that one of the 2 loos on my side was out of action. To access the other side you had to walk all the way to the back, through the galley to the other side.

    This will make choosing flights easier as the A350 is 9 abreast while the 777 will be moving to 10 abreast at some point in the future. I’ll take the A350 thanks! Just a shame Gatwick is still in the midst of perpetual renovations.