Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Bits: LA in PremEco for £1000, Hilton credit card free night, 40% off United miles

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Here are three short stories which didn’t justify a full article:

Los Angeles in Premium Economy for £1,000

Air New Zealand is having a flash sale on flights to Los Angeles which ends TODAY.  They sell this route because they fly London Heathrow to Los Angeles to Auckland, picking up and dropping off on the way.

Economy is £650 which, for the peak Summer season, is not bad.  Business Premier is £2,500 which, to be honest, is not earth shattering.  £1,000 for their Premium Economy seat is probably the best deal of the three.

You need to book via the normal ANZ website by midnight on Monday for travel between 1 April and 31 August, or 15 November to 15 December 2015.  Air New Zealand is a member of Star Alliance so you can earn miles with any Star Alliance airline.   (Thanks to Tony)

IC Westminster Conrad 3

My Hilton credit card free night arrived in 13 days

Regular readers know that I recommend the Hilton Visa credit card to beginners to this hobby.  You get a free weekend night (valid for 6 months) at any Hilton, Conrad (Conrad London pictured above), Waldorf-Astoria etc hotel globally for spending just £750.  It is a great introduction to the value you can get from points and miles promotions.

I recently got this card again after a two year break.  On Saturday 31st January I used it for the first time as part of my tax payment.  The email containing the code required to book my free night arrived on Friday 13th February.

Given that the credit card charge would have taken a few days to reach Barclaycard, this is quite impressive.

I should also say that the free night voucher for spending £10,000 on my IHG Rewards Club Premium Visa also turned up in a similar timeframe a few weeks ago.

United 350

40% bonus when you buy United Airlines miles

Finally, United Airlines is offering a discount of up to 40% when you buy their miles.

As few Head for Points readers have a large United collection I will not go into the scheme in details. If you were thinking of topping up your account, now is not a bad time.

The offer ends tonight. The discount is either 25% or 40% depending on how many you buy. 15,000 is the minimum purchase to save 25% whilst purchases of 30,000 to 150,000 save 40%.

The link to buy is here.

This offer may combine nicely with the current United redemption sale on Star Alliance partners (see here) which runs until February 28th for travel until the end of the year.

Comments (56)

  • Poincianakings says:

    I think Barclaycard must have done a mass processing of the Hilton free nights on Friday. We hit ours at the start of Jan and got the free night voucher on Friday.

  • Dannyrado says:

    Suggestions on best uses of the Hilton free night appreciated. Europe, mum, dad, and 3 year old…
    voucher expires mid April.

    Still no IHG points for me, plat status has come through (which has been pap so far) but no points, nowhere near 8 weeks yet though.

    • Anon says:

      Rome or Instanbul?

      I’d like to ask Rob where he’s spending his.

      I’ve used my 2 free nights (18months apart) in Waldorf NYC and the Conrad in London, did a second night there with their 32k HH points+cash offer.

      • Rob says:

        I might need a night in Stockholm in May so, whilst not my top hotel choice in the city, it would be a decent saving. Getting it out of the way would also stop me worrying about not using it in time! 80 per cent I will be New York in July for a weekend but I have an InterContinental Ambassador 241 weekend voucher which could be used there (and which is also heading towards expiry).

    • callum says:

      Unless your idea of a holiday is going to the hotel then never leaving, surely you’d be much better off choosing a destination first then finding the best hotel within it?

  • Marty Mcfly says:

    Raffles, is the 15000 mile bonus still active on the MBNA UNited card?? The link you provide to the card still shows the bonus, but there’s no mention of it if you apply for the card direct through the MBNA website? I’ve applied via your link and took a screenshot showing it offered the 15k bonus, would this be enough for them to honour it?

    • Rob says:

      I honestly don’t know. That is the page they used for the last ‘limited time 15k offer’. When that offer ended, they took away all the references to expiry dates and kept the page up so I assume it is still OK – I wouldn’t have listed it otherwise.

  • Rob says:

    …. which is what I did. It has already been paid which is good going.

  • Frenske says:

    Does the Hilton credit card free night also work for family rooms? More specifically rooms with cot beds (our daughter is 3 months now).

    • Rob says:

      You get the standard redemption room, so you need to look on a hotel by hotel basis whether their base level rooms can take a cot.

  • Michalis says:

    Is there a way to extend the validity of the certificate by a little bit – maybe by 2 weeks? Either by booking and cancelling, or courtesy extension?

    My certificate posted this Friday, much earlier than expected and have some holidays coming up at the end of August in Maui and would (potentially) like to use it at Grand Wailea.
    Is there any way to do that or I should be looking for a different redemption?

    • Rob says:

      It is not something they are known for doing, lets put it that way. Especially if you don’t have a serious excuse like illness.

      • ComeFlyWithMe123 says:

        Does anyone know if the voucher has to be used for a stay before the expiry date or just has to be booked before the expiry date and the stay can be after?

        • Alan says:

          Needs to be for a stay within the voucher validity – otherwise the risk of the hotel saying the reward certificate (in this case the voucher) is invalid and cash price has to be paid instead. Occasional reports of folk having success but personally I wouldn’t risk it.

  • Gary says:

    I signed up for this card last year and cancelled shortly after using the free night voucher, which was around the middle of August 2014. How long would I be expected to wait until I can reapply and qualify for the voucher? Six months or a year? Or perhaps longer? Any ideas?


    • Rob says:

      I generally say a year but I know someone who got it again with a 6 month gap. There is no stated rule.

      • Michael says:

        Hi raffles

        I applied for this 2 years ago at this time for wife and I, made the £750 spend and got 2 certificates. Used them back to back at Waldorf Caledonian in Edinburgh during the festival at around £1.1k. Cancelled card in August.
        Then applied again last February and did exactly same again.
        Just been accepted today for both us again so it’s just under 6 months for me to try and repeat again.

  • Tim says:

    I also got the Hilton free night certificate on the 13th – after hitting the spend target with a tax bill at the end of January – so impressively fast. Based on the other comments however it seems they just processed a big batch on that date.

    I’ve done one Hilton stay since getting the card but there’s no sign of the 2500 bonus points.