Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Bits: 8000 Avios for an Economist subscription, full points for my £27 stay

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News in brief:

Iberia brings back its Economist promotion

Head for Points readers had a lot of fun before Christmas when Iberia offered 12,000 Avios points with a subscription to ‘The Economist’.

The Economist historically let you cancel your subscription at any time for a full refund.  Many people signed up for a year, took the 12,000 Avios and then cancelled for a pro-rata refund.

The offer is now back in a weaker form and with no cancellations allowed.  However, if you’d been thinking of subscribing to ‘The Economist’ (£155 for a year), getting 8,000 Avios points as an extra incentive is not a bad deal.

Full details are here.  The offer ends on May 31st. The points will be credit to an Iberia Plus account from where you can transfer them to or

Park Plaza Westminster Bridge

Full points for my £27 Park Plaza stay via

A couple of weeks ago, had a special promotion via their ‘Top Secret Hotels’ page offering London hotel rooms for £29.99.  There was even a 10% discount code which brought them down to £26.99.  I wrote about the deal here.

I booked myself a room at the Park Plaza Westminster Bridge – I had wanted to check it out for a while and it was two days of cheap office space.  A review of the hotel will appear in a few days.

I was VERY surprised to see 2,493 Club Carlson points appear last night.  If you book a hotel via a third party such as Expedia, you should not expect to receive any points – that is the rule.  And yet – because of the current Club Carlson triple points promo and my Club Carlson Gold status – I received roughly £12.50-worth of points for my £27 room.

I heard recently about someone who got points for a Radisson Edwardian booked via HotelTonight.  I don’t know if this is an IT issue or policy – probably the former – but if you booked one of these rooms at a Park Plaza you should definitely join Club Carlson and register for triple points.   

Even if you never intend to stay at a Carlson hotel again, 2,000 points would be enough for 200 airline miles, including Avios.

How to earn Radisson Rewards points and status from UK credit cards (September 2021)

Radisson Rewards does not have a dedicated UK credit card. However, you can earn Radisson Rewards points by converting Membership Rewards points earned from selected UK American Express cards.  These include:

Membership Rewards points convert at 1:3 into Radisson Rewards points which is a very attractive rate.  The cards above all earn 1 Membership Rewards point per £1 spent on your card, which converts to 3 Radisson Rewards points.

Even better, holders of The Platinum Card receive free Radisson Rewards Gold status for as long as they hold the card.  It also comes with Hilton Honors Gold, Marriott Bonvoy Gold and MeliaRewards Gold status.  We reviewed American Express Platinum in detail here.

(Want to earn more hotel points?  Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Offers’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

Comments (45)

  • Doodles says:

    OT question: I am going to Malaysia and Singapore this summer and will have approximately 3 months left on my passport when I leave. All the information I can find online says 6 months validity required but is likely to cause me any problems?

    • Phil says:

      Probably… I would not take the chance.

    • Clive says:

      Personally I would not risk it as if you get the wrong immigration official you could be on the next flight home.

    • Polly says:

      Get a new passport. My daughters friend was kept in holding cells overnight, and returned home on the next day flight! He had 2 mths left after their return flight. Unreal experience. Nobody knows why this rule exists, but we have to live with it. Think Bangkok Hilton! Not fed or anything. She had to bring him food etc. you really are treated like a criminal in any of these countries, sorry !

      • Kai says:

        The rule is nothing wrong. I know UK residents can travel to most countries without a visa, but when you do it normally requires your passport to have 3/6 month validity when you leave. It’s rather a common practice.

    • Globetrotter7 says:

      Malaysia requires your passport to be valid for 6 months from the date of arrival. So as long as you go in with 6 months validity on your passport then it’s fine.

    • Fenny says:

      Renew it now! If you get in quick, you should beat the summer rush. They will add the unexpired time on to the new term.

      • Lady London says:

        IME Peterborough passport office has always processed my passports pretty promptly.

        • Fenny says:

          Yes, I’ve never waited more than about 10 days.

    • CV3V says:

      Just to add, although you should be ok exiting a country (i.e. you will get out of the UK ok), when you enter the next country e.g. Malaysia this is when you could come unstuck.

      Unlike when you enter most EU countries I can assure you that when you enter Malaysia they will have a good look at your passport – especially if you have any stamps in it. I was once queried on my passport as the officer couldn’t find the corresponding exit stamp for the entry stamp for my last Malaysia visit and wanted to know if I had 2 passports or an ID card. When I offered to show them the page with the correct exit stamp on it they handed the passport back to me without even checking!

  • MattChaps says:

    Re the Econ Sub, it says EU customers can cancel within first 14 days.
    Any idea how long the points take to get posted?

    • Lady London says:

      This will be due to the EU legislation on goods bought online – I think we get up to 14 days to cancel. They post pretty promptly. I got the subscription, and kept it.

      • Raffles says:

        I get a feeling they may now be delaying the Avios until day 15!

    • The_Real_A says:

      Mine took about 3 months to post…

    • D says:

      I cancelled last time within 14 days and then they posted points weeks later. You could try your luck? Nothing to lose!

    • Mark T says:

      Thanks for the heads up! My economist subscription expired yesterday (May 2nd)! Renewed today for roughly the same price as last year but with 6000 avios points, bonus! Getting an Iberia account really does pay.

  • Andrew says:

    Can anyone advise on how you go about cancelling this within the 14 days (EU) ??

    Will they actually refund you?


    • Rob says:

      Legally they have to refund you. Some people have had to push for a refund but I don’t know anyone who ever failed in the end.

  • Phil Huff says:

    I stayed at the Park Plaza Riverbank just up the road last week, also paying £27. I ended up with more points than I expected…

    500 Avios via BA Executive Club

    12,586 points from Club Carlson:
    744 Room Points
    452 Food and Beverage Points (a mojito, a beer and a cola)
    2,390 Triple Points Bonus 2015
    9,000 New Stay 9,000 Bonus Points Offer (despite having stayed at Carlson hotels plenty of times)

    I’m quite happy with that haul 🙂

  • shahr04360 says:

    Iberia / Economist offer 12,000 Avios for £155 still available until June 30th 2015 anyway. Link still same and may find here:

    • Rob says:

      Someone else sent me this link. I am wary of it because I have no idea where it came from. The Iberia website only mentions the 8,000 points offer. Is this link targeted? Is it an offer not yet live? Is it a dummy page which was never used? I don’t know.

      • Dynamo says:

        What is the cheapest country for digital only sub?

  • Bruceylegs says:

    I just followed the subscription link within Raffles’ early post dated 17 Jan 2015 (

    Do my eyes deceive me – the offer via this route is 12,000 avios and says the offer is valid until 30 June 2015!

    • Rob says:

      It does say that but, as I said yesterday, I have no idea where this link came from. The official deal on the Iberia website is 8,000 Avios and that is the link I posted. This offer may be dead, targeted or a mistake. Given the general unhelpfulness of customer services at Iberia and The Economist – at least when trying to get them to cough up your miles – I was not happy pushing this.

  • JC says:

    How did you add your Club Carlson no. to a reservation? I called Park Plaza reservations and they said they could not do it.

    • Rob says:

      I put it in the ‘notes’ section when I booked and the hotel had added it for me when I arrived (and upgraded me). If you didn’t do this then you could try emailing reservations the day before you arrive – hopefully they will add it for you.

  • Matt says:

    The Economist customer service are awful. I recommend not trusting them at all.

    • Alan says:

      Interesting – no such issues with their Asia-Pacific or Canadian email service centres for me when I cancelled my subscriptions.

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