Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Bits: free points via new Avios Suitcase sticker, IHG member total, Melia’s ‘not free’ Priority Pass

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News in brief:

More free Avios via Avios Suitcase

Avios Suitcase is a Facebook app which allows you to earn Avios points – credited to avios.com and NOT British Airways Executive Club accounts – for completing various simple tasks and earning ‘badges’.

(If you’ve never tried it, log into Facebook and search for Avios Suitcase.)

A new badge has appeared which offers an easy 50 Avios points.  (If it isn’t brand new, it is fairly new – I hadn’t seen it before.)  The badge is entitled ‘Do More With Avios Quiz’.  You don’t need to share anything to get the Avios and you only need to answer a simple question.  I won’t spoil the fun by telling you the answer!

If you have never looked at Avios Suitcase before, you should be able to earn a few hundred free Avios points by completing all of the tasks currently available.  They are transferred over to avios.com once a month.

Avios suitcase

IHG Rewards Club has how many members?!

Here is a slightly crazy statistic from a seminar with IHG (Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza, InterContinental etc) which I attended on Friday.  IHG Rewards Club now has over 90 million members.

However you look at it, that is a huge number.  It is thirteen times larger than the various Avios schemes combined (there are 7m Avios members) and nearly five times as big as Nectar (19m members).  It is as big as the whole of the UK population plus a small EU country on top!

The scale is mind-blowing.  And, to give them credit, availability is still pretty good!

Priority Pass

Melia’s ‘not free’ Priority Pass

I wrote in June about Melia Rewards adding a Priority Pass for airport lounge access to its list of benefits for top tier Platinum members.  I thought this was very impressive.

Whilst it was a HFP reader who originally pointed this out, I later received a full press release from Melia about it.  At no point did it say that the lounge visits associated with the card are not free!

It turns out, as another HFP reader recently found, that you are charged – in points – after your first two Priority Pass visits.  8,000 points are deducted from your Melia Rewards account.

As this reader found, if you don’t have enough points (and she didn’t, as she thought the card was totally free), Melia sends you a bill for the equivalent cost of buying the points which works out at €32 per visit.

The person who wrote to me was especially annoyed because she has another Priority Pass – a totally free one – via Amex Platinum and only pulled out the Melia one at a lounge because she assumed the package was the same.  She was wrong ….


Earn Hilton Honors points from UK credit cards

How to get MeliaRewards Gold status from American Express (January 2021)

Do you know that holders of The Platinum Card from American Express receive FREE MeliaRewards Gold status for as long as they hold the card?  It also comes with Marriott Bonvoy Gold, Hilton Honors Gold, Radisson Rewards Gold and Shangri-La Golden Circle Jade status. 

We reviewed American Express Platinum in detail here and you can apply here.

You can discover the benefits of MeliaRewards Gold status on the Melia website here.

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

(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 (33)

  • WW says:

    As for the number of IHG Rewards Club members, I’d imagine the number of active accounts to be much, much lower. Bear in mind that hotels guests are required to join the programme to get free WIFI and most of them will never use it again. Similarly, receptionists actually get rewarded for signing up more guests. It would be interesting to see how many accounts get accessed at least once per month or so, but obviously we’ll never find out.

  • Rob says:

    Someone just emailed me about this. However, I know some had issues cashing in the last Royal Mint coin so people should be certain they have a willing bank.