Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Bits: Cathay Pacific sale (HKG £369), BA launches Tesco competition, Qatar TO Heathrow for £700

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News in brief:

Cathay Pacific sale prices reduced further – and earn Avios

Cathay Pacific sent me a press release about their current sale, and before I got around to running it I had another one saying that prices had been cut further!

The sale runs until the end of May although these additional discounts are only available until 17th May.  Headline economy prices include Phuket from £419, Hong Kong from £369 and Tokyo from £569.  Business class to Hong Kong starts at £1,659 for travel until March 2017.

The full list of offers from London and Manchester can be found here.

Remember that, as a oneworld partner, you will earn Avios and British Airways tier points when flying Cathay.

Cathay Pacific 350

No Tesco conversion bonus to Avios, but a competition

As I wrote last week, Virgin Atlantic is currently running a 15% bonus when you convert your Tesco Clubcard vouchers to Virgin Flying Club.

British Airways is not.  Instead, they are running another competition:

For every £5 in Tesco Clubcard vouchers you exchange for Avios by midnight 31 May 2016, you’ll receive one entry into a prize draw, which includes a pair of Club Europe return flights and three nights in a 4* hotel, in either Chania, Crete; Biarritz, France; Palermo, Sicily or Menorca, Spain — some of our new summer short haul destinations.

Those of you who auto-convert your Clubcard points into Avios (which I do NOT recommend) receive two entries for every £5.

You can find more details on the ‘Tesco to British Airways’ page of tesco.com here.

The reason I don’t recommend auto-converting Clubcard points to Avios is that the downside outweighs the upside.  Clubcard vouchers convert to Avios within 24 hours on demand, so if a good redemption pops up you have time to transfer.

You would lose out, however, if Tesco launched a very generous special offer with another partner.  Perhaps you feel the need to buy a gift at Goldsmiths (3x face value), put some furniture into Safestore (3x face value) or buy a Eurotunnel ticket (3x face value)?  These are all good value deals where I would happily take 3x face value on my vouchers rather than Avios points.

Qatar A380

Very cheap Qatar Airways flight TO Heathrow

Over the Summer, Qatar Airways is offering flights from Colombo in Sri Lanka to Heathrow – and back again – for £700 return in Business Class.

How could you use this deal?

You could treat it as a one-way back from the Maldives (a very short hop from Colombo) and throw away the return

You could use it to straddle two holidays a few months apart

You could nest it inside an Avios ticket if you travel to the region a lot, eg fly London to the region on BA, come back on Qatar from Colombo, return to Colombo a few weeks later on Qatar and then do the last leg back on BA

Availability at this price is limited but it is there if you trawl through the Qatar Airways website here.  You are looking for an outbound at 54,000 LKR and an inbound at 90,000 LKR.

Comments (42)

  • John says:

    CX had Norway to HKG in J for £1300 for the past month, has it gone down? (I’m on a poor internet connection)

  • Tony says:

    Thanks Rob. Worth remembering that DOH-CMB on QR in J is 140 tier points for BA. For anyone in Dubai, it’s 400 TP for DXB-DOH-CMB on QR return as DXB-DOH is in F. Thinking of using adding that to this fare for a return to the UK via DOH/CMB for a couple of nights for 960 TPs as a mileage run. Shame though the Avios earning potential on QR doesn’t match the likes of AA.

  • Steve R says:

    Think I’ll be giving the London Airways offer a miss, because, for us who live in the Northern Powerhouse Region! not exactly convenient

  • Ash says:

    Thanks for the heads up on Colombo fare. Tried to check via mobile and site isn’t great so I’ll need to check it properly on a laptop.

    Are the Colombo flights only for travel during the summer?

    • Rob says:

      That’s putting it politely, the Qatar mobile site is a mess. No idea of the fare rules on Colombo. Availability was already tight yesterday.

      When we went to the Maldives 7 years ago we paid cash for a one way back as Emirates was offering silly cash fares from the region then.

  • Oscar says:

    Thanks for the tips Rob, first discovered your blog about a year ago and been following it since. Sorry for being a bit petty but just wished you would prehaps maybe acknowledge those on flyertalk who bring to light some of these deals as I’m sure they would appreciate this a little more

    • Rob says:

      That is a fair (sic) point re the CMB fare deals, although in many cases the people who post those also lifted it from elsewhere. The normal Qatar stuff is sent to me by Qatar though.

  • idrive says:

    morning!
    OT anyone knows whats going on with the Avios.com website? off from yday afternoon!!

  • Kip says:

    OT: if you book a hotel through Kaligo can you still get the hotel loyalty points?

  • Pol says:

    Got a great result with the inks from Tesco groceries. Ordered one of each of hp364(in black, cyan, yellow and blue) for £32 and 800 points. They didn’t have any single coloured inks in so when they arrived today they substituted and price matched them for for three multi packs! So in all I got one black and three multipacks of all four colours for my £32.

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