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Bits: The Economist on ‘class war in the [BA] airport lounge’, 0% Post Office balance transfer

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News in brief:

The Economist’s 1843 on ‘Class War In The Airport Lounge’

Intelligent Life, the quarterly lifestyle glossy from The Economist, was recently relaunched with a new title 1843.

The new edition features, on its back page, an article by Adrian Wooldridge.  It outlines his journey through British Airways Executive Club status.  He is clearly not a Head for Points reader, however, as it seems that he missed achieving Gold by 30 tier points and didn’t seem to know a) that he could ring BA for a one week extension or b) how to get 30 tier points quickly and cheaply.

It is well worth a read and you can find it here.

Did you know, for example, that in The Republic Plato argues that citizens come in three types:  Gold, Silver and Bronze?

As the article concludes:

We Britons understand the value of keeping the classes divided while holding out the possibility of social promotion.  BA’s slogan is ‘one world’ [er, no!] but its genius is to understand that, however interconnected humans become, it still pays to divide them into gold, silver and bronze.

Plato The Republic

0% balance transfer fee on Post Office Money Platinum Mastercard

The Post Office dropped me a note last week to promote a new 22 month 0% balance transfer deal on its Platinum Mastercard.

I feature the Post Office card on HfP because it is one of only a handful of credit cards which are both FREE and have no foreign exchange fees on purchases abroad.

Whilst the Halifax Clarity card is a little better than the Post Office one for overseas use because Clarity also has no FX fees on overseas cash withdrawals, the new offer of:

0% interest for 22 months on balance transfers, and

0% fee on your balance transfer

will be interesting for some people.  This means that you can move an existing balance from any other credit card, fee free, to the Post Office card and pay no interest until early 2018.  You should definitely clear your balance at that point, however, as the representative APR is 17.8% variable.  This is NOT a card where you want to be paying interest.

You can still make new purchases without impacting your 0% balance transfer as your monthly repayment must, by law, be used to pay off the highest APR transactions first – which means paying off your fresh spending.  

This would still allow you to benefit from the 0% fees on foreign exchange transactions which is, of course, the key benefit for HfP readers.  More details of the Post Office Platinum card and this offer can be found here.


Want to earn more points from credit cards? – September 2022 update

If you are looking to apply for a new credit card, here are our top recommendations based on the current sign-up bonuses.

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points, £200 travel credit and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

50,000 points bonus until 2nd October – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company Read our full review

For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending.

Barclaycard Select Cashback credit card

1% cashback and no annual fee Read our full review

Comments (51)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Mark T says:

    Wow, I didn’t like that Economist article, thinking the worst of people. I think it’s pretty horrible to think people get BA status for one-upmanship. And tbh, does he really think anyone is going to be impressed because someone has BA Gold, an Amex Platinum, or indeed any other card/status.

    We get the status for the benefits, and because we value how it enhances the way we live our lives. If he’s doing it for any other reason he’s pretty sad.

  • James Alexander says:

    Yes this reviewer is talking nonsense. If he was that good at tracking his tier points he would have noted his year-end coupled with his shortage for status.
    He also sounds like a name dropping w*nker.. Sadly there’s many of his type in T5 Gold lounge too !

  • Nick says:

    Mark, James – I’m pretty sure he’s caricaturing himself. The paragraph before the split for the ad is pretty obvious self-mockery, non ?

  • Michael says:

    Does anybody have the code for 15% off Priority Pass that was in highlife magazine this month? I forgot to note it down and I can’t find it online!
    Thanks

    • harry says:

      you’d get a reply on flyer talk in about a minute, sign up there?

  • Topp2015 says:

    Raffles – can you make multiple balance transfers to the post office card?

  • Damien says:

    My girlfriends tier point collection ends on the 8th of next month; right in the middle of a trip to Hawaii. The extension would allow her to include the return leg and make Gold. So she phoned the BA silver line… and they told her to phone back AFTER she completed the trip, and they would add the extension then….. She told me and a few alarm bells are going off in my head, does this sound right? or was it an operator that didn’t know the rules.

    • bsuije says:

      Sounds right to me, because that was my experience when my year ended back in Feb and I needed just a few more TPs to maintain Silver.

      Don’t be surprised if she gets an e-mail saying she’s down to Silver – the Gold one should follow a few days/weeks later.

      What I’m unsure about is whether the TPs in that additional period get “double counted”, i.e. do they count for status in the year that has just passed AND the year that’s currently running. Is there anyone who could share their experience of this?

      • AndyGWP says:

        Likewise, sounds about right to me. I’ve read this on Flyertalk before now.

        Thinking about it, they wouldn’t want to action it sooner in case the extension wasn’t needed 🙂 you may have more flights that come up that would make an extension redundant

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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