Nutmeg Avios

Bits: OT: Amazon Prime Day TODAY, Qatar Airways files record profits

News in brief:

Amazon Prime Day – big discounts for today only

Today is the 2nd Amazon Prime Day.  This is a day when Amazon makes certain items available at big discounts to anyone who is an Amazon Prime member or who is happy to sign up for a free 30 day trial.  (They don’t mind if you do this, they reckon there is a good chance you’ll stick with it.)

I was one of very few people to be given advance notice of the deals yesterday.  Full details, including how to join Amazon Prime for a free trial, and some sample offers can be found here at Shopper Points.

The best general offer is a £5 gift card (valid until 27th August only) when you buy a £30 Amazon gift card.

Anika will have picked out a few deals of her own over at SP.  Whilst not strictly travel related, the following deals looked interesting from a ‘middle aged bloke’ point of view and will be available all day today:

  • Issey Miyake L’Eau D’Issey Intense Eau de Toilette – 125 ml  £19.62 (was £53)
  • Fire TV Stick Streaming Media Player  £19.99 (was £35)
  • Amazon Fire TV Streaming Media Player with 4K Ultra HD  £54.99 (was £75)
  • Up to 45% off RRP on B&O Speakers and Headphones
  • Microsoft Surface Pro 4 12.3-Inch Tablet with Pen (Silver)  £749 (was £960)
  • Xbox One 500GB Console with Kinect – 3 Game Value Bundle  £229  (was £314)

There are also lots of Lightning Deals available which will last for four hours only.  I am not allowed to give out pricing details on these so you’ll have to look at the Amazon Prime Day site to find out.As an example, between 12pm and 4pm you’ll get a very good deal on Moet & Chandon Imperial Brut Champagne (gift boxed, 75 cl).  Cardhu 12 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky is on offer between 1pm and 5pm.  There are plenty more.

If you do decide to buy anything, if you visit Amazon via this link then HFP gets a small commission and you can consider your annual HFP subscription paid …..

Amazon Prime Day

Qatar Airways files record profits

I don’t normally focus on airline financial reports, but it was interesting to see that Qatar Airways publicly released its financial results for the year to March 2016.  You can download them here.

There is a view that the Middle Eastern airlines are massively loss making, creating unfair competition for established players.  The truth is that pretty much anyone could make money running an airline with a hub that is 8 hours flight for half the worlds population, can operate 24 / 7, uses new fuel efficient aircraft and is not bogged down by a £3.7 billion pension deficit a la BA.

(If you’ve ever visited the Qatar Airways head office in London, as I have, it is also very clear that these are not people who throw money around willy nilly!)

That isn’t to say that the ME airlines don’t enjoy some advantages.  Finance is marginally cheaper when you have implicit Government backing, for example, but aircraft loans are very keenly priced for everyone.  Planes are commodity products and if you have to repossess an A320 you can resell it by the end of the day – and probably at a premium, given the current waiting list.

Qatar’s operating profit was QAR 3.0bn (£630m) on revenue of QAR 35.2bn (£7.4bn).    British Airways (not IAG, just BA) made £1.3bn on £11.3bn in 2015 so had a superior profit margin – but then BA isn’t selling £800 return business class flights to Asia and buying up a large % of the world supply of Krug …..!

How to avoid paying for your BA flight until 5 weeks before departure!
Accor Happy Mondays - the best last-minute hotel deal in the UK - now bookable two weeks in advance
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  1. Erico1875 says:

    Of course Qatar do not have to worry about EU261 compo for many of their flights

  2. A certain broadsheet has naughtily published a list of lightening deals along with their own referral links in the article. They claim Moet will be £23.99.

    The robot Flymo is tempting, but I have yet to get a PowerPoint installed outside so maybe next year/Black Friday/Christmas.

    • Naughty. I should, but won’t, show you what we had to agree to before they would give us the data ….

  3. Stu R says:

    I, for one, am happy to be a contributor to Qatar Airways profits, although I doubt they’ll be making much profit from me on a 16.5 hour biz class flight to Auckland for £1070!

    Much rather this than waste any money on penny pinching IAG!

    • Robman says:

      Hi Stu R, is this deal still being sold or was it from a previous sale? I’d be all over this given the chance?

      • Stu R says:

        Sadly from the deal earlier in the year – I think this was definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity!

        • PeterC says:

          Stu you will also be getting the miles. I see from their accounts that unredeemed award flights are valued at c£115 million

        • Stu R says:

          And to add to that, I just had an email from Avios saying I was one of the lucky winners of 9,000 Avios for exchanging Clubcard vouchers for Avios back in May, RESULT!

  4. Doogie says:

    One of the deals all day is buy a £30 or higher gift voucher, receive £5 promotional credit. Just follow Rob’s affiliate link, click on prime day and the banner should be there to activate the promo before purchase. If you look in the gc store, you can choose an email voucher and send it to yourself 🙂

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Thanks, bagged myself a free £5. Needs to be used by Aug 27th but suspect it will be used by the end of the day in most cases

  5. If you already used up your free trial, you’ll need to make a new account.

    • Genghis says:

      You get a new free trial every 12 months

      • Oh do you? I guess I used my free trial less than 12 months ago…

        Well I have 2 accounts now so I’ll get a “free trial” every 6 months

  6. @mkcol says:

    I really hope you don’t get “lightening” through Amazon…. 😉

  7. Tilly71 says:

    To use baec avios miles on qatar, is the only way to do this to call BA CS?

    • Assuming is still being ‘buggy’ and giving error messages when you try to complete the booking, yes. You can see availability on though.

      • Tilly71 says:

        Using BAEC account search tool, it doesent find the destination. If i go to BA site under using partner airlines search it finds it?
        Looks due to IT bugs i would have to call CS. I take it Qatar miles are the same amount as BAEC avios miles?

  8. harry says:

    Free book for Prime members.

    Damn, wish I were a member – some good choices there:
    – Stephen King’s IT;
    – David Lagercrant’s Girl in the Spider’s Web;
    – John Grisham Sycamore Row;
    – Victoria Hislop The Island;
    – Jojo Moyes Silver Bay;
    – Ian Rankin Standing in Another Man Grave

    • harry says:

      Couldn’t resist! Signed up for the free trial, got a free book & free £5 credit 🙂

      Not taking any chances:
      ‘Your membership will end on 11 August 2016
      At that time you will lose your benefits, and your card will not be charged.’

    • idrive says:

      I bought David Lagercrant’s Girl in the Spider’s Web for free, by mistake:-) clicking the link went through straight away!
      Good that I read the Millennium Trilogy and loved it!

    • Thanks, Harry – hadn’t spotted that free book offer! Also didn’t know there was a 4th book in the Millennium series (Girl in the spider’s Web), so have gone for it!

  9. Sussex Bantam says:

    Argos also offering free same day delivery today for orders placed before 6pm…

  10. Renwaldo says:

    Moet at £23.99 isn’t really the deal of the century is it!

    • Scott says:

      I thought that! Pretty sure I was able to get it below £20 at Sainsbury’s in the run up to Xmas. If you bought 6 bottles you got 25% off, and they were doing Moet at £25 promo price and still allowed the discount giving a price of £18.75. I also seem to remember getting Veuve at £22.50 on a similar deal.

    • roberto says:

      Its not the drink of the century either in my book. Plenty of better Cava in Aldi for a third of the price.

    • barry cutters says:

      Drive to Calais and pay £17 a bottle for it that’s £42 a box cheaper

  11. Russell Evans says:

    (O/T) I hope someone can help here. I am on the “grandfathered rate” for Tesco Clubcard point conversions to Avios and have done a number of conversions before netting me 800 Avios for £2.50 Clubcard Vouchers. I have never before done a Virgin conversion (I am indeed a Virgin). Does being on the old rate for Avios qualify me for the old rate for Virgin, and if so, what is it instead of 625 Flying Club miles for £2.50 – 825 miles? Many thanks, Russell

    • Fenny says:

      No, there’s only one rate for Virgin, 625. I’m on the old Avios rate, but prefer Virgin Miles.

    • Relaxo says:

      Not sure if this sways you, but you also get a 2000 point bonus for signing up to Virgin autoconversion.

      • harry says:

        2000 is a nice improvement on 1000 🙂

      • Michael says:

        I do not see the auto-conversion bonus at Tesco, are you sure this is on at present. Can you send a link? Than you.

        • Relaxo says:

          Should be automatic. I did not have to go through a separate signup/link. Was a nice surprise!

  12. harry says:

    There’s another free £10 here for Prime members

    Again, you can cancel immediately but keep your 3 months free trial & the £10

    • idrive says:

      it gives me the error message:
      “The Audible free trial offer is only available to new members” so a no go for me.

    • Yup, not bad that. So £15 in credit and also £3 in Amazon Pantry credit (effectively free delivery on next order) for picking ‘no rush’ delivery, plus £10 off pantry order too! Bought a few bits of computer kit that were decently reduced in price too.

  13. David says:

    OT: But I see that the often discussed Barclays Travel Plus Pack is changing. From 1st Sept 2016 the charge will increase to £15.50 (from £13.50) but when you look at the T&Cs of the changes they are also introducing a 6 month minimum term if you take (or cancel and take out again) the pack after the date of the change: . They are also introducing some parking and hotel discounts but they don’t look like they would be tremendously useful for my needs. The card secure feature is also being removed. This might be worth an article; I don’t think it has been covered yet? On a related note, do you have any idea if the Telegraph will be running a code for Dragonpass in the newspaper this year (for non-subscribers)?

    • harry says:

      I can see the new minimum 6 month term condition – but so far they haven’t changed the policy wording, which still states that policyholders can cancel the Travel Plus Pack at any time.

      • David says:

        The T&Cs state that if you cancel your (existing) pack and subsequently choose to take out a pack after the date the changes come into effect, then you must hold the pack for a minimum term of 6 months. Presumably the main T&Cs will be updated at the time of the change to reflect the 6 month min. term requirement. This will stop people upgrading to the pack for just one month to get the 6x lounge access passes.

    • harry says:

      The Telegraph offer never went away – subscribers can get it all year round plus it was repeated in April – however, you need the current code (Sunday, April 17, 2016)

    • Thanks for this. Not heard anything re Dragonpass but I have no contact with them at all, to be honest. Bit of a shame as I’m sure we could do something together. The Priority Pass people are very helpful to me.