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Bits: Virgin / Tesco promo is live, Qatar increases IAG stake, last long-haul BA 767

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News in brief:

Tesco / Virgin Flying Club 20% bonus promotion is live

Over the weekend I wrote about what appeared to be a secret Virgin / Tesco 20% conversion bonus.

Emails went out yesterday confirming that the promotion is on.  You will receive a 20% bonus on all conversions of Clubcard points to Virgin Atlantic before 16th September.

Full details can be found on the Virgin Atlantic website here.

You will also receive 1,000 Virgin Flying Club miles if you activate auto-conversion on your Tesco account so that all future points are sent automatically to Virgin.  I do not recommend this as it is better to retain flexibility in how you use your Clubcard points.  However, nothing stops you cancelling the auto-conversion once the 1,000 miles have arrived.

My views on whether converting Tesco points is a good idea or not can be found in the article from Sunday.

Virgin Atlantic 787

Qatar Airways increases its shareholding in IAG to 20%

On 28th July, Qatar Airways increased its shareholding in IAG, the parent company of British Airways and Iberia, to 20.01%.  Under EU law it is allowed to increase this as high as 49.9% if it wishes.

The airline stated:

While Qatar Airways’ interest in IAG is purely financial, the increased shareholding reflects the strength of commercial and strategic ties between the companies and evidences the continued support for the ongoing strategy of IAG.

“The recent market valuation of one of the world’s leading airline groups has provided what we believe is an attractive opportunity to increase our shareholding in IAG. We continue to be highly supportive of IAG’s strategy and management team and we do not intend to increase our percentage shareholding further unless there are material changes to the current situation,” said Akbar Al Baker, Group Chief Executive of Qatar Airways.”

British Airways Boeing 767

Final British Airways Boeing 767 long-haul flight completed

On Sunday, flight BA229 to Baltimore became the final long-haul British Airways flight to be operated by a Boeing 767.

The remaining Boeing 767 aircraft (photo above), which have a short-haul seating configuration, will be phased out during 2017.  The cost of refurbishing the long-haul aircraft was deemed prohibitive and the running costs are high.  The long-haul aircraft are not being sold immediately, however, and may still pop up on routes such as Istanbul, Athens or Larnaca as cover from time to time.

Air Canada, United, American and Delta, among others, are still flying the 767 to and from the UK so it will be a long while before they disappear for good.


how to earn avios from credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (July 2021)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

There are two official British Airways American Express cards:

British Airways American Express card

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up, no annual fee and a companion voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

BA Premium Plus American Express card BAPP

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

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

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points, such as:

Nectar American Express

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

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

We also recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card:

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

The most generous Avios Visa or Mastercard for a limited company Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)

Comments (70)

  • Danksy says:

    last month I flew LHR – LCA on the 767, the aircraft wasnt that great the flight was full and its age was showing! I think BA have a fleet of 7.

    • Hal says:

      What will be replacing the 767 on the LHR-LCA route?

    • Gavin says:

      Flown the 767 a lot to Larnaca this year. Flights nearly always full and club cabin usually back a long way.

      My guess is they will put the A321 onto when the 767s get retired

  • oyster says:

    Always a sad day when these older planes stop flying. I’m particularly sad about BA losing their 747s. Nothing beats the look of them, nor the uniqueness of F in the nose.

    • Frankie says:

      Agree! Upstairs in club is just a lovely calm oasis from the rest of the plane and the rest of club.

      • Nick says:

        Totally agree on the upper deck Club World.

        I’m definitely going to miss Seat 64A, IMHO the best Club World seat on the plane, with extra leg room, more privacy, and direct access to the aisle without stepping over anyone. I always opted for that seat for decades and made a point of grabbing it immediately, or a.s.a.p. online.

  • Nick says:

    I’m on an American 767 DUB-JFK in September. I’m hoping to see an aircraft change before I go.

    • barry cutters says:

      I wouldn’t be hoping for that,
      The alternative on the route is a 757

  • Jason says:

    OTT sat in no1 lounge gatwick. Lounge is pretty empty but they were not letting in priority pass without booking! Interesting way of making an extra £5

    • harry says:

      They probably simply anticipate being full shortly with BA passengers.

      Were they actively suggesting that PP holders turning up pay the £5 booking fee to get in?

      • Danksy says:

        That’s very disingenuous !

        • harry says:

          Qui, moi? 🙂 There’s a bit of a difference between saying PP’s can only get in if they booked prior (£5) and saying pay us £5 & you’re in. Can you even pay £5 on the door? Or would you have to go online?

          • Jason says:

            Need to book 4 hours in advance…we got lucky as we had 2 in club Europe so they let in another 3 as together

    • flyforfun says:

      I’ve noticed on the PP guide they seem to have updated most of the London lounges (both LHR and LGW) and they say that particular lounges are likely to be extremely busy between (say) 7-10am M-F and access may be restricted. My first two attempts at using the No 1 lounge at LHR T3 got knocked back (midweek morning first time, midweek evening the next) so I booked for my 3rd attempt as I had my partner with me for the first time. Got admitted with no questions asked!!

  • Brian says:

    OT – a new offer has appeared on my AMEX Gold card for £50 off £300 of spend at Sofitel, MGallery and Pullman hotels.

    • Raffles says:

      Cheers, will check

    • harry says:

      Get £10 off your first two rides. (UBER)

      Get up to £10 off your first two rides with Uber. Click “Get this offer” to reveal the promo code. Offer only applies to new Uber users. Valid until 31/10/16 and not valid on UberTAXI. Terms & location restrictions apply.

      • harry says:

        Code looks generic.

        CODE AMEX2410

        OFFER TERMS

        Download Uber app and apply promo code AMEX2410 in the promotions section to enjoy up to £10 off your first two rides on the Uber platform. Offer only applies to UK American Express Cardmembers who are new Uber users with an American Express Card as their payment method. The promo-code is redeemable for a discount to be used toward the total cost of a new user?s first two rides on the Uber platform. If an applicable ride costs less than £10, the remaining amount cannot be rolled over. The promo code is not valid for use on the UberTAXI product. The promo code cannot be transferred, duplicated or sold and there is no cash value. The promo code is limited to use in the UK in locations where Uber is available only. In order to redeem the promo code new users must download the Uber app and accept the terms of use. New users will need to enter the promo code before requesting a ride. Successful redemption of the promo code is subject to the availability of Uber partner-drivers. The offer is fulfilled and promoted by Uber B.V. of Vijzelstraat 68-78, 1017 HL Amsterdam, Netherlands.

    • N says:

      I got 30 off 250.

      Bleurgh.

  • Stu says:

    OT: 20% transfer bonus on Starpoints to Aadvantage miles

  • Nate1309 says:

    O/T any MR transfer bonus’s in the pipeline for BAEC/Avios that anyone knows of?

    • Rob says:

      None for two years now, but if the economy keeps on tanking BA may need the cash.

  • rams1981 says:

    OT 1 anyone receive their bonus points for initial spend of £2k on HSBC Elite credit card? how long did it take?

    OT 2 did anyone who escalated Supercard to the Financial Ombudsman re the extra charges get anywhere? My last communication with them suggests they’ll give me £10 credit for the time I’ve wasted dealing with their customer service which was a shambles. They won’t look into my matter any further. They sent me a breakdown of the extra charges and used different FX rates for a Sunday when the markets are closed! None of the extra charges are in the app which still shows me i saved £75 so far when in fact it’s nearer £30 with their charges…

    They also charged me for two failed transactions from early July which don’t show in the app now and are yet to refund them.

    I think I have a pretty good case to show that the extra charges were literally made up and how they charged me for items not paid for. How do I take this forward?

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