Bits: 1p per Nectar point with Virgin East Coast, tour the McLaren factory with Hilton

News in brief:

Get 1p per Nectar point with Virgin Trains East Coast

Last weekend I wrote about the widely targetted offer of 40,000 Nectar points for getting the American Express Nectar credit card.

I said that, whilst 40,000 points is usually worth £200, occasional deals lifted that to 1p per point.  Here is one such deal.

Until 12th October, you can redeem your Nectar points for Virgin Trains East Coast vouchers and get 1p per Nectar point.  Vouchers can only be used for First or Standard Class Advance tickets.

Full details are in this Shopper Points article from yesterday.

McLaren Technology Centre

Visit the McLaren-Honda factory with Hilton HHonors

Hilton HHonors has arranged another tour of the McLaren-Honda factory at the Norman Foster-designed McLaren Technology Centre in Woking.

Last time I wrote about this offer, HFP readers bought the seven available packages by 9am.  If you are interested in this – there are 4 packages available as at 7pm Saturday – do not hang around.

The date is the afternoon of Wednesday 9th November.  The cost is 75,000 Hilton HHonors points for two people which is a 50% price rise on the previous trip.

The factory is not normally open to the public so this is a rare opportunity to take a look inside.  It is a shame that the timing won’t work for children who will be back at school by then.

You can redeem your points for a pair of tickets here.

(Want to earn more hotel points?  Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Promos’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

Win a trip around the world with Radisson Blu and up to 200,000 points with Accor
Bits: 100% bonus buying Hilton points, no more free Heathrow Express First upgrades for Star Gold
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  1. Mr(s) Entitled says:

    2 packages left at time of writing.

    • My wife and I joined a few other HFPers at the previous McLaren tour. WELL WORTH IT, if you have the points. An amazing money-can’t-buy experience for any race fan

      • Money can actually buy it. Buy a McLaren and then you will get a free tour. Bargain.

  2. Thanks Raffles! Nabbed one of those for my brother and I (2 major F1 fans). Had missed it last time around so the tip off is much appreciated.

    • Thanks rob and sorry to everyone else. Have just nabbed the last one!

    • Hi Sohan,

      Did your transaction process ok? I too redeemed a place as soon as this morning’s HFP emails landed. – there were 4 at the time. I then received a “YOUR @PLAY EXPERIENCE HAS HIT A SNAG” email saying “The good news is the auction is now closed and you had the highest bid! The bad news, is the points for this item HAVE NOT been deducted from your HHonors Account.”

      I think this may be due to the main HH site being under maintenance and “Current HHonors members will not be able to redeem points”. Wondered if you or others had a similar experience?

      I’m a huge F1 fan so really hoping they’ll transact and confirm the places !


      • Hi Matt,

        I didn’t check emails til now and just realised I got exactly the same message. Hmm. Will just have to wait and see what happens but mega disappointing if it falls through.

  3. Sold out now!

  4. Can the VTEC vouchers be used to book rail tickets on any network as per their website or just limited to East Coast?

    • Just East Coast and just First or Standard Advance.

      • You sure about that? VTEC site says
        “Simply book online or via the app and receive 2 points for every £1 spent on travel.”
        And what about journeys only partly operated by VTEC?

        • Richard says:

          That’s for earning. The rules for redemptions are as Rob stated, as you can easily check on

          Journeys with connections to other operators seem to be OK as long as it’s still a VTEC Advance ticket. I have a voucher in my account right now, and just checked that it would have let me redeem it for Tweedbank (near Edinburgh) to London.

        • Sorry – I’ll read properly in future !

  5. Reporting back, bonus virgin card miles received after churning white card within 2 weeks of cancelling.

    • Excellent news.

    • Sorry just to clarify. You cancelled your virgin card and then re-applied 2 weeks later and got the bonus?

      • Yup!

        • Genghis says:

          I reapplied today (cancelled in May) but MBNA wouldn’t give an instant decision (first time that’s ever happened to me). I need to call them. Did that happen to you? If so, what did they want to know?

        • Johnnycl says:

          I had that when I applied, which was about two statement cycles after cancelling. They were checking my address in my case as I moved earlier in the year and hadn’t yet updated every bank/credit provider so they were verifying it wasn’t a fraudulent application.

          They also brought up that I had recently cancelled the same card I was applying for…..there was no problem though, I simply confirmed they were correct and have also just received the 10k bonus.

        • Genghis says:

          Thanks for the info – much appreciated.

        • Nope. I cancelled, reapplied 2 weeks later. Straight pass.

  6. OT. Just got an email asking me to complete a questionnaire on the virgin red app. Lots of questions about whether I would rather use my virgin red points to convert to VS miles or for purchases within the app. Really would like to see the option to convert to VS. Fingers crossed.

  7. OT
    VTEC have launched a new promotion, never pay for a VTEC trip again.

    All trips will be made from the driver’s cab including the new fleet of Azuma trains.

    The competition also includes income for the rest of each winner’s working life starting at £58k

    100 lucky winners.

    Apply at

    • Genghis says:

      I always wanted to be a train driver when I was a kid. I could move back to the North East and have a decent life on £58k…

    • I’d be surprised if trains didn’t become fully automated in the next 10-15 years. Still, who needs a job for life these days!

  8. Matthew says:

    I posted in the comments thread the other day when there were 8 available for everyone to snag but appreciate it’s easily missed!!

  9. Off-topic but I hope someone can help.
    Signed up to the Moneycorp Mastercard on this site – £20 free arrived at last – to make my balance £72.00.

    Tried to take money out at Tesco Cash point – was declined.
    Tried again at Barclays cashpoint – declined as well, checked the balance and it was £0.50CR!

    On calling them up they said that the original transaction was rejected because a supposed ATM fee was payable on top of the MC £1.50 fee – therefore over the £72.00 balance. The kick in the balls is that they said the money won’t appear back into my account until the 15th!

    So my question is, where can I withdraw this money without incurring an additional charge over £1.50? If I try again and I get it wrong, the money goes missing for another week….

    Tried to point out to the guy on the phone that the Tesco machine has ‘free withdrawals’ over it, but he was unable to help.

    • Exactly the same 2day with me as I tried to draw the 70… I have taken a real dislike to the company after the email to activate the card best came and had to deal with a far eastern call centre that were pretty close to a chocolate teapot and now this….

      • Genghis says:

        I put £52 on card, got the £20 added then withdrew £70 from co op ATM, less the £1.50 ATM fee and I have 50p left on the card

    • I’m thinking..draw 60 and dump the balance a week later to amazon…

    • Less 3 percent card charge to moneycorp of course

    • Wally1976 says:

      Sorry to hear about your this…I did the same and withdrew the £70 at a Sainsbury’s ATM no problem.

    • I took mine out of an RBS machine (at a Tesco!) without an issue a couple of months ago – was it a Tesco Bank machine or a high street bank one? To avoid any issues I’d go with the latter I guess, but it really shouldn’t be a problem (it isn’t with any other non-Moneycorp card at least!)

  10. Simon, which “site ” where you signed up for MasterCard do you mean? Thanks for answering.

  11. I signed up here from Raffles link, I don’t think the offer is running anymore.

    Alan I can’t remember if it was a Tesco Bank one or not, but it was just one of those machines outside a massive superstore. But I have taken money out of that machine on debit card before and there is definitely no ATM-owner imposed fee like their customer service suggested.

    Perhaps something has changed – there is a Mastercard withdrawal fee as well as a Moneycorp fee? That seems to be the only explanation to me.

    Probably won’t use it after this, always am disappointed when you have to call up customer services and they end up knowing absolutely nothing.

    But the more pertinent reason: If you were stuck abroad with a high percentage of your liquid funds on this card (which is what they promote it for after all?) and for some reason you try to take it all out of the ATM, forgetting the fee, your transaction is then declined, and the money that you withdraw is also unavailable for you to use anywhere else (for example, paying on card) and it takes them up to a week to reconcile and post back the money.

    It was no issue for me here, but potentially if someone was abroad, they could be caught out very nastily by this, especially if they had no other source of funds.