Bits: Hilton Americas Flash Sale, new Qatar business sale, IHG 100% ‘buy points’ bonus

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News in brief:

Hilton North America Flash Sale

Hilton has launched a 3-day Flash Sale covering North America.  This will end at 5am (note am) UK time on Thursday 8th.

For bookings between 18th December and 2nd January, you will receive a 15% – 20% discount from Best Available Rate.  These sale rates must be pre-paid and are non-refundable, however, so it isn’t a full 15% – 20% saving in reality.  Conrad and Waldorf-Astoria hotels are offering a $20 discount instead.

This offer is only for Hilton Group properties in North America.  The special Flash Sale website is here.

Waldorf Astoria

New Qatar Airways four day sale

Qatar Airways launched a new 4-day business class sale yesterday.  This is valid for bookings by 8th December for travel until 30th November 2017, although some dates are blacked out.  It is only valid for UK departures.

The offers from London are here.  £1319 to Goa looks like the best deal although £1700-ish to South East Asia isn’t bad.

This sale appears to be UK focussed only.  I think the real action will be held back from Qatar’s January sale but if you need to book something for the next few weeks the current ex-UK deal is worth pricing up.

Remember that you earn Avios and BA tier points on these fares – a return flight to Asia via Doha in Business will earn 560 tier points (140 x 4) which is 90% of a BA Silver card.

Qatar A380

IHG ‘buy points’ bonus extended

The IHG Rewards Club ‘100% buy points bonus’ was extended at the last minute from 2nd December to today, 6th December.

The link to buy points if you are interested in here.

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  1. Hilton also has a Flash Sale for Asia, excluding all properties in Japan, New Zealand, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

    Discount is 35% off Flexible Rate (“BAR”) and Bed and Breakfast Rate (“B&B”) across all participating properties. Hilton HHonors members will receive an additional 5% off BAR and B&B.

    Book: 5 December 2016 8am (GMT) to 9 December 2016 8am (GMT)

    Travel: 8 December 2016 and 17 April 201

    Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau do have 20% off…

  2. Goa (GOI) is very rarely on offer, the last time i got an offer with QR was on the opening flight – I was on it… nothing special just a cake and a free t shirt. It’s a small aircraft as well, if you can get a good deal to Mumbai (BOM) – I would recommend taking this for a better aircraft and then taking a flight down to Goa (bus or train is also an option DOH I have found the deals from the UK not as good as they were :/ When they also devalued the FF program, QR has not been as attractive for Y passengers.

  3. Genghis says:

    OT. Amounts between 250 and 500 points posted to our HR accounts this morning. Not too sure what they’re for. “Member gets member – Existing member”

    • I received 500 after referring a friend, although weirdly it showed up as coming from the shop they made their first purchase at!

    • Johnnycl says:

      I got 250 points this morning too…no idea what this is all about, I don’t have a record to say I was expecting any points!

      • Genghis says:

        I know. My records are normally pretty good (excel spreadsheet) so no idea what it was for. Not complaining though! Just need another 100% airline partner bonus to get some value from our HR points…

  4. Current Hilton double/triple points promo now extended by a month to end of Jan to match with 5k per stay Visa bonus promo.

    • Top tip on the 5000 extra pts, you can earn them on a full redemption if you charge a pack of peanuts to the room and pay with visa and book via the app.

      I got 5250pts on a full 10k HH redemption at a Hampton in FL last week, bargain for a $114 king room with sofa

      Newcastle airport and the 10ks in Sheffield could be utilised for those in northern England.

      • Indeed so. Sadly my last one was booked months ago on the website and no availability to rebook via app so just the 1000 Diamond points for me. Did get a decent upgrade though and room rate would have been $400+tax with a conference being on so don’t feel too cheated!

        • I wondered about this too. Booked pre-promo and can’t really re-book the awards at same rate. Alan did you try charging something to a Visa on the off chance the bonus would trigger?

          Thinking I’ll give that a go in a few weeks…

          • I was going to but the minimum minibar price was about $15 incl all the fees/taxes they charged so I didn’t really fancy it for a punt!

  5. looking forward to tonite everyone, any interest in kicking onto a local pub post 8pm?

    • I am sure you will find a few takers to visit the nearest participating Amex ‘Shop Small’ pubs!

  6. Leafwarbler says:

    OT – Any advice for best OneWorld business class routing London to Auckland for Nov/Dec next year, please? Is there an optimum time to book to get a good price – am I being wildly optimistic to hope to achieve £4k pp return? Thanks

    • Andrew (@andrewseftel) says:

      Qatar would be my choice: fairly direct routing and good product. Doha is also a good spot to break up the journey. Malaysian is the obvious alternative, but I’d be worried about the financial health of the airline booking that far out. Cathay is another alternative, but a bit more out of the way.

      • I happened to notice that Cathay Pacific and Emirates out of Paris were both just over £3k business class for about October time, maybe worth checking for your dates if you want/don’t mind connecting into Paris ?

        • Just checked CX’s website: 3750 euros consistently across dates in November/December….

          • Milan to Auckland 2650 euros !!! 777-300ER to HKG then new A350-900 to AKL, reverse herringbone on both….

      • If anything it is DOH which is “out of the way”. For a 1-stop journey, the shortest great circle route is via NRT and HKG is close.

        Connecting at HKG divides the journey neatly into two 12-hour segments, rather than 7 + 18 hours via DOH.

        There seems to be a 50/50 split between people who prefer CX and those who prefer QR (in J/F ; in Y you would be mad to fly QR). That said you can’t beat QR pricing in a sale, and since I prefer CX, I will only choose QR when they have another of their regular ridiculously low J fares :p

    • Sin – Syd is cheap with Avios, been pricing up how to get to Oz next Xmas…

      AKL via CX?

    • Scallder says:

      Can also go through LAX with AA

  7. OT:

    Unfortunately had to cancel a hotel booking due to illness. It was booked on Amex platinum so I was hoping to claim back. Lady I talked to says the whole holiday needed to have been booked through the platinum card. I only wanted to claim the hotel costs.
    (the flights were reward flights and paid with virgin black so am not loosing much there).

    Anybody has any experience claiming for hotel only from amex platinum insurance or have I been caught out?

    • Genghis says:

      No first hand experience. But your argument is from here:

      You are a Platinum Card holder and “All Platinum Cardmembers including Supplementary
      Cardmembers and their respective Families are covered”
      “Cardmember” means any individual who holds a valid Account
      “Account” or “Card Account” means your consumer and small
      business cards issued by American Express in the UK, excluding
      corporate cards and any American Express Cards issued by bank
      I.e. if you paid for the hotel with another Amex, you’re covered.

      • Genghis says:

        Sorry, should have confirmed another Amex issued Amex.

        • Thanks.
          I paid for the hotel with Amex platinum. But the woman said the “holiday” wasnt paid with the platinum card (since the flight bit was paid with virgin black). So that got me worried.

          Would I be ok to submit the claim for the hotel only part via their online claim. I wasnt trying to claim for the flights anyway (that loss is minimal).

          • Genghis says:

            To quote another part of the terms:
            For the benefits under this section to apply transport and/or accommodation must have been Purchased in full using:
            I. the Card;
            II. American Express Membership Rewards® points; or
            III. Any travel rewards programmes provided the taxes
            and/or surcharges have been Purchased using the Card.

            The “and/or” means you can just claim for the accommodation. Seems perfectly valid to me.

          • Definitely worth a shot but my understanding when they changed the rules was that both travel an accommodation had to be paid for with an Amex to be eligible to claim for either – I’ve still got Amex ICC USD card though which doesn’t have such limitations.

          • Do you have to buy your car on Amex if you’re driving???

  8. OT:

    I have about 20000 Hilton HHonours points. No activity at all in the last 11 months and none planned.

    I’ve read that I may lose these points if theres no activity on my account for 12 months – how can I avoid this?
    Will transferring 200 points from Amex MR keep my account “alive” for another 12 months?

    • Andrew (@andrewseftel) says:

      Yes indeed.

    • or book a redemption room and cancel 😀

    • OT reply to OT …

      Talking of keeping accounts alive, any suggestions for Flying Blue? I have 17k miles left (spent 200k last year). I used to fly KLM fairly often, but it’s not looking like I will before the expiry date. Not a huge balance, but I hate losing anything!

      • Sadly Flying Blue has no option but taken a flight (with KL or another SkyTeam partner) to keep miles alive for another 18 months. I’ve been close to the wire before too as I don’t fly them that often, but have got 58k miles so don’t want to see them go – in their sales it would easily be enough for a biz class flight to North America!

  9. Sussex Bantam says:

    OT – todays IHG figure is 40500 and Iggy is just left of centre slightly up from the bottom of the picture.

    Has anyone actually received the 500 points for playing 5 days in a row ??

  10. Another hotel promo, but for Accor & fluent Frenchies…

    That must challenge for the longest domain name I’ve seen in ages..

  11. Mohammed says:


    I was looking at booking a Qatar flight using avois and 241 voucher.

    Is the info on this link still valid? Or has there been a devaluation?

    Where’s the best place for me to find out the above info but up to date ones?

    • The pricing has changed because of the Avios devaluation in 2015. The destinations are still in the same pricing bands though, so Qatar from Germany to Doha remains cheaper than Qatar from the UK to Doha.

    • Genghis says:

      But if you mean a BA 241 voucher, remember that it can only be used on BA metal

      • Mohammed says:

        Oh. I thought I could use it on their partner airlines also. BA is v poor compared to the others tbh

        • You can use Avios on partner/alliance airlines but the BA Amex voucher is clearly stated to be BA metal only. The Lloyds Avios one is the same, booked via

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