News in brief:
TAP launches flights from London City
In a surprising move, Portuguese national carrier TAP has announced a new service from London City Airport to Lisbon. One possible reason I saw yesterday is that it is a potential prelude to a sale of TAP’s 06.00 Heathrow departure slot, which could presumably be used for an early morning arrival by a long-haul carrier.
Launching at the start of the winter timetable on 29th October, the City service will operate twice daily during the week with one flight a day on Saturday and Sunday.
TAP is a member of Star Alliance if you are considering earning and redemption options.
Generous SAS EuroBonus / Hertz deal
The SAS frequent flyer scheme, EuroBonus, has launched a very generous deal with Hertz. If you rent a lot of cars, or fancy doing the car equivalent of a mattress run, you could nicely from this.
As you can see here, you will earn 5,000 SAS EuroBonus miles for every Hertz rental you make before 30th June, for pick up before 30th September.
There is no minimum rental period, except in the US and Canada where a minimum of three days is required.
EuroBonus is a member of Star Alliance so you could use your points to book flights on any Star airline – including the new TAP flight I wrote about above! You can also use EuroBonus points for hotel stays as you can see here – I did this last year to book a night at the 5-star The May Fair in London for 20,000 points.
KLM drops free baggage for BlueBiz and corporate customers
Whilst KLM brought in baggage charges on short haul flights back in 2013, they gave an exception for the first checked bag to travellers on corporate deals or those who were members of the corporate BlueBiz scheme.
This exception was quietly dropped on 1st April. Even if your company is a member of BlueBiz or has a corporate deal with KLM, you must now pay for all checked baggage on short-haul flights.
How to earn Flying Blue miles from UK credit cards (September 2021)
Air France and KLM do not have a UK Flying Blue credit card. However, you can earn Flying Blue miles by converting Membership Rewards points earned from selected UK American Express cards. These are:
- American Express Preferred Rewards Gold (review here, apply here) – sign-up bonus of 30,000 Membership Rewards points converts into 30,000 Flying Blue miles. This card is FREE for your first year and also comes with two free airport lounge passes. 30,000 points is a special offer which expires on 10th November 2021.
- The Platinum Card from American Express (review here, apply here) – sign-up bonus of 60,000 Membership Rewards points converts into 60,000 Flying Blue miles. 60,000 points is a special offer which expires on 2nd November 2021.
- American Express Rewards credit card (review here, apply here) – sign-up bonus of 5,000 Membership Rewards points converts into 5,000 Flying Blue miles. This card is FREE for life.
Membership Rewards points convert at 1:1 into Flying Blue miles which is an attractive rate. The cards above all earn 1 Membership Rewards point per £1 spent on your card, which converts to 1 Flying Blue mile. The Gold card earns double points (2 per £1) on all flights you charge to it.