News in brief:
Two new Opodo discount codes released
Opodo has released two new promotional codes which are good for bookings made by 25th July.
These seem like decent offers:
Save £25 on a flight booking of £450 or more with code SALES25
Save £90 on a ‘flight and hotel’ booking of £900 or more with code SALES90
Full details of these Summer sale offers can be found on the Opodo site here.
Wizz Air scraps hand luggage fee
If you fly low cost carrier Wizz Air you will know that you have to pay a fee for most carry on bags. Only a small item under 42 x 32 x 25 is allowed for free.
Presumably due to competition from easyJet and Ryanair the airline is changing its policy. From 29th October passengers can bring a cabin bag of 55 x 40 x 23 on board at no extra cost.
The irony is that if you are a member of the €199 Privilege Pass scheme you are now worse off. Those people are currently allowed a free and larger bag (56 x 45 x 25) and some frequent passengers might need to buy a new one. You also get a free additional small item (laptop bag, purse, up to 40 x 30 x 18).
The only luggage benefit of the new Privilege Pass and Wizz Priority services from 29th October is that you are guaranteed space in the overhead lockers. All other passengers face a chance of having to check their bag in at the gate. You continue to receive priority boarding (including being first off the bus when bussed to the plane!) and free seat selection.
Fly a Boeing 737 in London this Summer
A new flight simulator experience has landed in Putney, of all places.
At Flight Experience London anyone can have a go at flying a Boeing 737. The interesting bit is that the simulator’s cockpit was built from an actual aircraft and all the levers and buttons are operational.
Flight experiences start from £109 for a 30 minute flight and can be booked on the Flight Experience London Website here.
What I got at InterContinental Paris Le Grand last week
I went to Paris for three nights last week whilst my wife and kids were away. This gave me a chance to put our hotel booking partner Bon Vivant to the test as it was a rare cash booking.
Emyr booked my one night in a junior suite at InterContinental Paris Le Grand. Booking through a Virtuoso-accredited agent such as Emyr gets you free club access (usually €140 per day per room), and this is one of the best lounges you’ll visit. There is free flowing champagne almost all day, gold-leaf covered pastries in the afternoon and a good evening buffet spread.
I booked two further nights directly, not involving Emyr, using an InterContinental Ambassador ‘free weekend night’ voucher.
One thing about getting an agent involved whose high-end clients are valued by the hotel is that it bends over to please. The hotel contacted Emyr the day before travel to ask what upgrade I wanted. Two different full suites were suggested and I was allowed to pick the one I preferred.
As you can see from these pictures, it was a very modest affair and substantially better than any previous upgrade when directly booking a junior suite as an Ambassador. It also had a wrap-around balcony with Eiffel Tower views. This is called an Ambassador Suite and can’t actually be booked on the hotel website.
Whether you like that look is, of course, personal taste. It is very impressive in the flesh and I’ve stayed here at least once a year for about a decade now.
I was allowed to keep the suite for all three nights, not just the one booked via Emyr. This was all pre-arranged in advance. There is no guarantee you’d get the same result but it does no harm to have a high-end agency behind you in cases like this. Details of our Bon Vivant booking service are here.
IHG Rewards update – June 2021:
Get bonus points: The current IHG Rewards promotion is ‘Triple Your Points’ – our full article is here. It runs from 15th May to 16th August. You receive double base points on your second stay and triple base points on your third and subsequent stays. You can register on this page of ihg.com.
Buy points: If you need additional IHG Rewards points, you can buy them here.
Want to earn more hotel points? Click here to see our complete list of promotions from IHG and the other major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Offers’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.