Bits: win with The Times and The Telegraph travel awards, no more Nectar points on easyJet

News in brief:

Win great prizes with The Times Travel Awards

Voting is now open for the annual Times / Sunday Times / Sunday Times Travel Magazine awards.  It is worth taking a look because entering gets you into a prize draw with some very, very nice prizes indeed.

You can enter very quickly because there is a drop-down list of nominees in each of the 11 categories.  You can whizz through the whole thing in a couple of minutes.

Here is the website where you can vote and check out the extensive list of goodies to be won.

Times Travel Awards 2017

… and don’t forget The Telegraph either!

Voting is also underway for the annual Telegraph travel awards.

The 20 prizes on offer for voters are exceptional, most are valued at around £20,000 to £30,000 each.

Full details can be found here.

Nectar thumbnail

No more Nectar points when booking easyJet

easyJet and Nectar have ended their deal whereby you could earn Nectar points when booking easyJet flights.

The rate was not exceedingly generous in any event, and required you to book via a special link on the Nectar website.  You received earn 1 Nectar point for every £1 you spend on easyJet, which is equivalent to 0.5% back.  It is 0.5% more than you would have got back otherwise though!

You can still redeem Nectar points for easyJet flights – see here.  The rate is no better than spending your points in Sainsbury’s (£2.50 per 500 points) and so I wouldn’t recommend it.  Save them for a special Nectar redemption offer – Shopper Points will flag them up when they come along – such as the current generous Summer Rewards promotion.  You will get at least 1p per Nectar point this way.

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

Why you shouldn’t waste Avios on Club Europe redemptions from London City
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  1. Could this mean easyJet are thinking of introducing a proper frequent traveller scheme? I know they have Flight Club but they have nothing where you can redeem points for flights.

    This is a loss of a relatively minor partner for Nectar. easyJet don’t actively promote Nectar (presumably because it’s meaningless to non-UK residents), so it’s just an extra bonus for dedicated Nectar collectors (is there such a thing?) to get a few points. I can’t see it affecting anyone’s choice of airline.

    No one seems to have noticed that Hull Trains is no longer a Nectar partner! It does seem odd that Hull Trains drops out but other FirstGroup companies remain in the scheme, will they follow?

  2. JamesB says:

    OT: Rob, you’ve mentioned a few times that one of your favourite uses of MR points are rooms at Park Plaza for visiting family and friends. How are you finding points or points and cash availability? Of all the hotel chains I find ClubCarlson the most difficult to use with premium brands in major European cities rarely ever having rooms available for Points.

    • Never had a problem but I tend to only look at specific times (weekends, summer).

      • JamesB says:

        Thanks, I’ll havs a more detailed look but so far little joy.

      • JamesB says:

        It seems I was trying to book too far in advance. Good availability next few months,

  3. mark2 says:

    re competitions.
    They always say that you have to take the prize as described. Has anyone ever managed to negotiate a change with the travel company which is actually organising it?

    • These things are rarely set in stone but it depends how each company is structured. When we do a comp we are dealing directly with the decision maker at the sponsor and it is easy to discuss any tweaks. The bigger the company and the more agencies etc in the mix the harder it gets.

  4. The Original Nick. says:

    Slightly O:T, I’ve just received the September Times Travel Magazine from the 4500 Avios promo from last year. I cancelled my DD a few months ago. Will this be the last issue did anyone know?

    • Genghis says:

      If you ordered same time as me then yes. I diarised that this would be the last one

    • james says:

      When I received the September issue, right above the address, there was a very clear message saying Final Call, this is the last copy of your current subscription. I was quite impressed with that.

    • JamesB says:

      September final issue for me, I informed them by email I did not want to renew and got an explicitly clear email in response confirming this and which issue would be the last. No hassle at all from them.

  5. Mark LLL says:

    Times travel competition, there may be multiple votes but there is only a single draw entry.

    Sorry Best Country, I lost my chance of voting in other categories by submitting the entry form straight after Best Airline.

    I should’ve exhausted all the voting options before submitting the form, oops.

  6. OT: my 40k HSBC points, for elite MasterCard, posted this month. Annual fee got taken from my last statement 😉

  7. OT: but they’re a Nectar partner, so semi relevant
    I’ve noticed Virgin Trains East Coast now have issued their staff with an iOS app that identifies customers on-board that they want to ‘surprise and delight’ this is usually in the form on a free prosecco (mini bottle usually, but full size not unheard of) or an upgrade if in standard class.

    Here’s what I know:

    The problem is although gestures like this create some goodwill they can’t encourage new customers using this method and getting a small gift every so often isn’t going to encourage people to stay (particularly as champagne is free to everyone in Club Europe),

    • Barnaby100 says:

      Spend £30k ish a year between us on east coast but never received anything. As people seat hop not sure how this would work anyway

    • Barnaby100 says:

      I would just like wifi that works, electricity that works and the advertised food offer. The breakfast service has been unavailable on almost every service recently due to staff absence and curry Thursday may as well be called no curry Thursday as they have run out or have no catering crew on board. That said have had very few delay repays in past 12 months.

      • I got an East Coast delay repay on Friday! On an early morning York train tomorrow so will see that they are doing for breakfast.

        Booked Economy up to York on Friday lunchtime due to cost (very short notice booking) and then got sent a £20 upgrade voucher by email. I managed to get them to waive the £20 for my daughter so that worked out well. No food of any sort, apart from cake, on the way back but the refund will clearly soften the blow (and I had a huge lunch at the Royal York hotel!).

    • Crafty says:

      They emailed me a gift of free lounge access, anytime even if not taking a train, for 3 months.

      Not that useful to me really, but at least they are experimenting.

  8. zsalya says:

    Most of the Times prizes exclude flights from the UK.

  9. AmandaB says:

    I won one of the prizes in the Telegraph Travel survey competition in 2013. My prize was a luxury week for 2 on a PADI dive yacht, sailing either in Komodo National Park or Raja Ampat, Indonesia. No flights included. This was around the same time I got hooked by the points bug. Our revenue Qatar flights almost instantly gave us BA silver, but our free luxury 7 day holiday turned into a 3 week 12K trip to include Orangutangs in Borneo and SCUBA diving in Lombok. But what an amazing 3 weeks, a total of 13 flights including some on some very suspect domestic airlines.

  10. OTT: does anyone have the upgrade link from gold to Platinum handy? I know i saw it recently but can’t find it. Thanks

  11. rams1981 says:

    OT curve. Has anyone been charged for going over the £200 ATM limit? I took £100 out today having already done £200 this month. It seems to have gone through as £100.

    • No

      • I thought some folk using it abroad had been when they went over? Personally I’d be prepared to be charged (and certainly would have no grounds for complaint if so!) but enjoy the current setup – I must admit I have been making less use of that aspect that I should!