Bits: new Virgin / Heathrow Rewards offer, new BA Amex spend bonus, 6000 Avios with Tesco insurance

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News in brief:

Heathrow Rewards launches new Virgin Flying Club offer

Heathrow Rewards is launching a promotion for Virgin Flying Club members today – but it isn’t bonus miles.

Anyone who transfers their Heathrow Rewards points to Virgin  Atlantic – at the standard 1:1 rate, in chunks of 250 – will be entered into a competition.

The prizes are:

First prize – 20,000 Virgin Flying Club miles

Second prize – 10,000 Virgin Flying Club miles

Third prize – 5 people will win 5,000 Virgin Flying Club miles

Anyone who makes a transfer to Virgin during September will be entered.  You will only be entered once, irrespective of the number or size of transfers you make.

If Virgin Flying Club miles don’t appeal, remember that the 50% conversion bonus on Heathrow Rewards transfers to Avios is still running until 30th September.

Heathrow Rewards

New BA Amex spend bonus

Some British Airways American Express cardholders will be contacted today about a new spending promotion.

Eligible British Airways American Express cardholders will be offered 2,500 bonus Avios for spending £5,000 between 1st September and 30th November

Eligible British Airways American Express Premium Plus cardholders will be offered 5,000 bonus Avios for spending £10,000 between 1st September and 30th November

Whilst these offers are worth having if you are targetted, you should think carefully before pursuing them.

If you have already hit your spending target for the year to trigger your 2-4-1 voucher, it might be better to get a new card and hit a new spend target:

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold charge card (£2,000 spend required to trigger 20,000 bonus Amex points, worth 20,000 Avios) or

Starwood Preferred Guest American Express credit card (£1,000 spend required to trigger 10,000 bonus SPG points, worth 10,000 Avios) Representative APR 36.2% variable including £75 fee based on a notional £1200 credit limit or

Lloyds Avios Rewards credit card (you receive a BA Avios upgrade voucher for spending £7,000) Representative APR 23.7% variable including £24 fee based on a notional £1200 credit limit or

IHG Rewards Club Premium MasterCard (20,000 IHG points for signing up and a free night voucher – potentially worth £250 at a top hotel – for spending £10,000)  Representative APR 41.5% variable including £99 fee based on a notional £1200 credit limit

Any of these would be more valuable than putting an extra £5,000 – £10,000 through your BA Amex.

BA Amex cropped

6,000 Avios or 6,250 Virgin miles with Building & Contents Insurance

Tesco Bank is currently offering 2,500 bonus Clubcard points (converts into 6,000 Avios or 6,250 Virgin Flying Club miles) when you take out its Building & Contents Insurance for the first time.

Full details are in this Shopper Points article.

You should compare the Tesco price with the current Alan Boswell Group insurance deal.  Boswell is an Avios partner and they are giving out 5,000 – 10,000 Avios with policies taken out this month.  Details are here.

(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.)

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  1. OT – IHG Premium CC. Anyone having difficultly paying by ‘debit’ card online? Mine keeps being rejected yet plenty of balance on the ‘debit’ card to pay it.

    • Creation is a bit funny in my experience. Cards will be rejected one day and accepted the next.

    • Yes – I am in the US at the moment and tried to pay my bill a couple of days ago as it needs to be paid before we come home – it rejected my debit card too. I have messaged them but so far no reply.

    • Scallder says:

      I put through a payment today and it went through ok…

  2. OT: I added my wife as a supp to my PRGC under last month’s promo that Amex was running. I thought points post pretty much immediately on acceptance, but it’s been 2 weeks since card arrived and want to take advantage of the Plat upgrade offer in case it gets withdrawn again. Could anyone comment on their experience?

  3. The BA Amex deal might have just come at the perfect time for me, if I get offered it.

    I’m nearly at my Lloyds Avios target, so I’m delaying spending on that until March. About to cancel my Preferred Rewards Gold card and keep my Membership Rewards alive with a Gold Credit card.

    Effectively 1.5 Avios/ £ for the next 3 months, at which point I may apply for the IHG card (one of my Accelerate targets).

    • Rich,
      If you have spent £15k on the prg card, worth going over the year to get the 10k MRs bonus. 2nd yr fee might kick in but you get pro rate refund anyway once you cancel down to gold credit card. Also chance to earn a further 20k MRs with a plat upgrade..

      .wonder if one can downgrade to the gold credit card from plat to preserve MRs tho? Anyone ever done this?

      • Actually, I’ve barely used it this year. Just kept it for Amex Offers, referrals, the lounge visits, and mainly to keep my MR account open. Oh, and double points on travel spend when I remember to use it for that!

        I toyed with the idea of aiming for £15k spend next year, but couldn’t justify the £140 fee with other cards and offers about, especially since I can keep my MR account open with a free card.

      • Polly,
        I asked Amex about using the Gold Credit Card without the PRGC, and they told me that I could keep it with an annual fee (£35 IIRC). It would keep the MR account open, but it also prevents you churning for a sign up bonus, so I can’t see any reason why you’d want to keep it?

        • No annual fee on the one I’ve got. American Express Rewards Credit Card.

          Yeah, it’s a shame I won’t be able to churn the PRGC, but to me it’s more valuable to keep the MR account open. I have a hefty balance in there and no desire to commit it to BA (or somewhere else) yet. Once I’ve cleared it out, I can cancel the card and reapply for the PRGC after 6 months.

        • The Urbanite says:

          I have the Gold Credit card – put far more spend through it than I would get from churning PRG so no incentive at all for me to cancel it.

  4. flyforfun says:

    OT/- re Lloyds £7000 bonus, is there anywhere on the account or statement is says when you have to collect it by or how close you are to the target? Can’t see anything on mine!

    • Name Change says:

      To piggyback on this, where would one find the voucher once it is triggered? I assume in the Avios account somewhere, but I can’t seem to find it…

      • No, you have to manually track it. Remember, it’s *account* year, not calendar year, despite what you may read elsewhere.

        I just keep a spreadsheet with each monthly bill, though you’ll have to manually adjust the amount in your anniversary month. Don’t forget to subtract the card fee, which doesn’t count towards the bonus.

        Also don’t forget to change your card at Amazon, Apple Pay, Uber, Spotify and the million other places it is your default card, if you’re trying to delay triggering the voucher.

        It will drop into your account. Go to Your Statement, and click on Vouchers. In my experience I got a letter informing me, but it took them several months to bother to send it out, so I only really got 9 months validity.

    • No, no tracker at all, unlike the real Amex cards…people keep getting caught by early triggering of it..annoying. Just have to keep track of ongoing statements totals.

    • Are your avios posting? If not you may be having the same issue as me and others – there is a problem with Lloyds’ IT which takes 26 weeks (!) to rectify. If this is the case, you have to call them and ask them to post your avios and voucher manually, which they will do. The problem also means you can’t see you cumulative spend, however I just added up my monthly payments to calculate this, they all appear on your statements.

  5. OT: Deliveroo 500 avios came through today, nice surprise as completely forgot….

  6. Andrew_A says:

    OT – Once i have the Lloyds Avios voucher how do I use this with a BA 2 for 1 to allow three of us to travel? I assume the LLoyds voucher would need to be on a separate booking but both the voucher and the 2 for 1 would be in my name. I usually travel with my wife on the 2 for 1 and we have a Household account.
    Thanks in advance

    • You’ve got a problem there as the BA 241 is to be used on and the Upgrade voucher on!

      The holder of the 241 voucher has to be one of the people booked using it.

      Think the person on upgrade voucher has to be named on the plane ticket as well.

      • Andrew_A says:

        I wasn’t sure if that was the case. I thought I had read on here that someone had used a Lloyds upgrade voucher for a relative and not themselves.
        My other option is to get my wife to put enough spend through her BA card to get another 2 for 1 but she would need to upgrade it as its a free blue one.

        • I’ve just tried a dummy booking and it asks for the passenger name and runs on through to the final payment page – so despite the rules I doubt you’ll have a problem making the booking for your wife … unless you have to do it offline (e.g. open-jaw) where it might get picked up.

  7. OT – when using the Lloyds upgrade voucher, does the flight have to start in the UK? I can’t see it in T & Cs but may have missed it!

  8. O/T is there a limit to the number of additional (paying) guests that can get into a lounge on a Priority Pass (subject to how busy lounge already is, mood of person on desk etc.). Hoping to get 11 of us into MCO on two cards !! Many thanks in advance.

    • Some of the lounges are cutting down on groups….fearful of hens and stags…you will be lucky if you succeed!

      • Thanks Polly, though the group includes two pensioners and five between 6 and 16 – would be arguably the worst stag night ever ! Will give it a go anyway. Was just wondering if I had missed something in the T & C’s about any blanket restriction on numbers.

        • Very funny Matt, gave me a Giggle…its just they keep putting signs outside now saying, at full capacity. But still let paying guests in! I think you can take as many paying guests in as you like. Have not seen a limit mentioned anywhere…

  9. Graham Walsh says:

    Not sure if I’ve seen this mentioned before, just trying to send a message to Amex via my account and it says this “Email servicing is no longer available. You can still access your email inbox and sent messages here”.

    So much easier sometimes. Chat is offline too, what’s the point in having it!!!

    • And chat is not getting good feedback …..

    • Its called cost-cutting. Lots of staff have been ‘let go’ from Brighton. The chat staff are located in India but utilise westernised ‘names’ so as to give the impression they’re Brighton based.

    • LOL there’s been lots of chat on it in the comments on here – generally a major downgrade but Amex have dismissed any formal complaints about it (I think quite a few of us logged complaints)

      • the real harry1 says:

        won’t be many Mumbai agents answering the phone: ‘I’m free!’ 🙂

      • I’ve just filled in an online pop-up survey on amex website and asked for emails to be brought back instead of chat. I’m sure I’m not the only one.

  10. Hi,
    Slightly off topic here.
    I have the BA Amex Premium Plus card, and have recently redeemed the companion voucher for travel next year. Question is would it be possible to now cancel the card? Would this invalidate the voucher if it has been redeemed?

    My partner also have the same card, and have hit the target and been given the companion voucher, but have not redeemed. In this circumstance, does it mean only the only option is to downgrade to the free card? Would this then change the validity of the vouchers to only 12 months rather than 24 months?

    Thank you!

    • Optimus Prime says:

      You can cancel the card even before redeeming the voucher.

      The only requirement is to use any Amex to pay the taxes when using the voucher.

  11. OT: Have any of our Edinburgh readers found someplace to do the amazon paypoint topup? The
    co-op shops on both Shandwick Place and Frederick Street refused to scan the bar code on either phone or paper today.

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