Bits: Luxury Travel Diary deals, bargain at the new IC Perth, Etihad business sale

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News in brief:

Luxury Travel Diary auctions ending soon

The Luxury Travel Diary site dropped us a line about a new wave of its auctions that are closing within the next 48 hours.

Most of the items offered tend to go for far less than the standard retail price. Included are hotel stays, travel equipment and various gift vouchers.

Interesting options closing either today or tomorrow include:

5 Nights At Jannah Resort & Villas Ras Al Khaimah, UAE

5 Nights At 5* Miraggio Thermal Spa Resort, Halkidiki, Greece

7 Nights In A 5-Star Chalet For 10 People In Chamonix France (not in main ski season)

4 Nights At InterContinental Mauritius Resort Balaclava Fort

3 Nights At Belmond Grand Hotel Europe, St Petersburg, Russia

It’s worth taking a look at the different auctions. Not everything will work for you, either in terms of location, length or dates, but you’ll probably find something of interest if you poke around as there are about 110 different items.

Bargains at the new InterContinental Perth City Centre

InterContinental is about to launch a new hotel in Perth, Australia.  It is currently due to open on 15th October.

The InterContinental Perth City Centre website is here.  It looks impressive.  The building used to be the Rydges Perth hotel but has had a top-to-toe refurbishment.  See the images above and below.

As often happens with IHG hotels, it is discounting reward nights whilst the hotel builds up occupancy.

You can currently book the InterContinental Perth for just 35,000 IHG Rewards Club points per night.

The cash price is around A$350 per night (£205) which makes this an excellent points redemption.  Even better, the 35,000 points rate is available for any night currently open for booking, even in 2018.  If you plan to visit Perth and have some IHG Rewards Club points it might be worth locking in a reward night now, as the price is likely to jump to 50,000 or 60,000 points per night when the hotel is open.

Thanks to Daniel for this.

PS.  Anika will also be checking out the brand new InterContinental Ljubljana in a couple of weeks, so look out for that review.  The editorial budget won’t stretch to Perth unfortunately …..

Etihad launches a business class sale

Etihad has launched a business class sale – you must book by 27th September for travel by 30th November.

Regular readers will know that I rate Etihad highly, with the A380 Business Class studio (reviewed here) potentially being the best business class seat on the market.

Headline deals from London are (all flights are via Abu Dhabi):

  • Abu Dhabi £1613
  • Bangkok £1610
  • Kuala Lumpur £1811
  • Melbourne £3014
  • Mumbai £1711
  • Singapore £2060

Similar prices are available from Edinburgh and Manchester.

These are not ‘bargain basement’ fares but, given that you get to start in the UK and are flying a top quality product (at least from Heathrow with the A380) it is not a bad deal.

Full details of the business class sale are here.

(Want to earn more hotel points?  Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Promos’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

ARCC: a new way to keep your Amex points when cancelling Gold or Platinum
Club Carlson family room redemptions .... a good deal or not?

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  1. How is it cheaper to fly to Bangkok via AUH than to AUH only when Bangkok is about another 7 hours from AUH and then another 7 hours back?

    • Why is Rob’s house in Kensington more expensive than a 10-acre farm in the Scottish highlands?

      • Surely the pressing question is why Rob’s 10 acre estate i Kensington is worth more than …. (insert name of small country) 🙂

      • You’re missing Mike’s point. This would be like receiving the place in Kensington and the farm in Scotland for less than the price of the Kensington place alone. As he says, the flight to BKK includes the flight to AUH.

        • Abu Dhabi is a direct flight. If you are off to Bangkok you are changing plane which makes Etihad less attractive than BA or Thai, so they need to discount more.

      • 99% of properties in London are more expensive than 10 acres of farmland in Scotland!

    • There’s currently a glut of seats to BKK. As a result, BKK fares are low with most airlines.

      • Thai King’s cremation is going to put a damper on most things in Thailand for much of October.

    • ……….because LHR – AUH is a direct flight and LHR – BKK with Etihad involves changing aircraft in AUH and has to compete with EVA, Thai and BA who all fly direct from LHR to BKK. First principle of airline revenue pricing is that passengers will pay substantial premium for direct flight. LHR – AUH is a direct flight.

    • Bariummeal says:

      I have been working in AUH. Corp biz ticket £3k from London. But ticket from London to Tokyo with a fortnight stopover in AUH – £2k. A nice free Japan vacation for me!

  2. Anyone here had any success/bargains with luxury travel diary auctions?

    • Had a few good things, but double check the real ‘value’ – sometimes the quoted worth is way out. You are put in touch with the vendor/hotel manager/etc directly and so far, everything has been really easy.

  3. Am I right in thinking the IC Robertson Quay in Singapore is also new, or is it just a refurb? Their opening cash rates are really good, although I haven’t checked redemptions.

  4. the real harry1 says:
  5. For Perth, spend some Avios on the non stop Qantas flight? 😛

  6. the real harry1 says:

    gosh – not a word of comfort/ optimism re: Uber from Sadiq Kahn on Radio 4 a few minutes ago!

    a very unsympathetic stance, repeating the 4 issues making Uber not able to satisfy the ‘fit & proper’ requirement

    no intervention from the Mayor likely – ‘we’ll see them in court’

    • I hope they ban Uber worldwide. A service yes but nowhere near regulated enough.

      • I actually rely on UBER quite heavily around the globe where English is not spoken widely and I don’t have to explain the driver where I need to go. I can do without UBER in London (as no choice longer) but luckily here in Sri Lanka where I’m currently its been a life saviour

      • Perhaps better to keep Uber but force each car to have a man with a red flag walking in front shouting – ” this car offends local taxi drivers”

        • Lostantipod says:

          Somebody stop this thread drift before we need to launch the coast guard to find it again

      • Uber in other parts of the world is excellent and a far better service than the ‘regulated’ taxi drivers. Far safer and dont rip you off.

    • The whole thing isn’t about Uber its about them trying to control the unstoppable, whether Uber is banned or not, a universal app where you can call transport will come whether they like it or not.

  7. O/T – got a free weekend weekend car hire from Avis (in the EU) to use before March, I lose Hilton Diamond in March too so would like to use that one last time in the hotel that looks after Diamonds. Trying to save the pennies so looking for an RFS destination. Looking for somewhere to go with nice/beautiful drives or at least the opportunity to do so. Any ideas, thoughts or suggestions for somewhere to go for a weekend?

    • Fly to INV and then drive down to Edinburgh, through Deeside and avoiding the A9, and then back from there. Of course, that assumes you’re starting in London, which may not be the case…

    • Conrad Algarve would seen suitable, there is also a new Lake Como property opening soon.

      • On Lake Como – “This hotel will soon be joining the Hilton Portfolio of Brands and is presently accepting reservations for arrival March 1, 2018 and beyond.”

        Thanks for suggestions!

    • As a follow on to this, my Diamond expiry is 03/18. Is this 01/03/18 or 31/03/18?

    • Avis like to slap hidden charges on to the “free” weekend rental on pick up. For me it worked out cheaper the following year to pay for a Hertz rental instead!

  8. The IC is 10K more points per night for the weekend I want than the Hilton which is nearby, there are a number of new hotels opening in the next year so hopefully a little more competition and some better offers, I quite fancy the new Doubletree on the river bank.

  9. I know there’s certain origin cities that consistently have cheap premium fares but BKK must be the world capital of cheap premium fares as a destination!

    • Yes and no. On a mileage basis, I’m not sure Bangkok is routinely the cheapest but as a quasi Asian hub, it does have a lot of connections.

      Mentally, £1500 is very good, £1750 is usually ballpark and £2000 is high, based on ME3 (BA is crap 8 abreast) with Thai a little more (usually early £2000s) and Eva splitting the ME3 and Thai.

  10. OT: planning on getting flights in business to the Bahamas for next year using the 241. The taxes from London are coming to £630pp. Is there a cheaper option to reduce this? I tried online to look from Jersey but it comes back as “BA and its partners do not fly this route”


    • Select ‘with stops’ and it will show from Jersey, but remember that you actually need to fly to Jersey in the first place with all your luggage. It only works if you live near Gatwick so you can do the Jersey flight the previous day, go home, get your stuff and then go back to the airport the next day. Note that the gap in London must be under 24 hours.

      • Tried to reduce the taxes on BAPP using Jersey but it didn’t shave anything off a LHR-BKK routing. All stays less than 24 hours.

    • The Bahamas flight goes from Heathrow. Depending on when you are travelling you may need to swoop at T-355 as it’s one of the routes where they seldom release more than 2 CW seats and the route is shared with the Cayman Islands so you effectively have 2 destinations vying for the redemption seats. I was lucky last year and got 2 x CW seats on that flight which we flew in last month, but in previous years they have been snapped up too quickly in school holiday periods.

    • Also, if you start your flight in Jersey the previous day, you should be able to check your luggage all the way through – we did this at Manchester with an overnight stop in London and it was so much less hassle than collecting it and re-checking. This can only be done if the flights are on one booking reference, AND, in the case of Manchester, BA now racks up the “tax” element to about £100 for the privilege.

  11. OT – The application form for the Lloyds Avios Duo Rewards cards doesn’t ask for the applicant’s username or number. I understand that they generally try and match to an account by using the email address used for registration, but what if the applicant doesn’t already have an account (only a BAEC account) on that email address (or any other address)? The CC statement shows how many avios are earned, but there’s no way to access them?

    • Lloyds will ask Avios to open an account. You then need to persuade Avios or Lloyds to give you the number and password.

      • Thank you! We’ve used the “Forgot Password” on the site to try and get the username, but it says that no account is registered under that email address… so I guess either we’re trying to get into the account too soon (although it is now over a week since the first statement was generated) or the request to open the account may not have been made…

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