Bits: Club Eurostar Shop opens, has the Avios reward chart vanished?, Cathay Pacific sale

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News in brief:

The Club Eurostar Shop opens for business

One aspect of the new Club Eurostar programme I haven’t touched on yet is the new Club Eurostar shop.

This offers a new redemption option for those travellers who are – in the nicest possible way – sick to death of Eurostar after weekly commutes and would prefer to use their points for something totally different!

The Club Eurostar Shop is only available to mid-tier Avantage and top-tier Carte Blanche members.  You will find a link on your home page after you log in.

There is certainly a lot on offer and the quality level seems to be pitched right given the target Eurostar market.

Regular readers won’t be surprised to know that the value you get is not great.  I ran a few examples and you seem to be getting around 3p per point.

This isn’t Club Eurostar trying to rip you off, it is simply logical because of how these schemes work.  If you redeem for, say, a Pure Evoke H3 DAB radio (3,460 points) then Eurostar has to buy it for you for £120.  They would be happier if you redeemed for a Eurostar ticket which costs them virtually nothing in comparison.  This is why you get around 10p to 15p per point for train redemptions.

That said, I am always in favour of giving people more choice when it comes to redemptions and the Club Eurostar Shop does add a lot of new options.

Has the Avios reward chart vanished?

I was trying to find the Avios pricing chart on ba.com yesterday.  Since the site had its revamp, however, I can’t find it anywhere.

If you want to know how much a redemption costs, it seems that you need to plug in your route into the redemption flight calculator here.

I also looked on avios.com.  It still has a zonal map but nothing as simple as the table below.

This is, of course “not a good thing”.  An unwillingness to be upfront about what redemptions actually cost is the first step to removing reward charts altogether and moving to some form of variable pricing.

Redemption chart 2

The zones relate to the distance flown:

  • Zone 1:  1 – 650 miles
  • Zone 2:  651 – 1,150 miles
  • Zone 3:  1,151 – 2,000 miles
  • Zone 4:  2,001 – 3,000 miles
  • Zone 5:  3,001 – 4,000 miles
  • Zone 6:  4,001 – 5,500 miles
  • Zone 7:  5,501 – 6,500 miles
  • Zone 8:  6,501 – 7,000 miles
  • Zone 9:  7,000+ miles

Cathay Pacific launches its winter sale

The Cathay Pacific sale is now on, with headline prices to Asia from £489 in Economy.

Business Class deals start at £2999 to Australia and New Zealand, £2359 to China, £2469 to Japan and Korea and £3619 to Hong Kong.  (Hong Kong is never a great deal with Cathay because it is a direct flight from the UK, other destinations require a change of plane.)   These are for travel from 9th January to 30th September 2018.

Cathay Pacific is a member of oneworld, so you will earn Avios and British Airways tier points when you fly with them.

Don’t forget that Cathay also flies from Manchester as well as Heathrow and Gatwick.

Full details are on the Cathay Pacific website 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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Comments

  1. Top man, thank you.

  2. Just another data point for Amex referrals. I have referred myself for an SPG card from my own BAPP card and 9000 avios have just landed in my account for the referral. I even put my BA PP card number in the “do you have an Amex already?” box, so even if it’s not explicitly allowed they’re not making any effort to block it.

    This is probably good for them, because I’m probably going to get and keep the Platinum card, to refer myself and my wife for all the other cards in future.

  3. On a related note: Rob – have you done (or could you do) a comparison of the small business and personal Platinum cards?Is there any problem/difference with referring to personal cards from the small business card?

    • Not sure about the referral angle.

      Key differences are:

      * Insurance is better on Business Plat – covers you to 80, no need to pay for things on the card to be covered

      * Priority Pass is worse on Business – you don’t get a free guest (although your main supplementary cardholder still gets one, so OK for a couple)

      * I don’t think you get one of the hotel statuses on Business (Hilton?)

  4. Nick Burch says:

    OT Has anyone else had a decent slug of Nectar points removed by a strange Sainsbury’s bonus?

    My account is showing, for last week:
    13 Dec 2017 BONUS! You earned -8,000 Pts at Sainsbury’s

    That’s right, a negative bonus! Nectar are claiming it’s a Sainsbury’s IT issue, but refusing to explain any more, refusing to say when it might be resolved, if it’s a breach or a bug, and also refusing to put the points back…

    • Mark LLL says:

      I had a series of negative bonus transactions applied to my nectar account a couple of years back.

      Thought I’d been hacked but when spoke to customer services they explained I had not used my nectar card in 12 months so my points had expired.

      They re-instated a few hundred points while I was on the line, but said they were unable to do any more.

      Worst ‘bonus’ I ever remember getting.

  5. James Wagner says:

    So BA is about to screw us yet again.

  6. OT – does anyone know if the annual Post Office Amex offer is going ahead this January? Thanks!

  7. OT: After enrolling in the hotel status benefits of amex platinum, how long do the cards usually take to come through. When I check online most of mine are still pending after 2 weeks.

    • Mine have been pending for 3 1/2 weeks which isn’t great, especially as I’m in an SPG hotel on Thursday and would have liked the gold status…..grrrr.

  8. OT: After 13 months my Lloyds Avios points have finally posted automatically! The flags are out! Final compensation was £386, extra 29879 Avios over and above the 24250 I earned and an additional upgrade so I now have 2, so effectively a 241 voucher. It was hard work but worth it in the end.

  9. the real harry1 says:

    O/T I saw online that MAN-Salzburg and MAN-Chhambery opened up yesterday – bit late for Feb half term (all gone?) but there is still some decent Avios redemption availability left for skiing season

    eg 18-25 Feb MAN-Salzburg return 17000 Avios + £70

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