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Bits: Virgin’s new afternoon tea in pictures, new Oman Air First Class suite, £20 off Opodo flights

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News in brief:

Virgin’s new Afternoon Tea in the Clubhouse

As I wrote last week, Virgin Atlantic has launched a new afternoon tea service in the Heathrow Clubhouse in Terminal 3.

You will receive a stand of sandwiches and cakes plus tea or a glass of rose champagne.  This is a new collaboration with celebrity cake maker Eric Lanlard.  Everything is free, of course.

Here are a few photos from the launch yesterday, which do look very good.  Click on the pictures to enlarge:

Virgin Atlantic afternoon tea Heathrow Clubhouse

and

Virgin Atlantic afternoon tea Heathrow Clubhouse

and

Virgin Atlantic afternoon tea Heathrow Clubhouse

and there is an ice-cream machine too!  The launch was followed by a flight to New York to showcase the Economy Delight product and to trial the on-board afternoon tea service.  A report on this will follow next week.

Virgin Atlantic afternoon tea Heathrow Clubhouse

New Oman Air First Class suite – and how to redeem for it

Oman Air has launched its new First Class ‘suite’ which will debut on future Boeing 787-9 deliveries.

The seat has electronically controlled doors, which enclose a relatively standard sized 76 inch long – when reclined – flat bed seat.

Oman Air new First Class suite

It looks a little claustraphobic from the pictures, and not hugely different from the Qatar Airways Qsuite, which of course is a business class product.  The only major difference seems to be that your feet are ‘free’ with the Oman suite and not tucked into a cubby hole.

Whilst you should expect the seat to debut on the Heathrow to Muscat route, there is no easy way to redeem for it as Oman Air is not in a major airline alliance.

Unless you have Oman Air Sindbad miles, your best chance of flying the new suite is via Etihad GuestAs per this page of the Etihad Guest website,  a one-way First Class redemption between London and Muscat on Oman Air costs 80,000 Etihad Guest miles.

Oman Air new First Class suite

£20 off Opodo flights

Opodo has launched a new flight discount code, valid until 30th April.

Promo code FORTUNE20 will get you £20 off a £450+ return flight booking, departing from the UK.

The Opodo booking page is here.

(Want to earn more Virgin Flying Club miles?  Click here to see our recent articles on Virgin Atlantic and Flying Club and click here for our home page with the latest news on earning and spending other airline and hotel points.)

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Comments

  1. Scottydogg says:

    OT , we are flying through Gatwick South in a few weeks so were looking to use No1 louge with our Priority pass (amex plat) , was reading on trip advisor yesterday and loads of negative reviews about people not getting in as they have not paid the £5 per person booking fee ?
    I’m not wanting to pay a booking fee (because i never had to anywhere else) , am i best off just getting a table at the Grain Store and ordering a bottle of wine and a sandwich ?
    We are 2 adults 2 kids so is that £60 off any bill , and buying alcohol is allowed ?

    • You can go to both, if no1 wants you to pay then just skip it

    • Flying out of gatwick last Thursday and about two months back, each time between 8am and 10am: Turned away anyone without reservation. Lots of unhappy people.

    • I’m going to try and use ours at the Escape lounge at MAN T3 at the end of May, however it was full when I last tried to get in in November. Does anyone know if you can pay to reserve it and is it £5 per person or per party? There will be 4 of us so not convinced it’s worth £20 (very limited food and drink, makes the BA Terraces lounge next door look highly desirable!).

      • Tom Cook says:

        Hi Anna

        We’ve not had any issues getting into the Escape Lounge at T3 the past 3 times we’ve flown (three of us, flying last August, December, and then this April). These were early morning flights mind. We have access to the BA lounge through our Silver status but choose Escape for the decent bacon and sausage sarnies.

        Mind you – we’re flying at the end of May (Sat 26th, so the bank holiday weekend) on a mid-PM flight so now you’re making me wonder if I should rethink!!!

        • So are we – trying the direct BA service to Nice for half term! We’ve only been in the Escape lounge once, mid afternoon and were decidedly underwhelmed by the buffet and wine selection. Hopefully try and get in before they stop serving breakfast this time, though it was 10 am on a Friday in November when we were turned away, no idea why it was so busy.

        • Tom Cook says:

          Ah we’re heading to Florence, again trying the new direct service! I think the drinks are better in the BA lounge but the last few times it’s been breakfast and a quick drink plus coffee hence Escape lounge has been our choice as the BA lounge hasn’t had a hot breakfast options when we’ve called in.

    • It’s annoying, but I’d pay the £5 to guarantee you get in, especially with the unlimited priority pass and you’ll get priority security at Gatwick for the £5. You’ll definitely be getting more value from using the lounge than the £5 and with No1 traveller you’re getting a decent experience

  2. OT: Has anyone had any experience of applying for an increased Amex credit limit via the online portal?

    My partner has SPG card with a 12k limit and BAPP with a 2k limit. I have some big bills coming up that I’d like to put on the BAPP to get the 241. I asked Amex if they could move some limit from the SPG to the BAPP but they said they couldn’t because the account is only 6 weeks old. I am tempted to apply for a straight limit increase on the BAPP via the site, but I’m unsure if doing so will have any negative consequences or cause any kind of credit pull. Also, I pay the bills for these cards but on the limit increase page it asks for my partner’s income, which is considerably lower than mine, so I don’t know how that will factor in.

    It will be irritating if I end up only being able to put 2k on the BAPP. The bill is large enough to cover the remaining 8k of 241 spend, but it has to be paid in person and it is not tenable to pay 2k, clear the balance and then pay another 2k etc

    • I had a similar issue last year, and phoned customer services, the person I spoke with first didn’t seem to grasp what I was asking for in the first instance (moving the credit limit rather than applying for more). I asked to speak to a supervisor who did get it and made the change in minutes.

    • Tom Cook says:

      Often when I get a £12k – £14k limit on a credit card (which I know I won’t need) I will immediately go and lower the limit so as to “free up some space” for capacity if needed elsewhere.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Ive requested credit limit switches within hours of receiving an Amex card so I suggest just ringing back and getting a different agent to do it as it’s 100% possible

  3. Newquay Brown says:

    There are right now literally thousands (over 4000) of £1 Europcar one-way route/ date combos available with long availability into late 2018. https://www.europcar.co.uk/deals/one-way-uk.step – particularly good if you are heading to an airport. Their site is running slow, though.

    Not sure why the availability has suddenly improved or why Europcar have added more starting points. There are never usually any £1 opportunities starting in Cornwall, for example, but I just got Newquay Airport-LHR for 20th July (and could have picked up in Truro or Penzance as well). Saved me £120.

    • Have noticed this for a while now. Just booked LBA with a drop off in MAN for June 10 leaving my car at LBA as returning to LBA 5 days later. Cheaper than paying LBA’s Dick Turpin taxi rates.

    • Shame I can’t get the site to work on Internet Explorer (work PC), and it doesn’t work on mobile. So I can’t use the offer!

      • I can now get on the website, but can’t see how to book! Must be an internet explorer issue

  4. Matt Black says:

    OT – my partner has Amex gold, will she get 3k MR for taking out a Supplementary card or does she have to be targeted?

    • Tom Cook says:

      I’ve generally waited for the email offering the bonus. Others have reported clicking through and filling in the supp forms but not submitting these as it can trigger the system to show your interest and then you get the bonus offer.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Added mine a couple weeks ago and got 3k straight away. Wasn’t targeted.

      Make sure you do it after you have the main card and not with the initial application.

    • I have just applied. Same with BAPP: card arrived today; 3,000 points last week.

    • AndyGWP says:

      My g/f applied for a supp for me as soon as her card was delivered, and got the 3k immediately

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