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Bits: Club Aspire at Gatwick North, Virgin moves Las Vegas to Heathrow & adds Barbados, Virgin car rental deals

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News in brief:

Club Aspire re-opening at Gatwick North delayed

The opening of the new Club Aspire lounge at Gatwick North, the easyJet terminal, has slipped.

It was originally meant to be 28th May.  The website now says ‘early June’ which is annoyingly vague.

This replaces the old Aspire lounge – which was the old Delta lounge and (or am I confused?) the lower level of the BA lounge in years gone by.  It’s the one in the basement, basically, underneath the No 1 Lounge.

The eventual opening will be good news for any Priority Pass or Lounge Club cardholder as you have an alternative if the No 1 Lounge is full and you don’t like the Hoxton hipster vibe of MyLounge!

Full details are on the Aspire website here.

Virgin Atlantic moves Las Vegas flights to Heathrow

Virgin Atlantic moves Las Vegas flight to Heathrow and adds Boston, Barbados

Virgin Atlantic has announced two new flights to the US.

From 31st March 2019 passenger can fly from London Heathrow to Las Vegas.  This route replaces the current Gatwick to Las Vegas flight.

In addition Virgin Atantic has announced a second daily flight from Heathrow to Boston from the same date.

The Las Vegas flight will be operated by a Boeing 787 with 31 Upper Class seats, 35 Premium seats and 192 economy seats.  The Boston service will be operated by an A330-300. Both routes are on sale now.

There will also be a return of the seasonal flight from Heathrow to Barbados operating between 11th December 2018 and 19th February 2019.

How to earn Virgin Atlantic miles from UK credit cards

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Virgin Flying Club miles from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Virgin Flying Club miles.  That page is regularly updated with the latest special offers and will still be accurate even if you are reading this article months after publication.

Attractive Virgin / Hertz offer

Virgin Flying Club members can earn 2x the usual number of miles when they rent a car from Hertz.

The usual earning rate is 1,000 miles per booking (this is already generous and is our preferred choice for miles when renting from Hertz) and during this promotion you will get 2,000 miles. In addition Virgin Flying Club members get a 15% discount, although you may want to compare this with other discount codes for which you qualify.

You must book before 3rd June 2018 and rent by 30th September 2018.

The booking page is here.

Virgin / Enterprise Rent-A-Car offer

If Hertz is not where you need to be, Virgin Flying Club members can also earn 3x the usual number of miles when they rent a car from Enterprise between now and the end of August.

The Virgin / Enterprise partnership is not hugely lucrative. The usual earning rate is just 100 Flying Club miles per day, with a maximum of 1,200 miles per rental. This promotion increases that to 300 miles per day, with a 3,600 mile cap for a 12-day rental. This is still not amazing, but if you need an Enterprise car anyway…

During this promotion you can also add an additional driver free of charge.

You must book via this special website here to earn triple miles. You can learn more about the Virgin / Enterprise partnership on this page of the Virgin Atlantic site.

(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. Great to see the increased coverage of VS on HFP over recent weeks. Expect we’ll see more as the JV partnership with Delta/AF-KLM comes to fruition…
    https://news.delta.com/delta-air-france-klm-and-virgin-atlantic-sign-agreements-strengthening-trans-atlantic-partnership

    • TGLoyalty says:

      I’m surprised redemptions are taking so long as surely the JV approval has no impact on that

      • the_real_a says:

        The taxes/fees element of Air France/KLM redemption’s does not look attractive at all!

        • the real harry1 says:

          It looks terrible compared to BA/ RFS. I got my hopes up too soon and have transferred points over to Virgin – maybe 500,000 so far – in anticipation. But on deeper investigation, if Virgin just adopts AF/ KLM redemption rules for Europe, I won’t use the points that way.

          I started converting to BA again, such is my disillusionment. But we’ll see later on this year, I guess.

  2. OT – BAPP. Someone was asking about points for adding a supplementary card recently. I applied for one last night and 3000 avios have appeared this morning. I didn’t get an offer.

  3. Matt B says:

    I think it’s the 31st March not May

  4. Lumma says:

    OT but there was something in the comments the other day about needing to be on the booking to get the virgin miles with the number 1 traveller bookings.

    I did two separate bookings for the MyLounge at Gatwick north for myself and a friend for the bank holiday weekend, checking my virgin account I’ve only been given one lot of 350 miles (which is still wrong as it should just be 200 for the MyLounge).

    I’m not going to chase it for the 50 miles that I’m missing but it could be that they’re cracking down on multiple bookings for people who aren’t the account holder.

  5. Frankie says:

    I have happy memories off sitting down the back on the only few pairs of double seats on VS43 (747) from Gatwick when there was no other direct flight from London and long before HFP was a twinkle in Rob’s eye.

  6. The hertz link doesn’t work for me (maybe because I’m in France) . Does it work for others and do we have to use a certain CDP or PC code? Thanks

  7. Macca says:

    Just tried for book Prem Eco LHR-LAS in July and all options routes via LAX. Are the flights definitely bookable already?

    • Macca says:

      ITA is showing nothing in Eco or Prem Eco through the whole second half of July .

    • Matt b says:

      July 2018? The LHR flights start next year.

      • Macca says:

        Oh!!! Hah! That’ll be why then. Totally missed the 2019 part, thanks Matt

  8. KBuffett says:

    Rob, just out of interest, do you hold status with Virgin? I’m thinking of moving some spend over to them from BA.

  9. the real harry1 says:

    O/T You may remember that as I tend to organise our Avios redemptions T-355, I generally have nearly a year’s flights lined up for (school) holidays to our place in the sun, the reason we (you might think tediously) always go to the same place is not so much because the house abroad is a significant ongoing cost but because my mother in law loves both her daughter and her grandchildren and doesn’t otherwise get any time with them, she will clearly be pushing up the daisies soon so we are on borrowed time; I love it out there as well so sameness of holiday destination doesn’t bother me for now.

    This was the reason we had about 30 Avios flights lined up when BA withdrew the free drinks & snacks offering on European flights – despite me having paid for them at time of booking. You may remember they offered us 5x 1000 Avios compo, total, ie said it was a one off & you can’t get it twice (or 6×5 in our case). I appealed directly to Mr Cruz and on his instructions we were given 1000 Avios for each of these pre-booked flights, which I was happy about so did not feel the need to take it further or agitate.

    However, I am growing increasingly annoyed about the way BA has deliberately created a culture of turning down legitimate EC261 claims, basically obfuscating, denying facts and telling untruths several times until the claimant folds & goes away or tales it to CEDR/ MCOL. The whole way of their thinking seems immoral and not very different to dodgy parking penalty notices that make old people quake & pay up instead of standing their ground.

    But I have already got my fair compo. What about the other many thousands who should have had the same but got nothing, ie F&B withdrawn but no 1000 Avios compo?

    I have screenshots that clearly show BA’s offer at the time of ticket purchase. There is a 6 years limit for people disadvantaged to claim compo. Question: should I stick the screenshots on (say) FT so that people are motivated to get their compo? Or is it just poking a wasps’ nest?

    • the real harry1 says:

      Thinking about the numbers, we had 30 Avios flights lined up AFTER the end of free F&B c.11th January 2017, so would actually have had something like 40 flights lined up when it was announced. ISTR we were anticipating it in August 2016 here on HFP so that’s why I took the screenshots.

    • It’s good to have you back Harry. I think there’s a lot to be said for going back to the same place – in our case we like that we know where we’re going when we’re driving, where everything is, which shops and restaurants we like. You can waste a few days in a new place just finding your way around.

      • the real harry1 says:

        In BC days (Before Cids, and I guess we did actually do some of this with toddlers) my wife & I wandered through Spain, Med coast, Sicily, NZ, Australia, Thailand. Plus when I was single I did a lot more. A helluva lot more.

        So I am actually looking forward to being set free, as is my wife – she has been making a few noises recently about holidays but 5 or us to (say) Thailand for a few weeks wouldn’t be cheap (& my parents never took me abroad for holidays so I don’t feel too mean 🙂 )

        • Crafty says:

          In my view Thailand is exceptionally cheap if you go to places that haven’t been taken over yet by Western tourists, and aren’t too snobby to stay in guesthouses.

          Other southeast Asian destinations even more so.

        • the real harry1 says:

          Actually I have lived a good % of my life outside the UK:
          Italy 1 year
          France 1 year
          Place in the sun 10 years
          others 3 years
          =25%

          So I am well qualified to say the UK is crap.

    • Thomas Howard says:

      Is there an independent register of weather related delays? I’ve had EC261 turned down on that basis but have no idea how I find out whether there was a weather issue at Heathrow that didn’t impact any other “London” airport.

      • the real harry1 says:

        Just ask on the EC261 thread on Flyertalk – there are some helpful people there who will look up your flightonce you give the details.

    • BA are entitled to put people on a no fly list.
      They have had a dirty tricks department.
      They can identify you from the above.

      So I suggest that any fighting for fairness for such things should be done by a organisation which has significant defences itself, and can ensure anonymity (E.g. The Guardian, MSE, Select Committee)

    • TRH – completely agree with your view on BA approach to EU261, impressive getting the office of Snr Cruz to grant you compensation.

      Nice to see you back & firing on all cylinders.

  10. Bits – To get a reward saver fare with BA I understand you need to have “earned” 1 avios in the last 12 months. I have transferred Amex points in the last 12 months but my account is not giving me the standard RFS fares for domestic flights. For example a business class domestic is coming out at £87.13 plus miles. What do I need to do if an amex transfer doesn’t count. Never had this issue before

    • David says:

      Have you checked by trying another route or flight.
      My initial assumption is that your RFS could be on, but something about the flight in question is not setup properly. I.e. it is treating it as operated by an airline other than BA. click the flight number, see if it says who is operating.

    • Doug M says:

      I believe it’s fly on a OW flight and credit to BAEC, as in earn an Avios through flying.

      • Peter K says:

        It’s not through flying only add I’ve used it in the past with only non-flying avios in avios.com

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