Bits: Amex transfers to SPG suspended, Hilton ‘double points’ extended, our IHG points winner, MoS

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News in brief:

American Express suspends Starwood Membership Rewards transfers

American Express Membership Rewards has suspended transfers into Starwood Preferred Guest until 8th August.

This is inconvenient if you were hoping to pick up a Marriott Travel Package before they shoot up in price on 18th August, or indeed book a redemption at a property which is going up in cost on the same date.

8th August is an odd choice of date.  I would have expected transfers to be suspended until 18th August, to ensure that there is no confusion over the ratio.  I am expecting the transfer rate to move from 2:1 to 2:3 on 18th August in line with the 1:3 alignment of Starwood Preferred Guest with ‘new Marriott’ although this has not been confirmed.

Membership Rewards transfers to Starwood Preferred Guest suspended

Hilton Honors extends its ‘double points’ promotion

Hilton Honors has extended its ‘double points’ Summer promotion which is open for registration here.

The offer was due to end on 31st August but has been extended to 9th September, to take in the Labor Day holiday weekend in the US.

If you haven’t already registered, it is very straightforward with minimal small print: you will earn DOUBLE Hilton Honors base points for every stay between 1st May and 9th September.  

There is no cap to what you can earn and there are no minimum stay requirements.  It really couldn’t be simpler.  You will earn 10 base points per $1 spent, plus an additional 10 promotional points, plus any status bonus.

There is no small print except that you need to register in advance via the Hilton website (which has not been changed yet to reflect the 9th September extension):

There is no minimum stay requirement

Existing bookings still count

All Hilton Family properties (Hilton, Hampton, Curio, Waldorf-Astoria, Conrad etc) are taking part – there is no list of non-participating hotels – except for Hampton properties in China

Remember that the Home2 Suites and Tru brands earn a lower 5 base points per $1.

Hilton Honors double points Summer 2018

Who won 100,000 IHG Rewards Club points?

Two weeks ago we ran a competition in association with IHG giving away 100,000 IHG Rewards Club points to one lucky HfP reader.

We can now confirm the winner: Randall C.

Congratulations (and also congratulations on your 35th wedding anniversary, which Randall was celebrating on the day we told him he’d won!).

Remember that you can still save 20% on weekend stays at IHG hotels in Manchester via their current promotion.  Bookings have to be made by 7th September, for stays until 31st December 2018

Full details can be found on this special Manchester sale page of the IHG website.

Mail on Sunday Iberia Avios promotion article

The Mail on Sunday article on the Iberia Avios promotion

Finally … as I couldn’t link to it in my piece yesterday because I didn’t have the URL, here is The Mail on Sunday article on Iberia’s ‘90,000 Avios’ promotion if you missed it.

(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.)

Get double Accor points (Novotel, Pullman, Ibis, Sofitel, Mercure etc) on UK stays until 30th September
Bits: '3' mobile deal on easyJet, double Clubcard points (Avios / Virgin miles) at Esso, Heathrow Fast Track for sale
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  1. Genghis says:

    OT. 1,050 avios posted this morning for the £12 sub.

    • Result. Just took mine out over the weekend so lets see how long that takes. Bunch of kids in Mansion House this morning trying to sell people the ’12 for £12′ deal but with no Avios!

    • Guesswho2000 says:

      Thanks Genghis, me too. Weirdly posted as two separate transactions of 350 and 700, but not complaining!

    • Simon says:

      Me too. 350 plus 700. DD now cancelled.

    • Genghis says:

      Should have said that this is The Economist…
      (DD cancelled and email sent to CS so I can then sign up again in a few months’ time. I like the physical mag but refuse to pay more than £1 a copy)

  2. Rob, you mention at the very least 90,000 can convert to £500 hotel. Is this just spanish branded hotels couldn’t seem to find the link to book in say New York.

    • 90,000 Iberia plus miles*

      • Genghis says:

        There have been some reports of hotels booking link not working. I booked a hotel in Japan using the avios a few weeks ago.

  3. RussellH says:

    I just found that you cannot link an SPG a/c to a new Amex Mem Rew a/c either at present

    • Davef says:

      try adding four zeros in front of your acc number

      • RussellH says:

        No, not that, which I did know. You cannot currently access the page to enter SPG details. Click on the link and you end up on the same page.

        • Davef says:

          I’ve just looked and I’d set mine on the 26th, made a 400 point transfer which is showing as pending but my acc number has been removed from the initial page and it’s telling me to add an account number.

  4. Tracy says:

    My SPG to SPG transfer posted today. First requested 21st July. Redid it on 26th July, don’t know which request worked though……

  5. Ot: when do amex apply their annual fees? I upgraded my gold to plat a while ago but have had no 450 fee. If ive gotten away with it i will keep the card but if not i will cancel

    • Guesswho2000 says:

      From experience, on the original card’s anniversary date.

      However you’re technically liable for it straight away, so they’re within their rights to take it as soon as you upgrade. You would still be able to get a pro-rata refund though.

    • Doug M says:

      Had mine best part of a year and never paid. But this is like Fight Club, no one talks about it 🙂

    • Davef says:

      You’re lucky Mine was charged at the end of the 1st Plat statement month and the gold refunded pro-rata.

  6. Doug M says:

    Hilton. Had a 6 night redemption, but prices dropped and felt it was bad value versus cash. In the end remembered a spend £500 get £100 back offer from Amex, and decided to use cash and keep points for time being. So even allowing for 3% forex on the BAPP Amex I think I’ve done the right thing. But noticed the Amex offer which is for pay on leave USA only, requires spend in GBP, is that something they don’t enforce, seems almost impossible to achieve, I never accept the offer to have the billing in GBP as it’s always a horrible rate compared to regular credit card forex rate. Sorry if this has been mentioned before, but seems to me unlike Amex to offer something so seemingly impossible.

    • Mark2 says:

      Why is it impossible?
      You say yourself that you refuse the offer to pay in GBP, so it must be possible. Amex can see whether you have paid in GBP or not.

    • Guesswho2000 says:

      If it’s with Amex, there’ll be no offer to pay in GBP, as Amex don’t allow DCC.

    • Seems like a typo, this same rule is in all of the other hotel offers too.

  7. David says:

    @Rob Off topic but why would a BA Avios redemption for a flight on Cathay/Qantas be double the price of the same journey on just Qantas? I’m still puzzling over the changes to Cathay Asia Miles!

  8. Steve says:

    Cancelled a previously booked Avios RFS some 2 and a half weeks ago. Still waiting on the return of my points and credit card payment (less £35 fee). is that a typical timeframe..?! Seems a little strange and I’m concerned that the current/imminent closure of the Avios scheme will see these go astray.

    • No. Call them, refunds can get blocked – it has happened to me before.

    • S***O says:

      Still waiting on 25,000 Avios and 75ish pound tax refund from a change on my booking from 3-4 weeks ago.

      Was blocked as I changes credit card, eventually they had to use a bank account – However still waiting… will call again in a few days.

    • New Card says:

      Just noticed a refund I’ve been due for 3-4 weeks hasn’t arrived – complaint going in now..

  9. roosit says:

    OT but AMEX MR related: I opened a Club Eurostar account yesterday and tried to transfer AMEX MR in order to book a trip to Paris. However, I don’t seem to be able to add my Club Eurostar account (in order to carry out the transfer). Are there any conditions (like a minimum time since opening of the Club Eurostar account) which need to be fulfilled before a transfer is possible? Thank you in advance for any advice.

  10. GabeS says:

    Hi Rob&Anika
    Is there any new Amex Gold holders Amazon offer or has the previous one been extended?

  11. dicksbits says:

    OT: Does anyone know if you book a BA holiday and fly American Airlines in Economy, can you reserve the Main Cabin Extra seats (if available) as Gold (One World Emerald) for free? I assume you could by logging into American with your code to select a seat…but wondered if you could do it for both of us if the other half doesn’t have status…? Anyone guidance would be greatly appreciated.

  12. Jason Wiltshire says:

    Does anyone know if the SPG to Airline Miles transfers at 1:1 will be affected by the SPG/Marriott merger?

    • It may change for smaller quantities but the ’60k ‘new scheme’ points for 20k miles plus a 5k bonus’ will remain.

  13. Jason Wiltshire says:

    Thanks Rob, as always

  14. the real harry1 says:

    When in Rome?

    My wife is taking 2 chimps to Rome next week – big 5 – oh.

    I bowed out. We all need a holiday from our wives.

    But I got her & the kids a great hotel in Central Historic part of town.

    Now, if you could just recommend 1 good thing to do in Rome, what would it be? I don’t mean ice cream. Something more meaningful or memorable.

    • Mr(s) Entitled says:

      St Peter’s Basicalla. It’s free (big plus) and the queues move quickly (unusual in Rome) but better to get there early to avoid the longest lines.

      It is without doubt the most impressive building I have ever been in. I’m no Catholic and would not register on the religious scale but it is awe inspiring. Then you think about how it was funded… makes for an interesting visit whichever side of the religious divide you sit.

    • Peter K says:

      Just walk and enjoy the scenery, seriously gorgeous. I found the coliseum a bit meh but if she wants to go get her ticket from pallatine hill as she can then skip the queue at the coliseum.
      The hop on hop off bus is good for a general overview.
      The pantheon was nice, free and central.
      Evening meal on the rooftop of the hotel indigo – St George was great. Wonderful views of the Vatican etc lit up at night and decent food.

      • the real harry1 says:

        Thanks both – will recommend.

        As it happens, I did my Italian A level at St George’s School, Rome – I arranged this exam independently, got an A, was back in about 1985. So rings a bell, St George’s just invigilated it.

        Tell your kids they can do the same. I got 2 more A grade A levels in Italian & Spanish whilst I was at university – always impressed the interview panels but were really a mere piece of ploop & good fun.

        • An audience with the Pope?

        • the real harry1 says:

          Languages are just easy – A grade A level is within everybody’s reach, just go onto Rosetta Stone or do an intensive course in the country 🙂

          Raffles – German? – shame on you lol

  15. Mike G says:

    Damned annoying that Amex suspended SPG transfers – I’m trying to pick up a travel package before they screw up all the rates!

    • Martin says:

      Amex Reward point transfers to SPG suspension extended to 21st August, which makes sense in the context of the merger. Total lack of info from Amex on how transfers will work after that – will 2 MR points convert into 3 “New Marriott” points? Who knows? Certainly not Amex CS rep’s who appear to have been told absolutely nothing. A bit of Amex communication with their Customers would be useful.

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