Virgin Money

Bits: good Priority Pass Black Friday deal, a new cheaper way to fly Qatar Airways First Class with Avios

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News in brief:

Priority Pass launches Black Friday discount deal

As most Black Friday travel deals seem to be running for a week or more this year, we’re going to cover them as they launch rather than waiting for Friday itself.

First up is Priority Pass.  If you’ve been thinking of getting a Priority Pass airport lounge card then the Black Friday offer is, experience shows, the best deal they run all year.

As you can see here, there are some sharp discounts:

40% off Standard membership (reduced to £41 from £69) – no free visits, you and your guests pay £20 each time

25% off Standard Plus membership (reduced to £141 from £189) – 10 free visits then £20 for every additional visit or for every guest visit

25% off Prestige membership (reduced to £254 from £339) – all your visits are free, your guests pay £20 each time

It is worth remembering that none of these plans offer free guest visits.  The only way to get a Priority Pass which offers free guest visits is to take out an American Express Platinum charge card.  This comes with two Priority Pass cards (one for you, one for your supplementary cardholder), each of which allows a free guest.  This allows a family of four to use a lounge for free.

The best deal, to my mind, is Standard Plus.  You are paying £14.10 per lounge visit which is pretty decent.

You can find out more, and purchase, on this special page of the Priority Pass website.  The offer runs to 25th November.

Qatar Airways First Class from Frankfurt

Fly Qatar Airways First Class cheaply as the A380 launches from Frankfurt

Qatar Airways has announced that it will switch one of its two daily Frankfurt flights to an A380 from 31st March 2019.

This may, in itself, not sound very exciting.  Don’t be fooled.  It opens up some very interesting possibilities for anyone wanting to tick Qatar Airways First Class off their bucket list, especially for anyone who wants to try out the amazing First Class Lounge in Doha.  This is why:

Qatar Airways only offers First Class on its 10 A380 aircraft

Flights from London are blocked for First Class redemptions and even if bookable are expensive, at 160,000 Avios return plus charges

Flights from Paris now seem to be blocked for First Class redemptions (they didn’t used to be) and even if bookable are expensive, at 160,000 Avios return plus charges

The new flights from Frankfurt are NOT blocked for First Class redemptions and are NOT expensive, because Frankfurt is nearer to Doha than Paris or London.  You will only pay 100,000 Avios return, plus charges.

As usual in the wacky world of BA, the taxes and charges don’t make any sense:

One-way Frankfurt to Doha in Qatar First is 50,000 Avios + £227

One-way Doha to Frankfurt in Qatar First is 50,000 Avios + £99

Return Frankfurt to Doha in Qatar First is 100,000 Avios + £412 (so save yourself £86 by booking as 2 x one-ways!)

Here is my review of Qatar Airways First Class (I flew it from Paris when you could still get First Class redemptions from there) and here is my review of the Al Safwa First Class lounge in Doha.

At present, there are 2 First Class seats and 4 Business Class seats showing for Avios on virtually every Frankfurt to Doha A380 flight from 31st March.

Business Class is also a good deal from Frankfurt, of course, as you are paying 75,000 Avios return compared with 120,000 Avios return from the UK.  If you wanted to try Qatar’s Business Class then you will save a lot by flying from Frankfurt and booking a separate connecting flight from London – although you’ll miss out on the excellent Qatar Airways lounge at Heathrow.

(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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  1. memesweeper says:

    OT: Trying to make an HMRC payment today with my trusty Curve MC Debit Card, and the payment is failing — the error message saying it’s not the right card type (as though the BIN range is not recognised as a Debit Card). I’ve used the card before, as recently as last week — is anyone else getting this problem today?

    • I had an issue making a “Business Services” transaction yesterday. Declined 3 times but seems fine today, so may be wait 24 hours? I would always counsel waiting and trying again rather than contacting Curve with what might not even be an issue…

      • memesweeper says:

        This wasn’t (I don’t think) a decline by Curve. I get a different message when that happens.

    • Rob Walker says:

      I get a similar message when trying to use Curve with the government tax free childcare scheme. I assumed they were using a different payment provider to HMRC, but I’m not really sure as I haven’t had to make a HMRC payment for a while.

  2. New Amex offer for me, spend £200 or more, get 3000 MR points on Mulberry.

  3. New amex offer £10 off aldi on plat and Ba card

    • I thought I was the only HfP reader who got excited about Aldi offers. Prosecco magnums and Roquefort treats all round.

    • The Aldi offer is for online orders, however that’s alcohol and other items so still plenty to get excited about! And they do free delivery.

  4. OT: Just as a datapoint, my partner finally received a full 75% refund from AF/KLM for an involuntary downgrade I reported back in January. Took 10 months but shows persistence can pay off so chase your claims to the end.

  5. OT – Rob I know you put an update on the original article but I can confirm that attempting to match Wyndham Rewards Diamond to Hilton Diamond does not work 🙁

    Got an email today saying that Wyndham Rewards is “ineligible to compare against Hilton Honors program or not an eligible hotel brand”

    Wish I’d known that before doing a paid stay at the Days Hotel Waterloo :'(

    Has there been any reports of anyone getting a successful match?

  6. OT as bits,HELP pleeeeze!

    I’ve just had an email from Iberia saying they’ve cancelled the first leg of my first class reservation MAD-DXB flight in March. I booked it with a chunk of avios from the Iberia promotion. The second leg LHR to DXB is still ok. So, will I get back the avios from the cancelled leg and the change to business class before the 1st December deadline or am I screwed?

  7. Are there any restrictions on using a curve to pay an amex balance? Trying to use it with an ihg card linked to the curve, but its only letting me pay off 200 – which kindof makes it sound like the cash advance limit, but theres no additional cash advance charges on the ihg card?

    Which cards can be linked to curve and used to pay off an entire amex balance?

  8. Shoestring says:

    Just looking to book some reward flights on Iberia. The latest you can book is Oct 16th.

    That’s not T-355, it’s more like T-330

  9. O/T: Virgin Credit Card Rejection. As per Rob’s advice i wrote a letter to Virgin last week and today had an email confirming the application has now been accepted so well worth doing if this happens to anyone else. Thanks for the tip Rob!

  10. OT,
    Amex offer – Peninsula Hotel £100 discount.

    I used this last week but haven’t had the discount as yet and the offer is still on my acc. How long do these type of discounts take to process?


  11. OT: GWR/Nectar points showing on my account now

    Thanks 😀

  12. KillAWatt1705 says:

    Hi Rob – what dates are you finding FRA to DOH for 50k avios + ~£250?

    I’ve been using the BA reward flight booking ppage and the cheapest I can find for a redemption al the way in October 2019, per person, is 100k avios + £400?

    For 50K and even £300 pp i was hopign to book something for me and the missus given I have about 250k avios lying about, but 100K avios + £400 is too pricey.

    Am I missing something here?

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