Bits: £7 off Heathrow Express, 1000 Virgin miles per day with Avis, Hilton Honors terms update

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News in brief:

Save £7 on return Heathrow Express tickets

Heathrow Express is offering a £7 discount on return Standard Class Heathrow Express tickets.  This takes the price down from £37 to £30.

This offer is linked to the Virgin Atlantic sale but you do not need to have a Virgin Atlantic flight booking to take advantage.

You must book via this special link here.  The £30 fare will show automatically.

You cannot collect Avios on this deal (Heathrow Express tickets only earn Avios if booked via heathrowexpress.com/avios) but you should be able to earn Heathrow Rewards points.

It’s not clear how long this deal will remain – it will possibly be pulled on 31st January when the Virgin Atlantic sale ends, but I can’t be sure.  You can book for any future date however.

Heathrow Express discount

Generous 1,000 Virgin Flying Club miles per day on Avis car rentals

Virgin Atlantic and Avis have launched an attractive car rental promotion.

As you can see here on the Virgin Flying Club site, you can earn 1,000 miles per day on your next Avis rental, up to a maximum of 10,000 miles per rental.

You must:

book between 9-31 January

rent between 1 February – 31 May

rent a Group C car or above

Bookings need to be made via the Avis / Virgin microsite here.  The ‘1,000 miles per day’ includes your base miles (500 per rental) so this is not an extra bonus on top.

If Avis isn’t convenient for you, remember that Virgin also has a good deal with Hertz which offers 1,000 miles per rental.  You can find out more about that here and book here.  In my experience you get the miles irrespective of what rates code you use – I always get them when using the special Hertz Amex Platinum rate code (211762).  The Plat / Hertz code also gives you a handy four hour grace period so, for example, a pick up at 11am which is returned by 3pm the next day is charged as one day and not two.

Avis Virgin Atlantic deal

Update on my recent Hilton Honors article

Over Christmas I ran an article on Hilton Honors which highlighted one of the quirks in the terms and conditions – that if you mix a cash stay and a reward stay together, back to back, you do NOT receive Hilton Honors points for the cash nights.

A couple of readers said that this rule appeared to have been changed although the terms and conditions are contradictory.  I’ve now discussed this with my contacts at Hilton Honors in Virginia and they have confirmed that you WILL receive points and nights credit on a combined points nights and cash nights stay.  The ambiguity in the T&Cs will be corrected as part of the next update.

(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.)

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Comments

  1. Alan wan says:

    Regarding Hilton Honors. Do you know if you receive qualifying night credit it you book a “day room” … i.e. book to stay 10am-6pm?

    I was thinking of redeeming 5 nights. But on the day of departure the flight doesn’t leave until 10pm, hence booking a day room.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      is the day room on the day of checkout after your 5th night?

      late checkout at 4 should be enough ?

      Or pay a supplement to have it longer?

      If you’re staying 4 nights and leave at 10pm on the 5th just book it for 5 nights and leave they don’t need to know you’ve checked out before midnight and 5 redemption nights are the price of 4 anyway?

      • I’ve never tagged a day room on the end of a multi-day stay so can’t comment on your exact circumstances but when I’ve booked day rooms in isolation (with cash) I’ve received qualifying night credit.

        PS: AFAIK there is no way to book a day room as a redemption. If you know otherwise then please do enlighten me because I’d really like to know…

    • Andrew (@andrewseftel) says:

      If you have status and the hotel isn’t booked solid, I’d just try your luck with a late checkout.

      • Lady London says:

        If you have lounge access maybe see if you can hang out in the lounge for longer?

    • the_real_a says:

      Ive asked a few times if i could hang out in the exec-lounge for a few hours to wait for my flight in similar situations – never been refused. I have also been able to use the showers in the gym area.

      • Indeed – also some properties are great anyway! Conrad Singapore has given me 6pm late check-out for an evening flight (although desk agent told me it was actually coded to 7pm!) and the best ever – Hilton Frankfurt Airport gave me an early check-in and an 11pm check-out (plus a corner suite upgrade!) 😀

  2. HEX offer doesn’t work in combination with a railcard so if you have one that’s still better value (£24.40 return).

    • You can also get Heathrow Rewards points if you book online with a railcard discount.

      The Network Railcard (available in paper and app form) is available to everybody and also gives discounts on rail services in the South East, if you have an annual travelcard/season ticket in London/South East it should be labelled as a Gold Card and this also gives the railcard discount for up to 4 travellers.

      Also for those that qualify there’s now railcards up to 30 and these are valid for all of the UK, then there’s the senior, armed forces and family railcards. If you’re travelling with someone else there’s the Two Together railcard and there’s no limit to how many you have so if there’s a few different people you travel with you can have a Two Together railcard for each of them.

      Main thing to remember if you get a railcard is the morning peak restrictions Mon-Fri. Check if they apply the details vary slightly with each railcard.

      • RussellH says:

        My current 3 yr Senior Railcard runs oput on 29 Jan. As far as I can tell, the 3 yr card is only available online, but cannot be paid with Amex. I can go to a station and pay with Amex, but only get a 1 yr card, which costs £6.67 per year more…

        • Lady London says:

          Do they take Curve or Paypal so you can keep your Amex behind that?

        • Not Amex related, but if you don’t plan to use it for some time, you can let a railcard expire for a while, then get a ‘new’ one. I don’t know how long a gap they want to allow this, but if you get a message like “you already have a railcard- please renew…” just use a differnt email address.

          Also remember Tesco Clubcard have Boost deals on railcards.

        • RussellH says:

          To Lady London:
          18 January 2019 at 11:30
          I cannot have Curve because I do not have (or want) an Android or iOS phone. And from all the problems posted here about Curve, it hardly seems an attractive product anyway.
          No Paypal.

          To Mark:
          18 January 2019 at 12:27
          Yes, I was not planning to renew until mid Feb anyway. Thanks for the warning about possible problems with the e-mail address.

      • With the Gold Card, you can also buy any other railcard for £10 (has to be done in a station, I think). The Gold Card holder doesn’t have to be the same person as the holder of the other railcard (e.g. my OH and I had a Gold Card each. I bought a Two Together railcard for us and he bought a Senior Railcard for his mum). Useful, because the Gold Card itself does not cover the whole of the UK.

        • RussellH says:

          Sorry, what Gold Card is that? I immediately thought Amex, but clearly not!

        • See the post from SECR earlier in the convo 😉

          “The Network Railcard (available in paper and app form) is available to everybody and also gives discounts on rail services in the South East, if you have an annual travelcard/season ticket in London/South East it should be labelled as a Gold Card and this also gives the railcard discount for up to 4 travellers.”

        • RussellH says:

          Thanks Alan for the clarification.
          Have not lived in the South-East since 1966…, so I stopped reading that para after the reference to the Network Railcard. And the only time I have had a season ticket was the last three months of 1972.

  3. O/T: Tickets now available this morning for Arsenal Man United in the FA Cup via Skywards points, 15k for normal seat and 25k for box seats

  4. Richard says:

    Completey OT (but it’s Friday) – what’s the benefit of keeping the BA gold status tags on your laptop bag? I see a few every day on my Chiltern Railways commute and imagine serious benefits as people keep them permanently on there.

    • Genghis says:

      DYKWIA?

      • I laughed, and agreed, and then I wondered why I keep my VS FC Gold on my laptop bag….

        It’s because I’m a forgetful klutz and I’d be devastated if I left my laptop somewhere. Having the FC card on there increases the chances (by how much is arguable) ops getting it back to me in a timely fashion….

        Therefore, let’s not be too hasty to judge 🙂

      • Sussex bantam says:

        So I used to think that too but I’ve started doing this. An increasing number of times the routes I fly have not enough overhead bin space and the ground staff walk round the gate forcing people with two bags to put one in the hold. I figure if I am displaying a gold tag they are less likely to ask me !

        • guesswho2000 says:

          This, my QF Plat tags have saved me from gate checking even in the US on a number of occasions!

    • My children have our Platinum Amex luggage tags on their bags… I wonder if adding more will help swing upgrades!

      • ankomonkey says:

        My kids use their Etihad ones. My mum is convinced their luggage will end up on an Etihad flight one day when we’re flying with someone else.

  5. OT 1000 Virgin appeared in my account this morning from the Tesco auto convert offer in Dec. My hubby and daughter got theirs in Dec so I assumed mine didn’t work – happy surprise this morning – every little helps! 😀

  6. OT – Am I right in thinking that in order to transfer Marriott points from my wife’s account to mine, I will need to call Marriott’s US customer services number?

    Is there no way around this?

  7. Sorry, haven’t had this situation before, so decided to check with the gurus: flight on a Finnair ticket London to Moscow via HEL, Finnair metal first segmet, Aeroflot (which is in SkyTeam…) metal second segment. If I credit the flight to BAEC when booking, will I get tier points for the whole thing and if so, is the BA tier point calculator to be trusted in this case re number of TPs?

    • No, just for the bit on Finnair.

      The only time you get credit for non-oneworld codeshares (which the Aeroflot leg is) is if Qantas is the ticketing airline.

      • It’s a good thing I checked… The other option apart from Aeroflot that the Finnair website gives me is NORRA (formerly Flybe Nordic apparently), which is a oneworld affiliate. I assume that will give me the BAEC TPs? The airline is not in the BA calculator, but selecting Finnair gives me 40 for Business class.

    • Make sure you keep your Aeroflot boarding pass(es) as from expecerience they are poor at crediting points and the missing miles have to be chased via (in our case) KLM Flying Blue account every time!

  8. Another offer I’ve missed out on through bad timing, recently picked up a 27 day rental with Avis.

  9. Re: Hilton….

    Now Im completely confused…..

    Remember the promotion with miles and more ? I only got the miles and more points for the full cash stay I did and not for the mix of points and money.

    I pushed it several times with Honors customer services – but each time they told me the same thing – that mix points and cash are treated as reward stays so therefore nothing due….

    Any thoughts on how I should/could go about “shouting” at them ?

    • You got the normal honors points right? Did you speak to them on the phone?

      • Yes; I got the points…..and yes, I spoke to several completely inept folks on the phone – never once being able to get to someone in Glasgow….(all 3 agents I initially spoke to denied all knowledge of a miles and more promotion! (and thats with being a gold member too!).

    • Chrisasaurus says:

      This promo was wierdly restrictive – honestly, I wouldn’t expect them to budge…

    • The last email on the matter says:

      ( in response to:

      As I understand it, points and money stays are not treated as reward stays – has something changed ?

      )

      The 3 bookings that did not receive the Lufthansa points were all points + money and not reward stays.

      Thank you for your inquiry regarding your Points and Money stays, being recorded as Reward stays.

      Please know that any stay where points are used is considered a reward stay. As such no miles are earned for these stays.

      We are very sorry for any misinformation or delay in getting back with you regarding your concerns.

      Thank you for your continued loyalty.
      Warmest Regards,
      Sandra O.

    • It was quickly established and widely discussed on HFP at the time it was only valid on full cash stays despite the confusing terms. Doubt you will get anywhere with CS on this. You have my sympathy, currently having a hopeless task chasing up new member referral bonus points from them. Nobody is interested, different person responds to email each time you contact them.

  10. OT Bits – can just confirm Shangri-la instant dining rewards works perfectly! Just redeemed the 250 points from the app bonus at the Rasa Sentosa Resort in Singapore. They gave me S$42.80 off my bill which was even marginally better than XE.com was quoting! (250 pts = US$31.25 due to 1.25 per 10 GC rate for Jade members).

    Just put the remaining balance on Revolut, has cost me the princely sum of 97p for a beer and tasty pizza 😀

    • I have 250 points in my Shangri la but when i try to convert into dining voucher it requires a minimum of 500. Is it because I am Gold?

      • No, don’t try and convert them (as minimum then is 500pts and I don’t think you get any uplifts from higher status). Just hand over your card/show app at the restaurant (it’s called Instant Dining rewards). They can then see your balance and equivalent value in local currency and just tell them how much you want to use. Worked pretty seamlessly with good exchange rate, I was pleasantly surprised!

    • Bit OT, but related to Shangri-La Jade status….
      Any data points how long it takes to have it upgraded to Jade from Amex Platinum?
      It has been pending 2 weeks now, queried with CS, and was told in some extreme cases it can take up to 6 months .

      • No way should it take 6 months! A few weeks max I’d day – I did mine ages ago though so don’t have a recent data points. If you’ve only been contacting CS via webchat I’d definitely try calling them instead (and try to get one of the Brighton-based team).

      • Applied in Oct, received a letter and card last week dated as November.

        • Thanks both. I will give them a call next week then.

        • Actually quite impressed, emailed Shangri-La yesterday evening, got a reply within a few hours with my new account details(Jade), and instructions how to activate it.

  11. Another OT
    I have received the 24,000 Nectar points from Amex card.
    Am I correct in thinking that I can use my Nectar card at the checkout at Sainsbury’s to pay for groceries (or petrol)?

    • Yes in £2.50 increments. There used to be restrictions to only using it at stores you’d shopped at recently, not sure if that’s still the case or not. For petrol can’t do it at the pump but no problem in at the kiosk.

    • Yes you can, 2 lots of Amex Nectar sign-up points, one for me and one for the boss was a very efficient way of paying for the Xmas shopping and earning some MR points. They will round it down to just under what you have spent so expect to pay for a nominal amount with cash or card.

      • Why use cash in Sainsbury’s when you have an Amex?? Unless it’s less than £1 and you have it in coins 😉

        • Indeed, Xmas shopping cost 6p! It just felt good handing over a couple of coins for a trolley full of food.

    • Yes but …. you can only redeem Nectar points in Sainsburys if you have done a normal shop in that store in the past 6 months. For security reasons you cannot walk into a Sainsburys where you have never shopped before and redeem your points balance.

      • Thanks all.

      • I’m assuming that means I can use the 24,000 points for an online shop as we get a delivery every few weeks?

        • Guess so but never tried.

        • I’m afraid not. You cannot use nectar points or even Sainsbury’s giftcard for online groceties.

        • The Lord says:

          Yes you can

        • The Lord has spoken

        • Really, where do you enter nectar card or Sainsbury giftcard st online groceries?

        • Just called Sainsbury. Their giftcard cannot be used to pay online groceries. However, nectar points can indeed be used online. It seems you have to call nectar, have them converted to a vouchrr which then appears under coupons at online groceries. Learn something new evry the day, thank the lord 🙂

      • Supplementary question:
        Has anyone managed to buy gift cards? I am sure that I have used Sainsbury’s gift cards to buy John Lewis in the past.

        • ankomonkey says:

          My wife used to work for Saino’s. It’s not allowed – and the staff are far more clued up about it than Tesco, for example, but you might get away with it.

      • A way round this is to buy something small and swipe your nectar card.

        Straight afterwards you can then use the nectar to pay for the rest of your items.

        • Interesting – when I tried that before it didn’t seem to work and they said I had to wait 24h before I would be able to use it.

        • Either way whether you can made a Nectar redemption same day or next day, the security checks on making Nectar redemptions is particularly weak, and I’m surprised this has not been changed in all the years that Nectar has been going!!

    • Brtter to sit on them in hope of a 50% LNER rebate at the end of the year if that is of interest. There is also the Sainsbury double up, on last one I got lucky and got a £200 Gtech vacuum cleaner for £100. Also link your nectar account to ebay but don’t buy anything for a while and you might get a 1p per point offer of some sort. It’s usually redeem £50 of points and get £25 of points back.

  12. Rob – is the Hertz FC deal 1000 miles per day, or per rental? I always thought it was the latter.

  13. OT – upgrading a Marriott room booked on points. Would you go to Marriott or the hotel? Apologies if this is an obvious one

  14. OT – in case anyone has SAS Eurobonus account
    Noticed they started pool sharing again, finally combined all my family accounts together instantly which is nice, though their points on *A were pretty useless

  15. Doubt it,p, but worth a try. Also, don’t forget that some accounts have an £80 off £400 cumulative spend at the virgin trains site. Has worked out better for me across 2 cards than using the train line cash back

    • Now, I’d like that one. I suspect it would layer nicely with the 20% my employer gives me off all VTWC advance tickets.

  16. Scallder says:

    OT – Rich if you read this, I put a response regarding flying with a toddler onto yesterday’s article for you.

  17. rams1981 says:

    OT curve Amex beta. Apologies as prob covered before but if people have gone over the £1k top up limit, have you been charged the fee?

    • Yep, I was. App erroneously started quoting fees to everyone regardless of whether free or not so I chanced it but was charged. Remember it also runs on a rolling 30-day limit too, rather than just which month you’re in (some folks were caught out topping up late Dec then early Jan).

      • rams1981 says:

        Yes thanks Alan. Asked that yesterday so will make a note.

        Not made much use of beta but they increased limits for me (though prior spend counts towards this new limit)

  18. BA Amex 500 points for £10 spend. Is anyone else still waiting?

    • Is that the offer from around October? I used it 3 times, 1 posted after a few days, I had to chase 1 up for about 2 months and the 3rd I gave up on as I wanted to close the card! It was very hit and miss.

    • I think so. Also never got the paypal £5 credit. Triggered it twice.

    • Peter K says:

      Got the points ages ago.

      • I had to get mine manually credited ages ago – was given an extra 500 for my trouble!

  19. Can anyone confirm if I pay with points and money I will receive the “stay” element from Hilton Honors?

    The article suggests i would, but others saying that is not the case.

    TIA

    • I got stay even with full points redemption.
      in fact, my 6 of my 8 Diamond challenge were points stay.

      • Thanks Lee.

        The anomaly I have is that I am 4 stays short of 20k bonus, but no Hilton for business anytime soon

        A couple of nights away with the wife though which were planned anyway, and made me think of booking a reward stay 1000 points short and paying a couple of quid to make up, but be credited with a ‘stay’.

        See how we go for next Friday. 👍

    • Hilton always award stay credit for points redemptions or paid stays booked through their website or authorised channels (e.g. certain business TAs) so there’s no issue there – it’s some specific promos that require paid stays. The current Hilton promo applies to reward and paid stays though.

  20. OT. Sorry if a bit of a dumbo question – how can I make sure that TP and Avios for a Qatar flight are credited to Exec Club / BA? Many thanks.

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