Bits: BA Geneva lounge closing today, last call for 100% Hilton ‘buy points’ bonus, new PointBreaks tomorrow

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Bank Holiday news in brief:

British Airways Geneva lounge closing today

EDIT:  the closure has been delayed until 9th June

Today, assuming everything remains on schedule, is the last day to use the British Airways lounge in Geneva.

It closes tonight and will reopen in ‘late 2019’ following a major refurbishment.

You will be sent to the dnata Skyview lounge in the interim, picture below, which has decent feedback.  This is also a Priority Pass lounge.

PS.  The BA lounge in Glasgow is also due to close for two weeks, currently planned for 2nd to 15th June, for a lick of paint.  £5 restaurant vouchers will be provided to affected passengers.

dnata Skyview lounge Geneva

Last day to buy Hilton Honors points with a bonus

Tomorrow (Tuesday) is the last day to get a 100% bonus when you purchase 5,000+ Hilton Honors points.  This is as big a bonus as you will ever see.

The Hilton ‘buy points’ page is here.

Regular readers of Head for Points will know that I tend to value Hilton points at 0.3p each.  You are paying 0.39p here (the maximum is $800 / £630 for 160,000) so it isn’t a slam dunk.

HOWEVER ….. there ARE real bargains to be had at peak periods.  At the top end, the Conrad Maldives is usually 95,000 points per night.  Via this offer you would be paying under $500 per night which is a great deal.  We did a big review of Conrad Maldives here.  Remember that you can pool points between Hilton members for free so it is now easier for different people to buy points and merge them together.

Hilton also does ‘five for four’ if you have Hilton Honors status.  As Hilton will status match you from any other hotel scheme where you may have status, most HFP readers should qualify for this.  Five nights would cost you (95,000 x 4) 380,000 points which would cost $1,900 with this deal.  A non-refundable cash rate would cost substantially more.  

The new Waldorf Astoria Maldives is also a bargain if you buy points as we explained here.

Similar deals are available at peak times in other major cities.  Conrad New York, for example, costs $2,790 for a five-night long weekend from 20th to 25th June.  Buying 320,000 points via this deal – if two people bought the maximum and pooled their allowance – would cost just $1,600.   Conrad New York is an ‘all suite’ hotel which I recommend.

If you are just buying a handful of points to top off your account, the price per point doesn’t matter anyway.  If you a few thousand short of a redemption then this is a decent opportunity to buy them.

You can buy points via this link.  The offer ends tomorrow, 28th May.

New IHG PointBreaks list released on Tuesday

IHG Rewards Club will apparently be releasing a new PointBreaks list on Tuesday.  Whilst they usually appear on a Monday, this one has been delayed by the Memorial Day holiday in the US.

These hotels will be bookable from Tuesday afternoon UK time.  It seems at the moment that we won’t see the list until it is officially published.  We will try to do an extra post on Tuesday evening if we can.  If you are on our email list you will have to wait until Wednesday morning or pop onto the site on Tuesday evening.

The 100+ PointBreaks hotels on the list will be bookable for the period 1st June to, probably, 31st August.  The cost will be reduced to between 5,000 and 15,000 points per night depending on hotel.

There is no teaser list this time so I can’t give you an examples of what hotels will be included.  The quality has been improving since they changed the pricing from a flat 5,000 points to 5,000 / 10,000 / 15,000.  Check back on Tuesday evening and hopefully the list will be up.

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Comments

  1. sk123 says:

    OT – I have a Lloyds Avios upgrade voucher expiring in December 2019. Do I need to book and travel by that date or just make a booking. I want to travel in April 2020.

    • fivebobbill says:

      Just need to make the booking before expiry date, think you can travel up to a year afterwards

      • sk123 says:

        Thanks, I just checked on a couple of other websites and they also say you just need to book before expiry.

        • You can also ask nicely to extend it.
          Or.. I made a booking which I genuinely intended to use, but when I cancelled it, they reissued the voucher with a year from when I cancelled. I questioned it ‘to check’ and she confirmed. Seems to be manual.

          • Mikeact says:

            If you’re not sure where you want to go, book something in zone that appeals to you a year out. You now have a year to decide where, call up to change when ready assuming seats are available. Small change fee can be a no brainer compared to cash price.

          • sk123 says:

            I called but she said i booked my ticket in March 2019 and now I want to change the dates (not destination) to travel in April 2020 and that won’t be possible. She said if you make a change you have to travel within 12 months of the original booking! So the voucher expiry wasn’t an issue or the change fee but will need to keep existing booking…

        • Mikeact says:

          Avios.com are correct. I assumed it was an unused voucher you were looking to use….not very clear. You can still change it, up to your date of travel, if that helps.

  2. Jason says:

    Morning all!

    OT – I wish to cancel my AMEX Plat, I understand I’ll get a pro-rata refund of the £450.

    I have a stash of 60k points, If I apply for a free credit card such as American Express Rewards Purchases Credit Card, then I can keep my MR account alive?

    Thanks,

    • Charlieface says:

      Yes, make sure they connect the two accounts together

    • Or just downgrade your Platinum account rather than cancel it. You’ll still get the prorata refund.

      • Sandgrounder says:

        There are no free charge cards earning MR as far as I know- you would have to go to green which is £60 pa.

        • Grant says:

          There are three flavours of the Amex Rewards Card, all of which have no annual fee and earn 1 MR point per £ spent.

        • Grant says:

          Sorry I noticed you specifically referred to charge cards – the Rewards cards are, of course, credit cards.

          • Amex would let me change my gold credit to one of the rewards cards. I had to open a new account, link them together and then close gold

        • Shoestring says:

          what about the free blue charge card?

          • Sandgrounder says:

            No MR on the Basic card.

          • Genghis says:

            https://www.americanexpress.com/uk/credit-cards/rewards-credit-card/
            “Earn one Membership Rewards® point for every full pound you spend on purchases.”

          • Shoestring says:

            and nobody has reported back on 20K upgrade to Plat here just yet, I mentioned it a couple months ago (but went for Green myself, given a) no info on Blue & b) forgot about it)

          • guesswho2000 says:

            Data point, upgrade from Green to Plat – applied for Green about a month ago, upgraded to plat about two weeks ago. Spend £1,800 on the Green while waiting for Plat to arrive, 21,800 MR in the account about 48 hours later.

          • So another way to look at that is if you picked up 21800 MR points then your new Plat fee has had a big chunk of it offset plus you still have the PP.

  3. Harvey says:

    OT
    I made a reservation on Bonvoy points advance for the Carlton Central Park NYC for July sometime ago(before increase of points required) at 60k per night for 5 nights. Now I see on my account they require 85k per night.
    1. Was it not supposed to stay at 60k since i reserved before the changes?
    2. If i needed to change the dates, could I still keep it at rate of 60k?
    Any advice. TY

    • 1. You can call them, they will credit you additional points to make up the booking
      2. Any change you will lose old points redemption

  4. Rooster says:

    1. should still be 60k
    2. I doubt it

    • The policy recently changed. If you did points advance reservation, you’ll have to pay new rate if there are increases.

      • where is this written?

        • Not sure if it’s written. I actually think it might be only for reservations made before 5 March. I called Marriott CS about a month ago and they said that I will now have to pay increased redemption rate if I want to finalise a redemption. Cancelled and went elsewhere.

          • BigSi says:

            Not true, I had 2 bookings made before 5 Mar on points advance and both were honoured without issue at the lower rate. You need to call Bonvoy customer service.

          • @BigSi I did call, a few times actually and every single agent said the same. Bonvoy CS is still a total mess. I’ve come to realise that I will only deal with Bonvoy if things can be done wholly without intervention of CS.

          • BigSi says:

            Meta, did you try this number during UK working hours – 020 7012 7312 (Cork)? I’ve found them pretty helpful. I had to hold a while but got the issue sorted, for one booking they manually added the points to allow me to make the booking and the other they did something behind the scenes and all worked fine.

      • Rooster says:

        That might be the case if you used the advance point feature

      • Not true, just done that last week

  5. Gerarf says:

    Any idea of offers on pointbreaks, few decent offer to be had last time.

  6. Roger says:

    Anyone yet to use a 7 night Marriott stay certificate from last year following category change?
    Have people been successful in Marriott honoring the original CAT 5 for new bookings using the old certificate?

    I have two certificates to use.
    Failing that what are the refund points expected?

    • Gin and Tonic Please says:

      Yes – I’m fact I’m at Domes Noruz Chania right now, which was (I think) old Cat 5 and new Cat 7. I got it through all fine on the old certificate – though it was a pain and I spent about an hour on the phone to CS.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      There is a very good and detailed thread on this on FlyerTalk which states all of the refund and upgrade points costs.

      I changed my old Cat 8 for a new Cat 6 for 30k MR I think and had a great stay.

    • I tried over 10 times but couldn’t change my old CAT 5 to new CAT 5 even with extra points. I think they are a lot stricter now.

      • guesswho2000 says:

        Yep, old cat 5 is new cat 4, and I have one of those too. Don’t seem to be able to change it, so the choice seems to be either find a Cat 1-4 you’re happy with (Asia is easy enough for me, so not impossible, but YMMV) or take the 45,000 point refund.

        The certificate is net zero cost to me, so I value it accordingly – the travel package value for me came from the AAdvantage miles.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        Strange I did mine maybe 2 months ago by phoning the uk call centre and was processed within about 20 mins and the hotel I wanted booked.

        Possibly it’s because I had a hotel in mind at the time? But the FlyerTalk thread at the time had the exact language to use and seemed to be bang on.

  7. Justin says:

    Anyone else having issue with flyertalk today? Seems they’ve been hacked. I just keep being referred to adverts.

  8. Allez allez allez says:

    Managed to book the Hilton Madrid Airport on Saturday night for 40,000 points instead of €1467

  9. Gavin says:

    Happening continuously on the guardian website for me too

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