Bits: BA Beijing flights moving to Daxing, Miles & More launches miles transfers, YOTEL opening in Edinburgh

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News in brief:

British Airways Beijing flights moving to Daxing

British Airways has announced that all Beijing flights will move to the new Daxing airport on 27th October, at the start of the Winter timetable.  BA is the first international airline to set a moving date.

Daxing, as you can see from the image below, is a very modest airport with over 300 shops and restaurants, with 52,000 sq m dedicated to food and retail.  It is 50km from Beijing and 80km from Tianjin, with a new high speed rail line promising 20 minute trips to Beijing West Station. It will open with four runways (Heathrow has two, of course) with a further three planned.

Beijing Daxing airport

Lufthansa launches mileage transfers via its mobile app

Lufthansa has launched a new feature via the Miles & More mobile app – the ability to transfer your miles to someone else for a ludicrous price.

And yet …. and yet …. you still might end up using it.

For some reason the new transfer feature is only available in the app.  For a cost of €10 per 1,000 miles, you can move your Miles & More miles to someone else.  There is a 35,000 miles per year cap on either transferring or receiving miles.

This is NOT great value at 0.9p per mile, given that no new miles are being created.

However …. Lufthansa may have you over a barrel.  Miles & More miles have a hard expiry date of three years.  Unless you have elite status, your miles expire irrespective of how much account activity you have.  The only way to stop it is to get the Miles & More credit card, and even then you need to spend on it regularly for three months before protection kicks in.

My wife has 8,000 miles expiring on 30th September.  Her total balance is only 17,000 miles.  17,000 is enough for a one-way from the UK to Germany in Economy but, with full taxes due, it is still a bad deal compared to 4,500 Avios + £17.50 with BA.

Should I pay €80 to move her expiring 8,000 miles to me?  I’m not keen.  If a promo came along to acquire Miles & More miles for 0.9p, I probably wouldn’t do it.  It makes no sense that I am even contemplating paying the same to move expiring miles from her to me. And yet, a nagging voice doesn’t want to see them wasted.

I could also redeem 9,200 miles for a £25 shopping gift card – a pathetic 0.27p per mile.  Despite being terrible value, it is still something – so transferring 9,200 of her miles to me effectively costs me 1.17p per mile (0.9p transfer fee and the 0.27p of Amazon gift card I would otherwise get).

Let’s see where I end up – I have until 30th September to decide how we spend them.  If you want to transfer any expiring Miles & More miles, you will find the option in the app but not on the Miles & More website.

YOTEL hits Edinburgh

YOTEL dropped us a note yesterday to highlight their new Edinburgh hotel, which opens on 19th August.

This is not an airport site – it is on Queen Street in the City Centre.  Standard rooms are very small (16 sq m, with no windows in the cheapest) but they are obviously brand new and with the latest connectivity.  The ‘Family Cabin’ with two bunk beds also looked interesting.  There is also a ‘VIP suite’ at 44 square metres which sleeps four and seems decent value, by Edinburgh standards, at £220 for a Saturday in September.

This hotel is not yet listed as being part of the Virgin Atlantic / YOTEL miles earning partnership (details here).

You can find out more about YOTEL Edinburgh on this page of their website.  Special opening rates are currently available.

Bits: Amex rolls out its spend-based bonus promo to more people, Finnair adds Busan, Iberia adds Cairo
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  1. OT: Hi, I need expert advice.
    If I buy a one way ticket London to Beijing with a 2 4 1 Ba voucher and later on I add the return ticket from Hong Kong, the tax from HK will be calculated as one way or will jump up because part of a journey starting in London?

    • Shoestring says:

      jump up

      • 🙁 thanks!

        • Stu N says:

          Agreed – if you phone to add an inbound, they reprice the whole thing so you won’t get the low fee redemption ex HKG.

          One possible workaround is to book a separate inbound online when the seats are released, then phone in the next day and get the bookings merged with the 241 outbound. You apparently get half the Avios refunded but they don’t always recalculate the charges. Downside is that you’d need sufficient Avios to be able to book the inbound without the benefit of the voucher…

          • this is interesting! Lets see if I’ll manage enough avios! thanks for the suggestion

          • Stu N says:

            If it works then do report back.

          • Craig says:

            This is what I did (out to Singapore and back from Hong Kong) and it didn’t get repriced, currently in MMB as 2 bookings but I used the same 241 voucher.

  2. TGLoyalty says:

    For the cost of transferring your wife’s points why not sign up for a year of the M&M card? Or do you never see her using that enough to be able to redeem a decent redemption?

    • Andy_H says:

      Thanks TGLoyalty – I think this was in response to my comment further up.

      That idea (M&M card sign up to keep the points) was going through my mind too, although I think I am in the mental headspace of your second sentence – in that based on current plans and lack of LH options from our home base she may never get to convert her points into anything useful …..

      Given the cost of the transfer, however (which, as per Rob’s original article, is basically a dead cost), the card may still end up being a better approach…..

      • TGLoyalty says:

        If the card still has a 10k sign up bonus then that plus an economist sign up deal could earn you a few miles.

        I sort of agree and it’s probably not worth the yearly fee on the card but the way I see it I doubt I’ll ever get to see Lufthansa first class any other way and I need somewhere to credit the odd star alliance flights I take.

        • Lady London says:

          You can do a lot better in Star Alliance than Miles&More. Or even by looking at someone like Alaskan that has highly interesting cross-miles crediting options.

          Lufthansa was only worth it to me as crediting airline when I travelled a lot to German-speaking countries. Even making Senator (Gold) I didn’t see that much in the way of real benefits.

          I think to really benefit from Lufthansa flights you have to be actually flying in First. Then the benefits really kick in. Otherwise sign up with another Star Alliance program.

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