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Bits: Email issues, new Turkish Airlines business class from Heathrow, Virgin offering domestic connections in Brazil

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News in brief:

If we didn’t reply to your email ….

You may have seen elsewhere that there was a massive Yahoo outage yesterday between roughly 7am and 1pm.

We use a Yahoo-powered service for around 1/3rd of HFP email. If you sent us an email yesterday morning – especially if you wanted a referral for the 60,000 points Amex Platinum Business deal – please resend it.  We don’t seem to be obviously missing anything but clearly we can’t be sure.  Apologies for the inconvenience.

Turkish Airlines new business class seat on 787

Heathrow gets newest Turkish Airlines aircraft and business class seat

Turkish Airlines recently began to took delivery of its Boeing 787-9 aircraft.  There are thirty on order, arriving by 2023.  The airline has now chosen to put one into service on the busy Heathrow-Istanbul route.

This is particularly good news because it features the airline’s new business class seat, which looks significantly better than its existing hard product. There are 30 seats in the business class cabin in a 1-2-1 configuration with direct aisle access.  It appears to provide far more privacy than the legacy seat.

The new seat is based upon the Aurora seat manufactured by Stelia Aerospace. It is very similar to the business class seats on the Emirates A380, Singapore Airlines 787-10 and Iberia A350 (review here).

From Heathrow the 787 is on TK1986 which departs at 4:30pm. From Istanbul it is on TK1985, with a 1pm departure. You can book it on the Turkish Airlines website here, and frankly you’d be crazy if you booked British Airways Club Europe instead of this.

GOL codeshare Virgin Atlantic

Virgin Atlantic to offer connecting flights in Brazil

A few months ago Virgin Atlantic announced it would start flying to the Brazilian city of Sao Paolo, its first route to Latin America.

Flights are scheduled to begin on 29th March 2020 with a Boeing 787. Tickets are on sale from this coming Tuesday, 10th September, via the Virgin Atlantic website. The flight numbers are VS197 and VS198.

To complement this solitary route into South America, Virgin Atlantic has reached a codesharing agreement with GOL, the largest airline in Brazil.  This will allow Virgin to sell connecting flights to 37 destinations in Brazil, including Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro and Recife.

You’ll be able to check your luggage to your final destination with both Virgin Atlantic and GOL segments having matching baggage allowances. If you are travelling in Upper Class you’ll also be able to use the GOL premium lounges.

GOL flies a fleet of Boeing 737 aircraft exclusively and offers what it calls ‘Premium Economy’. For all intents and purposes it looks like European business class with a blocked middle seat and lounge access.

There are plans to expand the codeshare onto regional flights to Argentina, Uruguay and and Chile, as well as reciprocal frequent flyer programme benefits, although nothing concrete has been announced yet.

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Comments

  1. Anyone received a second / third bonus from Tesco conversion to BA executive club (shell points) ?

  2. OT I just had my final Shell points convert to Avios post to my BAEC. The email I got from Shell indicated that I had received 37 Avios but looking at the account today only 30 Avios have posted backdated to 30 June. I won’t bother querying as it’s only 7 Avios but I’m wondering if anyone else received less Avios than Shell said they would?

  3. Shoestring says:

    American Express Spend £20 or more, get £5 back @ Just Eat

  4. OT is it correct that the Grain Store is not accessible if flying from the North terminal please?

  5. For NFL fans, Marriott now have Wembley tickets/packages available with points

  6. Jonathan says:

    I was in Brazil earlier on this year, and used GOL airlines right before the start of the carnival. I had a return flight from Rio’s GIG airport to Salvador, both flights were single flights at first, but then for the flight to Salvador, they decided to reroute it via Brasilia, and to put it simply, they couldn’t have made any more screwups if they tried. And almost certainly lost themselves loads of money in process, by someone thinking up a ‘clever’ idea. Apart from that, the airline was ok, if they hadn’t made such huge shambles of everything for me (and a few other people in the exact same position as me) I’d have said they’re great.

  7. Hi, Rob.

    Do you know the date from when TK1986 will start with 787-9 aircraft? I check few dates this month and in April 2020 on TK website and all TK1986 still show an old aircraft? Or do you think it has already started and the info on the website is just not updated yet?

    Thanks for reply in advance.

  8. Shoestring says:

    In a sign of cockpit crews’ hardening attitude, the Balpa pilots’ union warned there could be further strikes after those scheduled for next week. Thousands of BA pilots have held mass meetings, with plans to crowdfund money to fund an extended strike campaign.

    “The only way to deal with [BA’s] approach is to display steely-eyed resolve,” said a BA pilot who asked not to be named. He said there were already funds for a couple of weeks’ worth of strikes. “They are ready for the long haul,” he added.

    Financial Times – google an extract from the paragraphs above and you can read the whole article

  9. Cuchlainn says:

    OT: Upgrade to Personal Platinum with referral from OH, or self from Green
    Scenario : 1. I have no current primary AMEX cards ( but have 2 supps under OH’s cards, inc Gold PRC and BAPP ) and not eligible until Sept 2020 to reapply for either as primary acc holder.
    2. OH has Gold PRC with 1st year due to finish mid-Oct. 2019 and a BAPP we will be keeping when it renews Dec 2019.
    Looking to maximise Avios / MRs on referral for OH so thoughts are :
    I) Self refer OH only on BAPP up to personal Plat and add me in post card delivery to trigger bonus for supp Plat card ( is there a fee for supp Plat ) ?
    2. I take out Green ( if poss under 24 month rules ) and immediately self upgrade to Plat, then add OH in near future as supp Plat.

    Thought I had my head round recent events but struggling. Thanks in advance ( again ).

    • Shoestring says:

      2 is possible no problem, I guess you would use the 20K upgrade, obvs you won’t get sign up bonus on green

  10. I have to say i m not a big fan if this new TK biz class (flew back and forth from Bali). It might be good for single travellers looking for privacy but if you travel with a family, it is not great as you cant see each other (even the 2 seats are only close for half of the rows and even then the screens are still blocking the view)
    I also found the ‘hole’ for your legs very narrow making me hit the walls regularly

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