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Bits: Virgin confirms Sao Paulo dates, get FREE Luxury Travel Fair tickets, £100 off Virgin ‘flight and hotel’ deals

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More news in brief:

Virgin Atlantic confirms Sao Paulo flight dates and timings

Whilst tickets are not currently on sale, Virgin Atlantic has confirmed the dates and times for the new Sao Paulo service.

Flights will launch on 29th March 2020, using a Boeing 787-9.  This means that you will not be getting the new version of the Upper Class Suite, currently rolling out exclusively on the A350 fleet.

The service will operate daily.

The outbound, VS197, will leave Heathrow Terminal 3 at 22.30 and arrive in Sao Paulo at 06.25 the following day.

The return flight, VS198, will leave Sao Paulo at 16.25 and arrive in Heathrow at 07.50 the following day.

It is obvious that these are not ideal timings for Virgin Atlantic.  It will have a $200m aircraft sitting on the tarmac in Brazil for 10 hours per day, not generating income.

As we covered last week, Virgin Atlantic has agreed a codeshare deal with GOL to allow you to purchase through-tickets for domestic destinations in Brazil.

Tickets are expected to be on sale, both for cash and Virgin Flying Club miles, in the next few days.

How to earn Virgin Atlantic miles from UK credit cards

As a reminder, if you are interested in redeeming miles for this new service, there are various ways of earning Virgin Flying Club miles from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Virgin Flying Club miles.

Get free tickets to The Luxury Travel Fair – but is it worth it?

The Luxury Travel Fair is back at Olympia in London from 7th-10th November.

To be honest, this is not a hugely exciting event.  It is essentially just a lot of high-end hotels and travel agents in booths.  You don’t, for example, get airlines bringing along their latest business class seats to try out.

The fact that they actually charge for tickets is a bit cheeky.  However, until 18th September you can order free tickets via their website using code LTFTWO in return for a £2.50 handling fee per ticket.  If you live nearby then it is worth popping in.

We don’t recommend it at the standard price of £20.50 (£22.50 at the weekend).

Free tickets Luxury Travel Fair London Olympia

Save £100 on selected Virgin Atlantic ‘flight and hotel’ deals

All this week – until Monday 16th September – Virgin Atlantic is offering £100 off ‘flight and hotel’ packages to selected destinations.

You need to use code PROMO100 on the ‘flight and hotels’ website here.

The deal does not show on the home page but does show when you do a search for any of the participating cities.

It is valid on Tel Aviv, Mumbai, Hong Kong, Johannesburg, Shanghai and Delhi, for travel by 31st July 2020.  There does not appear to be any minimum spend target although at least two adults must be travelling – the offer does not work for solo travellers.

Bits: BA pilot strike update, IHG losing its two new Manchester hotels to Hyatt, Reward Flight Finder trouble
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Comments

  1. stevenhp1987 says:

    Sao Paulo flights appear for sale on their website for me. Even have reward availability loaded, 140k points for a return in Upper.

  2. The Sao Paolo flight times look pretty standard for Europe/Latam sectors. AF, LH and BA all have their planes sitting in GRU for the same time that VS will have theirs.

  3. O/T: When you haven’t earned a single Avios in the last 12 months,the best way to deposit Avios into BAEC to buy a Reward Flight saver ticket the same day ,Is it buying 1000 Avios from BA than book RFS .Can this be managed the same day?
    Please let me know .Thanks

    • Shoestring says:

      yes should be instant

    • Tesco conversions are overnight, Amex transfers are usually overnight.

      • Oh! Matron! says:

        Good to know, as I transfered 71K yesterday. Got the “Your request is being processed email”

        Shame it’s so slow… VS and DL manage 15 minutes….

      • Thanks .Just bought points at 31GBP for 1300 avios and the 1 avios requirement is for the Head of the household account in last 12 months and not for all the family members.Booked to Ibiza.

        • Kumar,
          Next time you shop online, just go through the basic e shop and bag a few avios , save the panic further down the line.

  4. Question to the people that have been to the Luxury travel fare previously – anything interesting to be found there for a point / mile collector / aspirational traveller? (discount vouchers, special offers etc) Or it’s purely an industry event?

    • There are some country specific tour operators there who specialise in specific cities or tours where it may be difficult for a solo tourist to do themselves.
      I think if you are going to book any packages on the day, they are willing to cut prices. The website probably has a list of exhibitors.

    • It is 100% a consumer event, but more aimed at wealthy pensioners from the Cotswolds. It is not a coincidence that the Spirit of Christmas Fair is on the same dates.

  5. Does anyone know if you can earn Virgin Flying Club Miles on flights previously taken with GOL Airlines?

  6. OT – my revolut account is frozen whilst they ask me for docs. Been frozen for over a week, despite me sending in a load of complex docs. Been trying to get in touch with customer services for three days via chat, but no success (same timeline as other days).

    Let’s be honest – not a bank you’d leave any money in, or rely on given the above, is it?

    • What have you had to send them for? I opened a Revolut account recently and all I had to do was scan my driving licence on my phone and it was confirmed within minutes.

      • Opening an account is easy.
        Maintaining an account is more difficult as they want more proof after more than around £20k has passed through your account for anti money laundering checks.

    • Agree. Mine was done the same day (this was around a year ago) and my situation was slightly complex too. Their checks aren’t too stringent either.
      Check the app as it’s easy to miss replies from them in the chat section.

    • Been a naughty boy? 🙂
      Remember they’re not a bank (yet). I don’t leave money in there for any length of time.

    • fivebobbill says:

      Done the same to me about 6 or 7 months ago, asked me for proof of funds and proof of access etc. However, although I provided the requested material immediately, and got an acknowledgement, it took them well over a week (maybe 2) to return my account to normal. I would say however, I was still able to spend whatever balance I had in there, just couldn’t do anything else with the account. Think my turnover would have been in the region of £40k/£50k in the previous 6 months.
      Otherwise can’t complain, Revolut has been good for me, happy to stick with them for now…

    • Mrs xcalx and my accounts frozen. Only tried to add £500 to each for overseas spend. Got message £200 only. Deposited £200 into each account and now both are frozen until we prove income. Waste of time opening these Revolut accounts.

    • I had some issues 2 months ago with duplicate payments taken by revolut from my credit card – an extra 1,800 had been taken through revolut double-charging.

      Took 3-4 days to get a response from customer services and get the money returned, barely got an apology for the mistake and no apology for the double-charging which would have gone un-noticed if I had not spotted it.
      That was enough for me to stop using them – ultimately there will be times with an account – errors etc that you need to contact customer services. Imagine if the above card had gone over-drawn?
      If you can’t contact a financial firm when there are issues then that’s not a firm I can do business with

  7. Shoestring says:

    OFFER DETAILS Save to Card to get a £15 Statement Credit when you spend £100 or more on flights with SWISS or Lufthansa online before 9 November 2019.

  8. OT has anyone managed to add their capital on tap to either Revolut or Curve as i’m struggling?

    • Prepaid cards do not work with Curve by default – Curve needs to decide to accept them. This is what happened with the Lufthansa card, which IS now accepted on Curve. I doubt COT will get added given it is ended in its MC form on 31/10. I am guessing the new Visa can be added without any trouble.

  9. Quote:- “there are various ways of earning Virgin Flying Club miles from UK credit cards.”

    Including using your BA Amex Card in Waitrose! 4 miles per £1 spent at the moment.

    Rather naughtily, I’ve added my parent’s Credit Card details to my Flying Club Account, so every time they shop in Waitrose or have a coffee in Costa, I earn 4 points or 8 points respectively. It’s points for nothing.

  10. Depends on who you are employed by, but there are 15% back targetted offers out there at the moment on Virgin Flights. It doesn’t work with the flight + hotel deals though.

  11. Bits. Can anybody point me to the IBERIA 2020 Peak/Off Peak calendar to download ? Thanks.

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