BA sale

Bits: BA launches Antalya but drops Limoges, congratulations to BA’s IT team, 20% bonus on Etihad transfers

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

News in brief:

British Airways launches new route to Antalya

British Airways has announced a new holiday route for Summer 2020 – Antalya in Turkey.

The route will operate from London Gatwick.  There will be up to six flights per week – frequency increases as we get into the Summer – with the first flight departing on 30th April.  It is scheduled to run until 29th October although there is always the possibility that it will become a year-round route if successful.

British Airways already runs a Summer-only service to Dalaman from Gatwick and, of course, there are daily flights to Istanbul from Heathrow.

Tickets are bookable now, for both cash and Avios.  A standard redemption is 17,000 Avios off-peak / 20,000 peak + £35 in Euro Traveller and 34,000 Avios off-peak / 40,000 peak + £50 in Club Europe.  Under the current variable pricing trial, you can choose to pay as little as £1 in tax by using more Avios, although this option is not available if using a British Airways American Express 2-4-1 voucher.

I don’t know anything about Antalya, although British Airways says:

“Antalya is often described as the gateway to the Turquoise Coast with some of the most stunning landscapes in Turkey.  The beaches and crystal-clear Mediterranean Sea are perfect for sunbathing, swimming and water sports.  As well as the rolling landscapes and beaches, the region has two-thousand years of history with a range of spectacular temples and Greco-Roman ruins close by, as well as a bustling food and cultural scene.”

The hotel scene looks a bit desperate, to be honest.  The best option appears to be the four star Crowne Plaza – website here and photo below – which is handy for anyone with IHG Rewards Club status or with IHG points to redeem.

PS.  BA giveth and BA taketh away.  This announcement came in parallel with the dropping of Summer services from Gatwick to Gibraltar and Limoges.  The Heathrow service to Gibraltar will continue.

Crowne Plaza Antalya

Congratulations to BA’s IT department

The British Airways IT department generally has very little to celebrate, but it has managed to hit a remarkable milestone this week.

The new British Airways iPad app has just received its 1,000th one-star review.  Since virtually no-one has given it two, three, four or five stars, the overall average from ALL reviewers is just 1.1 out of 5.

It is very difficult to achieve a result like this – even with careful planning you could never be certain that everyone would hate your app so much they would give it just a single star – so the team should be proud of themselves.

Take a look (click to enlarge):

British Airways iPad app

20% bonus on transfers to Etihad Guest

Etihad Guest has launched another of its occasional transfer bonuses.

Details of the transfer bonus are here.  For UK residents, the key transfer partners which will trigger a 20% bonus are:

Le Club AccorHotels

IHG Rewards Club

World of Hyatt

Radisson Rewards (still called Club Carlson by Etihad!)

Marriott Bonvoy

Hilton Honors

Shangri-La Golden Circle

It is important to note who is NOT on the list – American Express Membership Rewards.  You will not get a bonus if you transfer from here.  Note that Etihad Guest is no longer a Heathrow Rewards partner.

It is not clear if HSBC is included.  It has been included in the past and it is not on the list of exclusions.  Etihad says that “Mastercard partners” ARE included …. does this include HSBC Premier Mastercard points?

Transfers must be made by 31st October.  The bonus will be added in a separate transaction within 15 days of the end of the promotion.

You can find out more here.

We take a sneak peak at United's Polaris business class - now on all Newark flights (Part 2)
HFP in Doha: How is the food and drink when you fly Qatar Airways Qsuite?
Click here to join the 14,000 people on our email list and receive the latest Avios, miles and points news by 6am.

Hilton India and SEA sale
Amazon ad
BA sale
About Head for Points

We help business and leisure travellers maximise their Avios, frequent flyer miles and hotel loyalty points. Visit every day for three new articles or sign up for our FREE emails via this page or the box to your right.

Comments

  1. BA app on Android has a rating of 4.2. presumably the same it department. So this probably says more about iPhone users!

  2. Stuart Stebbings says:

    The BA for iPhone works fine and has 4.6 stars. It also works on the iPad. Why the iPad specific app is so awful is a mystery. Maybe theyasked the local pre-school group to write it.

    • Oh! Matron! says:

      the BA app on the iPhone is one of the better airline apps out there. My baseline, ie the lowest, is a draw between Ukraine Airlines and Lufthansa

    • I think that maybe many people use an iPad as a replacement for a computer, and therefore expect that an app on the iPad can replace a business’ website? Whereas, the phone app is probably mainly used for check-in and checking your account.

  3. The Antalya CP is really quite pleasant actually – I’ve stayed there when I’ve met up with a friend who worked in Iraq, and it made a great base to hike sections of the Lycian way. Plus it was exceedingly good value, esp when you factor in Accelerate bonuses. On the top floor, there’s a very pleasant ladies only hammam (there’s also a mixed one), the gym has a fabulous view of the Mediterranean, and the swimming pools are quite lovely.

  4. OT – RE applying for the Amex business gold. Are there any rules that the spend has to all be strictly ‘business’ spend.? The £3k for sign up bonus would be a challenge from a business spend perspective.
    TIA

    • Roberto says:

      Spend it on what ever you want..

      • memesweeper says:

        If you are charging any card fees to the business — or linking it to your accounting software — then I think you need to bill only business costs. Your accountant can advise. They might be relaxed about the odd personal expense that is immediately applied to a directors loan account for instance.

        If it’s unlinked to your business then fill your boots. The Amex contract is with you, not your firm, AFAIK.

        • No fee for Gold Business in year 1.

          No problem putting all non business spend on & paying balance from your own personal current account. Then never hits company books at all.

  5. Normally Antalya is not the final destination to stay but rather to visit. I fly to Antalya but stay in Belek, Lara or Kemer (up t 1 hour from the airport). They have wonderful hotels there. Check out Maxx Royal for instance…

    • I absolutely loved Cirali beach, but that was half a lifetime ago, so I have no idea what it’s like now.
      Termessos is a stunning day trip from Antalya – the view from the amphitheatre takes my breath away!

    • For those who don’t know much about Turkey, I personally would not recommend Antalya unless you like high rise hotels and are booking as a family maybe for all inclusive. Or to go to Belek for golf – it’s perfect for that as it’s the closest airport.
      I’ve been travelling to Turkey since 1987 and have two apartments in Sarigerme (near Dalaman) and suggest this area, Oludeniz (if you want family all inclusive and a resort), Kemer, Kalkan, Kas. This way you will see the real Turkey and have less expensive prices. Don’t forget Cappodocia – it should be up the top of everyone’s bucket list as is a very unknown area by most people. Sarigerme itself is a 200m long village with lovely bars and restaurants and a fabulous sandy beach perfect for children as there’s no ‘drop off’ in the water. My heart, as you can tell, is in Turkey!

  6. OT – any particular sweet spots for redeeming with Bonvoy in Paris?

    Also OT – months ago I asked on here about flying with a baby. Got a lot of good advice (mostly reassurance) which really helped when we flew a few weeks ago, so thanks to all who helped.

  7. O/T Nectar: 1000 bonus points on LNER back for some but with £5 minimum spend. Still works if points redeemed at 1p value offers. There is also 500/1000 points for spending £25/£50 at argos so a 20% rebate if redeemed at 1p. Not sure if argos sell Sainsburys giftcards, if so then it could be worth 10% off petrol.

    • Sainsburys gift cards don’t work in their petrol stations

      • Since when? Never had a problem but a few months since I had cause to use them.

        • the_real_a says:

          @BJ – its true, gift cards no longer work at fuel stations. T&C`s have been updated and heard the same from Customer Service after staff refused my card. This was before Christmas so not sure how many months it has been since you tried. No idea is the till rejects it however as couldn’t get that far!

          • Thanks to both you and John then. I used to buy them sometimes to hit spend targets more quickly so I’ll know not to fall into that trap going forward.

      • luckyjim says:

        Gift cards and most fintech cards don’t work when you pay at the pump. Try paying in the kiosk if you have an issue.

        • Should add I only ever paid in kiosk. I try not play any games that let companies cut staff but it’s hard at times.

    • Also 5% with Halifax and BoS on LNER online bookings at the moment.

      • Ages since I had anything useful with Halifax. Hopefully get something better with my new Club Lloyd’s account.

    • Charlieface says:

      I got Morrisons 10% on Halifax. Started immediately after the Coop offer…

  8. Mikeact says:

    When does BA’s Summer season start and end…does it tie in with Peak Period dates…depends on the route…..it varies ?

    • Shoestring says:

      varies with route I think – I was checking on the Antalya route yesterday and it had a few gaps esp May half term

      speculation that BA will also offer more of the busiest ex-Thomas Cook holiday routes this coming summer so watch this space, get in quick with Avios or £64 each way cash even in peak summer (which is what you could have done with the Antalya route yesterday!)

    • ‘Summer schedule’ in airline lingo is end of March until end of October. It is set by one of the regulators, I believe.
      Peak/offpeak is set by BA.

    • Start is last sunday in march. End, last saturday in october. It’s standard IATA regulation.

    • Theer are the official start end dates (I think airlines get different slots for W & S). But I presume BA leave capacity on the ski routes for Easter, hence why some summer routes have delayed starts.

      Somewhat a shame as I would fancy going to Antalya at Easter. There’s a massive theme park if not everyday is beach temperature. And not many better SH options that time of year.

    • Shoestring says:

      catastrophic effects on the environment (of flying)?

      all the carbon emissions of all the world’s planes currently make up 2% of the annual total, let’s keep things in proportion

      • Harry, I posted more as an advisory to expect delays.

        I wonder how an EU261/2004 claim would fly if disrupted enough…

        I wonder if they’ll have their diesel generator with them today…

        • It’ll ho under civil unrest so no EU261 I guess.

          • BA Exec Club call centre reps have authorization to switch flights from LCY today onto alternative routes, on request and without change fees. I just swapped LCY-EDI this evening for LHR-EDI with no hassle (travelling on an inexpensive non-flexible ticket). Super-helpful person on the end of the phone too.

      • 2% of a huge number of course being a huge number. Though some studies estimate the total effect is more like 5% (the location of the emissions and the contrails they leave behind also being significant).

        Some people also care about equality, and a passenger’s share of a single return flight from LCY will produce more CO2 than many people produce in an entire year.

        If you don’t particularly care about climate change (or if you do but disagree with civil disobedience as a tactic) then that’s completely fine, but I do object to statistics being used misleadingly!

        • It’s not often I quote Farage …

          Olivia Colman PR stunts for XR and BA in the last year…

          https://mobile.twitter.com/nigel_farage/status/1181288302730780672

          Gotta love celebs 🙂

        • Riccatti says:

          But what is the end goal? To close down all airports and commercial aviation?

          • I despise arguments like this. You apparently care enough to comment on the topic, but you flat out refuse to do even the tiniest piece of research. Why? I’m genuinely curious.

            The goal of XR is INCREDIBLY easy to find. They demand that the government be honest on the dangers of climate change, that we commit to net zero emissions and create citizen assemblies to come up with ecological regulations.

            So to answer your question, no that does not mean shut down all airports and stop all flights. BA’s domestic network plans to achieve that standard in just three months time – it’s really not hard…

          • Shoestring says:

            main goal of XR?

            ‘Government must act now to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2025’

            it’s ludicrously unrealistic – OK, 2050 might be too ‘lazy’ an aim but 2025 is hopeless & never going to happen – and as a stated aim makes XR look like nutters

          • Can you give a logical reason why being too ambitious makes you a nutter?

            To me, the logical method of achieving a goal as best as you can is to aim as high as you can. What benefit would there be to aim lower, when the end result would be at best identical?

        • RussellH says:

          Apart from the location of the emissions being far more dangerous, there is also the fact that air travel is growing very rapidly.
          This 2% figure has been trotted out for several years now – it must surely be more than that by now, especially as emissions from other sources are dropping, as renewables and other non-carbon or low-carbon sources come on line.

      • memesweeper says:

        Only about 2% of the worlds population fly each year, so that is a massive hit to CO2 from a small number of people.

        • Shoestring says:

          and how many mouths are those 2% feeding with their ‘whole life societal economic contribution’? probably 20% of the world’s population

          • Can you provide a scrap of evidence to prove that rather absurd claim? Progressive tax systems don’t seem to make much sense if you think keeping the rich richer benefits the poor.

          • Lady London says:

            +1
            I love the idealism of those committed to this cause and the young and passionate, but frequent flyers are frequently flying for business roles with long chains of positive effects of productivity, achievement and efficiency.

            However the kind of inane posing on various trendy topics such as this now is getting very Turing and I’m losing respect for The Grauniad overall.

      • Riccatti says:

        Cargo planes, military planes. Cargo on regular commercial flights that adds to load and emissions.

        It is extremely single-minded to focus on one thing, eg, carbon emissions.

        If planes stop flying today, think of consequences: delayed critical cargo, delayed/no medications, food shortages, no deliveries for hard to reach parts of the planet/Africa. That is, what would be a proportion of people that suffer/die today from a halt to flying.

        • Well yes, most special interest groups do indeed focus on the special interest that they were founded to encourage… Is this really news to you?

          Given no one has asked for all flights to stop immediately, I’m struggling to see what your point is?

          • As you stated earlier throwing around a few selective stats is unhelpful because the issue is hugely complex. Hearts and minds are being won over on a whole range of environmental issues and that is good. Whether the results that changing mindsets drive go far enough and quick enough is another question all together and requires political solutions, but it is nevertheless good that we are moving in the right direction. Direct Action in conjunction with science, technology and policy can and do come together to yield positive results; acid rain was a good example, progress in pest control another. It is happening now with global warming and climate change. Whether we agree with their methods or not, groups like XR are ultimately having a positive effect by heightening awareness and concern, which in turn drives policy responses forward. However, these policy responses somehow need to strike a balance in reconciling the needs for people to live their lives as they choose and protecting the environment as best they can. It must be remembered too though that today’s solutions often become tomorrows problems, for example plastics were once perceived as very beneficial to the environment!

          • 100% agree BJ. I don’t agree with all their methods, but I’m glad people are stepping up. After the apathy and inaction of the last few decades over environmental issues, it’s high time things start to change. XR and GT finally seem to be starting to shake policy makers out of their torpor.

        • is this a bit like “think of the starving Africans” if we stop flying.

          Absurd argument, if that’s what your relying on to fly to Magaluf or New York for the weekend.

    • Paul Pogba says:

      Why don’t they put their efforts into getting the Greens into Downing Street? Either this is a democracy or we submit to middle class mob rule.

      • Why didn’t black people in America commit to getting people into power? Why didn’t the suffragettes commit to getting people into power? Because they couldn’t.

        Their idea of mob rule doesn’t look too different to the current state of democracy in the UK, where a government elected by a very low number of people (15%? Or a third if you want to restrict it to only the eligible voters who turn out) can wield absolute power.

        Though given that their demands are for a civilian assembly to decide what to do, not XR itself, that argument doesn’t hold much weight anyway.

    • Charlieface says:

      I guess I always take these things with a pinch of salt. The world is not going to come to an end but we must do something about the current pollution.
      One of the problems is that these issues are never clear cut and have trade-offs. If you reduce greenhouse gases to 0, you will probably cause major economic damage, but equally climate change itself can cause major damage as well. Same with road speeds: if you reduce speeds to 20 to save lives, you cause congestion and more air pollution. If you ban Euro4 minivans, you cause problems for poor families with a lot of kids.
      Personally I’m much more bothered about localised air pollution than generalised greenhouse gases. I think they affect people much more.
      In my area buses make far more NOx and partics than cars do, they’re old and not to Euro6 standard. According to a BBC article recently, 2 people sharing a car cause on average less CO2 and NOx than someone on a bus, so I have no sympathy.

      • Lady London says:

        +1. The Swiss have had buses that emit mostly water for about 30 years now. I cannot understand, with the spiralling we have seen on public transport fares in London, why London did not choose these non-polluting buses on any of the 2 or 3 rounds of bus replacements we’ve seen in that time.

        • Do you mean the electric buses that hang on to overhead wires? Apart from that they don’t pollute I’ve always thought it was a bit of a botched solution….

          • Electric-powered stuff is only environmentally friendly if the underlying electricity is generated in an environmentally friendly way. The UK is still weaning itself off coal.

            Take paper recycling.

            UK paper goes to Wales to be recycled, in a process which uses a lot of electricity which, in the UK, partially comes from coal in the Winter. If you DON’T recycle your paper, trees in Finland – farmed on a 100% sustainable basis (eg you cut down 2% of a forest every year if trees take 50 years to grow) – are cut down and made into paper using 100% hydro electricity. Which is actually better? I’m not taking sides, but eco stuff is never this simple, in the same way that we couldn’t feed the world if everyone ate organic food and ate fully free range meat.

  9. Benylin says:

    OT: Looking to go Beirut on Avios redemption economy. How long do you recommend, people say 2N3D. Any girl recommendations, cash pay, not expensive.

    • ??? Regarding cash, bring US dollars and avoid Lebanese pounds as they might devalue.

    • Can’t decide what to make of recommending an inexpensive cash only girl.

    • If you need inexpensive cash only girl- why Beirut?! Why not Glasgow?

    • Had three nights there in June and absolutely loved it. We technically had four nights as we got into our room at 4am and slept for a couple of hours, so three full days. There’s a lot to see outside Beirut – Jeita Grotto, Baalbek, Anjar, Byblos, Harissa – and an awful lot more that I didn’t see…..

      I’m generally a 2D/3N weekend person, but I’d consider more if you can. Utilise the happy hours wherever you can.

  10. Does anyone know what refund/insurance claim or cancellation options are available for a non cancellable hilton points booking that might be missed due to train cancellations because of typhoon?

    Emailed hilton and they said they cant do anything with points cancellations due to security reasons.

    If the trains get cancelled and i cant use the room, is there any options to claim on insurance or amex plat insurance as its weather related? If so how would that work as the points were bought specifically for the booking, but theres no direct cash involved to claim for etc?

    I cant find an email address for hilton tokyo to try and cancel direct, assuming they even would what with it being noncancellable.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

Please click here to read our data protection policy before submitting your comment.