BA sale

Bits: 2-4-1 vouchers now working on Avios sale, Thomas Cook slots sold, Virgin Trains drops Nectar

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News in brief:

American Express 2-4-1 vouchers now working on the Avios sale

Avios is currently running a redemption sale, which we covered here.

World Traveller and World Traveller Plus seats are reduced by 50%, whilst Club World and First Class require 10% fewer Avios.  Normal taxes and charges still apply, unfortunately.

There were some technical issues on Thursday with the application of British Airways American Express 2-4-1 vouchers on sale fares.  This confused some readers because we had specifically said in our article that 2-4-1 vouchers were accepted.

The situation has now been fixed, and BA Amex 2-4-1 vouchers can be redeemed without problems against Avios sale fares.

Don’t forget that there is also a 50% bonus when you buy Avios, if you are a little short of what you need.  Full details are here and you can buy here.

50% bonus when you buy Avios

easyJet and Jet2 snap up Thomas Cook slots

A batch of Thomas Cook slot sales were announced yesterday by the liquidator of the airline.

easyJet has paid £36m for a package of slots at London Gatwick and Bristol.  It acquired 12 Summer and eight Winter slots at Gatwick as well as six Summer and one Winter slot at Bristol.

Jet2 has also announced the acquisition of some Thomas Cook slots at Manchester, Stansted, and Birmingham Airports.  The price was not disclosed.

It is not clear if this represents all of the Gatwick and Manchester slots, which were the most valuable assets, or just the short-haul ones.

The official statement is not totally clear and Cook was originally reported to have 15 or 16 pairs of Gatwick Summer slots.  British Airways was known to be interested in a handful of well-timed slots at Gatwick whilst Virgin Atlantic was keen on some of the Manchester ones.

Here is a photo that I took at Manchester on Monday (whilst been driven to my plane, full story on Monday!) showing part of the Thomas Cook fleet parked up awaiting collection by the leasing company:

Thomas Cook airport slots sold

Virgin Trains drops Nectar

A slightly odd email arrived from Virgin Trains West Coast announcing that it will no longer offer Nectar points on bookings from 5th December.

The reason this announcement is a little weird is that the Virgin Trains franchise ends on 7th December.  The email doesn’t mention that explicitly, except to say that “Claims for missing Nectar points can be made by contacting the train company operating the West Coast franchise”.

I had assumed that the partnership between Nectar and West Coast would continue.  After all, First Group – which is a partner in the new franchise – offers Nectar points via its other rail companies.  This news implies that it will not, although it is also possible that it is just a stopgap measure to avoid any confusion over whether Virgin Trains or First Group has to pay for points issued over the transition period.

Avios news, Club Suite roll out timetable and other IAG Capital Markets Day revelations
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Comments

  1. Am I right in thinking the 50% of world traveller is only worth it if you can find seats at peak times?

  2. Rib, any idea whether Lloyd’s upgrade voucher can be used with the BA avios discount?

  3. OT Looking to close my Platinum card. If I transfer to Marriott will I still receive my bonus if I close the card? Is the payment of the bonus independent to the amex account remaining open?

  4. RussellH says:

    OT: Two bits of good news yesterday. My Hilton Gold extension to March 2021 came through from Barclaycard (about a month after hitting the £10K threshhold and without me having to chase them), and our favourite local restaurant which has hitherto only taken M/Card and Visa is now sporting its Shop Small sticker.

    • We hit our £10k at the end of Aug and we received an email from Hilton Honors early in Sept saying “Congratulations! As a HH credit card member you have Gold status for as long as you’re a card member and your HH pts do not expire. I’ve printed the email as evidence but not sure what to do next year. We dont want to lose our gold status as we no longer have the Plat card. Assume we dont need to spend £10 next year on this card and can focus on our IHG spend to retain Spire.
      Has anyone else had this lovely offer!

      • Mine came through in September and I’ve just double checked it – it says “another year of the good stuff”

        I’ve spent £10k+ on the card for the last 3/4 years, so would assume if your wording is different then you don’t need to spend anything at all.

        • RussellH says:

          Mine said ““another year of the good stuff” too, and specified the until date 31/3/2021.

          What annoys me is that it comes as a graphic, not in simple text, or even a PDF if they have to.

  5. Question for you Amex/Avios gurus out there! My other half has spent ~£13k on her BA Blue Amex card this membership year. 1) Am I right in thinking that if she upgrades to the BAPP, this will trigger the 241 immediately? 2) I have a BAPP; should I be referring her for the BAPP in order to receive some referral points? Thanks in advance

  6. OT: IHG Rewards Club Premium MasterCard free night – cancellation policy when making a booking is 24 hours before for most hotels, but would the “refund” come back in the form of the free night again or in some other form (eg. points)?

  7. OT: If I book a flight via BA with a BA flight number but on American metal out of LHR in Premium economy can I upgrade with Avios to business? Fare bucket T.

  8. Bits OT, just signed up for this Hilton Honors 5k bonus points offer for 2 nights in a Waldorf Astoria or Conrad (I’m currently staying in a v nice Conrad). Not sure if it’s for future or existing bookings , guess I’ll find out next week.

    https://www.hiltonhonors.com/en_US/5k-points-2nights/landing/

  9. 1nfrequent says:

    O/T but does the HSBC premier credit card work with Curve? I’m assuming so as it’s a MasterCard but it would be useful to know.

    1F

  10. Looking for inspiration please…
    Flights to Vegas in business (or premium) end of may (end of school holidays).

    I have enough avios and virgin points and some more amex Mr that I can convert but I like to find better value than the ‘standard’ redemptions (I think we all do).

    I have a Virgin upgrade voucher to use as well. (Would be premium economy.)
    I have to be there for certain dates but can be flexible adding on a few days either side to see somewhere different and better flights.

    Midlands based so London/Manchester both ok.

    Thinking something like virgin to east coast then avios domestic US. Or TAP one way from Dublin, then back on Delta One To CDG/ams for 50k virgin +$5.60 fees.

    Thoughts please?

  11. Harry T says:

    OT:
    I want to buy a new iPhone and I’m trying to find a way to do it which gives me the best discount or generates a points equivalent.

    I’ve thought of buying John Lewis gift cards at Morrison’s and getting 10% off (have the amex offer). Alternatively, my employer does offer some salary sacrifice scheme (looks like it would save me about 10% and the cost would be spread across 12 months).

    Does anyone have any other ideas?

    • Shoestring says:

      which model iPhone? (or possibles)

      • Harry T says:

        Probably the iPhone 11 Pro or Pro Max. Haven’t updated my phone in years and feel like a proper upgrade.

        • Shoestring says:

          Take a nice discount off the Amazon price with your Morrison’s/ Amex 10% + Amex MR points
          https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07XRP1G1D

          My running discount on Amazon (my credit balance) is about -12+% thanks to Tesco MOCs mostly. But -10% easy to get to.

          Gives you a price to beat, anyway, about £1K

          • Shoestring says:

            anyway, BF is only a couple of weeks away, I’d wait until then

          • Genghis says:

            Indeed. Just after I bought for cash, Vodafone did a fantastic deal last year where it was cheaper for a 2 year contract through them with the line usage etc than it was for me to buy the phone only for cash after all the discounts. Annoying.

          • Harry T says:

            You mean combine getting 10% off Amazon gift cards with Amex offer with using the AMEX25OFF code?

          • Shoestring says:

            too late for that but new Amazon codes/ offers always come along – no I meant that just using Amex card is worth a 1% discount in itself (more on the premium Amex cards/ Virgin cards), so combine that with the 10-12%

    • Employer or Academic schemes?

      I get a fifth off contracts at Vodafone and Double-E. I can claim up to 5 discounts a year on Double-E for myself and frirnds/family, so might be worthwhile asking around people you know who work for a larger company or public sector.

      Not sure if Ideal World sell Apple, but LBG have a funds back for them at the moment.

    • Buy at airport with Currys vouchers from Morrisons

      • Harry T says:

        Why buy at the airport? Does it avoid paying tax in some way?

        • Shoestring says:

          no tax savings (if you’re flying EU/ EEA) – but that’s often where you’ll find the cheapest prices in the UK (Currys/ PCWorld)

          and no DF declaration needed as you’re not buying it DF

      • Lady London says:

        Got a feeling airport shops dont take their own domestic vouchers but pretty sure they take the airport ones like HR.

    • Lady London says:

      If you’re flying then you can phone the relevant duty free shop to see if you can pre order for your departure day. Usually min 2 weeks ahead. Not sure if you have to be flying ex-EU to get duty free price by now – you didnt use to have to. But either way not coing to be a restriction for long :-(. Was about 15% off at LHR Dixns and airport vouchers for discounts or part payements usually OK.

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