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Bits: more BA A350 Club Suite routes revealed, Virgin credit cards tweaked, ski holiday discount

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News in brief:

More new British Airways routes getting Club Suite

After yesterday’s news that Philadelphia and Washington DC were getting the A350 and Dallas and Seattle getting the 787-10 both with Club Suite, it looks like British Airways has now fully rostered the A350 fleet for the Summer schedule.

In April, this means we will see the A350 on Bangalore (BA119/BA118), Dubai (BA109/BA108), Austin (BA191/BA190) as well as the previously announced Philadelphia (BA67/BA66) and Washington DC (BA293/BA292). From June Tel Aviv will see the return of the A350 (BA167/BA166), whilst Tokyo will see it come July (BA5/BA4). Boston will get it in August (BA203/BA202).

Toronto is notably missing. Whilst Toronto was one of the first destinations to get the A350 it looks like it will no longer serve on that route. This list looks exhaustive, given the limited number of deliveries that British Airways will be taking from Airbus.  I wouldn’t expect any more routes to get the A350 until later in 2020.

There are no additional routes for the 787-10 yet.  Atlanta, Dallas and Seattle have already been announced.

British Airways A350 Club Suite

Virgin Atlantic tweaks its credit card rules

Virgin Atlantic announced a change to its credit card rules this week.  This will only impact a very small number of cardholders, but I think they are disproportionately HFP readers!

The spending on which you can earn miles per month is now capped at your monthly credit limit.

What this means is that you cannot cycle your credit limit mid-month.  Well, you can, but you won’t earn any miles if you do.

Imagine you have a £10,000 credit limit but spend £30,000 per month on Google or Facebook advertising for your business, as I know quite a few readers do:

on the 1st you charge £10,000 and pay it off on the 9th

on the 10th you charge another £10,000 and pay it off on the 19th

on the 20th you charge another £10,000 and pay it off on the 29th

At the moment, this person would (on the Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard) earn 45,000 miles per month on £30,000 of spending, despite having a £10,000 credit limit.

Going forward, this person would only earn 15,000 miles per month, since the spend on which miles can be earned is capped at their £10,000 credit limit.

However, if Virgin Money agreed to increase their credit limit to £30,000, they could continue to earn 45,000 miles per month.

It is worth noting that having a cap on cycling your limit is not unusual.  Some card companies ban the practice outright.  Capital On Tap, I believe, limits you to double your credit limit per month on its generous Avios card.

You can find out more about the Virgin Atlantic credit cards here.  Despite this change, they are still easily the most generous cards on the market, with 0.75 Flying Club miles per £1 on the free card and 1.5 miles per £1 on the £160 paid card.  There are generous sign-up bonuses too.

Save 5% on ski holidays with SNO

Finally, I wanted to plug our ski holiday discount with SNO again today.

SNO has agreed to offer Head for Points readers an exclusive 5% off discount code again this winterTheir website has some good half board hotel packages at the moment, including the Hotel San Giovanni (pictured) in Livigno, Italy, which currently comes with a free lift pass.

You can claim a 5% discount from the brochure price of all SNO holidays using the code SNOHFP.  You can find all SNO hotel deals here – you need to book by telephone 020 7770 6888 to claim your 5% discount.

Review: The great new Finnair Platinum Wing at Helsinki Airport (BA Gold cards only!)
NEW: Credit KLM and Air France flights to Qantas, and then redeem on British Airways!

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  1. Michael Blume says:

    Got the club suite by dumb luck from LHR to Madrid on Thursday. Nice surprise.

    Fair to say it was a familiarisation flight for passengers as well as crew – with so many rhomboid hatches, I spent a LOT of time trying to find an alcove that would accept my iPad before spotting that the front of the magazine holder opened.

    Oh, and my suite door rattled in its track when closed. A scrunched up napkin sorted it out.

  2. OT but not sure who else to ask! I have a BA flight from LHR tomorrow morning that I needed to speak to someone on the phone about quickly tonight – I don’t suppose anyone knows of a 24hr BA helpline? All of their publicised numbers seem to close at 8pm daily. Thanks in advance

    • Bit late now but for anyone else the US number is open until 11pm (4am UK time) – bizarrely staffed out of the UK for at least some of that time!

      +1-800-247-9297 – use Skype to call for free. Status holders will have their own number

  3. Somewhere around this time last year HfP advised us of an offer to nab 500 Shangri-La Golden Circle RPs by signing up and installing the app. If you, like me, just had them sitting in your account instead of transferring them out (you couldn’t, there’s a 2500 minimum to transfer) since then, you might find they are about to expire soon.

    However, you can still redeem them. 500 won’t get you any of the fancy electronic goods on offer, but it will get you $50 worth of dining vouchers which you can spend in one of the participating restaurants. Redemption vouchers are valid for another six months.

    Redeem here:

  4. Help! OT but wondering if anyone can clarify. Looking at visiting some Shop Small stores before the offer ends and know Amex has some rules since people took advantage last year, but I am a bit confused. If me and my supplementary platinum card holder both spent £10 at the same shop on our respective cards, would this be allowed or is this what Amex doesn’t want?
    Also, is it allowed to buy gift vouchers from participating shops? I know Amex doesn’t like you buying gift cards to boost earnings so want to be sure before I get some gifts for Christmas.

    • Shoestring says:

      all that is fine but try and vary your £10s by adding on another item such as stamps or anything else so that it’s not exactly £10 + £10 a minute apart

  5. Re the A350 on the TLV route, looking at ExpertFlyer it’s actually showing just a very short break with the A350 at the end of March. So showing a 777 replacing it between March 30th and April 7th on the 166/167 rotation, and then the A350 back again from the 8th, so much earlier than June, unless the info on there isn’t up to date.

  6. I had F seats booked on a 241 deal to Austin and was downgraded. I called tonight and surprisingly was rerouted to IAH with none of the usual nonsense you get from BA.
    Quite happy as am on the 787 now and closer to my final destination.

  7. Regarding the Virgin CC monthly miles earning cap against credit limit, has a date been shared when this comes into effect? As a Virgin card holder I don’t recall receiving any notice of a change to T&Cs as I’d expect.

  8. Hadn’t seen it mentioned anywhere but on my latest virgin rewards + statement it had the following

    From 15 December 2019, we’re changing how you’re charged when
    you use your card or withdraw cash in any of the 31 countries of
    the European Economic Area (EEA). When you pay for something
    in Euros, Swedish Kronor or Romanian Lei, we won’t charge you a
    Non-Sterling Transaction Fee.
    When you take money out in those currencies from a cash machine
    in the EEA, you won’t have to pay a Non-Sterling Transaction Fee
    either – but you will still need to pay a Cash Advance fee.

    Also despite having a spend of 4 x credit limit via cycling my credit limit, i still earned miles on full spend, ie not just up to credit limit. I had not received any notice that the new rules mentioned above would apply.

  9. Slightly OT question on the new Club Suites: we are planning a 2-4-1 companion voucher trip to NYC in April 2020 and have the option of Avios redemptions in Club for 50 000 or in First for 68 000. With the new Club Suites vs the older FIrst offering, is it worth going for the First option? We have only flown Club once (to JHB on a previous 2-4-1 in 2019) and have never flown First. Thinking of doing First on the way out to experience the Concorde Room and then Club on the way back…
    Appreciate that it may be a subjective/personal opinion thing, but thanks for any feedback!

    • To some extent it depends on how many Avios you have. I’d rather do 3 x CW trips than 2 x F trips and 1 x Economy trip, for example. Certainly for the night flight home F is a bit of a waste.

      • Thanks Rob, since the Amex changes our stash and earning of Avios is severely limited. We have 2 x 2-4-1s to use and 260 000 Avios. We have to do the trip to NYC in April and will then do another JHB trip next year. That will be basically empty all of our Avios and then we’ll wait for 2yrs until we can get Amex cards again.
        So with that in mind, am thinking it may be our only shot to experience First, but seems like the new Club Suites are actually better than First(?), so then it would just be to experience the Concorde Room on the way out and the better meals/amenities/service. Would you say that’s what the difference between the 2 products comes down to?

        • Yes – and I am not a massive Concorde Room fan either. I would be tempted to stick with Club Suite. If you want something similar to BA F, use your Avios for Qatar Business 🙂

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