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Bits: Qatar adds more Edinburgh flights, 100% bonus buying Hilton points, Six Senses moves into Whiteleys!

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News in brief:

Qatar Airways adds additional Edinburgh flights – and some other niche routes

Qatar Airways has announced that it will increase services to Edinburgh to 14 per week during next Summer.

The current total of 10 flights per week will be increased to double-daily between July and October.  The additional flights will also use an A350.

The airline has also announced two more niche routes – Santorini, from 20th May, and Dubrovnik, from 20th April.  These routes will be operated by an Airbus A320, featuring 12 flat-bed seats in Business Class and 132 seats in Economy Class.

If you look at the list of other European cities where Qatar Airways is increasing capacity to Doha, it looks very bullish:

  • Adana will increase from three to five weekly flights
  • Antalya will increase from three to five weekly flights
  • Athens will increase from three to four daily flights
  • Belgrade will increase from seven to 10 weekly flights
  • Bodrum will increase from three to five weekly flights
  • Edinburgh will increase from 10 to 14 weekly flights
  • Oslo will increase from 10 to 14 weekly flights
  • Venice will increase from seven to 11 weekly flights
  • Warsaw will increase from 14 to 18 weekly flights
  • Zurich will increase from 14 to 18 weekly flights

Most of the above will use long-haul aircraft.  However, I’ve been impressed by the Qatar Airways strategy of using A320 aircraft to feed traffic into Doha from smaller airports.  You would imagine that there are many regional airports in the UK which could support a daily A320 to Doha (assuming they bought the new long range variant) from where passengers could connect onwards.  You get a flat bed for the A320 flight and, whilst it obviously isn’t Qsuite, I think enough people would be willing to make the trade off if it meant flying direct from their local airport.

Remember that Qatar Airways flights earn Avios and British Airways Executive Club tier points.

Qatar Airways adds 2nd Edinburgh service

100% bonus when you buy Hilton Honors points

Hilton Honors has launched another promotion offering a 100% bonus when you purchase 10,000+ points.

The Hilton ‘buy points’ page is here.

Regular readers of Head for Points will know that I tend to value Hilton points at 0.33p each.  You are paying 0.40p (0.5 cents) here so the maths in general doesn’t work.

HOWEVER ….. there ARE real bargains to be had at peak periods.  Conrad Maldives at 95,000 points per night, the new Waldorf Astoria Maldives at 120,000 points, the ‘all suite’ Conrad New York Downtown or Conrad New York Midtown at 95,000 points etc are places where you will usually save a lot of money by buying points instead of paying cash.  This is especially true if you have Hilton status and can get ‘5 nights for the points of 4’ on a longer stay – and if you don’t have status, you can get a match here.

If you are just buying a handful of points to top off your account, the price per point doesn’t matter anyway.  If you a few thousand short of a redemption then this is a decent opportunity to buy them.

The annual cap has been doubled for this offer.  You can buy up to 320,000 points (160,000 + 100%) for $1,600.

You can buy points via this link.  The offer ends on 28th December.

Six Senses London to open in Whiteleys

Six Senses announces a five star hotel in Whiteleys!

We very rarely write about new hotels which are just announced, as opposed to just about to open.  Experience shows that a large percentage never happen, or open years late, or open with a different operator to the planned one.

This one is so weird that I couldn’t resist however.  Six Senses, the uber-luxury chain recently acquired by IHG, is to open a hotel in the old Whiteleys department store in Bayswater in 2023.  It will have 110 rooms and there will be an additional 14 Six Senses-managed apartments for sale.

If you don’t know Bayswater then you won’t fully undertand how odd this is.  Whilst, on paper, it looks close to very wealthy parts of London and only seconds from Hyde Park, Queensway – the road where Whiteleys sits – is, to put it mildly, not exactly upmarket.  Six Senses London guests will not be short of places to buy fried chicken, place a bet, visit a £1 emporium or launder their clothes.

That said …. the developer is someone I used to work with, Alex Michelin of Finchatton, who is responsible for the Four Seasons Private Residences currently approaching completion in Grosvenor Square.  His judgement is usually sound, so perhaps we are about to see major change in Bayswater.

The hotel will, when open, be bookable on IHG Rewards Club points and should be the most luxurious IHG property in London.

British Airways launches San Sebastián from London City, now bookable on Avios
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  1. Shoestring says:

    [AIRLINES are legally liable for harm caused by the accidental spilling of hot drinks, even if the mishap was not caused by something associated with flying, the EU’s top court has ruled. The European Court of Justice said it was irrelevant if an accident was caused by plane vibrations or turbulence as it ruled on a dispute involving a carrier founded by the late Formula One racing champion Niki Lauda. “An airline is liable for the harm caused by a spilt cup of hot coffee,” the ECJ said after a decision, which cannot be appealed and sets a precedent across the EU.]

    • That’s good to know. So if I spill my coffee on me in my own kitchen then I can claim damages from an airline!

      • Shoestring says:

        does seem a bit perverse, to say the least

        I think in the court case it was the litigant’s young daughter spilling his coffee on him & nothing to do with turbulence etc – the most you could say is that the airline possibly brewed the coffee too hot but even 45C can cause scalding so it’s not as if the airline can do much to totally avoid the risk of vexatious claims other than not providing hot drinks at all

    • Not a standard credit card. Rather, more of an instant credit / installments functionality in the app. It was covered in their crowdfunding deck.

  2. Henry Young says:

    Regarding Six Senses, one might note that the Queensway area is one of London’s thriving red light districts, perhaps less obvious to the casual observer given that much of the promotional activity has moved on-line. So there is certainly much scope for the entertainment of all your senses nearby !

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