Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The new HFP chat thread – Monday 23rd March

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We have decided to run this new daily chat thread on Head for Points.

Historically, the daily ‘Bits’ articles were the defacto repository for random comments and questions.  It is unlikely that the news flow will be so big over the next few weeks that we will need many ‘Bits’ articles, however.

The comments under this article are where you should post questions about travel and, indeed, anything else on your mind.  At this tricky time, and given that many of you are stuck at home self-isolating, we want the HFP community to have a place to chat.

Please only comment under the main articles on the site if your comment is directly related to the topic of the article.  This has long-term benefits as its keeps the commentary relevant for people who read those articles in the future.

We will review how this works after a few days:

we could potentially split it into a daily travel and non-travel chat thread

we may install some basic forum software

we may start suggesting potential topics for daily discussion

Let’s see how it goes.

We will do a separate article in a day or so about how we plan to run the site over the next few weeks.  Take care!

Comments (183)

  • Aston100 says:

    Just curious, what happens if you get a refund for your flights (several thousand pounds) which were paid for with a BAPP that is now cancelled, and which which would take your spending on that BAPP to under £10k? Companion Voucher already issued (but not yet used) and BAPP card cancelled.


  • SL says:

    Might seem a little crazy to be thinking about future trips right now but hoping after this has blown over a trip to Africa for a safari would be nice.

    Has anyone used Ethiopian airlines? Thinking of using Krisflyer miles. Flying from Manchester and looking to avoid using BA if possible.

    • John says:

      ET is fine, but the flights from MAN have a transit in BRU I believe.

    • memesweeper says:

      My friends fly with them regularly and like them. Layover times can be long is their only complaint.

    • WaynedP says:

      Go to airlineratings dot com to compare and see why Ethiopian has six out of seven stars, ranking alongside airlines like Aeroflot, Pakistan and Cubana. Also look at the list of seven out of seven star airlines, then make up your own mind.
      Personally, I avoid state-owned African airlines (like Ethiopian) as I know how easy it is for politicians to be expedient with hard currency (which is needed for aircraft maintenance parts).
      SAA and Kenya Airways score seven out of seven (with advisories on the number of ICAO safety parameters met out of eight), but same hard currency caveat applies in my opinion.

  • Graham Walsh says:

    Re IHG Bookings, how can I get my credit card night back? I can cancel online but it doesn’t mention about the voucher?

    I’ve just cancelled my flights with BA for a cash refund and the 2 nights with, super simple.

  • Lynn says:

    I have a non refundable hotel booked in Singapore via avios hotels. Paid by credit card, was getting 15 avios points per £. Booked via ba exec club website with e-mail confirmation from [email protected]. Anyone have any idea who I contact to see if I can get a refund (unlikely I know!) or even a date move. Flights cancelled by BA, Foreign Office advising against non essential travel, and Singapore imposing a 14 day stay at home requirement for UK people coming in. I suspect my travel insurance will want some proof that I have tried and been refused, before I try to claim from them. Thanks!

    • AJA says:

      Lynn Try contacting the hotel directly to ask if they are refunding others with non-refundable bookings. If they are then ask them if they will send you an email to that effect. Forward that email to BA Holidays asking them to initiate a refund based directly on hotel response. Alternatively if you are interested in actually going to Singapore at some point then ask if the hotel will move your booking to a future date or give you a voucher against a future booking.

  • Harry T says:

    Anyone cancelling their points earning Amex cards and changing to the [email protected][email protected] options for a bit?

    • QwertKnowsBest says:

      I was thinking of doing this both with Amex Plat and my BAPP so to save on card fees. Just concerned re insurance on for cancellation of flights booked for later this year and unlikely to fly, in case getting refunds from BA proves to be a problem.

      Any thoughts

    • Genghis says:

      No. I’ll continue with my Amex Gold and refer wife in a few months.

    • Pangolin says:

      At the moment I’m waiting for some refunds to be processed back to the card (Hilton bookings with a cancellation waiver). Once that’s all cleared I’ll almost certainly dump it as I now have the ARCC and don’t have to worry about my MR being deactivated.

    • Harry T says:

      Not spending on Amex, @Rob?

      • Rob says:

        As we’re sitting on 2m Avios I’m trying to build up the Lufty pile for a bit of extra flexibility. I’m also paying £5k per week to HMRC using it so we’re generating 25,000 – 30,000 per month for free just from that.

        • Harry T says:

          Guess you’ll have no trouble getting those half term flights with that quantity of points and level of diversification.

          • Rob says:

            I have trouble with BA and VS, hence stocking up on some Star! This will be the 3rd year we’ve flown down to the Middle East in October half term using Miles & More for example. What’s a pain is that there are no Star Alliance day flights back to the UK.

  • Paul Richardson says:

    Good Afternoon, I have a flight + hotel booking to the Seychelles with the outbound flight scheduled for 2nd May – currently this flight is departing on schedule every day. We are due to pay the balance of the holiday this coming Saturday – £7000! I am reluctant to part with cash during these times – should I just take the voucher for the deposit amount?

    • WaynedP says:

      I’m in similar situation for mid-May flight and car hire booking to South Africa with BA. Flight not cancelled by BA yet, but trip won’t now go ahead, so I will opt for voucher covering deposit rather than pay a penny more when due in 2 weeks’ time – if flight hasn’t been cancelled by then.

      • WaynedP says:

        I wouldn’t bottle it before Friday though, if I were you.
        Situation is so fast moving that flights may be forced to be cancelled by then, in which case you can get cash refund for your deposit paid.
        I’ll hold out as long as I can before balance of cost is due to be paid.
        Good luck !

    • Cat says:

      Hi Paul, 5 days ago the government of the Seychelles started refusing entry for anyone coming from the UK (except returning residents, who have to quarantine).

      I’d take the voucher.

    • Anna says:

      Are people getting vouchers for deposits on holidays which haven’t been cancelled by BA?

  • xcalx says:

    Cruise line Royal Caribbean offering 25% bous valid for future cruises upto 31 12 2021. I still want the cash hoping they cancel my 18th and 25th April cruises soon Iberia have cancelled the flights to SJU only voucher available online will wait a while to phone them to see I I can gat CC refunded

  • Novice says:

    I have a question as this has never happened to me before but if a person gets a few grand worth of refund on an Amex which you have already moved the points from; then what happens to the points balance eg. Does it show as minus thousands of points?

    • AJA says:

      Yes I think that’s what happens.You just end up with a negative points balance on your account. You then need to spend a similar amount as the refund to get back to the ability to transfer out. That’s what happens with Avios so I assume it is the same with MR points

      • Novice says:

        Yes but if I was gonna cancel the card after the refunds then what do i do? Shall I use the amex refund money to send to my account or what? And is this likely to affect my future applications if I cancel?🤔

        • Novice says:

          Just checked points are -35. One refund is through.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          Just cancel the card if it’s a massive negative balance. Infact just cancel it before the refunds hit as it won’t change anything. You’ll need to phone to get the refund.

          Be careful when using credit balances for making purchases too as it can effect your s.75 cover (leave you with none as no credit was given by the card company)

          Not like most of their customer aren’t receiving refunds for flights.

        • AJA says:

          You can phone Amex and request that they pay the refund to your bank account. That still doesn’t solve the negative points balance.

          • Novice says:

            Ok thanks. I’ll probably go on a spending spree as I’m not one to panic buy 😂

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