Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The new HFP chat thread – Tuesday 31st March

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

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.

By default, HFP shows the last page of comments under the article.  If you want to see the first page of comments and read them all from beginning to end in order, click here: The page will refresh with this article but the comments will now show the first page and not the last page.

We will continue to monitor how this is working:

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 (243)

  • Tom says:

    I’m flying BA Heathrow to Denver on 21st May – any idea when the flight will be cancelled (not specifically this one but what is the current cancellation lead time due to COVID-19)?
    It was booked as a reward flight, so the car and accommodation were booked separately (via trailfinders) so I can’t cancel those until the flight is confirmed not running!
    Thanks in advance for any insight/advice

    • Rob says:

      21st May is a long time away – I wouldn’t bet on it being cancelled. My SFO flight for this Friday was cancelled about 10 days in advance. Remember that BA won’t speak to anyone on the phone unless their flight is in the next 72 hours.

      • Spursdebs says:

        Although I called You First at 6am today no waiting straight through as first class seats became available to upgrade for my trip next January. I got lucky which makes a change.

      • Tom says:

        Thanks Rob, very useful (and much as I expected), just wanted some reassurance.

      • Fred says:

        Did you accept the voucher for the cancellation?

    • Peter Ould says:

      I have a flight to the US planned for early July. Suspect I won’t really have a go / no go decision till the week before. C’est la vie.

  • Anna says:

    BA flight being chartered to send testing equipment and PPE to overseas territories thousands of miles away while there apparently aren’t enough for our NHS workers…

    • J says:

      Well it is the government’s responsibility to help British Overseas Territories as much as it is to help the NHS and people here… and given that overseas territories are somewhat remote, and are dependent upon Britain in times of war and crisis I don’t really get your disapproval.

      • Anna says:

        90 minutes flight time from the continental USA is hardly remote. These are not islands in the Pacific with a handful of inhabitants, they are extremely wealthy offshore finance centres with a higher standard of living than the UK!

        • Jamie says:

          For the small minority of people employed in senior positions in those businesses, yes. As for the rest of the indiginous population, not so much. You’d do well to stay away from Daily Mail generalisations.

          • Anna says:

            I have visited both these jurisdictions on several occasions and have family in one of them. Never read anything about either of them in the DM. They have both been blacklisted for failing to co-operate with anti-tax avoidance schemes and should be paying their own way during this crisis. Obviously this is aimed at their respective governments, not the general population.

          • Anna says:

            And before you jump to any more conclusions, the family is indigenous (sic), not ex-pat.

          • Jamie says:

            Of course Anna. Your original post was obviously only about the poor tax situation on the islands and at no point reeked of Daily Mail-esque let’s look after our own first… how did I miss that? Oh no, that’s why, not there at all 🤔🙄🤦‍♂️

          • It’s all in the language says:

            Anna, funny how you refer to expats whereas here it’s immigrants

    • Chris K says:

      I for one am glad that the British Government is looking after British nationals irrespective of which (British) territory they reside in.

      The status of their own regional governments should have no bearing whatever.

      I think you should reflect on your post, Anna.

  • FlyingChris says:

    Anyone else not had their Virgin Miles post from their Rewards card correctly this month? Usually get swept across for me about a week or so ago but nothing yet.

  • Ian says:

    Hope someone can help.

    There is availability in First for a trip I want to take.

    When I try to book from a region availability is knocked down from first to business. Normally able to select First then be allocated Business for the domestic and First for the Long Haul.

    How do I book it as I’d like?

    Also intention was to book my outgoing with a voucher then call up to add the return on in a few weeks. Is that possible at the moment phone-wise? And if not is there a way to do it online?



    • Anna says:

      Where are you originating? There was a post yesterday saying Glasgow departures have some sort of IT glitch. Is it the same flight each time or is the website adjusting for connecting times etc?

      • Ian says:

        It’s Inverness, but it’s not the glitch that was mentioned yesterday.

        I guess my question is – what do you do when you want to make an avios booking that can only be done by phone, when you are only permitted to all if you have a flight in the next 24 hrs.

        Do you think I can book all the component parts of the trip then hope BA will convert into one 241 ticket when they are back in the full swing?

        • Anna says:

          If you have enough Avios you can book the return when it’s released then ask BA to refund the extra Avios. They can be very awkward about adding regional connections, though I suspect they would be more helpful at You First, I have found them to be outstanding in the past few days. Hope I never have to speak to an overseas call centre again 🤦🏻‍♀️

          • Anna says:

            Nope, just based on experience and expressed many, many times by regular HFP readers.

          • Ian says:

            I’ve bitten the bullet and gone ahead and booked my outgoing flights. Will try You First and see if they can offer any help adding the return on.

            Might send a direct message on twitter too. Obviously don’t want to take up their time with my query- just a pity this can’t be done on the website.

          • Jayne says:

            The fact that you don’t see it as racist Anna, doesn’t mean that its not. I’d suggest some timely self-reflection about how you come across.

          • the_real_a says:

            From experience i also think overseas call centers are generally awful. Let me for a minute consider my racist position… Yep considered it, and still think they are awful and to be avoided. Stick your virtue signalling. Thanks.

          • Jayne says:

            Lol, why are you so triggered over this? Why cant you bear somebody having a different view to you, and labelling it as virtue signalling. I just call it being respectful of others… Oh of course, a pound as your picture – UKipper by chance?

          • Charlieface says:

            The real issue with overseas cc is not that they are overseas/foreign per se, it’s generally the command of English that is the issue. Viz. any native English speaking cc where the service is excellent.
            The Indians would say the same about an English cc if it was for an India based company, and would be right do so.

          • Brian W says:

            @Rob? What on earth was wrong with that comment that’s been deleted? If we cant defend an opinion like that then it’s all downhill from here.

        • BJ says:

          Try booking it with a stopover in London, departing London same day as you arrive from Inverness. This way you can select the domestic and longhaul flights/cabins separately.

  • David S says:

    Recently returned from Mexico via LGW and back to MAN from Heathrow. No lounge access, no hot food, no drinks apart form one small bottle of water and one small cup of tea, inedible food onboard, no club kitchen and food voucher at Mexico for £15 and none at LHR.
    Wrote to BA customer services and no partial refund but 6000 Avios offered. I know this is a first world problem (please don’t judge me) but service not provided as sold and considering it was not a small amount of money that was paid, is this appropriate compensation. Thoughts?

    • Genghis says:

      I’m normally quite militant in such things but in such circumstances I’d just be pleased I got home. Let it go.

      • J says:


        Better than being stuck and holding out for the govt to try and sort out a charter flight…

      • John says:

        I wouldn’t’ ‘let it go’

        BA are screwing everyone left right and centre

    • David S says:

      Thank you. Never had to complain before to BA, so didn’t know what the proper compensation was, which is why I was checking. I did try to come home early when FCO changed advice on non essential travel but BA refused to move us, even though there were CW seats.
      Yes, I am still not happy about it but as you said, I am home and working for our patients and not stuck somewhere.
      So will have to suck it up and leave it due to the situation we are in. Thanks for the advice.

    • Doug M says:

      I think you have to consider the circumstances and just be glad to have got home.

  • Thomas says:


    Me and a group of 16+ friends were due to Fly / stay in Vegas from 18 April. Flights were with BA and Hotel was the Cosmopolitan. All booked through DialAFlight. Clearly has been cancelled from both Flight and Hotel perspective, however, DialAFlight are refusing to provide a refund, just a credit note from a future trip.

    What are our rights here? Clearly its ATOL protected but this appears to be becoming a bit of a trend when trying get a refund. Any advice would be very useful

    • ChrisBCN says:

      ATOL won’t help as that only applies if the company goes bust.

      Call again demanding a refund, threatening a credit card chargeback. Make note of the time and date of every contact.
      If they don’t give the refund, follow this up with an email.

      If still nothing, speak to your credit card company to make a S75 claim, sharing the details of the efforts you made with the travel agency.

      Persistence! And good luck.

    • Rob says:

      If your flight is cancelled (is it? have you checked? many BA US flights are operating) then DialAFlight has had a full refund and is keeping your money to avoid going bust. Looks like you need to launch Money Claim Online.

      • Thomas says:

        Flights have been cancelled from LHR to LAS.
        Seems to be that they are trying to avoid going bust.
        Do you think there is anything can do to force their hands?

  • 1nfrequent says:

    Quick query. I was due to fly to Copenhagen this Friday. The flight was cancelled 2 weeks ago. Had held off calling for a refund because the line said to wait 72 hours before flying. Just called the number and it says don’t call for refunds as these will be processed automatically within 14 days. Is this correct/anyone else’s experience? I haven’t had an email from BA about a refund and the booking page just points me to the voucher page (even with the Chrome workaround).


    • Twipes man says:

      the automatic is a voucher.

      if you want a refund to your payment method/credit card, then you do have to call.

      BA have removed the automated refund options online or via the app, trying to retain customer’s money where possible.

  • Lev441 says:

    I have avios flights booked for my family & were supposed to leave on Thursday but the flights have been canceled.

    I haven’t yet called BA but was wondering if I could I move the flights to the following year even though they are not yet currently available to book yet using avios (about a week short of next easter).. This would save the hassle of trying to booking in demand seats at t-355..? Didn’t really fancy a long wait on the phones to be told it’s not possible…

    • Mike says:

      The booking system won’t let you book anything further out than T-355. They can’t do it on the phone any more than you can’t do it online.

      • Lev441 says:

        Thanks – I thought as much.

        Would it be possible to sort out next week when the flights become available? Or do I need to sort out the refund/rebooking before the flight was due to depart (Thursday)?

        • Anna says:

          People seem to be waiting quite a while for refunds at the moment so if you have enough Avios I would recommend grabbing your seats at T-355. I feel there is going to be a huge rush to snap up holidays for next year.