The new HFP chat thread – Monday 20th April

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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.

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: https://www.headforpoints.com/2020/04/20/the-new-hfp-chat-thread-monday-20th-april/comment-page-1 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.  Take care!

'My Favourite Hotel' review - Hôtel Grand Amour, Paris
Malaysia Airlines publishes a very sober London Heathrow flight schedule

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Comments

  1. Hugs and Kisses says:

    That Sunday Times article just encouraged panic reactions. We need to protect the airline industry not kill it due to over reaction.

  2. I miss flying 😢

  3. johnny_c-l says:

    New Amex offers this morning on Hello Fresh (Spend £30 get £10 back) and NOW TV (Spend £5 twice get £5 back

    • The BA Flyer says:

      Good luck getting a delivery slot with Hello Fresh. They must have had this promotion planned for a while as they’re completely flooded due to the demand caused by the lockdown.

    • I’ve no problems with Hello Fresh at the moment. Not sure if they’re closed to new customers but themselves and Gousto have been great the past few weeks. Offer has now be added to card, thanks for the heads up.

  4. When do we admit that this experiment has failed?

  5. I got my BA refund over the weekend, I’m thinking because of a PM sent to BA Refund Helper on FT although that could be a coincidence.

    Received two cash refunds, a part avios payment but have yet to receive my RFS avios back. Has anyone experienced a lag in getting cash and getting a redemption refund in the past or is this something I need to chase?

    • Patrycja says:

      I had an Avios booking which was cancelled. I had my Avios and voucher returned on 30th of March but still no refund for taxes… not sure if everyone knows how long it takes for it to come through at the moment?

      • People are waiting 4 weeks and more, it’s worth contacting the Flyertalk helper, got my taxes back within 24 hours doing this after waiting nearly 4 weeks myself.

      • Sandra says:

        Refund for cancelled flight arrived back on card Friday for my sons foreign student girlfriend, it has taken approx. 17 WORKING days from when we applied using the workaround to avoid accepting a voucher. The bonus is, due to exchange rate fluctuations, the refund is the equivalent of about £20 more than she originally paid as the ticket was bought on a card issued in her home country.

    • I messaged the BA refund helper again saying I was missing the Avios and they got processed already. Thanks to whoever it was (probably a few people at this stage) who pointed my in the direction as everything got resolved very quickly with little to no hassle.

  6. Data point if you can use the Dell Amex offer for £100 off £750 spend (valid till September soon rush). I needed a new laptop so ordered one yesterday and got the email confirmation from Amex immediately.

    • *So no rush, obviously!

    • Sundar says:

      @Anna – Did you order from the dell website and were you able to configure the laptops to your specs ?

      • Yes ordered from the Dell website. Have to confess my only specs were Microsoft office for me and some gaming capacity for the teenager so I didn’t look too closely!

        • Sundar says:

          Thanks Anna, will check if I can configure further.

          • David D says:

            You can configure a Dell computer to an extent, though normally once you have selected your base type there are generally a few different spec options which you may then make some additional amendments to. It is worth taking a look at the price of the amendments and see if the next spec base is worth the extra due to the difference in cost.

  7. Is the iPhone workaround for cancelling Avios bookings still working? I have a provisional booking for Easter next year but might change it if something better comes up.

  8. Peter Thomas says:

    Hi HfP- I’d appreciate any help with getting reimbursed for a forfeited deposit as described below.

    On Feb 8, as a very last minute decision to go on holiday, I paid via bank transfer a USD 500 deposit (a receipt was furnished but no rental contract signed ie was done on trust through a reliable source) for a holiday property rental in Florida. On Feb 9, our outbound BA flight to Tampa was cancelled due to Storm Ciara (BA reimbursed us for all our cancelled flight disruption costs whilst we were stranded in London). I immediately contacted the Florida rental property owner who agreed to keep the property available for us.

    On Feb 11, we took the BA Miami flight, being the earliest next available plane to Florida. I called the Florida rental property owner and we agreed that, as we were unable to get to the property until Feb 12, that I should look for an alternative rental property, with me also agreeing to our deposit being forfeited given the circumstances.

    I have the HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard and Amex Platinum card with their respective free comprehensive travel insurance, but I assume that as I paid the GBP 500 deposit via bank transfer, that I have little/zero opportunity to be reimbursed for the forfeited deposit via these two credit cards’ travel insurance.

    Am I right in my above assumption, and if so are there any other mechanisms for me to get reimbursed for the lost deposit?

    Thank you in advance.

    • You need to look at the Ts and Cs of the insurance policies, what needs to be paid for with the respective card in order to be covered?

    • Andrew says:

      Quote:- “also agreeing to our deposit being forfeited given the circumstances.”

      You’ve told them they can keep the money? It’s unlikely that any insurer will be prepared to refund you in those circumstances.

      • Lady London says:

        I would get something in writing from the accommodation end stating a non-refundable deposit was taken. Also their certificate of being in business as holiday accommodation provider and whatever other standard documentation they can provide you with to prove it was a regular business transaction. I am sure it was issued at the time even if not sent. At that point I’d just submit the claim with the documentation to the insurance company.

    • The travel insurance from HSBC comes from having the Premier current account and not the credit card, so there is no requirement to spend on the card (unlike for certain types of claim under Amex Platinum).

  9. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/health-fitness/body/could-vitamin-d-help-protect-coronavirus-symptoms/

    3 years ago I was (wrongly) diagnosed with COPD after suffering a long period of chest infections and told that I could expect to be a semi-invalid during the winter months. A newly qualified GP at my surgery then tested my vitamin D levels and found that I was deficient. I started taking a daily supplement and within 3 months my health was utterly transformed. Suffice it to say I didn’t have COPD and have barely had a sniffle since.

    • Kev 85 says:

      “ Could vitamin D help protect you from coronavirus symptoms?”

      The question wasn’t answered in the article.

      • I think it’s the University of Granada doing the study, it should be possible to follow their findings.

    • Peter K says:

      There’s a lot to be said for newly qualified GPs (or even F2s). They often spend more time on things. This of course is counterbalanced against less experience, but they can really get things done!

      • It was very interesting because he said all medical students are being told to test for vitamin D deficiency in general practice but older doctors don’t know about this! It’s scares me to think that if he hadn’t been doing his placement at our GP surgery my life could have been quite different. I never considered I could be D deficient because we holiday in sunny places but apparently using high SPF sunscreen can significantly decrease the amount you make from sun exposure.

        • Darren says:

          What supplements did you take? Simply vitamin D pills or did you increase natural foods high in it, oily fish etc?

          • A supplement in tablet form. I already eat lots of vitamin D rich foods but clearly they weren’t working for me – I am told it’s virtually impossible for anyone to get enough D from food sources and also some people are genetically inefficient at synthesising it full stop. Sunlight is the only natural source of sufficient amounts, and we just don’t get enough of it in Northern Europe.

          • I use a vitamin D spray: https://betteryou.com/vitamin-d-vitamin-k

            Can buy it from Amazon or Holland & Barratt.

            It has worked very well for me in terms of upping my Vitamin D levels. I have a thyroid problem and it is one of the recommended supplements.

        • Lady London says:

          Which brands of vitamin D3 would you suggest?

  10. Are Amex UK still playing hardball with platinum fee refunds or credit? Other than downgrades, is anyone getting anywhere?

    • Oh! Matron! says:

      Had no problem at all getting a refund, but was downgraded for free to Gold for a year, despite having a corp green that could have kept my reward points alive. Weirdly, my new card arrived just two days later!

    • Best offer seems to be letting you downgrade to Gold charge (not Gold credit) without a fee for the first year.

  11. An open letter to Virgin employees (virgin.com/richard-branson/open-letter-virgin-employees)

    “Together with the team at Virgin Atlantic, we will do everything we can to keep the airline going – but we will need government support to achieve that in the face of the severe uncertainty surrounding travel today and not knowing how long the planes will be grounded for. This would be in the form of a commercial loan – it wouldn’t be free money and the airline would pay it back (as easyJet will do for the £600m loan the government recently gave them). The reality of this unprecedented crisis is that many airlines around the world need government support and many have already received it. Without it there won’t be any competition left and hundreds of thousands more jobs will be lost, along with critical connectivity and huge economic value. Virgin Atlantic started with one plane 36 years ago. Over those years it has created real competition for British Airways, which must remain fierce for the benefit of our wonderful customers and the public at large.”

    Good luck with your Virgin FC miles.

    • Freddy says:

      Sounds like virgin up just upping the ante with the government to give them some cash. Hardly a letter you’d send your employees is it really

    • Marc, you really are relentless (obsessive) with this aren’t you? 🥱🥱🥱

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