The new HFP chat thread – Thursday 21st May

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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/2020/05/21/the-new-hfp-chat-thread-thursday-21st-may/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.  Let’s see how it goes.  Take care!

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Comments

  1. davvero says:

    Still not got my Heathrow Rewards transfer to BAEC. Anyone with more luck?

  2. Hi all,

    Another “sorry if this has been answered before” question, for which I truly am sorry if it has been! 😉 I have looked but haven’t found it so far.

    Can anyone here can share any insight or experience of the following specific situation:

    I have a trip booked KUL-LHR return in Club World for late July / early August, for two of us. I doubt we’ll travel due to the potential quarantine requirements at either end, but for now I’m sitting tight and waiting to see what happens – presumably BA may cancel one or both of the flights, or I may have to cancel the tickets myself and take the hit on the cancellation fees.

    Either way, I’m curious to know what happens if I take voucher(s), given that:

    1. The outbound KUL-LHR is booked as a one-way using Avios and a Lloyds upgrade voucher.

    2. The return LHR-KUL is booked using Avios and the ‘outbound’ half of a 241 voucher (both pax in household account, if that’s relevant).

    3. The original plan was to use the return half of the 241 to book a second KUL-LHR for next year, which I was planning to do at some point in June/July with a view to travelling in May or June 2021. The return LHR-KUL would then be booked separately, probably on Malaysia Airlines using Enrich miles, or possibly going via Hong Kong with Virgin.

    I assume our first outbound flight would be refunded as a voucher to the (Avios and cash) value of 2 x one-way Club World KUL-LHR including the taxes etc. Or does the Lloyds voucher remain in there albeit presumably extended?

    Would the return be similarly refunded as the Avios-plus-cash needed for 2 pax one way, or as 1 pax Avios, plus 2 pax cash for taxes and fees, and a (presumably extended) 241 voucher?

    If the latter, presumably I can still use the 241 as originally planned (subject to seat availability of course) by topping up with the extra 1 pax Avios and 2 pax cash for the ‘return’ KUL-LHR leg either at the same time as I rebook the LHR-KUL, or when I add it later.

    But if the former, what happens to the return-leg ‘value’ of the 241? Would I be better to add a return-leg booking onto the 241 sooner rather than later so that when it all gets cancelled, the whole lot can be wrapped up in a full return trip voucher?

    That said, if I add a return leg for next year and the outbound this year gets cancelled by BA, would our ticket for the return leg also get cancelled or would it remain valid even though the outbound wasn’t flown?

    Sorry for the long post! Any insight much appreciated, many thanks!

    • What would be really ideal of course is if BA could just say “Everything in your booking stays exactly the same but moved from 2020 to 2021” 😉

      • Wouldn’t it just!

      • Chris says:

        Under ec241 you are entitled to later rerouting if you don’t want a refund

        If a flight is cancelled, passengers are automatically entitled to their choice of

        re-routing to the same destination at the earliest opportunity (under comparable conditions);
        later rerouting, at the passenger’s convenience, to the same destination under comparable conditions (subject to seat availability); or
        a refund of the ticket as well as a return flight to the point of first departure, when relevant.

        • True. Although I get the the impression that actually securing those rights might be more painful than walking over hot coals while sticking pins in one’s eyes 😉

          I foresee it being complicated in any case – spending who knows how long on the phone with Avios to try to get the first leg re-routed for a later date, and then doing the same again with BA, and trying to get both dates to line up. Oh joy 😉

    • Charlieface says:

      Just ask for a full refund on that booking, then you get the 241 back.

      • I can but try 😉 My concern there (aside from being able to get through on the phone….) is expiry – both my vouchers are close to the limit. If they extend a year (though 18 months would be better) then all well and good. I got the impression from other threads here that (new, refund) vouchers are valid until April 2022 (?), which would be handy, hence my interest in them, but I wasn’t clear how the original upgrade/241 vouchers are treated therein. Also presumably a risk that if APD is substantially reduced your voucher becomes worth less (I’d bet you wouldn’t get a refund of the cash component if your ticket is cheaper than the voucher, but would have to top up if it were more 😉

  3. James says:

    Can anybody please provide advice on the following:

    Booked a return for 2 x adults with a Lloyd’s Upgrade voucher for travel with BA mid June. However, the return flight has been cancelled.

    Who do I contact for my refund: BA or Avios (trip was originally booked through Avios).

    Also, any clue as to how long these refunds are currently taking please?

    Thanks.

    • Catman says:

      I had the same, I called Avios.com. My taxes were refunded in a couple of days, I don’t know how long the Avios took to come back because I found them in my old closed Avios.com account just as I was about to call or email.

      They put 6 months on the expiry of my Lloyds voucher.

      I would have been happy to have got the voucher but BA said no

    • Leigh says:

      I called Avios for a cancelled flight booked with Lloyd’s Upgrade voucher. Both cash and Avios refunds took just a few days, very impressed.

  4. Spursdebs says:

    Credit where it’s due called BA on Tuesday straight through to You First cancelled a trip booked with Avois . Points returned to account while still on the phone, taxes and fees money refund back on my card today.

    • Andrew says:

      Yes, You First have been answering the phone on the first ring since the start of the crisis and have dealt with my cancellations very efficiently.

      • Spursdebs says:

        I had a nice chat with the CS agent, they said Tuesday when I rang was very quite, but over previous days people seemed to be cancelling the next few months but booking for next year. Which is what I was doing cancelling a trip in September not due to Covid but for family reasons and I extended my trip in January by a few days.

        • Andrew says:

          The change to 31 July change your booking period probably sparked a lot of calls, with a whole load of new people now eligible.

    • YouFirst have been the one redeeming factor for BA since this started. Does anyone know if they make new F bookings as I’m shortly probably going to have to try and call BA to use a voucher? 🤦🏻‍♀️

      • Andrew says:

        I can’t imagine them saying no if it’s for a First booking.

      • Spursdebs says:

        I would call them Anna to make a 1st class booking.

        • I will, thanks Debs, I didn’t know if they officially deal with new bookings. They’ve been fantastic with me over the past couple of months.

    • Jonathan says:

      I’m still waiting for my refund on taxes from BA for a cancelled Avios flight 3 weeks ago. Avios & companion voucher returned same day . This was a club booking not first . Any idea how long BA take to refund taxes ?

  5. Andrew says:

    Various Selfridges offers out there on Amex

    I’ve got £50 off £250, my brother has £30 off £100 – both on BA Amex and valid until 5th July.

  6. Andrew says:

    Some generous Amex offers at Selfridges just landed – Platinum I got spend £100, get £30 and BAPP I got spend £250, get £50. Online only though and gift cards is a third party site so won’t work. Runs until early July so let’s see if the offer extends to instore if they open in June as suggested.

  7. Anyone know whether BA are required to re-route me for a cancelled AY flight (HEL-CTS) booked with Avios? Trip originating LON.

    Or am I basically high and dry and need to rebook/find redemption space from LON to TYO (BA/JAL) and onwards on JAL myself, which is going to be more dear (both Avios/£££ wise).

    AY seem to have pre-emptively cancelled numerous (30) routes through Mar 2021 – it’s bleak out there…

  8. idrive says:

    Good morning everyone, I am sorry if this has been posted before but lately i am working a lot and haven’t read all comments everyday lately.
    It seems like Tesco has been hacked again I found out, anyone having troubles getting into my ClubCard Account. Either they locked the accounts as a precaution or in fact all points got stolen.
    Anyone got news or similar situation?

    • DB2020 says:

      Yes I am having trouble with Tesco Pay+ and I have not been able to login to tesco.com. Clubcard app appears to be working.

    • Baji Nahid says:

      Hiya, they’ve locked all accounts so you need to reset your passwords to make em stronger. I had the same issue but they’ve changed it now so just reset your password

      • idrive says:

        thank you all sorted with a call and reconfirming personal details, the password was ok but they locked the clubcard module.

  9. Andrew says:

    QR status match been extended to midnight tomorrow now, but is limited to Etihad, Emirates and Turkish members. You need to provide the documents on or before 22 May 2020, 11.59 PM BST (British Summer Time – GMT+1).

    https://www.qatarairways.com/en-gb/Privilege-Club/pcsm.html?CID=SMGB331410

    • Haha! They’ve dropped Virgin Australia and SAA. I suspect it may be because such status will be pretty worthless now

  10. Looks like the economist offer doesn’t include print-only option anymore. ☹️

  11. Had Easyjet flights which were cancelled recently, haven’t received any refund and impossible to get through to them on the phone. Any suggestions v welcome! Thanks

    • Try writing to [email protected]
      following these instructions:
      Subject Line : Booking Reference/Departure Date/EN

    • My wife had an email from Easyjet yesterday about some cancelled flights so followed the link in the email and after a lot of “take a voucher” prompts she was given the option to request a refund. She’s had an email to say it should be back in 30 days but don’t call till after 60 or 90 (can’t remember what she said now). So did you do anything after you got the cancelled email ?

  12. Mike P says:

    For those people looking at fixed rate HSBC mortgages (there have been a few people commenting on these on here) the rates appear to have dropped overnight. 60% LTV 5 year rate has dropped from 1.44% to 1.39%. Question is do we lock in now or wait to see if it falls further?

    • The financial markets are betting we get negative interest rates shortly – the BofE just need to ensure that all institutions can cope – not all can as lots of documentation doesn’t allow for it.

      As I said the other day – can only see mortgage rates going 1 way for low ltv mortgages.

    • For existing RBS mortgage customers, RBS offer a 60%LTV 5 year rate of 1.87% at a cost of £995. This same rate was available when BBR was 0.75% thus RBS have chosen not to factor in the current BBR being 0.10% for EXISTING customers.

      Meanwhile RBS have factored the latest BBR in for NEW customers.

      • Fred

        Actual Base Rate makes little difference to the price of mortgages – it is the forward expectations of rates that matter. If on the product you quoted the market already expected a future drop then Bank Rate changing wont necessarily affect the price. Always horrible and no excuse here to see new and existing customers treated differently.

        • You say that, but once BBR changed substantially in March, the RBS mortgage rates for NEW customers improved dramatically yet the rates for EXISTING customers remained the same.

    • Grant says:

      Thanks for the heads up, Mike. I can’t see it going the other way, can you? In which case I might just run it up to the wire to see if it drops any further. Got another 30 days or so before we revert to the SVR.

      I naively assumed any rate changes would occur at the end / beginning of the month.

      • Mike P says:

        No problem at all. I think we are fairly safe waiting at this point as rates are only likely to drop further. I’ve got until the end of July before my existing rate finishes so not in any hurry.

        • Lady London says:

          personally on mortgages just like investment then good advice would be not to try to time the market. I’d suggest comparing the rate to the best case you’d estimate for the average over the period then if it fits your expected ability to pay for it for the period and you dont think you’ll be divesting the property within the period then grab something reasonable. IMV any move in the other direction could be explosively fast when it starts.

        • SimonW says:

          Bear in mind, any offer is limited by the tranche they have available. Be it £5m or £10m etc. Once that is gone, the rate is gone. Natwest 5yr 1.35% fixed was too good for me not to lock in now, 3 months ahead of needing it….

    • Jonathan says:

      At those sort of rates I’m pretty tempted to extend my mortgage, should be pretty easy over a 5 year time frame to generate annual returns of more than the 2.31% a higher rate taxpayer would need to be quids in (Even lower if you aren’t already maxing out ISA subscriptions).

    • Joseph Heenan says:

      If it’s one of HSBC’s zero fee ones then you can lock in the rate, but hold off finalising application for as long as the offer is valid for. If rate drops, just start again. I did this last year and saved 0.2% or so.

  13. da trader says:

    Will topping up my Trading 212 or Nutmeg account with the Virgin credit card incur a cash advance fee?

  14. Doog1000 says:

    Just tried to top up Revolut with my virgin master card – never any problems before and earning points on previous topups including a couple of weeks ago
    This morning though transactions declined – called virgin and they said that Revolut is no longer a merchant at the moment they are transacting with due to fraud issues
    Just an FYI to see if others have some experience now

    • Michael says:

      I’m pretty sure someone mentioned a couple of days ago being unable to top up Rev from Virgin. Thankfully it still works with IHG but I’m taking a break from the boys in Vilnius for a spell to keep my account open.

    • Lady London says:

      Fraud? I’d love to see what documented examples of ‘fraud’ happening to Virgin through Revolut, Virgin could provide.

    • The Urbanite says:

      Topping up Revolut with a credit card has been risky for a while due to the MCC situation and is no doubt causing the credit card issuers headaches for many reasons. Some people will be raising fraudulent chargebacks, others will be adding to demand for customer services by requesting cash advance fees and interest are waived and others will probably complain to them because Revolut have blocked their accounts with the funds still inside.

      I know in theory it’s an easy way to generate spend/get a cash advance but are people aware of the risks, including receiving no points for topping it up and paying fees + interest for that “free” cash advance? The amount of negative posts springing up on here and several of the financial/fintech communities from people topping it up with a credit card would suggest a lot of people are being caught out.

  15. I Am awaiting the taxes and fees refund from a Virgin Atlantic reward flight cancelled in March.

    Got an email 4 weeks later to say we have “received your claim”

    Now end of May- nothing. Has anyone received their virgin taxes refund yet?

  16. Booked LHR-HND in the new ANA F with 120k VS miles for March 2021 last night.

    Called VS call centre, waited 40 minutes and got disconnected whilst on hold, called again and got through to someone after 40 minutes this time. Super friendly representative, I used United Award Search to find availability and then she was able to confirm and reserve the flights straight away.

    I have tickets in Qatar J for Tokyo in September but I doubt that will happen now. Hopefully by March 2021 things will look a bit better! And hopefully VS hasn’t gone bust!

    • Brilliant. Did you manage to get 2 seats or just the 1?

      • I’m flying solo so just the 1.

        The United Award Search seems to only show 1 reward seat available for the LHR-HND route on any date. When selecting my seat everything was available (apart from the customary blocked 1A – EF confirms this is blocked not booked) so looks like only 1 reward seat available per flight.

    • Andrew says:

      And hopefully first class service will be back to normal by then and not the limited F&B service on a tray and no blankets as it is at the moment. I wonder how long it will be before premium flying gets back to being a premium experience. BA offering a packet sandwich and bottled water in First at the moment, doesn’t really seem worth it just for a larger seat.

      • I am meant to be flying BA F in July to SCL. As much as I want to go, I hope it gets cancelled because, as you said, doesn’t seem worth flying in F if I don’t get to enjoy the CCR and proper F service.

        I am basically delaying all of my travel plans for a year. Might even ask for a mini-sabbatical from work to make up for lost travel time – here’s to hoping for a return to normality in 2021!

        • Andrew says:

          Likewise, I was supposed to be going to JFK in First in July and have already decided I’m going to cancel as it won’t be even close to a premium experience. I booked with BA holidays, so I can just take a £300 voucher for the deposit I paid if they don’t cancel the flight. I think it’s wise not to plan any trips until next Easter if you are wanting the premium travel experience we know and love.

      • Blenz101 says:

        Emirates are back to hot food now on 9 routes, hopefully not long!

  17. John carribean says:

    Laithwaites 15% off offer on Amex didn’t come through , as seemingly Laithwaites are changing to Berkshire and not the website. Did anyone else have this problem?

  18. Anyone got bookings for later in the year and decided what they’re going to do?
    I’ve got Vegas booked for early October flying from Paris with BA that I don’t think I want to go on now. Thankfully just booked flights so far. Booked on 3rd March I think. Not sure what to do yet.

    • If you’re not sure yet I would give it some time. A lot can change in 5 months.

      • My worry is things change enough that I can go but not enough that Vegas is open fully and I can’t get the full experience.

        If I could take a cash refund now then I would but I know that’s not possible.

    • October is a long time away. However, assuming this is a cash booking, you might get lucky as there is a good chance your flight gets retimed or cancelled as BA plays with its schedules, giving you an excuse to claim a refund.

      We have two weeks in the Middle East over October which I expect to happen. Varies by location though – currently weighing up South Africa for Christmas but that seems riskier than the Middle East in October.

      Vegas would be fine as long as you didn’t go into any of the casinos.

      • Yes it was a cash booking, I guess wait and hope for a schedule changes or advice doesn’t change. Fortunately don’t need the money but would be nice to change the time booked off with work to another time.

        Anyways thanks both for your quick opinions.

      • Optimus Prime says:

        I’m no gambler but would count popping into the casinos as part of the Vegas experience…

        • MattB says:

          Exactly…we were booked for August, but I cancelled it a while back. Managed to move flight to Easter 2021 but i’m not confident of going then either. Whats the point in going somewhere like Vegas with these restrictions…..coupled with the fact the US is one of the few countries doing worse than the UK?

          • Andrew says:

            Agree – even if we can travel in the coming months (and years) it will be such an enjoyable experience getting there and when you’re there, what’s the point? Time to pay down the mortgage a bit over the next couple of years with the travel money saved and retire a little earlier than planned maybe.

          • I could change my flight to February 2021 for no cost which is more likely to go ahead but still unlikely to get the full experience.

            I could move it to July 2020 which is much more likely to get cancelled but it would cost me nearly €8000 to do it. Not sure that’s worth the gamble.

          • Chrish says:

            [email protected] What makes you think U.S. is doing worse than U.K.
            Looking at the charts yes it looks like U.S.doing a lot worse than U.K.
            But is it actually if you examine it more closely per % population they are a lot below U.K
            Depends on your perspective

        • I’ve been 3 times and my total casino expenditure was under $10 in total!

      • Andrew says:

        Depends if Trump opens the borders – currently anyone who isn’t a US citizen or green card holder (or diplomat etc) isn’t able to travel to USA.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          But if your flight is scheduled and flys that’s your problem not BA’s.

          Vegas isn’t one of the “gateway” airports but I can’t see a ban until October based upon Trump forever talking about getting back to business.

          I can see why you wouldn’t want to go to Vegas if everything is closed especially bars/clubs/restaurants.

  19. The Caribbean Times and other media reporting that St Lucia, Antigua and other islands are opening up to tourists from June (though hurricane season is imminent and predicted to be a bad one). St Lucia is an odd one, it’s ONLY opening to Americans, and they will have to have a COVID-negative certificate, wear masks at the most times, observe social distancing and have their temperatures taken before every meal. I am assuming St Lucia must be utterly desperate for tourist $ just now, but are the Americans that desperate to go abroad just now?!

  20. Isobel Brown says:

    Have a 2-4-1 Rewards flight booked with BA. Out August to Vancouver, return Sept from Calgary.
    Just heard that the return flight has been cancelled.
    Should BA wave any cancellation fees for the outward flight when I call them cancel it?

    • If it’s one booking you should get a full refund for both legs.

    • AndyGWP says:

      Also just got notification that our outbound flight to Calgary is cancelled for August (but return from another airport is fine)

      • AndyGWP says:

        Will have to put some thought now into:
        a) finding another way to get to Calgary (ie. change outbound to Vancouver, and get internal flight)
        b) abandon Canada and change outbound flight to the US to travel onwards from there (which is where return airport is)
        c) abandon everything and rent a caravan in Slough

        Ignoring (for now) the unknown issue of access to particular countries – and I know this information has been previously shared (and I will re-read the articles) but for cancelled (avios booked) flights, is there any kind of timescale I need to operate within to get the best result?

        Or do I have time to dwell on it (ie. for “a” and “b”, Avios availability on flights to Vancouver might not exist) – suggestions welcome (again, ignoring Covid as a factor for destinations, but not ignoring it in terms of flexibility!)

        Sorry for going over old / regular ground :/

        • Lady London says:

          any reroute including internal flight is still part of your rerouting rights so should cost you nothing

          • AndyGWP says:

            Cheers LL…

            1) Is that even if internal is not on BA / Oneworld?
            2) Am I correct that taking the re-route now (LHR -> Vancouver -> Calgary), would then mean I couldn’t cancel for free if Canada are still imposing a 14 day quarantine and…
            3) (Note to self), I need to check if insurance covers me for a full trip refund due to flight cancellation as they could possibly be infringed if I choose to re-route and cancel at a later date

          • Lady London says:

            1)They are responsible for rerouting you on their own airline or any other airline that can get you there and it should not cost you anything
            2) if you had booked a flight that wasnt cancelled then the airline is not responsible if your immigration status or the rules for that changed – personally this is why I’d take the refund
            3) yup would look into this too

  21. Geoff says:

    Following Qatar cancelling one of my flights I requested a cash refund on 12 May. Funds were received back to my Amex yesterday. No communication from Qatar yet to confirm cancellation. Pretty fast service.

    • Genghis says:

      You had better look than me! My chargeback was successful, however, and got a little brucie this week as my “portal” cash turned to payable and I got the money in my bank account. Nearly a ton. Happy days.

      • Genghis says:

        luck!!

        • Lady London says:

          Well done. I take it you will move it out pronto? I do see the odd report of even at that stage disappearing or reducing…

  22. RussellH says:

    Reasonably present surprise this morning.
    We had been due to fly BHX-BCN this afternoon on Vueling. I got a voucher around a month ago. Phone message today still said to wait a few weeks before asking for cash, but surprising I was only on hold for 2+ mins after listening to the pre-recorded messages, and it only took the agent, Ricardo, another 4 mins to process the refund, even including re-reading the pre-recorded message about how wonderful the voucher is.
    Now to wait 60 days for the cash…

  23. So, OH and I might be able to squeeze in 3-4 nights somewhere between Xmas and New Year (earliest outbound day would be Dec 26th, latest inbound Jan 3rd), using a 2 4 1. LAS and other US cities are coming up but I’m not sure whether the USA will be a viable option by then. Availability to DXB and AUH is extremely limited, presumably because everyone else thinks they might be safer options as well! I have loads of HH, IHG and Bonvoy points plus Ambassador free night cert. Needs to be a LHR departure due to MAN connection. Anyone got any ideas? I’d like to do the outbound in F if possible, so would prefer a long haul destination.

    • There is availability flying into AUH and out of DXB for 3 nights which might be just about feasible?

      • Michael says:

        Easily doable flying into once city and out the other if that’s what you mean. 3 nights in either is plenty.

    • Harry T says:

      Abu Dhabi, Dubai or evening Doha (I hear there’s a decent IC in Doha). I assume you’re looking for sun and relaxation instead of a thrilling cultural experience.

      • Either/both, Harry. If there’s no culture to be had we’d like a nice hotel, some sunshine, good food and spa treatments! If there’s culture, we’re not that bothered about the weather or the spa treatments.

        • Harry T says:

          Good point from Rob. Four Seasons usually a better choice than most, unless you’re in Sydney.

          @Anna could you book cash flights instead? Might be some good deals out there. I appreciate if you don’t want to commit to cash, given the uncertainty. There were some solid J fares to Dubai from Amsterdam, but I booked BA F to Abu Dhabi for the race partly due to the inherent flexibility.

          • I’ve got 2 4 1s building up in my account and I feel that burning avios might be advisable in the medium term.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        Rob doesn’t like the StR on the beach in Doha but from my visits that plus the IC next door are a couple of nice beachside properties.

        • I’ve just checked, no availability to Doha either on our dates. Obviously everyone’s decided the ME is the safest bet for Xmas and New Year!

          • Four Seasons has just reopened.

            The Kempinski is very niche and on a new man-made private island – I did a review.

            Assuming seats reopen ….

          • TGLoyalty says:

            I know you can’t get it on points but I’ve heard MO Doha is a very nice hotel aswell

          • No beach though AFAIK.

          • TGLoyalty says:

            Nope no beach but Anna didn’t mention that was a requirement 🙂 It’s near the MIA, souk etc

            There’s a nice Nobu at the FS. Kempinski is over near the pearl and katara cultural village.

            Taxis / Careem / ubers are cheap so it’s easy to get around where ever you stay.

      • Lady London says:

        There is a nice hotel or two in Oman with spas. I would want to fly Oman Air Business but BA does Muscat as well. Completely different style to Dubai.

  24. That is contrary to other statements Greek ministers have made recently. Notably, it was suggested that the British would be welcome as long as we didn’t have the 14 day quarantine at our end. Contrast also with Spain, where hoteliers have told the government they simply can’t afford to re-open unless the British are allowed back!

    • Chrish says:

      [email protected] that doesn’t make sense “Greece would welcome Uk visitors as long as we don’t have 14 days Quarantine when we get back”
      Why ?

      • It was just what was reported, though I’m guessing:

        1. So that Greeks could visit the UK without having to quarantine.
        2. Brits would be more likely to book holidays if they didn’t have to quarantine on their return.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        Because the don’t want Greek travellers to be quarantined.

    • Agreed, though Spanish tourism bosses and employees now seem to have decided that the oiks are the lesser evil and are begging the government for them to be allowed to return!

  25. Brian C says:

    Just tried to see if there were any plans to provide any incentives to Amex Platinum cardholders to stay as suggested by Rob a little while ago when he mentioned that one reader got 20k points loaded (but he was refused). I similarly got the brush off and was offered a downgrade to gold, and reminded that there were double points at the moment and how much my poimnts were worth if i used them to pay down my bill – which was a useless comment as the balance is practically in credit with all of the flight refunds coming in! I tried to exert a little pressure and mentioned the business platinum fee incentive, but still got nowhere. BUT the advisor mentioned that there were plans to further incentivise??? but no detail of course or timescales. Unlike Rob (as he indicated) I use the card a lot, so I was a little disappointed. Anyone else tried and get anywhere with this topic?

    • Genghis says:

      Loads of people have been given points (not me, I don’t have plat).

      But giving people 20k points is not really an incentive to stay. You can just bag the points and then leave.

      • Polly says:

        Yes, that 20k is to make up for being unable to use their travel benefits, main reason most of us hold the card maybe? But l did have to work hard to get the extra 5 k from the agent l spoke to, good will gesture she told me, in the end.

    • Andrew says:

      I was hoping for some non-travel related benefits to be made part of the card for this period as they have done in USA eg £10 per month netflix – but so far nothing other than the double points/double value and the 20K points for some.

    • I’m a very low user of the Plat and got 40k. Just asked if there was anything they could do as my renewal was due in a weeks time.

      • Brian C says:

        Wow! 40k. think I might give it a week or so and have another go.

        • Polly says:

          Yes, some people were given 20k straight up, then found 40k in their accounts! Lucky for some.

    • Graeme says:

      I called up this afternoon and got the 20k points, offered immediately when I said I was considering cancelling the card. Thanks to Rob for highlighting this offer! In case the data points are useful, I’ve used the card very infrequently in the 7 years I’ve had it, other than very recently since the earning rate was doubled. The priority pass plus a couple of travel insurance claims that I think most insurers would have turned down have made it great value even without using it.

  26. Data point AA – cancellation requested 11/5, refund appeared 21/5. Best so far out of QF, AA, BA, SQ.

    • My experience with AA has been very good too. I received full refunds for three return flights with minimal hassle.

    • BrightonReader says:

      took a month for mine to coe through!

      Positivly speedy compared to Finnair where I cancelled on 12 March and got the card credit yesterday!

  27. Martin says:

    BA just cancelled my Club World open jaw Amex 2-4-1 return leg flight from Calgary in Sept, leaving me outbound to Vancouver only. They’ve pulled the whole Calgary route it seems (I was expecting this). Called and managed to get thru, rebooked my return leg from Vancouver in Club World a couple of days later than planned, result as reward seats were available. I think it’s still likely the whole trip will be off but happy to have derisked at least this part of it.

    However, I then noticed that my Exec Club Silver status has been extended by a full 12 months even though I only had enough Tier Points to quality for Bronze when my year ended. A nice touch by BA I thought.

    • bsuije says:

      Status extension would be quite exciting if it is indeed true. Any chance that you perhaps qualified under the reduced threshold (420 TPs instead of 600)?

      • Martin says:

        Just checked my BA account, I only had enough Tier Points to put me in Bronze even with the reduced Silver threshold of 420 v 600. My Tier Point year has just ended and I was on 380 points with no chance of getting to 420 so maybe they are doing it at year end? No clue if it is universal or a factory of my proximity to the 420 threshold….either way it was a pleasant surprise.

    • Yes, if anyone can confirm this that would be great…

      • Hannah says:

        On the BA it now says my card expiry for silver is 31st March 2022

        • Hannah says:

          *BA app
          Apologies! Managed to miss a word!

          • Perhaps Martin had a Jun (or prior) expiry… like him I’m on 380TP with Jul expiry and status quo remains for me.

      • Capecam says:

        The year long renewals are happening on request for sure – But the timing of the request is critical according to my mate at BA. Wait till tier point collection date passes ( eg May 8th) But before card expires.( June 30th) Asking for renewal whilst you are still in your current earning year will actually work against you. My renewal for 12 months happened when I followed this procedure. Within 5 days of my request

        • But Martin hadn’t requested the extension!

          • Martin says:

            Rhys, if you want I can send you a couple of redacted screen grabs from my BAEC account showing the status and transactions (tier point balance removed) if you want. Email me if so.

    • AndyGWP says:

      Interesting re: de-risking

      My thoughts (on the previous page) were that as cancelled avios flights can (currently – admittedly) be moved regardless of avios availability, that you’ve possibly increased risk as you will be on the hook for flight cancellation costs now, and any associated (accommodation) cancellation costs should you wish to cancel the trip due to Canada entry requirements (ie. 14 day quarantine)

      If you’d have left it, wouldn’t insurance have covered the cancellation costs of your accommodation, and you’d have had the option to cancel flights for free with full refund

  28. My Heathrow Rewards transfer has hit my Avios account today but the bonus points haven’t arrived, just the base 3,500 I transferred

  29. Simon says:

    Random one, admittedly • “Comments tally” per article. On some devices and in some browsers, the comments tally/counter per article is there to see; on a different device or via a different browser, it disappears! Would anyone know why? Knowing how many comments I have in front of me helps to stiffen my resolve; without it, I get the sense of what looking for that golden ticket for the Wonka chocolate factory would have been like. 🙂

  30. JohnT says:

    Following on from Tuesdays posts (sorry to come back to it) – BA have now cancelled our US flight in September (Avios 241). So I presume option is phone for a full refund or take a “refund voucher”. However agent said this is not the “Book with confidence voucher” (as flight is after 31/7) that would allow me to rebook for any availability in CW (not just avios seats). So presume best option is full refund (cash/avios and 241) so I can rebook myself, as no special booking benefits for a “refund voucher”?

  31. illuminatus says:

    Curve / HSBC Premier World Elite

    Has anyone had issues with HSBC points recently? The combo used to work perfectly for me, however for April – with total spend of about £20K – I received 10K points only vs the expected 40K. After 2+ weeks of investigation, the wonderful Premier support replied to me that my ‘total purchases’ in April were £5K, thus the amount of points received. Looking at the statement, I cannot understand where that amount comes from, ie how they arrived at at…

    Anyone with similar experience?

    • The Urbanite says:

      You’re not the only one, but the only way to resolve is to persevere with them!

    • Polly says:

      Ask for a manager… had multiple probs with them first couple of years, when staff didn’t know about the card! But they seem better now. Or a supervisor. The call centre staff really can only handle the simplest of issues.

    • Jimbob says:

      My points that posted on 10th April were correct, and that included some Ernie spending

    • Joseph Heenan says:

      What’s your credit limit?

      Their IT has a nasty habit of not crediting points for transactions that take you over your credit limit, but also takes a very days to apply payments to your account. So long story short make sure any payments are fully credited before spending more.

      Also you all really should get an IHG card.

  32. I have a one way flight booked in Dec Malta- LGW with avios. We paid a total of £17.50+23,500 for 2. I now need to move it but the charge is £70.
    Is there a cheaper way of doing this? I don’t mind losing the £17.50 but i would like to get back the avios but don’t really want to pay £70.
    Any thoughts?

    • I believe you need to call to cancel and you’ll only be charged the £17.50pp and get the Avios back, then you can rebook.

      You used to be able to do it online but they’ve stopped it (and also closed the workaround that was on here a few weeks back)

      • sadly when I called they also wanted to charge me £70

      • JohnT says:

        Could wait and see? Unless you need avios for new booking.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        It is a £35 charge per person per booking

        It was just the website that didn’t work as per the T&C’s correctly and only charged you the max of £35 of the cash paid. Or since the £1 euro redemptions came in £1/50p

  33. TonyG says:

    Can you transfer VA points between accounts?
    Thanks

    • Dezbez says:

      Not without paying handsomely I’m afraid. £75 per 10k I think is the going rate! They don’t have quite the flexibility of Avios with household accounts and friends and family

    • Charlieface says:

      They will let you make one booking using points from two accounts

  34. DaveL says:

    Avios group limited has become IAG Loyalty. Did we know about this?! Are we likely to see any bigger changing such as the renaming of avios points ?!

  35. Baresi says:

    Recieved the new Metal Amex Plat yesterday! Very nice indeed…..

  36. Baji Nahid says:

    I got an email from easyjet stating my details were compromised.

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