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:  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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  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?


    • Catman says:

      I had the same, I called 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 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 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. Looks like the economist offer doesn’t include print-only option anymore. ☹️

  10. 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 ?

  11. 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.

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