Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The new HFP chat thread – Thursday 4th June

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.  Let’s see how it goes.  Take care!

Comments (205)

  • Nigel W says:

    I’m not sure if it has been reported on here or not, but those who used a Lloyd’s voucher with Avios, they have changed their cancellation offer.

    Still up to outbound flights leaving 31st July, you can cancel for free (had to pay before) and get all Avios and cash back. However now you can only get the voucher back for 3 months from the date cancelled (so if today it would be 4th September).

    • meta says:

      Different if your flight was cancelled.

      • Reeferman says:

        What are the current terms (for Lloyds Avios voucher) if the flight is cancelled please?
        Am hoping my flight to IAD in Oct will be cancelled – voucher was expiring Oct/Nov 2020.

        • meta says:

          If cancelled, you get all Avios and fees back. Voucher is extended till end of November regardless of expiry and you need to book by November meaning you can rebook up to 21 November 2021.

          • Reeferman says:

            Thanks very much.
            Fingers crossed BA does cancel my flight!

  • Andrew says:

    Face coverings on all public transport including air will be mandatory from 15 June, enforcement by BTP.

    • Anna says:

      BTP only police the rail network, so can’t enforce this enforcement on busses, planes and all other forms of public transport. I’ll all for anything that helps prevent spread of the virus, but I’m quite surprised there hasn’t been a spike in robberies yet due to wearing a face covering becoming so common!

      • Andrew says:

        The rail network includes the Underground and most tram networks for which BTP are responsible.

        • Anna says:

          That’s only really relevant to London, although I realise to many people, only London is relevant!

          • Anna says:

            To be specific:

            The British Transport Police (BTP) looks after Britain’s rail network including the London Underground, Docklands Light Railway, Midland Metro tram system, Croydon Tramlink, Sunderland Metro and the Glasgow Subway.

            That’s an awful lot of public transport they don’t cover!

      • Chris Heyes says:

        [email protected] Clide here for you Bonny, get you mask ready we’ll start slow England’s Gold Reserve lol

        • Anna says:

          Chris, thankfully I don’t have to rely on public transport as we have no tubes or trams round here, and it’s very much hit and miss as to whether your bus or train will actually turn up. 🤣

      • Jerrry Butler says:

        A good friend of mine used to work for the BTP,

  • Gruntfuttock says:

    Announced on Airlineroute this afternoon. July long-haul operations:
    London Heathrow – Atlanta 1 daily 787-10
    London Heathrow – Beijing Daxing 1 daily 777-300ER
    London Heathrow – Boston 1 daily A350-1000XWB
    London Heathrow – Cape Town 777-200ER operates alternating days
    London Heathrow – Chicago O’Hare 2 daily 787-9
    London Heathrow – Dallas/Ft. Worth 1 daily 787-8
    London Heathrow – Delhi 1 daily 787-8
    London Heathrow – Dubai 777-200ER operates alternating days
    London Heathrow – Hong Kong 1 daily 777-300ER
    London Heathrow – Johannesburg 1 daily 777-300ER
    London Heathrow – Lagos 777-200ER operates alternating days
    London Heathrow – Los Angeles 1 daily 787-9
    London Heathrow – Mexico City 1 daily 787-9
    London Heathrow – Miami 1 daily 787-9
    London Heathrow – Mumbai 1 daily 787-8
    London Heathrow – Nairobi 1 daily 777-200ER
    London Heathrow – New York JFK 2 daily 777-200ER
    London Heathrow – San Francisco 1 daily 787-9
    London Heathrow – Sao Paulo Guarulhos 1 daily 787-8
    London Heathrow – Seattle 1 daily 787-8
    London Heathrow – Seoul Incheon 3 weekly 787-8
    London Heathrow – Shanghai Pu Dong 1 daily 777-300ER
    London Heathrow – Singapore 1 daily 777-300ER (from 06JUL20)
    London Heathrow – Tel Aviv 1 daily A350-1000XWB
    London Heathrow – Tokyo Haneda 3 weekly 787-9
    London Heathrow – Toronto 1 daily 787-9
    London Heathrow – Vancouver 1 daily 777-200ER
    London Heathrow – Washington Dulles 1 daily A350-1000XWB

  • Gerry says:

    What is BA latest stance on status. I managed to get through to someone in exec club , I am on 360 at moment and had flights booked which would have taken me to above the 420. The flights got cancelled, earnings year ends on 8th June so just wondering if anyone has any advice.

    • Lady London says:

      as the 420 was already a concession I think you might be pushing it

    • ChrisC says:

      So you managed to get through to exec club and didn’t ask ???

    • AJA says:

      Gerry, what’s your current status? Are you Silver hoping to retain or Bronze hoping for an upgrade? I think I’d wait and see if you drop to or remain Bronze then contact the EC via the contact us web page enclosing evidence of your cancelled flight which would have hit the reduced threshold. It also depends if you are currently Silver and have been for a few years. I’d expect a negative answer but you may be pleasantly surprised.

  • Nicola says:

    Hi everyone – I’m a long term reader, but I’ve never posted before, but I am after some advice please? My husband had flights booked from Heathrow to LA with Virgin Atlantic for work later this month that have been cancelled. I have been trying to rebook for another trip he needs to take in January 2021 – the original flights cost £813 in Economy Delight and I have been trying to move to the same route but Premium Economy, which Virgin are advertising on their website for £767. I was happy for Virgin to keep the difference as the £813 has already been reimbursed by the customer, but instead Virgin asked for an additional £150: £60 to cover the additional taxes, which I could about stomach, and the remainder to cover an increase in ‘carrier surcharge’ – this is double on the new flight – increasing from £90 to £180. When I said I wasn’t happy about paying even more for a flight they are advertising for less they suggested (after lots of discussion) I request a refund and rebook myself, but as their refunds are not forthcoming (other forums suggest 90 days and counting) this is not an attractive option either. My question is… am I expecting too much in that they would treat the original £813 as credit available to apply to a new flight? It seems bizarre that they are suggesting the refund/rebook option, yet aren’t able to do this hypothetically themselves. Should I keep pushing, or accept it’s a lost cause?

    • Lady London says:

      The cleanest solution would be to invoke your undeniable right to a full refund under EC261/2004 due to the airline’s flight cancellation. So you would take the full £813 back. Then you would spend £767 on the new flight and correct!you would actually make a profit.

      What could possibly go wrong? !!!
      What with the airline being close to bust and its future not clear :-).

      You have correctly pointed out that no way will Virgin refund your money in the 7 days (yes, 7 days) to which EC261/2004 statute entitles you.

      You could put in a claim for a refund and meanwhile pay for the new flights with extra money to secure the price.

      Personally, I think you’d be nuts to put any more cash into Virgin now. You could lose the new money if Virgin folds or gets reorganised out of their problems in a way that doesnt honour existing prepaid bookings. A refund of your earlier booking might never happen. You may get the money for the refund but if you do, I’d be prepared for it to take nearer 6 months than 3.

      My advice would be keep your money in your pocket. EC261/2004 gives you the right to choose refund in full for your cancelled flight, or you can choose to rebook a later date. I would rebook to the January date. I think this is tbe best combination of what you want, and what Virgin will actually do promptly. The only fly in the ointment means you will still be stuck in Y as EC261 only covers you in same class.

      I would look at upgrade options nearer the time, or at the airport (1 leg or both).

      I think this is the lowest risk option to your money, that Virgin will actually do. Dont forget to use Miles Boost if you collect Virgin.

      The harder way is to contact your credit card with a section 75 claim for a refund. Basis is yea Virgin have said you wont be refunded for st least 90 days but EU261/2004 says you are entitled to a refund in 7 days and you need the money back now. cardco is jointly liable under s75 for all legal obligations (including statutory whuch Ec261 is) so they should pay you. Dont fi a chargeback on this one as it’s not as strong for you as s75 – plus chargeback might erroneously be clawed back by some cardco’s if Virgin comes up with some flimsy excuse so go s75.

      If cardco refuses or tries to say you should wait or ‘Virgin refunds are taking 4 months to process’ or says a credit or voucher would be good enough they would be wrong. You are indeed entitled to choose a refund and to have the cardco pay you back in 7 days according to EC261 if Virgin won’t. Its just that you wouldhave to threaten the cardco with taking them to the Ombudsman/FOS if they are obdurate. Likely to take over 6 months for a result and hassle and stress.

      I would do the rebook to January now instead as the path of least resistance if I really did want to fly in January and trusted that Virgin would still be around to make the flight. Deal with the upgrade later.

      PS yes a PY flight has same APD due to government as flight in Upper Class. So you would expect a jump.

    • AJA says:

      Welcome Nicola and I hope this is the start of you commenting more.

      I think I’m with Virgin on this. You booked and paid for economy so should just move the cancelled flight to an economy ticket on the new dates. If you want to upgrade then you should pay the fare difference. It is irrelevant that you can buy the seat in the next class for cash today at a lower fare than you originally paid for economy.

      They’ve given you the option to refund and rebook but the risk you have is that you have to wait for the refund to be paid to you. If you think they will actually still be flying in December then you should have some confidence that they will actually refund you.

      • AJA says:

        Oops I meant January 2021 not December in my comment.

        • Nicola Short says:

          Thanks both – it looks like my expectations were too high! I thought this was Virgin’s application of the voucher scheme run by BA (who could not have been more helpful – and quick – in refunding me when I told them I didn’t want a voucher).

          One thing I missed out when trying to simplify the story was that Virgin told me there was no availability in Economy Delight (despite it being offered on the website) so there was no option to accept like-for-like. My husband has Silver status, and so was in Economy Delight for the extra Tier points, but in accepting a downgrade to Economy Classic he would lose these and additional miles. And of course they were offering no compensation for this.

          If I take a refund and they go bust before it is paid will this be then covered under Section 75?

          • Nicola says:

            For anyone interested we have managed to resolve this… I asked again about availability in Economy Delight and was told it was available after all, AND they would be happy to refund the difference between my original ticket price and the online Economy Delight price of the new ticket. So I have my new flight booked and a £300 refund (eventually!)… fingers crossed they can stay afloat!

  • Alan S says:

    Does anyone have any recent experience of how long Ryanair are taking to process cash refunds?

    • Anna says:

      No experience, but Michael O’Leary was being grilled on the news this morning and said he hoped the 60% of claims still outstanding would be processed within the next 10 weeks. He was struggling to explain why it’s so much quicker for his airline to take people’s money than to give it back!

      • Polly says:

        M OL is quite entertaining but not when you need a refund. One time l got a letter from them, saying they only had about 3 people processing letters and manually refunding! Thus the long wait, l think…can’t even imagine what the department is like now tho!

    • Rossy says:

      I requested one several weeks ago, but was told that allegedly the staff that process the refunds are working from and need to be in the office to access the systems required to process cash refunds, hence they won’t be able to do so until they are allowed back into the office. I think others have been fobbed off with various other fabricated excuses, but in short, don’t expect a refund any time soon!

      • Lady London says:

        chargeback on chargecard or credit card, or s75 on credit card, now. Dont waste time.What O’Leary/Ryanair/their agents are saying right now is b*ll*x. You shouldn’t waste your time.

        If you want the full story look at MSE this werk and last week.

        • Rossy says:

          I did raise a claim with Amex and tried to go about getting money back that way, but they wouldn’t help me. I was told that as I was offered a voucher they weren’t able to help.

          • Lady London says:

            do a call back and insist on dealing with brighton not philippines.

            if you card is not credit card then you only have chargeback or Amex’s own policies to call on.

            Clearly what you’re being told is unfair. Personally I’d get this resolved whatever it takes, but would let them know you’re surprised at their stance since you’re chatting about this one on forums and other cards are not being unfair like this.

            Once I’ve got the money for sure I’d dump the card if they don’t change their tune soon, and tell them why.

    • Rossy says:

      *working from home

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.