Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The new HFP chat thread – Tuesday 9th June

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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/2020/06/09/the-new-hfp-chat-thread-tuesday-9th-june/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!

Comments (194)

  • Katy Storie says:

    Has anyone heard if there will be any further flex on BAEC requalification criteria for those with July, August, September renewal dates?

    • Rhys says:

      Still nope!

      • Katy Storie says:

        I wonder when they’ll make an announcement?!

        • Rhys says:

          They may never. If they don’t plan on offering any further extensions then I imagine it’s in BA’s interest to let it quietly fizzle out than announce it and trigger the ire of passengers.

    • Don says:

      Don’t complain, just spend your money elsewhere. There’s a nice premium world out there away from BA.

      • Mawalt says:

        So as a BAEC Silver with the membership year ending in Jan and sitting on 400 TPs, I am likely to miss out unless travel resumes soon.

        Can you suggest another good bonus programme apart from Avios for a Londoner? Somewhere where I can get points from normal spend and get something similar to a 2-4-1 etc?

        Virgin Club does not seem adequate due to their status-driven 2-4-1 redemptions (no J redemptions unless you are top tier) and limited travel network.

        Any suggestions?

        • Rhys says:

          The problem is that a lot of European/international airlines do not have branded credit cards in the UK which is obviously a key attraction to collecting Avios. Lufthansa does, but doesn’t have 2-4-1 vouchers.

          https://headforpoints.com/2019/11/17/lufthansa-miles-more-diners-club-world-traveller-credit-card-review/

          • Mawalt says:

            Thanks Rhys. I have considered Lufthansa but was discouraged by their lounge access policy for their mid-tier people and restrictions on availability of reward flights. The most valuable perks of BA Silver to me are: 1) free seat selection 2) lounge access. 2-4-1 voucher is also critical as it means I can comfortably do 1-2 trips a year with my wife in CW.

            Considering the low quality of BA lounges, I tend to use non-BA oneworld lounges, except at LHR T5 where there is no choice.

            The policy on expiry of miles (except with their credit card) is also very evil.

          • Alex W says:

            What about Alaska airlines. The miles are much more valuable and earned more quickly than Avios so it might negate your ‘need’ for a 241. No credit card but you can transfer from Marriott and therefore Amex MR.

        • ChrisC says:

          Give up on the points earnings cards!

          Fly with whoever offers the best flight / service / price

          KLM is looking good for some of the long haul routes I plan to fly. If only they did’t price LHR-AMS at 2-3x BA in business!

    • Doug M says:

      BA announced yesterday they’ll only extend status if Rob transfers his Virgin FC miles to Hilton.

      • ankomonkey says:

        I thought he’d done that weeks and weeks ago. I seem to remember he mentioned it in the comments…

        • Peter K says:

          I remember Rob saying he has no need for 4 million more Hilton points. The conspiracy theorists may say that leaves a lot a wriggle room…. 😉

      • Paul74 says:

        🙂

    • David S says:

      Asked their customer services. Apparently no plans at the moment. My tier points just reset recently, so there goes my status. Poor show but hardly surprising and not expecting much with all the fiasco.

  • Lindsey Jackson says:

    Hi – can anyone help with advice about cancelled Turkish Airlines flights? We were due to fly to Istanbul/Odessa on Friday (and back on 21 June). We would like a refund, or if that is never going to happen, then we would accept Miles (TA is a member of Start Alliance so presumably we would be able to use these miles on Lufthansa, United etc.)
    We booked through Opodo who are offering either a voucher or rebooking. However, though there are other options on TA’s website. Yesterday, I submitted a refund request to TA who replied this morning saying the following:
    “… we can enable you to suspend your ticket without paying any change fee. Thus, you shall not be charged any change fee for once only for the flight you will buy newly, provided that you suspend your ticket before your first flight in your travel plan and complete all your travel by December 31, 2021. Please note that these adhibitions are provided only for once and you need to cancel your flights (leaving the ticket open) until your scheduled flight time. In this context, the entire trip must be completed by 31 December 2021. If you make your trip after 31 December 2021, your existing fare conditions will apply.”
    There are six options on their website:
    “Create a request to change ticket to an open ticket. You can change your ticket to an open ticket and reissue it for a flight taking place by December 31, 2021.
    Create a free change request. You can change your ticket to another flight at no charge.
    Create a refund request in Miles. You can get your refund in Miles and add value to your ticket.
    Create a refund with a voucher. You can get a refund with a voucher which you can use to purchase Turkish Airlines tickets and services. The voucher is 15% more in value than the ticket price.
    Create a standard refund request. According to the Civil Aviation Regulation regarding COVID-19, your refund can be made within 2 months after the flights return to normal. We kindly advise you to apply 2 months after the flights return to normal or review the other advantageous options offered and create your request now.”
    My question is whether I have to do anything right now or can I wait? The TA email implies I have to suspend my ticket before Friday – which presumably would mean going for the first option; changing to an open ticket.
    I would prefer to go for the last option – wait two months after the flights return to normal and then submit another request.
    I should say that I haven’t even tried phoning Opodo – but perhaps I should?
    Any advice would be gratefully received!

    • Pablo says:

      If you paid with a credit card raise a section 75 claim as services paid for were not provided and let them sort it out with the travel agent.

      • LindseyJ43 says:

        Thanks but unfortunately I did everything wrong with this booking – used Opodo + Paypal instead of direct from TA with credit card.

        • Pablo says:

          Try opening a claim with PayPal buyer protection. Choose the ‘not received’ option.

  • Stu says:

    In case it’s not been mentioned, Virgin Money/Virgin Atlantic Mastercard added non sterling transaction fee to a purchase this week. It had temporarily? Not been doing so.

    • Pablo says:

      I think no forex fees are only applicable to transactions in EU currencies.

    • Andrew says:

      I’ve never been charged a non-Sterling transaction fee on my Virgin Money Mastercard. It’s the reason why I took it out in the first place.

    • AlexT says:

      What currency was the payment in? The waiver only applies to EU/EEA currencies.

  • WaynedP says:

    Unexpected extra Tier Points showing in MMB from upgrade with Avios

    I called BA to upgrade with Avios from WTP to CW on a long haul flight. Did it once before over the phone without any problem. But I think I previously used the 0344 number that flashes up if you try to upgrade a BA Holiday booking online via MMB. I recall the CSA apologising that BA IT system can only handle online upgrade to flight only, not BA Holiday bookings, but he sorted it out quickly.

    This time around, when I called the 0344 number I got a message saying to dial the general 0800 727 800 number instead (consolidated due to Covid-19), which I did.

    The CSA seemed a bit out of his depth when he saw it was a BA Holidays booking, and told me he couldn’t help me over the phone, but gave me a dedicated email address to put my request in writing. I was disappointed as I thought I might lose the availability to upgrade, but went ahead anyway.

    Today my upgrade was confirmed by email, and when I went into the booking online, I was surprised to find that it was reporting CW TPs, not the original WTP TPs that I was expecting after reading Rob’s article from 2 Jan 2019 on this issue, which states that extra TPs for upgrades are only given for cash upgrades, not Avios ones.

    My ticketing class shows as U (reward flight), so they’ve got the ticket class correct. But not the TPs.

    Quite important as the unexpected extra CW TPs would bump me up to the next BAEC benefit level, which wouldn’t be the case for the original WTP TPs.

    But I’m loathe to get excited too soon, as I suspect it’s a mistake that BA will rectify at some point in the future.

    Any similar experiences ?

    • RWJ says:

      Stay quiet and you might get lucky! This does sometimes happen, and sometimes it doesn’t get fixed. 🙂

    • Mawalt says:

      I’ve had this happen a couple of times when upgrading from PE to CW. It normally happens if for whatever reason the online form won’t let you upgrade (despite having U availability) and you call BA Customer Service who force through a manual upgrade.

      Don’t mention it to them and normally nothing else happens – so hopefully you will get to keep your TPs.

      • WaynedP says:

        Interesting, thanks.

        My fingers are crossed and my lips are sealed.

    • Dave says:

      Pretty common for MMB to report incorrect tier points in these situations.

  • Benilyn says:

    OT: Singed up to Amex Gold CC, made a few transactions go my points. No reward tracker has appeared, how long does that typically take?

    • Genghis says:

      My wife applied probably 6 weeks ago. Not eligible for any bonus but no £15k spend tracker yet. I’m not concerned.

      • Benilyn says:

        Mmm ok let me know how you get along! I will update too. I haven’t signed up to a new Amex for a very long time now!

  • William says:

    I upgraded to platinum for the 4k spend bonus, i met the criteria but the points have not posted (its been over a month now) Usually they post as soon as spend is met.

    I think they are deliberately delaying posting bonus points to stop people cancelling as soon as points post. Customer service confirm the offer is on my account and spend has been met.

    Annoying to say the least.

    Also my friend has had issues where referrals are not being awarded on his platinum card.

    • G says:

      Not deliberately delaying in my case as the bonus posted with the transaction which took me over the target today

    • Crafty says:

      Mine posted just a few days after hitting the spend (a week ago). You may want to chase.