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The new HFP chat thread – Friday 24th July

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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 de facto 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/2020/07/24/the-new-hfp-chat-thread-friday-24th-july/comment-page-1.  The page will refresh with this article but the comments will now show the first page and not the last page.

Old chat threads are hidden from the HFP home page.  If you want to look for something in an old thread, click here.  This brings up all the articles in our ‘General’ category which includes the chat threads.

Comments (169)

  • Scottydogg says:

    I sent Marriott / Bonvoy points to convert to Avios on Wednesay and they have still not cleared , any idea how long these take ? im waiting for them so i can make a booking .
    Is it a case that someone at BA needs to manually credit my account with them and i could possibly call BA to see if i can get them pushed through ?

  • Ammar says:

    Had a call from the team at the Langley calling to say they are not open before November, so my Aug and Sept reservations will be cancelled and points refunded. Just wondering has anyone managed to get them to rearrange the reservations for a date in 2021 for example and not get charged more points, I booked with 30k and 35k points originally

    • Rhys says:

      They wouldn’t let Rob move his booking for the same rate, unfortunately.

    • Harry T says:

      Mixed reports. @Anna was successful, it seems.

      Personally a bit annoyed they aren’t opening because I’d give them some business. I thought they would be open given the enthusiasm for Staycations…

      • Anna says:

        I’m surprised as well. I’ve heard a lot of people struggling to find good accommodation for summer breaks recently.

      • The Savage Squirrel says:

        This. Seems to suggest that in terms of the customerer spend, they’re in reality more of a high end airport hotel than a destination?

    • Anna says:

      I moved my booking (again) from August to New Year weekend. They said I would be charged extra points but I wasn’t. The Langley staff member who changed the booking noted that the system hadn’t charged me extra points and seemed to think I will get away with it! It’s clearly Marriott dictating this, not the hotel, but their IT doesn’t seem to have caught up yet.

  • Venturelog says:

    Is the Amex Platinum insurance valid on car hire in countries not on the FCO exemption list?
    Thank you

  • stevenhp1987 says:

    Booked a BA Holiday last night (last day of sale). Booked around 11:45pm.

    Received an email this morning that my flights are cancelled…

    Gotta be one of the quickest turnarounds from booking to being cancelled?

  • Vin says:

    Lufthansa trouble.
    Flight booked to Tunis from MAN via FRA end September 2020. Lufthansa changed the schedule (twice) and rebooked me on a different set of dates as they no longer have a flight to Tunis on wednesdays. I need to travel on my original dates as I have an Ultra race to run (all being well). It so happens that Air France is flying on the dates that suit me. Contacted the Lufthansa UK customer services who were having none of it when I quoted EU 261/2004 regarding re-routing with a different carrier. They first said the re-route must be with Star Alliance. When I challenged that I was told re-route on another carrier would only be allowed if the flight was cancelled with less than 48h notice. I suggested Lufthansa would be in breach of EU261/2004 but was told no, they have their own set of rules. My request for Lufthansa to pay the price differential with another carrier was declined. My request to be put through to ‘supervisor’ was declined. My only options would be to cancel the ticket for a full refund or travel on the different dates.
    Do I have a leg to stand on here ?
    Anyone else have success with a similar claim and if so how did you work it out?
    Or shall I just give up and foot the cost as the price has gone up now ? 🙂
    Many thanks for your advice !

    • AJA says:

      That’s a difficult one. How much more expensive is the AF ticket vs what you paid LH? The flights LH have put you on won’t get you where you need to be. Fighting them, while laudable and within your rights to do, doesn’t appear to be working. You could try phoning LH again but I think I’d be inclined to just take a refund and just book again directly with AF. The longer you argue your rights with LH the fewer the chances of actually having space on the AF flights. You will also have the hassle of getting a refund out of LH to contend with as well. Good luck

      • Harry T says:

        If you took legal action, you’d probably win eventually, but at a cost of time and effort. LH group are awful for refunds too. I would advocate getting a refund, but having a low threshold for section 75 if they don’t play ball. LH play dirty too – my better half had a chargeback reversed by Amex when LH lied and said they had offered her a refund (they haven’t tried the same stunt with me). So be prepared for a fight either way.

        The optics on this change if the AF flights are much more expensive than the LH ones – it may be then worth dying in that trench to get a reroute. Best of luck; hope you come out on top with minimal difficulty.

        • Vin says:

          Thank you @AJA and @Harry T.
          The AF flight will now cost £300 more than the LH one I’d booked. I don’t wish to wait till 48h before travel to find out that there are no alternative flights available. I too feel I won’t get anywhere with LH (having read other reports) so the best option will be to accept their offer of a full refund.
          Perhaps I’ll dash off a ‘complaint’ email just to make me feel better 😀

          • Lady London says:

            DO NOT take a refund from LH as this loses you all your other rights. Thats what the airline want you to do as this saves them all the extra costs associated with your replacement ticket and other duty of care costs. The moment you take a refund they’ve got away with it landing increased costs on you that they’re responsible for. Buy another ticket and go s75 for the original one leaving the credit card to get the money off LH in full which they will. But card will pay you all meanwhile.

        • Lady London says:

          Been screwed over by LH messing my flights around and just ignoring the consequences to the rest of my flights on that ticket and simply refusing to honour their EU261 responsibilities. That was in normal times too. They are complete b*stards on reroutings.

          Harry T is right you would win mcol case for all your eu261 rights for this including any duty of care costs suchvas hotel and meals which I notice LH is not mentioning even though their proposed reschedule would require them to pay these.

          Do what Harry T says. If you can manage it buy a new AF ticket. Note ahy extra costs caused by this change such as extra meals or hotels whilst travelling or increased transport costs to ir from airports.

          Make a Section 75 claim on your credit card immediately. s.75 makes cars responsible for any costs increased as a resultof you having to rebook. So dont accept to do a chargeback as you wanr all yohr increased costs back.

          If card refuses you can take them to the FOS. You can also do moneyclaim dot gov dot uk as a last resort – but as Harry T saya this looks certain but takes longer.

          Good luck. Personally if doing a race event in these times Id fly out earlier in case AF messes me round as well.

          • Vin says:

            Thank you for the advice @Lady London and @Harry T !
            the Lufty email gives me 2 options only – cancel the booking or take a travel voucher to book by 31 Jan 2021. I need to let them know by 30th July failing which they will cancel my booking and issue me the voucher automatically.
            https://www.lufthansa.com/de/en/passenger-rights
            Have never made a S75 claim before (card used was Amex Gold credit).
            Do I claim through S75 to recoup the cost of the original ticket and a separate claim for the additional ticket costs or the whole additional cost as one claim? (My race is out in the desert so I’m bound by the local travel arrangements made by the organisers)

          • Lady London says:

            under s75 you can claim the whole cost of meeting your original travel arrangements even if cost is now more than your original ticket price. s75 also covers any addutuonal costssuch ad ectra hotel nights, extra meals due to longer travel times, plus extra transport costs such as your new flight arrives too late for your original flight’s transport still to be availabke etc.

            just call your credit card and request section 75 claim. dont let them convert it to chargeback as you are entitled to full replacement and consequential costs not just refund. watch carefully sometimes cardco’s do that without telling you because it suits them. keep good records and watch and follow up.

            Again do not accept a refund. Personally Id give LH onemore call, ask thrm to provide rhe travel on the same day even on another airline. State you refuse a refund and you refuse a voucher and you need rerouting on the same day to meet the purpose of your trip and you are accepting nothing else. Record or keep notes if this

            When they refuse state you have “taken advice” (dont tell them where) and your next step will be fo claim the cost if a retail ticket on AF plus other costs. state your credit card will recover this amount from Lufthansa under UK Section 75 legislation (card pays you, and card will then recover rhe money off LH – you get paid in full by card even if LH goes bust). state that if any problem with Cardco full recovery paynent to ypu then you wi alsotake them to court for all these costs under EU261 and you have no doubt you will win.

            it will cost them a lot more to reimburse your cardco or pay a court award full retail ticket price ibstead if tge fraction of thar cost they would pay to AF for an interline ticket at industey rates.

            So have no sympathy for them and reject a refund.
            please let us know howypu get on.

          • Doug M says:

            Thing is it’s not stupid as for every one that pursues it there will be 20 that don’t, so they win. If the EU are serious they’d make it such that airlines didn’t deny valid claims without serious and very expensive consequences.

          • Lady London says:

            you are right @DougM. Until there is a punitive element introduced to EU261 for airlines that refuse to reroute / pay extra costs or compensation promptly, airlines will contunue to bully people.

            Currently the only punitive element is they are supposed to pay amounts due within 7 days. So you could demand and would get statutory interesr addition to what’s due at the rate of 8% p.a.

            If I had to go so far as mcol I’d also request a “preparation order” for my time spent at my professional rates which would also cost the airline more.

        • Lady London says:

          ps ignore LH so-called only 2 options you have all the rights under EU261 that supersede this. btw rhey are legally obliged to inform you if those rights and they havent done so.

          • Doug M says:

            @LL. Given the fines you mention as appropriate for BA I’m amazed you haven’t suggested imprisonment and torture for the LH board.
            Based on other comments and forums LH seemingly regard 261 as something only for other airlines.

          • Lady London says:

            @Doug M regarding suitable fines as punishment for LH “I”m working on it”.

            All I would say is tfat based on rrports you read, LH is every bit as bad as TAP for EC261 and that”s really bad.

            Pretty stupid of LH to treat the poster this way as the interline rates to reroute the passe ger o AF will cost a fraction of what they will end up having to pay the poster. For their egregious bullying behavioir poster shoukd hit LH wjth every possible expense.

          • Doug M says:

            Replied above in error.

    • tical says:

      Similar situation with BA, where BA simply refused to re-route to SOF. S75 (for cost of new ticket) filed with AmEx over e-mail but they are taking a long time (about a month now) to do anything. Will probably give them another couple of week and file MCOL

      • Lady London says:

        Dont forget Section 75 gives you any other incteased costs / additional costs as well.

  • The Streets says:

    For those with an AMEX Platinum Business Card and wanting to do some spending at Currys PC World then you can now pick up Amazon Echos on the cheap! The Echo with the £20 discount can be bought for £29.99, the echo dot with clock for £14.99. From previous experience these offers only last a couple of days but can be found here https://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/smart-tech/smart-tech/smart-home/voice-control-assistants/amazon-echo-dot-with-clock-3rd-generation-sandstone-10200493-pdt.html

  • jek says:

    Quick question: I am about to book flights via miles on Virgin when they become available. Should I book the outgoing flights as one way as soon as they become available or should I wait for the return flights to become available?

    What are the drawbacks on Virgin with two oneway tickets instead of a return ticket? (The metal will be Delta.)

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