The new HFP chat thread – Saturday 1st August

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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/2020/08/01/the-new-hfp-chat-thread-saturday-1st-august/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.

Lounge news: Birmingham Aspire lounge to open, photos from the new Leeds Bradford Airport Yorkshire Lounge
BA / IAG "to break even in Quarter 4" - and more from IAG's January to June financial results

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Comments

  1. friendofbiffin says:

    Not sure if this has been mentioned here already but there’s a good opportunity to combine Shop Small with the government’s Eat Out To Help Out scheme from Monday. Splitting a bill across 2 Amex cards at places that are running both schemes should bring a £40 charge down to £10.

    • James H says:

      You’ve missed out the % higher chance of catching covid from your calculations.

    • mr_jetlag says:

      Meerkat meals or Gourmet Society as well. Looking for a triple stack discount next week!

      • Jonathan says:

        These cost the restaurant money so personally I wouldn’t use these if you’re already double dipping AmEx & the Treasury.

        • It doesn’t cost restaurant any money. They get money for the scheme from the gouvernement and Amex is underwriting Shop Small!

          • Jonathan says:

            I’m talking about Gourmet Society etc. The restaurant foots the bill for the 241 with these schemes. My point is if you’re getting Shop Small & Eat Out discounts then that’s plenty without then taking the restaurant’s margin.

          • Restaurants are free to chose to subscribe to the Gourmet Society/Tastecard scheme. If it doesn’t work for their margins they are free not to participate. But since they are getting money from governement and it doesn’t cost them anything for Amex Shop Small, for the restaurant it doesn’t matter as they are only taking a hit on Gourmet Society/Tastecard use.

          • Lady London says:

            @meta things changed recently for restaurants economically though. that was after Taste and Gourmet signup by them.

            Personally the other poster saying let’s be decent since we’re already paying only 25% using other deals…. As Gourmet or Taste would now cost the provider when they really struggling…personally it woukd be classy not to use Gourmet or Taste on this one.

          • I would generally agree, but I know from own
            experience that with Tastecard/Gourmet restaurants can restrict use as much as they want (no weekends, only main course, etc). That’s why I usually don’t subscribe to these schemes any longer. They used to be great, but restaurants have refused the use of a card on too many occasions. Those that still do accept them in this environment obviously find them beneficial.

  2. Erico1875 says:

    Wr are flying Club from Edinburgh this morning. The BA lounge is closed. I phoned BA (India ?) I was asured our boarding pass will get us entry to Aspire or No 1 lounge. I will update later.

    • Wollhouse says:

      Hmmm, well when I travelled from Edinburgh on 23 July, ALL lounges were closed. Most of the shops were also closed. There were a couple of cafes open, but all in all it was a very sad experience – We were all like little rats in face masks following the one way markers around the airport. Just another reminder of how our world has changed.

      • Andrew says:

        And will be many years before it is changed back to how it was.

        • Maybe never sadly

          • Lady London says:

            What do people really think will be left changed for the future in terms of travel?

            I am quite worried about pricing for the future if social distancing remains required and capacity stays lost. Overheads have to be covered soemehow by the providers and will spread over ? one-third of previpus capacity? for the mass providers like mainstream airlines.

      • Aspire opens today.

        • Erico1875 says:

          But unfortunately dispite what the numpty in the BA call centre told me they arent accepting BA business class passengers

          • Lady London says:

            If they are open and not accepting according to their contract for your airline’s Business Class pax then ask BA for a replacement lounge pass to be used at any if their lounges ideally valid a year or so.

            I can imagine in these times lounges filling up with door-rate or prebooked cash customers and ‘forgetting’ to keep the space for contracted airline J class pax hoping to get away with it.

            If however all the eligible lounges were closed then you would, ironically, have to ‘lump it’ alongside every other J passenger.

    • Robert says:

      Anyone know if NCL or AMS BA lounges are open?

    • Were all closed when I travelled on Thursday.

  3. Bluekjp says:

    BA has scrapped the BA1/BA2 London City JFK service altogether.
    Travel certainly is changing forever☹️☹️

    • Andrew says:

      Yes it’s a shame LCY has gone back to being a European airport. But I think that service had very low load factors.

  4. Platinum business card offer “business bundle offer” does buying £20 gift card in store work for currys? cheers

  5. Andrew says:

    Tesco Clubcard Avios seem to gave landed early this quarter – arriving today rather than towards the end of this month.

  6. Gareth says:

    Hey, looking to pay off Creation with hsbc premier cc via curve- does anyone know if this attracts fees or cash advance interest? Thanks

  7. Michael C says:

    Avios cancellation fee question!
    We’re looking at the following, for 3 passengers:
    LHR-HEL-Rovaneimi (on through ticket)
    Rovaneimi-HEL
    HEL-LHR

    If we cancelled, would it be:
    35GBP x 3
    + 35GBP x 3
    + 35GBP x 3?

    Cheers!

  8. Andrew M says:

    Any news on a HSBC points to Avios transfer bonus this month? There was a 25% bonus on transfers last August. I was hoping for a larger bonus this time. HSBC never does a good job of promoting theses bonuses so I did a small test transfer today to see what happens. I will update with the results.

  9. Just cancelled our long weekend in the Cotswolds for mid-August (which replaced our cancelled and re-booked and cancelled again Langley stay!) as the new lockdown rules mean my teenager now can’t go and stay with his grandmother that weekend. I’ve looked at doing the qualifying stay for the IC Ambassador sign up/renewal offer later in the summer instead, but the Kimpton Clocktower and the George are closed and I don’t fancy a train ride to London or a flight to Dublin! (Also there is the distinct possibility of English people being banned from entering Scotland or Ireland again if we don’t get our act together with the infection rate).

    • Andrew says:

      What is this IC AMB offer – it’s like an urban legend, still not seen anything official or any detail on what I need to do.

      • memesweeper says:

        I got it on an email this very morning 🙂

        • Secret Squirrel says:

          Do you already have AMB & coming up to renewal as I’m spire elite and no email received.

      • It’s in the Ts & Cs.

        • Andrew says:

          It seems that if you’re not due to renew before November 2020, which I’m not as they have given a 6 month extension, then you aren’t able to take advantage of this offer?

      • ChrisC says:

        Rob and others mentioned it a couple of days ago and said he would likely post something this weekend once it was actually live.

        Other blogs have already written about it.

        But basically if your renewal date is next year the offer isn’t for you. Ironically I would have qualified with my 1st Sept renewal date but those awful people at IHG gave me a 6 months extension!

    • Anna,
      Ireland still remains effectively closed to visitors from the UK, only those from the 15 countries on the “green list” can arrive without quarantine, it has never opened up. As ever there is some form of exception fro NI but not the rest of us.

      • Harry T says:

        Yes, but you can fly to Northern Ireland and enter Ireland from there, which seems like an odd system.

        I doubt Scotland will prohibit English visitors. I’m not even sure if they can legally do so, and it would be essentially impossible to enforce.

      • This really confuses me, I thought the CTA was open? Or is that just for people from Ireland coming to the UK?!

        • Anna,

          Correct, the CTA is currently a one way ticket, Irish only to UK. Anyone going the other way should quarantine, though NI citizens who haven’t been to the mainland in the last 14 days have an exemption.

    • Harry T says:

      @Anna
      Amsterdam is open for visitors. I’m currently staying at the Amstel on an excellent Staycation offer. If you don’t fancy the IC, I think the Kimpton may be opening in September?

      • Don’t fancy flying anywhere just yet though and risking a quarantine situation!

        • Harry T says:

          Fair enough! I think it’s safe enough with countries with low levels of covid, although it all depends on your risk assessment and tolerance etc. If it makes you nervous travelling abroad at the moment, then that’s not conducive to a happy holiday!

          Flyertalk has a good thread where they monitor countries that are likely to be put on the UK naughty list. Spain and Luxembourg weren’t really a surprise if you were following their numbers. Belgium likely to be next!

      • ChrisC says:

        Kimpton is due to open 25th August but it was supposed to be sooner and they seem to be pushing it back and back.

        Someone posted recently that their booking for a couple of weeks time had been cancelled and were asking about alternatives.

        I have a booking for the 31st. Originally for 30k points but I saw it was reduced to 25k so changed it.

        Fingers crossed they don’t cancel but I have a reserve already booked,

  10. with cancelled Gatwick BA flights, how long do you have to confirm the proposed alternative at Heathrow ? flights are for October half term to Tenerife and We’re not sure if we do / don’t want to go yet so I’d like to leave it a few weeks and see – does this risk the seats having gone by the time we do accept ?

  11. If your flight gets moved what is the refund policy for an Avios booking as not travelling anymore so would be good to save the £35. Thanks.

    • It is treated as a cancellation by BA so no fees payable by you whenyou phone up for a refund (which is only way to do it. This is true even if BA use the same flight number. I did this yesterday. Avios and 2-4-1 if part of the booking refunded instantly, waiting a few days for cash back to Amex,

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