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The HfP chat thread – Sunday 13th September

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We have decided to run this daily chat thread on Head for Points during the coronavirus outbreak.

Historically, the daily ‘Bits’ articles were the de facto repository for random comments and questions.  With the news flow being lighter, we are running fewer ‘Bits’ articles.

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 at home, we want the HfP community to have a place to chat.

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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 it keeps the commentary relevant for people who read those articles in the future.

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Comments (131)

  • Annabel says:

    Morning. Had Ryanair flight ( which I had no intention of going due to imposed quarantine on return ) where the flight time was changed slightly by one hour on morning of departure. They had emailed me saying flight had been cancelled and we had been moved onto the slightly later flight. So I submitted a refund form only to be rejected saying flight went ahead! I’ve done a chargeback on my Amex and refund has appeared on my account. In this instance could Ryanair reverse it? Thanks for any opinion.

    • The Original Nick says:

      Well done. I’m hoping that my Ryanair flight gets cancelled/changed so I can do the same.

    • BS says:

      Yes, Amex could still reverse it, but Ryanair would have to lie to amex to do this.. But you could then provide Amex with the evidence it had cancelled, and they may well then overturn it.
      Ryanair could then theoretically pursue you for payment in the courts if they felt they had a case (which it sounds like they don’t, was the new flight a different flight number?)
      Similarly you could also pursue Ryanair to MCOL, if the Amex route also failed. If they do this make sure you charge all the extras you can on to your claim (interest, travel to the hearing etc., and use the fact they will have to lie to amex to get it reversed as evidence they have acted unreasonably so you can claim full costs).

      • Annabel says:

        Thank you will do BS. Yes the flight number changed. I sent up to Amex screenshots of their ‘cancellation’ email and refusal to refund so hopefully they can’t get out of that one!

        • Sukes says:

          Nice wk Annabel. If you’ve preemptively uploaded to Amex clear written evidence from RYA of the cancellation I don’t think you’ll have any further issues. You’ll probably receive an automatic letter in the post from Amex in a week stating the dispute has opened and RYA can refute it. You can check on the dispute within your account on desktop online (you can’t see disputes in the Amex app) and you may see it moved from closed to under investigation. Then prob after 6-8wks or so it’ll move back to closed – you’ll not get any letters or emails or other comms from Amex about these movements. That was my experience of a chargeback at start June to Amex plat for cancelled RYA flights – refund was immediate but didn’t show dispute as finally closed on my account until Jul/ early Aug.If your Amex balance is now in credit you can request rebate via Amex web chat or phone.

    • Lady London says:

      if flight number changed open and shut full refund without deductions under statute EU261

  • Darren says:

    With many countries now requiring a negative covid test 72hrs prior to arrival, and we are told not to use the test centres for holiday, any recommendations on who to use for these tests and any company out there not charging £200/300 for the privilege?

    • BS says:

      You will have to pay anything from £150 each for the PCR test, which is about the lowest cost. These are available from private GPs and/or travel clinics -, just google your local. Do check if the country you’re going to will accept an antigen test instead – these go down to £60 or so, but are less sensitive.
      I know you haven’t said you will, but please don’t consider trying to get the NHS to get a ‘free’ test. It is not free (just free to you at the point of use), and will use a slot for someone who really needs it.

      • Elaine J. says:

        I had to travel to Guildford for a test (about 200 miles), and I paid £140 per person. Had the results back within 24 hours. We were told about a second test while in Barbados, but once we got there, there was no mention of this, although we were given a thermometer and form at the airport, and were supposed to take and record our temperature twice a day. There were no checks on this and we did not have to submit the forms to anyone.
        As I said a few days ago, I could see (while queuing at the airport), that several people had NHS documents. I agree with BS that for holiday purposes, it’s not fair to try to get an NHS test.

    • rk says:

      If in London, the pharmacy on Curzon St, gives you back the result in 24 hours – £150.

  • Matt says:

    Apologies if this has already been covered in a previous daily chat but I’m trying to book some reward seats on Virgin Atlantic using a companion voucher and have been on hold for hours (yesterday – gave up – and now again this morning).

    I can’t see any way of booking using a companion voucher online but can anyone suggest any other way of making a booking using the voucher (or contacting VA) other than sitting on hold for literally hours on their Flying Club reservations line?

    • Paul says:

      Download WeQ4U app and then go about your business and app will get your phone to dial when you are answered in the queue later on.

    • ChasP says:

      text them – took 5 days but they did eventually reply and sorted out easily

  • Michael says:

    I’m Bonvoy Platinum after a successful status match request. If I book three rooms for three people (I’ll be one of them) will we each receive the welcome gift, of which we would certainly choose breakfast? Or is it just me that receives it?

  • Andrew says:

    Following yesterday’s Barbados related article it seems that they are getting tighter on letting people travelling from the U.K. in, requiring a second test to be taken 5 days into your holiday. Travelling really is becoming such a faff.
    https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/barbados

    • Peter K says:

      I’m sure the relatives of those who die from COVID in the countries you might travel to (who don’t have the NHS to reply on and may not be able to pay hospital fees) find going to funerals more than a faff.

    • JohnnyN says:

      ‘ Travelling really is becoming such a faff‘.

      You’d think think we were in the middle of a worldwide pandemic or something.

      Don’t do it then!
      Travelling isn’t mandatory. Unless it’s crucial, and if you don’t fancy the ‘faff’ you always have the option of not actually doing it, and staying home and staying safe, and then you don’t have to take to the internet and moan about it.
      If you really can’t do without a foreign holiday whilst we are in this pandemic then you just have to accept that it’s not going to be straightforward, and won’t revolve around you and your expectations.
      Sorry, I know this sound harsh…but c’mon.

      • NYC_Sam says:

        I have to agree with this. The world is in a very unprecedented state of flux at the moment and unless your foreign travel is a necessity then I really don’t think it’s appropriate to be complaining about complexities and complications before, during or after a non essential trip abroad.

    • Rob says:

      Doesn’t apply for a one week stay, it seems, which means most will avoid it.

  • Stuart says:

    Jody, regarding the Monte Carlo holiday – I had a flight change this morning so rang BA and was about to ask what my options were but the agent offered a full refund straight away without me asking. A good result as it is all sorted a week before the balance was due.

    • Jody says:

      Thanks Stuart. Great news for you.

      We had a flight change two days before the FCO advice came in, unfortunately I’d already changed it!

      I had an email this week saying we might not get helicopters as they are running a reduced service so it might be transfer my road. Not sure if that is enough to ask for a refund at this point?

      If nothing else changes I’ll be calling on the day the balance is due and asking for a full refund if FCO advice hasn’t changed.

      Really appreciate the update, thank you.

  • John says:

    Struggling to top up Monese with Curve linked to HH, anyone else?

    • mark2 says:

      Just topped up with no problem, but only £50 because of Monese limits

      • John says:

        I wonder what on Earth is going on. I’ve got my full £1000 and can’t use a penny of it. Do you have to do the Curve confirmation each time and it shows up on Barclaycard okay?

  • Chrisasaurus says:

    Cant really be OT so so good luck to anyone virtually running GNR today!

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