Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Saturday 24th October

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

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.

HFP-Wordmark-Black

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.

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/2020/10/24/the-hfp-chat-thread-saturday-24th-october/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 (189)

  • Alex says:

    Hi – I’m new to all this do looking for some help. I booked car hire in September via BA Exec Club to get the free additional driver offer. Booked it, hired the car, returned it – all good.

    Two days later i has a charge on my credit card, no details so I contacted Avis to find I had been charged an additional driver.

    I’m now in a battle with Avis to get it refunded and am concerned that they just charged it without my knowledge.

    Has anyone else had this problem.

    Many thanks

    Alex

    • Harry T says:

      I’ve not had this problem but I reckon you can just chargeback the additional driver fee if you have proof of the free additional driver. Easy to do on amex.

    • Colin MacKinnon says:

      Was it in USA? Avis in Denver in March claimed never to have heard of the BA extra driver perk – even though we have used it in Denver for years!
      So had to pay on the spot, then print out BA paperwork and get it refunded when we returned the car.

    • Anna says:

      It should say on your original booking that the free additional driver was part of the offer – what does Avis say about that? Was it mentioned when you collected the car? I can’t see how they would know if you even needed a 2nd driver at that point unless they offered it to you as an extra.

      • Anna says:

        I’m not massively keen on driving abroad unless it’s a country where they drive on the left, so fully comprehensive insurance would generally be more useful to us than a free extra driver!

    • Graham D says:

      @Alex. Yes, had this problem with Avis in South Africa last year.

      Booked via Exec Club – was charged an for additional driver and all sorts of other add ons including extra petrol and a refuelling service charge (despite me filling it up 2 mins earlier from a petrol station that was actually visible from the drop off point). They also whacked on various other charges that were contrary to the agreement.

      I kicked up, sent them screenshots and stamped my feet. Eventually after many emails, they refunded me. The whole process took about a month to sort.

      Also had an experience in the Canaries a few years back where they sort of looked at me blankly when I queried why no free additional driver – which I again had to claim back.

  • Ian M says:

    I’ve been trying to pay HMRC for the last week with my Curve Metal, I get to the very final stage and an alert is sent to the Curve app on my mobile to confirm the payment. I confirm the payment on my mobile, then box then disappears from the HMRC page but nothing else happens and the payment doesn’t go through.

    Has anyone else been experiencing problems?

  • fivebobbill says:

    Didn’t get a chance to read the site yesterday and was hoping to catch up this morning on the latest threads. Was there no chat thread yesterday or has it gone?!

    • RH says:

      I can’t see any historical chat threads either.

      • Rob says:

        Yesterday’s is still visible (in theory!). HOWEVER … there is an IT issue when we have a pinned article (Amex Gold is pinned to the top). The site loses track of what to show on each page. We are in the process of fixing this.

        Normally page 1 shows articles 1-9 and page 2 articles 10-19. Because we have pinned the Gold article, page 2 should show articles 9-18 as page 1 is only showing 1-8 plus Amex Gold. It doesn’t, so article 9 is ‘lost’. As soon as we post something else it will reappear and whatever then becomes Article 10 will be temporarily lost.

        You CAN see it by clicking on ‘General’ under Categories.

    • Reeferman says:

      There’s a “click here” button at the end of each day’s Chat thread (before the comments) which has links to previous days’ threads etc.
      All working for me

      • RussellH says:

        No button here, but there is a link on the second line of the final paragraph of the actual text, before the “Today’s Top Stories boxes.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          It’s not a button just a hyperlink in the text towards the end of the article.

          “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.“

          • Simon says:

            Worse case, just change the wording in the URL for any old Chat link to the day you wish to look at — just a workaround in case all else fails.

  • Munch says:

    Due to a poor limit on a Virgin Atlantic credit card I’ve only spent a £1000 / month for the last 8 months (I saw no point paying off mid-cycle as no points would be awarded).
    I was hoping for the 2 for 1 voucher but just realised its £20k / year. Does my spend total reset after a year? Without a credit limit increase I’ll never reach the £20k spend in a year.

    • ChrisBCN says:

      Yeah, your spend total will reset. If you have spent 1k a month for 8 months and there haven’t been any late payment issues etc, there’s a strong chance they will increase your credit limit if you give them a call.

      • The Streets says:

        I recently increased mine via the website but you have to have had the card for six months

        • Travel Strong says:

          Also note it is ‘six full calendar months’, which unless you signed up on the 1st of the month, is always just a bit more than 6 months.

          • BP says:

            I just signed up for this card and got £20k. Then signed up for HSBC Prem and got £30k. Limits going a bit crazy!! Creation won’t up my £8k limit on the IHG card 🙁

  • Kevin C says:

    Don’t throw away any post from Amex. I got a mailshot today ‘A Reward From Platinum’. Spend £100 on Platinum, get 100 back. Available instore and online from 2nd to 30th November. Suggests that it’s targeted. You can use it at the beauty place in Thurrock but not at airports.

    • Tom1 says:

      Just read similar comment on HUKD too.
      (Runs to front door to wait for postie)

    • MD says:

      @ Kevin C
      In Harrods, is the key detail you’ve omitted there.

    • Anna says:

      It’s a complete waste of paper, why not just add it to people’s accounts? Mine was the double value when you redeem your MR points on gold which went straight in the recycling box. Happy with my 12k referral bonus offer though (which is showing on my account, not on some thick glossy paper!)

      • MD says:

        I got that one too about the dubious gold “benefits”, straight to recycling as you say. I’ll be ringing up to see if the have anything of actual value to stop me cancelling as soon as my 10k anniversary points post!

      • n_g says:

        Just got my £100 Harrods credit post and it’s definitely “packaged” as an exclusive benefit rather than a standard offer. I can see why they’ve gone to the effort. In saying that, I would have been equally happy with an email with same content.

        • Olly says:

          Could it not be “it’s all about the experience”? Like getting fancy wrapping and box with a luxury watch, handbag, item pf jewellery etc? There is no sense of occasion in a £100 refund directly to your card as there is in visiting Harrods and spending £100 surely?

    • Leo says:

      I agree it’s better than a poke in the eye with a stick but Harrods is so overpriced! Just looked at the website….I’m wincing at paying the prices for anything even though the £100 is “free”…. although it’s not really. Lower end champagne about the same price as Waitrose so I suppose it will go on that but to be honest I would have preferred a £100 refund!

      • Andrew says:

        For most things Harrods really is the same price as everywhere else – yes you’re not going to get budget ranges there but things like cosmetics, fashion etc all the same price as any other shop. Want a new iPhone? – same price there as everywhere else.

      • Genghis says:

        For some branded things, it’s competitively priced.

        • KBuffett says:

          Harrods are one of the few retailers that do genuine sales.
          I got the Harrods offer too!

          • TGLoyalty says:

            Agree on the sale items being genuinely cheaper.

            I’ve picked up some good buys around Christmas sale time.

          • Princess says:

            Yes, if you are there in the right days you can get really good offer! People still don’t believe me when I tell them how it could be Harrods

        • Leo says:

          The key word being “some”.

          • Andrew says:

            All

          • KBuffett says:

            You’re wrong. Sound like you’re not a regular at Harrods and aren’t familiar with the products they stock and their sale pricing.
            John Lewis are the ones who are always selling at RRP and their sales are all ‘special purchase’ tat.

          • Leo says:

            KBuffett no funnily enough I’m not a regular at Harrods…..I can however tell the difference between the price of goods I might want to buy from their website and others….and yes it so happens John Lewis. £50 more expensive for a coffee maker in this case.

        • Rob says:

          I’d say, having lived near it for 13 years now and having my kids in the school behind it for 8 years, that there is a small Harrods premium on branded stuff. Perhaps 5% to 10%. You won’t see this everywhere – you certainly won’t see it in concessions which Harrods doesn’t run directly (I got my last iPhone there at the usual price) – but it is there. A Ralph Lauren polo shirt might be £74.95 if it is £69.95 in Debenhams.

          However, the idea that Harrods just sells expensive luxury stuff is nonsense. This is what you hear from tourists who never leave the ground floor. On the higher floors it is more like a smart House of Fraser. There is a standard bookshop in the basement and the kids toy department is pretty normal.

          • Harry T says:

            I also don’t understand how people can spend £575 a year on an Amex Platinum but find the prices in Harrods repulsive…

          • Leo says:

            Well you see Harry T I’m neither cheap nor stupid….

  • Ray says:

    Amex Plat just sent a £100 statement credit for spend at Harrods between 2nd and 30th November. Came via post! Anyone else got this? The perks this year have been particularly good!

    • MD says:

      Yes I got this too. Free money is always good.

    • Can says:

      Me too. Amex Plat really upped its game. Two John Lewis £100 credit, £400 Marriott, and now this! Pretty amazing

      • KBuffett says:

        Yes. I’m very happy with Amex. I guess they’d noted the dismay of cardholders about the value they were getting from Plat at the beginning of lockdown and they’ve found a way to get retailers to foot the bill.

        I hope they continue to strike partnership deals like this.

    • James says:

      Just got it myself! Amex have really come up trumps for their Platinum Card Members lately.

      • Jill (Kinkell) says:

        and dross offers on their other cards. I have 57 on BAPPand only one that I might be able to use

  • Ben says:

    Morning

    How does the $100 credit with hotels booked through Emyr work?

    I’m about to check out from a hotel this morning!

    Do I need to tell reception when I check out, or does it automatically come off my bill?

    I need to make sure I’ve spent enough for my £400 credit on platinum

    Thanks

    • Kevin C says:

      The credit should be automatically applied but check the bill to make sure. Sometimes it doesn’t happen and then they sort it.

      Where were you staying and was it good?

      • Ben says:

        I’m at the W in Leicester Square. Really nice and modern. Upgraded to next level plus drink and fruit platter on arrival.

        London is empty though!

        • Anna says:

          Not surprising as anyone thinking of booking a trip (even 12 weeks out) is looking at eyewatering rail fares (minimum £100 return at weekends from Preston or Manchester). We’ve got 4 nights booked at the IC O2 after Xmas depending on what Tier we’re in by then by will be driving down as even doing that and parking at the O2 for 4 nights will be about £150 cheaper than the train for 3 of us!

          • Harry T says:

            Trains are really cheap from NCL to London!

          • Anna says:

            Harry, it must be an East Coast/West Coast thing!

          • ChrisBCN says:

            The west coast advance tickets for xmas haven’t been released yet as the engineering plans haven’t been finalised, keep checking and the cheaper tickets will appear some time soon!

        • Harry T says:

          Hey Ben, glad you had a good stay. I stayed last weekend and really enjoyed the hotel too.

        • Tim says:

          Haven’t decided on how to spend my £400 yet. Did you eat at the restaurant there, and if so what did you think?

          • Harry T says:

            Breakfast was amazing but that was free with status. I had a brisket burger and chips late one evening – pretty decent, very generous portions. Unsure if they are doing anything more swanky during the day.

        • G says:

          Did you use the spa and does that get billed to the hotel if you did?

          • Harry T says:

            Sorry, I didn’t use the spa. I imagine you can bill that to the room if you’re staying there.

    • Ben says:

      I should add- do I need to make my bill up to around £480

      • Kevin C says:

        Yes. Amex will only see the final amount you paid. They won’t know any deductions.

    • Rob says:

      It should have been deducted already by the back office, but double check.

  • Olly says:

    Just got my Harrods £100 letter as well. I am in agreement with the “better than a poke in the eye” mentality…….. some people just can’t be peased I suppose. It is definately a sweetener to keep hold, what with the previous and now current M&S/Waitrose £100 back, it does start making up for the lack of use from the Platinum has had from my point of view.