Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Tuesday 1st December

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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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Comments (324)

  • AJ says:

    I’m sure this has already been answered so apologies in advance. I have companion tickets to Jamaica leaving 22nd December. If I go we can do shortened quarantine on return with test, but i can’t see a way around travel insurance – without it (and thinking worse case scenario!) we could end up with medical bills in the thousands/hundreds of thousands. Is there a way to sort this, or are people just prepared to take a risk (I wouldn’t be btw). Also, are package holidays still going ahead if a country is not in the corridor?

    • WaynedP says:

      I purchased single trip insurance with Battleface for 14 days for myself (50 yr male) for fifty seven pounds all in.

      Low cancellation cover (2k) which I’m not bothered about, but good medical expenses cover (5million) with 250 xs which is what I was really after.

      Battleface covers you inspite of FCDO travel advice of all but essential travel.

      • Mouse says:

        For anyone looking at xmas skiing, Snowcard has the same sort of deal

      • AJ says:

        Thank you – that’s exactly what I need!

        • WaynedP says:

          I should perhaps have mentioned that there are lower benefit limits if you’re 75 or over.

          It also covers Covid19 related medical expenses, but only if you’re aged 59 or younger.

          Those conditions don’t affect me personally, so I’m not sure if you can pay extra premium to include cover outside those age ranges, or are not insurable for them.

  • Sloth says:

    20% cashback at Selfridge on Q…C. today only. Nice combination with the Amex cash back also…

  • MinR says:

    I booked a BA reward flight LHR-DXB during the 50% off period.

    I received an email that my flight to DXB has been downgraded from F to J.

    Does the below (75% reimbursement for the downgraded sector) apply in my case?

    • Jonathan says:

      Yes, if you fly the downgraded leg. You may well get a lot of pushback from BA & end up needing to go to MCOL for this though.

      Alternative would be to request to move to a flight with F which should be possible regardless of Avios availability.

    • Rob says:

      Yes, but BA will deny it. You will need to take them to CEDR arbitration after the trip.

      • Chris Heyes says:

        Rob I’ve always (on the two occasions) found that BA pay out before it gets to any court, on one with a non-disclosure clause, but nothing on the other.
        Just very good written details of why they will lose
        Helped (in my case that my cousin is a solicitor, no charge lol) that the letter came to them from a solicitor

  • Leigh says:

    Virgin card upgrade voucher: when using the voucher to upgrade an existing reward booking, do they just charge the tax difference or do they re-calculate the points as well?
    I tried to call to make a booking using the voucher during the sale but couldn’t get through (on hold for 90 minutes twice and gave up), so made the reward booking online (with 50% points discount) instead and will upgrade later.

    • stevenhp1987 says:

      You pay the points of the lower fare and pay the tax & surcharges of the higher fare. Redemption seats must be available in the higher fare.

  • WaynedP says:

    Just received my Negative PCR Covid test result from Boots, just within their 48 hour turnaround time.

    Am finally able to fly back to South Africa after seven months of waiting, and am scheduled to fly out of LHR on BA tonight.

    I’m told BA North Galleries will be open, despite strike threats, but time will tell, I guess.

    • WaynedP says:

      Boots was good for PCR Covid Travel test.

      Many more London venues included during November (incl my local) which avoided a trip into central London on public transport.

      Test completed in just ten minutes including paperwork for £120 on Amex.

      Test on Sunday morning. Results arrived 47 hours later.

      Would recommend.

      • Dave Bolsdon says:

        This is good news as I have a test booked with Boots for a xmas break.

    • Lady London says:

      Glad that after a bit more quarantine you will get to see your loved one kn South Africa.

      All the best.

      • WaynedP says:

        Thanks for your kindness LL, it’s a relief to be back, and Marriott Karridene are looking after me very well despite my lowly silver status.

  • WaynedP says:

    More personal good news..

    Wrote to BA over the weekend to request they consider my cancelled 2020 flights in advance of my 8 December tier point year end.

    Had 80 TPs but two cancelled flights which would have got me an additional 320.

    Haven’t received any response yet, but logged in this morning to find I’ve been upgraded from Blue to Bronze, which is good enough for me.

    Valid out to 31 Jan 2022.

    Thanks BA !

  • Ben says:


    Can you add a virgin credit card voucher to an existing booking? Made a points booking last night, hoping to add it today

    • Leigh says:

      I think you can, but not sure whether they will re-calculate the points, hence my earlier question.

  • DK says:

    Just got an email from EasyJet that from Feb 10th you cannot bring a larger cabin bag for free unless you paid for Up front or Extra legroom seat

    • Rhys says:

      Urgh – one of the reasons I preferred easyJet vs Ryanair

    • Travel Strong says:

      a) that’s awful and a huge deterioration in their service
      b) even worse to apply it to flights already bought and paid for with the baggage policy advertised during the booking process!

      • C says:

        Ryanair tried doing that when they introduced the changes but then backtracked and gave everyone that had booked before the changes a free 10kg checked in back. Very poor of easyjet

        • dave says:

          I got an email from easyjet saying i can check my bag in for free if i bring a copy of this email. Annoying though, i don’t want to check a bag in!

          • Rhys says:

            Yes, I’m not sure why they can’t just honour original bookings….

    • Phil says:

      As easyJet Plus you can book Upfront or Extra Legroom FOC alternatively go to gate and they will tag the bag on board for you. That’s what my email said.