Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Saturday 26th 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.

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 (99)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • M says:

    Can you fly from the UK to Spain as an EU national if you change in France rather than flying direct?

    • marcw says:

      You need to check French entry requirements – that’s where you will enter Shengen – when flying from the UK.

  • Saiz says:

    The Etihad £250 Amex offer, if I opt for a voucher, it says it has to be used by October 2021 but then in the Terms and Conditions it doesn’t mention the date. They will add up to $400 on top but seems risky if travel has to be completed by that 31st October. Anyone else sought clarification from Etihad? Also, has anyone opted for the voucher? How quick was it and is the credit added on top easily?

  • TimM says:

    Along with BA pulling out their Cityflyer fleet from Manchester, easyJet have cancelled their Manchester-Kalamata route. As I have flights booked for May, I have asked for a ‘reroute’. EasyJet, of course, only offer a choice of alternative airport (depart from Gatwick or arrive at Athens of Thessaloniki), voucher or refund. I believe I am within my rights to insist that they get me from Manchester to Kalamata and back, as booked. Has anyone had any experience of easyJet making arrangements with other airlines as a reroute request? I fear it may be an uphill slog.

  • Dave says:

    Anyone has the bonus 5000 ihg points from creation yet for booking and paying for a stay at an IHG hotel up to the 31st DecembeR?

    I had one in early Dec and no bonus points yet. Loathe to have to contact creation CS

    • Travel Strong says:

      In the same boat and interested to hear if anyone has sorted it and got the points. Feels like it should be an Ihg call not creation.

      • JohnT says:

        Was going to wait for next statement before chasing. Can’t get into creation app at present.

  • Gary Colclough says:

    Anyone know if the 30k per quarter clubccard points limit is enforced, I went slightly over last quarter and got all my avios inc the little bit over, this quarter I will go way over and was wondering whether to defer some spend

    • Tracey says:

      I thought club card were breaking their link with Avios.

      • Gary Colclough says:

        they are, I will use them for Virgin after cut off date

      • Chris Heyes says:

        Tracey Wrong way round for some reason Avios are the one breaking the link with Clubcard (clubcard want to continue)

        • Mikeact says:

          BA want a more upmarket retailer chain… the only likely contender is JL/Waitrose…announcement soon after Tesco termination.

    • the_real_a says:

      It is enforced. They will send you a letter telling you they have removed excess points. Despite others on here insisting points are NOT removed for certain categories – they HAVE been removed for both “change” from previously used vouchers and T Bank spend in my case.

    • Simon says:

      I did 100K Tesco CCs in one quarter back in the 3V days and it was enforced. Rob did an article on the back of it. A letter to the CEO had the points reinstated. Of course, that was a few years back, but I suspect the policy is still enforced.

  • OP says:

    Sorry if the wrong place, but has anyone seen any interesting hotel (branded or other) sales or deals yet? I’ve never been sure where to find these online bar communications from individual hotels

  • Alex says:

    Quick Question – I have tickets to Seychelles in March for two in First (booked using avios). BA have moved the return by a whole day. I was planning on kicking the trip out later in the year anyway given I don’t think we will be in any sort of ‘normal’ situation any time soon. I see BA are suspending the route from April however. I checked and Qatar don’t offer first, only ‘old’ business. Am I within my rights to ask for re-route in First on Non-OneWorld airline? I can see Emirates/Ethihad offer First. Alternatively of course I could take the Qatar Business and apply for the downgrade compensation. Any advice greatly appreciated.

    • Tracey says:

      My advice would be to wait, Seychelles have taken the UK off the list of countries they will accept visitors from wef 28/12/20 until end Jan 21, subject to review. Who knows what the situation will be in March. I would do nothing for now.

  • Bree says:

    Hullo. BA Gold member here just desperately trying to see if anyone had any ideas as to how I can get from LHR to PER as soon as possible? Am resident in London but need to get home (an Aussie citizen) to see a beloved dying relative and have my G2G approved so should be able to enter the country. Just can’t find flights except Qatar via Doha and BNE for extortionate money. This won’t work as can’t really land in one state and travel to another. Am getting quite desperate! Thank you

    • memesweeper says:

      Maybe go to the PER website and look for live departures/arrivals boards for a couple of days. Then see if you can work a connection through. Going to be tough — good luck.

    • Lyn says:

      Sorry to hear about your situation. I’m afraid I don’t have any suggestions for specific routes. The new restrictions against flights from the UK as well as Australia starting to tighten quarantine for airline crew (in Melbourne anyway) have probably narrowed the options even further.

      Would it be worth contacting the Australian Embassy in the UK in case special repatriation flights on Qantas become available?

      In case there aren’t any flights to Perth at all, do you have a good current source of information about rules in WA if you do have to transfer through another state? It might be worth looking at some of the Australian travel web-sites like Executive Traveller if you haven’t already done so. Good luck finding a way to get there.

      • Bree says:

        Yes I am fully tooled up on the (ever changing!) rules and restrictions!! I’m also registered in the Aussie govt returners scheme so maybe I’ll get a place on one of those flights if they run another soon.

        Keeping an eye on the fluid state border rules, too. It’s not too difficult to leave LHR, relatively, – it’s the second leg into PER that’s the struggle, and I’m not sure booking sectors separately at the current time would be particularly wise…

        Thank you for your advice!

        • Louie says:

          No harm in registering with DFAT but I doubt that will help. There are something like 40k Aussies hoping to go home registered with them already so finding a short notice flight is going to be tough (and expensive) I’m afraid.

          The issue is not the lack of flights – most flights currently have 30 – 50 passengers on them at the moment – it’s the strain on the hotel quarantine system. The repatriation flights are to get people to non-capital cities where there are quarantine facilities (such as Howard Springs near Darwin) so they tend to be from places where there are fewer scheduled flights to kill two birds with one stone. It’s more about the government being seen to do something IMO. Highly unlikely to be any repatriation flights from the UK. Sorry.

          • Bree says:

            Yep, registered with them. There was an offer of a repatriation flight to Darwin maybe a month ago but I didn’t take it up as had significant work commitments here. Gah!

            Thank you…

          • Callum says:

            There have been several repatriation flights from the UK, and I believe there’s one next week and one in January.

            They’ll already be full so it doesn’t help of course, but London is absolutely a major repatriation point.

    • Lyn says:

      Hopefully one of the regular HfP commenters living in Australia will have some suggestions for you soon.

    • Louie says:

      I’m sorry to hear about your situation. However, you are going to have to do 14 days hotel quarantine whichever state you land in. Thereafter you will be able to travel freely from every state except NSW to WA (at least as things are at the moment), so you could look at landing everywhere except SYD and then getting an interstate flight 14 days later. See

      • Lyn says:

        I was thinking the same thing, that the two weeks hotel quarantine might as well be done anywhere.

        However, as Bree says, the Covid cases and state borders are fluid at the moment. So there is a real risk things could change during that two week quarantine, potentially adding a further quarantine period in Perth on top. But perhaps in that worst case scenario any potential Perth “travel from interstate” quarantine could at least be done at home?

        • Bree says:

          I think the QR flight I found sells me a trip to Brisbane with a domestic BNE – PER flight with Qantas tacked onto the end, so I imagine for sure that = BNE quarantine…and then potential requirement to self isolate again on arrival to PER. Tricky!

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