Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Thursday 31st 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.

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 (239)

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

  • Jody says:

    Seems to be a few people changing energy suppliers at the moment, so if anyone would like a Bulb referral please feel free to use mine:

    We both get £50 each if it’s a dual fuel switch, or £25 each for a single

    Seems to be the best tariff for us, and I check quite often, although appreciate everyone has different needs.

    • Nick says:

      Does anyone have a referral code for any company that’s actually at the cheaper end of the market? None of the igloo/bulb/octopus ones spammed here every day are anywhere near it, and I don’t really want to be reliant on joining in with the ‘referral spam’ to get a decent deal myself.

      • Doc says:

        Hi Nick, I would first of all do a comparison on one of the various comparison sites for your location using postcode and come up with a couple of providers you like and then maybe ask for referrals, if it works for you. I have always found that the price changes every year and occasionally the big ones have offers which work out cheaper. I pretty much swap my supplier ever year based on price rather than referral codes since like you I have found the igloo/bulb/ octopus are way more expensive in my home location but the maths might work for others.

      • Jody says:

        I regularly check, and for our usage (we have a hot tub) bulb is cheapest. I tend to find tariffs that have cheaper gas prices but more expensive electric, and given that the majority of our bill is made up of electricity usage it hasn’t made sense for us to change so far. Will keep on checking every couple of months to see if this continues to be the case.

      • John says:

        Well they have to fund the £100 bonus somehow.

        Actually Octopus is close to cheapest for me. I use the Octopus “tracker” tariff which is not available on comparison sites as it does not have a fixed price.

        When I include the £100 referral bonus (spread out over a year) this was actually the cheapest I could find at the time.

  • Charlieface says:

    @Rob in regards ticketing validity of 1 year, I back up my position that the ticket can be endorsed from BA General conditions of carriage, which is basically quoted from the IATA:

    3b2) If you are prevented from travelling within the validity period of a ticket because we could not confirm your reservation at the time you asked for it, we will:

    extend the validity period of the ticket or
    give you a voluntary fare refund.

    IATA says:

    When a passenger holding a ticket, is prevented from travelling within the period of validity of the ticket because at the time such passenger requests reservations Carrier is unable to provide space on the flight, the validity of such passenger’s ticket will be extended in accordance with Carrier’s Regulations.

  • Dsce says:

    I have a few questions and would really appreciate some help as I have not been tracking the comments for the past year or so.

    1) I have two Etihad £250 rebates. How can I use this today in order to get a voucher for use later.

    2) If I get a hotel to credit the charge today can I still use my Marriott £400 voucher?

    3) If I upgrade to bendy metal does that allow me to use the card to:

    a) Make deposits to AJ Bell / HL.
    b) pay off other cards (Amex/IHG/Virgin) using the Bendy Metal

    Thanks for any help.

  • Optimus Prime says:

    Hope everyone enjoys their NYE evening. Last year we celebrated in New York, today we almost end up in a hospital as our glass shower has shuttered while my OH put some shampoo on the shelf…

  • Eric says:

    Singapore – Turkey on SQ J is at 40k 1 way, whereas if I book directly on SQ it’s 49k. Am I missing something? Or is availability a lot lower if I use Virgin miles to book?

    Anyone also knows the tax/fuel surcharges for Virgin? Can’t price it as temporarily unavailable.

  • Mark says:

    Anyone got any decent IHG recommendations for a free night cert I need to book by tonight ? Europe would be ideal and preferably intercontinental brand.

    Thank you

    • Optimus Prime says:

      I’ve been to IC Porto and loved both the hotel and the city. I haven’t been to the ones in Paris or Amsterdam but I believe other readers have said those 2 are probably the best in Europe.

      • BJ says:

        LeG is nothing to write home about.

        • Rob says:

          In the right rooms (Junior Suites with Opera View are the sweet spot) with lounge access it is. It is actually my favourite European city hotel, factoring in the location for the shops and museums and the ability to walk from the Eurostar terminal (or take the bus from CDG which is non-stop and stops literally outside).

    • memesweeper says:

      Intercontinental Marseille Hotel Dieu — had a really great weekend there last year. I hear the sister hotel in Lyon is equally good.

      • BP says:

        Had a great stay there too however the upgrade to a terrace room overlooking the marina may have helped!

    • Harry T says:

      Amstel Amsterdam is a very good hotel. That would be my choice.

    • Alan says:

      Sofia is the best IC hotel I have been (it’s on a par with Porto) in a great location. If you haven’t been before a great city to spend a few days in.

      • Tom says:

        Really? It’s the worst I’ve stayed at! Breakfast was nothing to write home about and really nothing remarkable about the hotel. Location is good though – I accept that!

        • Alan says:

          Breakfast was good when I was last there in Feb, Lounge was nice and quiet with excellent food/drink. Rooms and general decor very similar to Porto. £8 cab ride from the airport and perfect location.

          What are you comparing it with, I haven’t been to the Paris or Amsterdam IC if they are that much better I will put them on my post Covid list of places to visit.

          • Rob says:

            Amsterdam is unique. Huge building, VERY small number of rooms, Michelin-starred restaurant, lovely pool overlooking the water. Decor is a bit old fashioned but part of the charm.

    • Rachel R says:

      Depends where you want to go, really, but lovely cities with decent IC hotels I’ve stayed in are: Lisbon, Porto, Cannes, Ljubljana, Marseille. Closer to home, London O2 and Edinburgh also nice. But really depends whether you want to go to a place. No point staying in a lovely hotel in a place you don’t really want to visit.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        Agree completely with this.

        • Mark says:

          Thank you all for your recommendations, I didnt mind any of the European cities where the ICs are located so I appreciate all the input.

          I’m going for the one in Lisbon (never been Portugal) and will combine with a few nights at the Conrad in the Algarve before heading home.
          Cheers 🙂

    • Peggerz says:

      IC Sofia, we were very well looked after. And the cash costs are not bad either if you need more nights. Sofia is very inexpensive, but great for a visit particularly if you like a bit of Communist brutalist architecture and statues along with Roman and Euro faded elegance.

      • Alan says:

        Don’t forget the wine. We had some really excellent Bulgarian and Georgian wine tastings, following the recommendations on Jancis Robinson’s dot com site.

  • Grant says:

    Does anyone here use Trading 212, and if so do you want to post your referral link? I’m just about to open an account.

  • Matt says:

    RFS advice please… I’ve never felt I might want to cancel one before so I’m afraid I haven’t paid attention.
    Does using extra avios to reduce “taxes” mitigate what I would lose if I do end up cancelling?
    Thanks for any advice.

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