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The HfP chat thread – Monday 11th January

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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 (255)

  • Kai says:

    Does Curve+Virgin work for Vanguard top-ups usually? Just tried mine and got declined.

  • ChrisC says:

    there were a few comments about ‘crypto’ last couple of days.

    Hope people buying have assessed all the risks

    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2021/jan/11/bitcoin-be-prepared-to-lose-all-your-money-fca-warns-consumers-risk-productis-cryptoassets

    “Consumers should be prepared to “lose all their money” if they invest in products that promise high returns from cryptoassets such as bitcoin, the City watchdog has warned.

    “The Financial Conduct Authority urged consumers to understand what they were investing in and the financial risks involved, given they were unlikely to be protected by UK schemes that help investors reclaim cash when companies go bust.”

    • babyg says:

      add te$la to that… mega bubble…

      • kitten says:

        glad it’s not just me that thinks that. Love the company but a path of too much volatility for me.

    • Doug M says:

      Been a lot of comments about Trading 212 in the last few days, and cypto too. I looked at the site and was amused that they state, presumably because they’re required to, that 76% of retail investors lose money on CFDs.

      • Anuj says:

        Trading212 has both cfd and normal stock trading, the 76% is clearly only referring to the cfd. In fact for buying etf funds, trading212 can be a great choice due to no isa management fees, trading fees.

        • Doug M says:

          What part of “76% of retail investors lose money on CFDs.” was unclear as referring to CFDs?

          • Anuj says:

            Some people might have taken your comment to mean they only do CFDs, and I wanted to highlight the scenarios in which the app makes sense to use. Ofc if you want to invest in Vanguard then it won’t necessarily be cheaper and it depends on which vanguard investment you choose.

          • Doug M says:

            Who mentioned Vanguard? This is so random.

          • Char Char says:

            It states this IG too, just glad I’m one of the lucky ones!

    • Gavin says:

      If you want exposure to Bitcoin, it’s probably best to just buy some and keep hold of it securely yourself, then you are not at risk of any companies going bust etc.

  • David says:

    I currently have a problem with Creation and my Marriott Rewards credit card. My points earned for December (credit card statement dated 7 December) have not been transferred to my Marriott Rewards account but my rewards for January (credit card statement dated 7 January) have been transferred. I have contacted Creation Customer Services on three occasions but they have just passed the problem to their admin department who appear to just ignore my complaint. I have spoken to Marriott Bonvoy Customer Services who say there is nothing they can do. Has anyone experienced a similar issue with Creation and does anyone have any advise on how to deal with this issue?

    • RussellH says:

      I posted on this the other day.
      The following is an e-mail I got from a contact at Marriott in Cork. The contact has so far sorted out every problem I have had with Marriott points not posting or posting incorrectly.

      Yes, there was a problem with the December file and these
      have not yet posted.
      After being in communication with HQ and BNP for the last 2
      weeks on this matter, I was told on Wednesday that these
      points will post over the next few days.
      I am going to check Tuesday again to see if these have
      posted otherwise, I will need to reach out again.

    • David says:

      Thanks for that info.

  • Venturelog says:

    How long does it take to transfer Amex reward points to Virgin?

  • Rum says:

    Amazon Prime

    A while ago I read on here about how some readers have haggled with Amazon over Prime membership.

    Any recent success stories of getting reduced membership, additional (free) months or other?

    Thanks in advance!

    • BuildBackBetter says:

      Only after you let the sub expire. Friend of mine got 4 months free.

      • Rum says:

        Thanks for that.
        Did your friend get contacted by Amazon after their membership expired and if so which method? How long after expiry were they contacted?

  • George K says:

    Good start from Bonvoy. More free night credits and reduced redemption rates. The former coming, the latter now live in quite a few properties!
    **

    This February, we’re depositing into your account 50% of the Elite Night Credits (ENCs) based on your 2020 Elite status. You’ll be halfway toward achieving your goals. That’s in addition to the ENCs awarded to Marriott Bonvoy™ Credit Card Members.

    Plus, we’re reducing the $20,000 spend threshold for attaining Ambassador Elite status to just $14,000 for 2021.

    You can also earn rewards faster with our Better Two-gether promotion. Get double points and double ENCs for stays of two nights or more between February 16 and April 27, 2021. Keep an eye out — registration starts soon.
    One more exciting benefit: We’re reducing redemption rates at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy. Save up to 40% when you redeem points for Free Night Awards by February 21, 2021. Rates start at just 4,500 points per night. It can take a little time for our new rates to distribute through all our systems, so the new redemption rates are now bookable, but may not show up in the online booking experience for the next few hours.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Glad I gambled

      Platinum earned already this year then 🙂

    • Harry T says:

      Pushed for Titanium in 2020 largely because I was banking on this. Glad to see my loyalty has been rewarded. I will be on 53 nights in Feb without a single night in a bed.

      • Rob says:

        It’s interesting. I will be on 40.

        The question is whether I should mattress run a few nights before late April to ensure I get very close to 50 for 2022 status. I will have some Marriott nights later in the year (I have 5 suite night awards to use!) but 10 may be a push. 3 nights somewhere dirt cheap would take me to 46 and take the pressure off for 2022.

        • BJ says:

          Any reason to spend a weekend in Aberdeen … Marriott, Moxy, Aloft, Residence Inn …four articles for slow news daysif morning else plus 2x BA sectors.

        • Matthew says:

          The global promotion is double elite nights too if staying 2 or more nights Feb-Apr so you’ll only need 5 nights Rob. Paid ones though not award stays.

        • John says:

          Not very knowledgeable on Marriott. I have gold in 2021 due to previous Amex platinum. I have been credited 15 nights this month with my spg amex credit card. Thus presumably will have 27 nights. Says need 50 for platinum.
          If I book a couple of cheap stays with my points to get to 50: am I right in thinking I would get free breakfasts when platinum and a free 5 night suite award certificate?
          Also, when would I become platinum – on 50 nights? Also, how long would I keep platinum for?
          Sorry for so many questions!

          • TGLoyalty says:

            I thought the rounded up so 15+13 I think you’ll have 28 but I was Plat last year and got 25.

            If you book some 2 night stays then yes you’ll get double nights.

            Yes On 50 nights you can choose 5 SNA’s

            With platinum until 31/12/22 you’ll get free breakfast in lots of Marriott brands but not all (Edition and Ritz Carlton are notable exclusions for example)

          • YC says:

            Yes platinum @ 50 nights and gives free breakfast (at most brands) + 5 SNA. You will keep platinum till early 2023

    • YC says:

      Glad I didn’t push to get Hilton/Hyatt status as Marriott plat is almost safe till 2023

    • Dave says:

      Was their any point to stay 50 nights in 2020 for people who were already platinum?

      • TGLoyalty says:

        Trigger the 50 night choice and a gamble that this would be repeated and you’d need to earn platinum to get 25 nights.

        • Rob says:

          Yes, that was my view. Moved 3-4 nights to Marriott to get the Suite Night Awards and, as it turns out, I have now got the 25 nights again.

  • 747_Brat says:

    Has anyone who recently upgraded to HSBC Premier received their credit card? I applied in mid December and have already received my debit card, but the Premier Credit Card still eludes me.

    I called the customer care, and the agent informed me that I will have to wait until the end of January, before someone can approve my Premier Credit Card application. Apparently, that happens when one upgrades from Advance to Premier. It sounds weird to me but has anyone faced a similar scenario?
    Thanks.

    • BuildBackBetter says:

      Apparently Hsbc claim they are understaffed due to COVID causing delays. Read somewhere they stopped accepting applications for premier.

      • 747_Brat says:

        Yes, that was the case for most of 2020, but they started accepting applications for Premier sometime in late November. I wonder how long would I have to wait to get my Premier Card. 🙁

        • Dan says:

          They’ve been using that line since the very start of the pandemic – have you tried going into the branch? I would keep pestering. When I upgraded to Premier, they made a hash of my Credit card – I didn’t get the physical card for ages. When I phoned two to complain I got £50 compensation the first time and £75 the second time. The more noise you make – the more likely someone will do something about it.

        • Doug M says:

          On my experience you did well to get the upgrade. HSBC awful customer service, but I’d set my mind to getting that WE card.

    • Sina says:

      Email your relationship manager? I upgraded my card from HSBC Rewards to WE today and was told to expect a call from someone and that it would take 14 days!

    • 747_Brat says:

      Thanks everyone for the replies. I will chase HSBC again! 🙁

  • YC says:

    Reported by other sites: Bonvoy – same as last year, 50% of nights deposit. + double points/double nights global promo. Got to be happy with that?

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