Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Friday 5th February

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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 (235)

  • Chris Heyes says:

    Realistically a large Benefit of having to quarantine into Hotels on return to UK is
    having to pay yourself instead of government paying is
    HFPs asking can i go into Marriot, Hilton, IHG, ect
    I have loyalty, 10 days cheap rate couldn’t be better lol

    • bafan says:

      The Telegraph is saying that the government did pay upfront and they will claw it back. I don’t think it explained how exactly.

      • kitten says:

        Is this where we say “Good luck with that” ? 🙂

        Did I read correctly. Only truly dodgy countries needing hotel quarantine. EU countries don’t seem to appear ?

        • bafan says:

          You did! Apparently BoJo pushed back on making it all countries, but the list of countries is “dynamic” and “will be added to”. Why don’t they get the thing up and running before adding countries to this (currently) hypothetic list lol.

    • The Streets says:

      In Hong Kong you can’t use your loyalty points towards quarantine stays but you can earn elite nights!

  • Ben says:

    I tried the link for the FT weekend subscription. The only option I can see is for £1.91 / week. Assume that this won’t trigger the Amex cash back… is there something I am missing?

    • Rob says:

      Er, yes 🙂

      You don’t actually pay them £1.91 per week. You pay them £99 for 52 weeks which just happens to average out at £1.91.

    • Dan says:

      There is also an option to pay quarterly which means £41 for 3 months and therefore only around £19 with the Amex offer. So it might be best using this route as I;’ve had to get the most value out of the offer

  • Hotelier says:

    Have seen a few comments kind of related but want to check (I will call AMEX directly to ask next month anyways). Is there a 20k MR bonus for upgrading from Gold Credit card to Platinum? Found a link in Amex website but that doesn’t mention any particular cards but here keep reading about only applicable to old charge card. Any advice appreciated.

    OT: Managed to get AMEX to offer 10k MR for £2.5k spend in three months in my gold card (I had only spend £2k so far in 4 months so not even close on the renewal bonus yet, was surprised it was offered. Partner got it when trying to cancel card so thought worth a try)

    • Manny_D says:

      You wouldn’t be able to upgrade to the Platinum from the Gold Credit Card. Its only possible to upgrade if you hold the Green or Gold Charge Card.

    • Sina says:

      For some time I wanted to cancel my card, so when I read your comnent, I called and got offered 10k MR to stay! Not bad for a 5 minute call!

  • Steve R says:

    Sainsbury’s Bank 7000 points for pet insurance code is PET4W. Points will be added within 60 days.

    Not sure how long this is running for

    • Pablo says:

      Don’t. There was a 6000 point offer in the summer but the points never posted. I raised it through the nectar chat support but they never followed up.

  • Rich says:

    Quick Googling suggests the answer is no, but has anyone found a way to pay Stamp Duty by card?

    • Colin MacKinnon says:

      Did it through Revolut, via Grey is the new Orange!

      But that was a couple of years ago, and have now had the account closed on me!

      • Colin MacKinnon says:

        Or, it appears, load up your NS&I then cash out to your bank account and then pay the Stamp Duty?
        Never tried it, but it appears from comments, that the first bit works – even without a Stamp Duty bill to pay !

    • Jonathan says:

      Curve Metal, did it 9 months ago for £20k. Worth the subscription if for a decent sum.

  • Zed says:

    Asking for thoughts please. I booked a reward flight with Etihad in First. They called yesterday to say ‘for operational reasons’ the plane is no longer an A380 and so my ticket has been downgraded to Business. Can they book me onto a later flight in First at no extra charge? Or should they be offering refund of miles etc?

    • babyg says:

      You’ll need to contact Etihad, suggest asking the question in the flyertalk forums. I think we have all been spoilt by BA’s options, be interesting to hear about what options Etihad give you.

    • Rob says:

      Etihad only has F on the A380 so if none are flying (and I don’t think they are) then moving you won’t help. You are clearly due a refund of the miles.

      • meta says:

        Etihad also has F on some 787s. However, none of the flights to/from London are currently flying with F. To be honest, I don’t think they will be bringing A380 F back in the next year or two. I had the same problem for my flights last month. I wanted to cancel them anyway, so took a refund. Takes about 45 days to receive taxes back. Miles where in my account within 3 days.

    • Anna says:

      If you’re departing ex-EU or UK you are entitled to 75% of the points paid as per EU261.

    • kitten says:

      If if falls under EU261 and you fly it in J you have an open and shut case for the 75% back of cost of F ticket for downgraded leg(s). You’d likely have to go as far as MCOL but cheap and eminently winnable.

      You can’t agree to any form of refund though – not even partial – and at any contact points you still need to keep it clear when necessary that this is not voluntary downgrade must be involuntary.

      • kitten says:

        Refund of the 75%, for amounts paid by points, is payable in cash. Find a benchmark such as their selling price to work out the value. For example avios rule of thumb is 1.6p per avios as that’s what BA’s selling price regularly converts to.

        If an airline never sells points so there’s no benchmark findable, unfortunately in that case I suppose you might have to use the cash price regularly available on that route for First Class tickets as a benchmark and claim the 75% compo based on that.

        A couple of weeks ago on here we had someone whose family seats in First to Rio that they were downgraded to Business on, genuinely had a regular cash price of about £51,000. Literally. They said they had checked cash pricing, and it was a peak pricing time. Unfortunately they had paid with avios, so I calculated that the avios portion they were due back on the 75%, was only worth about £17,000.

        Also when you do find yourself claiming 75% of the cost of any ticket (F to J compo 75%, other downgrades a bit less), remember you also must claim 75% of most of the “taxes” with quite a few airlines, as a big chunk of the ‘taxes’ is not in fact taxes at all, but a co-pay to the carrier. BA and LH are a couple of the worst.for this.

  • Tarmohamed says:

    I have a booking with Etihad in a few days, and it’s likely that the AUH-LHR sector will be cancelled. Etihad had said they would refund once the flight is officially cancelled and have refused to reroute me. Am I entitled to be rerouted?

    • marcw says:

      No. Etihad is no EU or UK airline, and the cancelled sector is to UK/EU not from.

      • Rui N. says:

        How is a flight to London not UK? Have they declared independence already?!
        Anyhow, the sector should not matter. If the trip start or ends in the UK/EU the same rights apply, even if the affected sector is extra-EU only.

        • Tiff says:

          Loads of people get this wrong.

          EU air passenger rights apply:
          1 If your flight is within the EU and is operated either by an EU or a non-EU airline
          2 If your flight arrives in the EU from outside the EU and is operated by an EU airline
          3 If your flight departs from the EU to a non-EU country operated by an EU or a non-EU airline

        • John says:

          It’s the trip, not the entire ticket. LHR-AUH-BKK the regulation applies to the whole trip to BKK, but not to BKK-AUH-LHR

  • ChrisC says:

    Just wondering but does Jackie Weaver have any authority here?

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