Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Tuesday 16th March

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We are running 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 (415)

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

  • Tarmohamed says:

    Any readers on here within the legal industry? I’m working on a new project and would appreciate some opinions and obstructive criticism before we launch. Thanks

    • KBuffett says:

      Your request is vague. Perhaps you are looking for a specialist in a particular field?

      • David D says:

        As @KBuffett says, legal wise if you are looking for opinions it would generally be within a specific field, such as consumer law, intellectual property, etc. You need to be specific if someone will answer, or you could just throw it out there and see what everyone thinks.

  • Tarmohamed says:

    *constructive not obstructive

    • Freddy says:

      I work in the legal industry and charge 20,000 avios points an hour. Travel is charged at 1 bonvoy point a mile. A 30% discount is offered for obstructive criticism rather than constructive

      • Chrisasaurus says:


      • Tarmohamed says:

        Would you accept Monopoly money? I’m working a project of providing an outsourced paralegal support service to legal professionals as well as business and individuals. Some of you law professionals may remember a few years ago, a law student set up a mckenziefriend marketplace and got grilled badly from legal professionals. I just want to ensure before we launch we have all our bases covered.

  • MarkS says:

    Hi quick question, what would the quickest and cheapest way of generating 10k spend be on an Amex? Thanks

    • 1ATL says:

      A couple of fully flex/refundable tickets in F to JFK should do it.

    • Dani says:

      Or refundable bookings

      • 1ATL says:

        Actually 1x flexible First Class ticket to Dallas comes in at £10,589 one way. (Bargain!)

        Sign up to the BA promotion pinned at the top of the website today and you’d earn another wodge of Avios on the transaction too. Let the avios carry over to your BA account before putting the ticket in for refund so you’ve got these secured, otherwise you risk having the avios reversed.

        Above will only be worthwhile if you intend to close down the BA card account upon refund otherwise your account will be in Avios deficit. You’d also need to factor in interest payments to Amex for as long as the BA ticket takes to refund the ticket so the cost isn’t entirely free. Your membership fee would be refunded on a pro rata basis however.

        • Andrew says:

          If the bonus Avios offer on BAPP works like it did with the bonus MR points last year, then refunds don’t claw back the bonus points, only the base.

        • Yorkieflyer says:

          To note that Amex might not be overly keen on seeing you back!

      • Nigel says:

        Doesn’t it say in the terms that if your purchase is refunded then it will not count towards a signup bonus?

        • memesweeper says:

          Yes, the points will be deducted when the refund hits and the counter will move backwards. Historically, Amex have been unable to claw back companion vouchers after the appear on the members BAEC account. Definitely not for the fainthearted and only worth it if you’re in a desperate hurry. If you keep on spending — and get back over 10k again — I guess Amex and BA don’t loose out so that can assuage any ethical concerns.

    • Peter K says:

      Cheapest is to actually buy things you need. Not always the quickest however.

      Everyone else has assumed it’s the BA card. Is this for the Amex Platinum business offer?

      Be careful if you plan to spend £10k, take the 100k MR points then cancel and get a refund. Think how Amex might look upon that and the long term game.

    • Andrew says:

      If they accept Amex…

      Prepaying your Council Tax bill, then put whatever is left on your Utility Bills.

    • Chrisasaurus says:

      Go to Morissons and spend 10k on gift cards?

      Or load your Amazon account. Prepay any bills you can, or even book a nice holiday (an actual one, and then go enjoy it)

  • Paul465 says:

    My local Morrisons petrol station has advised me twice that they don’t take their gift cards for fuel purchases when I have gone to pay. Is it a luck of the draw sort of thing if they take them or not?

    • Sandgrounder says:

      The changed the gift cards last year, not all petrol stations know how to use them. There is a guide to putting them through the till online somewhere so you can educate the staff.

    • Pablo says:

      Can I use my Morrisons Gift Card at UK Morrisons petrol stations?
      Just show them this and let them learn how to do it.

      • Sandgrounder says:

        Last time a similar promo ran I stood there for 10 mins, the queue grew behind me, the guy rung the main shop for help, no joy. I gave up in the end. I think the guide was on the Martin Lewis site, should have bookmarked it.

    • Harry T says:

      I’ve never had a problem using the gift cards at Morrison’s petrol stations. No one he ever refused or being unable to use them.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        I’ve come across 1 women who just wouldn’t believe they take them. Then the last time as it was 9:30pm and no one there I pushed her to check and hey presto they do.

        Though I’m now EV so a waste of time lol

    • BJ says:

      You need to tell them to use the giftcard option at the bottom of their screen and not the one for old paper vouchers which they are likely familiar with and trying to use.

  • Chas says:

    @Rob – further to my observation after your change yesterday, I’m still seeing all the comments on the chat thread in bold, but not on the other articles. I know the changes you made shouldn’t have affected the way things display on a 15-inch screen, but….

    • Rob says:

      Can you clear your browser cache? Rhys will hopefully pop up and tell you what keys to press. This is most likely to be the issue.

      Technically, the chat thread is identical to a normal HfP article so there is no logical reason why it would display differently.

    • Johnny5a says:

      @chas – what browser you using? and what computer/device?

      • Chas says:

        I was using Safari on a 15-inch MacBook Pro, but clearing the cache has resolved it.

  • mr_jetlag says:

    Qatar put on the UK “red list” for travel which seriously impacts most long haul travel via Doha…

    • Andrew says:

      Indeed – Qatar airways are now banned from flying to the U.K. like Emirates and Etihad. They can still operate empty flights/cargo only into the U.K. and fly people out of the U.K.

    • marcw says:

      It didn’t make sense with the UAE on the list, but not Qatar.

      • meta says:

        It doesn’t make sense to remove Mauritius either since they just entered into a lockdown due to high number of cases…

      • Andrew says:

        The government seem to want to limit the use of these hub airports into the U.K. as they are a mixing pot from different destinations. It’s less about the State Of Qatar being an issue as 99% of people on a QR flight into the U.K. won’t have even been in the country.

        • marcw says:

          Indeed. That’s why I said it didn’t make sense to have UAE but not Qatar on the list.

          • Andrew says:


          • Andrew says:

            Although a lot more people go to Dubai on holiday (as seen at Christmas) whereas Qatar has remained closed to visitors since April last year, so the country itself didn’t pose a risk whereas UAE was seen to.

  • Daniel says:

    Is everyone still having issue with Curve. I know there were reports yesterday that the problems of last week surfaced…

    • Ian M says:

      Curve is not working for me

    • Ian M says:

      Just tried again this morning to pay some VAT. It worked this time. If you are using the card for an online purchase, try selecting to receive an SMS to confirm the transaction rather than using the app.

    • Anna says:

      It started working for me again when I updated the app, no idea if was just a coincidence though.

      • Dan says:

        Thanks Anna and Ian M, seems to be back up again. Did Ernie and it worked fine (for now!)

      • The real John says:

        Are you using iphone? Latest app for android is 5 March and doesn’t work for me, £200 not refunded since 8 March, tried again with £5 yesterday which is now also lost in the ether

  • Zoe says:

    Although the NHS book your vaccination site show 55 and over it is working for me this morning – I’m 54. Hope this helps a few people.

    • Ant says:

      Thanks Zoe just got an app for my partner.

    • Jonny O says:

      Thank you Zoe. Worked for my partner in the same category.

    • WaynedP says:

      Mrs dP and I are in 50-55 bracket and both of us received invitation for first jab yesterday from our GP.

      We’re booked in for after work today 🙂

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