Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Thursday 8th April

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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 (384)

  • Tiger says:

    Regarding the Amex bonus for referrals, just to clarify are there no bonuses for referring someone for Nectar or Bonvoy cards?

    • TGLoyalty says:

      There’s no boosted referral for the applicant. The person referring gets whatever it says on your invite a friend page ie 24k via platinum, 12k gold etc (until 12th May)

  • TicknBash says:

    Wondering if Avios redemption sale is likely to follow after this.
    We live and hope ?

  • Venturelog says:

    I’ve never booked a BA holiday. Are you allowed to UUA?

  • Lawro says:

    Has anyone been successful in getting an Amex Plat retention bonus recently? Also wondering if people have managed to get Plat retention bonuses on cards that have only been open for a few months?

    • Dan says:

      I don’t have an answer to your question but I think I’m general – if you’ve had a retention bonus this year then they won’t give it again.

      I phoned today hoping for one for my Gold card and was refused. I got a spend bonus for 5k MR in November and 10k MR in January.

    • KS says:

      I applied in June ’20 and asked for a retention offer in October, got 35k. Recently I was pointed towards gold charge with first year free, no points.

    • rams1981 says:

      I was given an offer of 10k for spending 2.5k on my gold charge 3 months ago. I actually just about managed to spend it so activated it. Have called again just now to say was thinking of leaving due to lack of offers and they offered 20k points for free. Result

  • 747_Brat says:

    Data Point:
    1st monthly fee of £12 for Barclays Avios Rewards debited from my Premier current account.

  • YC says:

    With the boosted MR sign up bonuses. What would be the better option (Plat or gold)? Its been more than 2yrs since the last MR card. The £575 is hefty but Plat has higher follow on referrals and potentially special one off deals (e.g. Waitrose/Marriott, etc). The numbers are pretty even in my spreadsheet so looking for a push in either direction

    • Anna says:

      Have you had any other personal Amex during this period though? If so you’re only eligible for the Platinum sign up bonus, but not the gold. Otherwise the benefits of the gold are no fee in the first year and 10k bonus points for spending £15k. With spend & retention bonuses and other bits I think I’ve done nearly as well out of my current gold as I would have with platinum, taking into account the fee for the latter.

      • YC says:

        Ah yes how could I forget… I got excited calculating the gold potential. Currently have Marriott Amex. At least it makes my decision easy!

        • Anna says:

          Yes – don’t make the mistake of applying for the wrong card and inadvertently re-setting your 2 year wait!

    • Harry T says:

      I don’t think you’ll see any more especially lucrative offers on Platinum, considering the current trajectory of the pandemic and travel looking realistic again this summer.

      • YC says:

        Agreed – card does not work for me long term but welcome bonus and referrals makes it work for 3-6months.
        Thanks Anna for saving me from a very foolish HfP reader mistake!

  • Anuj says:

    What’s a safe amount to top up from Solihull to r*lut per week? And then are people leaving the cash in r*lut or withdrawing it? I’ve been doing a few hundred a month but wondering if I could get away with more

    • Aston100 says:

      Transferring funds out to your bank is always going to be risky.
      See Brighton Belle’s comment on the next page.

      If you are however paying another card off, then it is probably far less risky.

      • Anuj says:

        Well I’m planning to do enough to reach £4K then use my card to top up my Lisa for this year. I think withdrawing to a bank is probably going to be too suspect.

    • avstar says:

      revolut is wise to doing more than this. you will get three warnings and then account shutdown.

      • Aston100 says:

        Three strikes and you’re out?
        Do you have first hand experience of this?

        • avstar says:

          two warnings with app popup. then account locked, have to talk to CS who are fully clued up about the game. promise you wont do it again, scout’s honour. month later force of habit doh….. lol, next day account lock, KYC! KYC docs uploaded next day for review, no decision for two months despite pushing via app, email, social media. TRUST ME – not worth the hassle.

    • Lady London says:

      Only leave in Revolut what you can afford to have frozen.

  • Roy says:

    Is the part of the Amex web site where you enroll for Platinum benefits (hotel status, etc) down for everyone, or is it just me? Been trying to get to it for a few days, now, and it just hangs, and then eventually comes back and says that the card has no benefits that require enrollment.

    • Alan says:

      I had the same problem.

      After waiting a couple of weeks to see if it sorted itself out I contacted AMEX via chat and they sorted out all the enrolments for me.

      • Roy says:

        You mean they sorted out the web site access, or you did the enrollments manually over the phone?

        • Alan says:

          I told them the hotel loyalty schemes I wanted upgraded, gave them my membership numbers and they sorted it out.

          It took between 2-7 days for the upgrades to appear on my accounts.

      • Rob says:

        Been down for a few weeks on personal cards, but oddly it works fine on business cards.

        • Roy says:

          Not exactly impressive that Amex don’t bother to fix it, then!

        • Lady London says:

          hmhnhm why do I think they are doing some maintenance on that by part of the system then.

          Are they finally replacing Priority Pass with a useful benefit then?

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