Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Wednesday 14th April

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Comments (337)

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  • BSI1978 says:

    Without wishing to revisit likelihood, or otherwise of overseas travel being possible/doable/moral(!) come late Sept or early Oct. Can I seek the perceived wisdom please as San Francisco at that time of year?

    Always wanted to go, and whilst I am not expecting weather typical of California given its location, also keen to understand how cloudy/wet it typically is that time of year. The interweb appears somewhat contradictory….

    • Anna says:

      We visited early November and it was cool and cloudy, but I think SF can be like that any time of year – though I imagine you’ve a decent chance of at least some sunshine in Sep/Oct.

    • aviosnewbie says:

      We went end of August a few years ago, and I was totally disappointed. Probably because I had a different expectation that San Fran would be like the typical California I’d heard about…- went for a drive on Highway 1 and it was so foggy that we couldn’t see the ocean at all and just turned around. It was very windy and chilly on the beach, and also rained a couple of times. Couldn’t leave the hotel without a jacket on a single day, and we went hoping for somewhere warm. So personally I wouldn’t go to San Fran in September, but that’s just one data point for you

    • ChrisC says:

      Went in September once and never had the same weather over a weeks stay though ‘generally fine with sunny spells’ would cover it!

      Again visited a couple of times in November and ‘generally fine’ also covered it but colder in the evenings. Not ‘big coat’ cold but ‘jumper and a light jacket’ cool.

      The weather really can change almost hourly.

      On a boat trip across the bay in Jul to Angel Island it was foggy when we departed but it was almost a bright line between the fog in the city and the sun on Angel Island.

    • Paul says:

      Have visited SF in Sept/Oct/Nov several times over the years. Personally had some fantastic weather at that time of year, but as others have said it can be very variable – even over the course of one day. You’d be unlucky to have too much rain I reckon, but should plan to encounter cloudy/foggy/chilly weather at least for some of the time… but then I do kinda think that’s the Bay Area for you.

      I’ve got a booking for this coming Oct, and whilst I’m not holding my breath, am very much hoping I’ll be able to go.

    • Jill (Kinkell) says:

      We were in SF end Sept a couple of-years ago and the weather was great! Sunny, no rain or fog.ideal for getting about. Seems quite variable experiences from other posters.

      • Magic Mike says:

        SF is always about 5 degrees C colder than anywhere else in the Bay Area. And the top bit of Highway 1 (passing Half Moon Bay etc) is often fogbound. It gets better down nearer Santa Cruz.

    • The Savage Squirrel says:

      +1 that the weather in SF is so lacking in temperature extremes, prone to fog/cloud, and yet so variable by the hour that the time of year you visit is barely relevant. Sep/Oct is as good a time as any.

    • BSI1978 says:

      Thanks all 👍🏾

      Think we’ll stick with the proposed dates and hope for the best, and/or hot foot it to San Diego if need be….!

      • Sandra says:

        We were there in August a couple of years ago and had quite big temp. differences with cold, damp, cloudy some days needing jeans and sweatshirts but shorts, T’s and sunscreen on others. Forest fires inland were also affecting the weather at the time. Locals told us Jan/Feb better weather but I don’t know if that’s true or not!

      • Lyn says:

        San Diego wouldn’t necessarily be any warmer than San Francisco, but it should at least be dry.

        • mradey says:

          Agreed. San Diego can be cool. Best stick to the middle bit if you want guaranteed hot sunny weather!

    • Steve says:

      Still it sure why San Fran has such a big tourist destination reputation. I found it a bit meh.

    • Njb says:

      We were there at the end of a road trip from LA in August 19. It was my first trip back there after 25 years and I left feeling a bit disappointed. We stayed at IC San Francisco who treated us well and enjoyed the club lounge. Concierge was great and got us pitch side baseball tickets for the Oaklands A’s which was a fantastic day out.
      However San Francisco has a homeless problem and it is quite overwhelming at times. Fishermans Wharf is heaving with tourists and shops selling tat.
      Must do is Alcatraz and we did the evening cruise there which added a bit of atmosphere. Book this up as soon as you can though as sailings fill up quickly. Loved the area around Golden Gate/Presidio – bit more upmarket feel.
      And if you travel outside head to Monterey and the aquarium if you can – just incredible.

  • Fk says:

    Is there a referral bonus on the gold business card, I cant see the normal refer a friend link when I log in

  • Sina says:

    would I get the amex gold credit card bonus if I have a BA card? Asking for a friend!

    • Rob says:

      No. You get the Platinum bonus.

    • Hotelier says:

      No you won’t as you’ve had an AMEX in the last 24 months. You can still get the bonus in Platinum.

    • Peter K says:

      No. You would only be eligible for a sign-up bonus on the platinum card, if no other personal MR earning card on the part 24 months.

    • Sina says:

      Thanks everyone.

  • The Original Nick. says:

    I’m looking for the best route for MR points. I hold the Amex Platinum card. My partner has been clear of holding any Amex personal cards apart from Supp from my Platinum card and will be able to apply and be clear of 24 months in mid June. Unfortunately the 24k referral points end on the 12th May. What should I do please?

    • TGLoyalty says:

      It’s worth looking at the thread from yesterday lots of options discussion.

      24k to a nectar still means your OH is eligible for Plat (24m since last MR) and BAPP bonus (24m since last BA)

      • TGLoyalty says:


        • The Original Nick. says:

          Thanks. So I could refer her today for nectar for me to receive the 24k referral points on approval. Then I could refer her for the Platinum card at the end of June and she’ll receive the sign up bonus? I can’t see how that would work because she’d of applied and have the nectar so would disqualify her from any sign up bonus for another 34 months?

          • TGLoyalty says:

            The rule for personal Platinum is only that you must not have had any personal MR earning card in the past 24m therefore Nectar is excluded (1.25/£ is also one of the highest earning rates around) Bonvoy etc would also be excluded.

            Same for BAPP it’s no personal BA Avios earning card in the past 24m so again holding a personal MR earning card or a Nectar/Bonvoy etc has no impact.

        • Roger W says:

          Massive gaff. Wife referred me for Gold Card as had 24 months free. Refused and only have the Business GC! Perhaps because am Limited Company ( tho only a fortnight off since start pandemic and quids in)? In pique referred my wife and applied successfully. She has BAPP & Business Gold Card. Just realised she is not 24/12!! Phoning new application to rescind in the morning.

  • The Original Nick. says:

    *24 months

  • The Original Nick. says:

    Thanks TGLoyalty. I’ve just had a read through all the rules about the cards. Since the new 24 months ruling came into effect I’ve not really kept up with it all. Your help is appreciated, thanks.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      You could refer her for a nectar now and a bonvoy on May 11th bag 48k points then apply for Plat whenever there’s another boosted offer, I’m sure it’ll be back before the end of summer.

  • John Gallagher says:

    My wife has not had any Amex cards for over 24 months. I have a Gold MR Card and a BA PP Card. What should our strategy be to maximise current sign-up bonuses?
    Thanks in advance

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Since referring from Gold and BAPP currently earns the same 12k it doesn’t matter which you refer from.

      As you only have 1 month to apply it depends on your collective goals and spending power
      1) how much you can spend
      2) how much you want to pay on card fees.
      3) if you want to apply for any cards too.
      4) do you have any use for Plat benefits.

      If it went on longer and you could meet all the spend then I’d apply for Nectar (free for 1st year) then Plat (£50 pcm) (refer you for a card for 24k points) then BAPP (£16 pcm)

      As it’s 1 month higher points will ofcourse be – Plat (refer you for card for 24k points) then BAPP but you’d need to spend £7k in 3-4 months. (This option means you won’t be eligible for any other sign up bonus for 24m)

      If you don’t want/can’t have another Amex for any reason and want the lowest spend requirement then Nectar and BAPP need £4K spend 3-4 months. But consider that the Plat boost is 15k points while BAPP is only 5k so if you can spend the extra £1k it could be worth getting the Plat (and getting a card yourself for 24k) then just signing up for BAPP at a future point (even better if the boosted referral/sign up come around again)

      Remember first supp on BAPP earns 3k and Plat earns 5k too.

      It’s worth reading some recent articles on this and assessing what you can reasonably spend and what it costs to get it.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        Just to add. You are ineligible for any sign up bonuses on personal cards if she refers you so just best to pick Nectar (free and 1.25 avios/£), Bonvoy (if you spend £ in bonvoy hotels) or one of the £ back cards.

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