Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Monday 26th April

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We are running this daily chat thread on Head for Points during the coronavirus outbreak.

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Comments (308)

  • Tarmohamed says:

    Has anyone had the AZ as the first jan but then been offered/given Pfizer as the 2nd? Side effects?

    • Tarmohamed says:

      *jab not jan.

      • meta says:

        Is this a joke? There hasn’t been any evidence to suggest that this is acceptable. Currently the trials are ongoing. I read about someone who received by mistake a second jab of a different vaccine outside UK. They have some serious side effects and lasting health problems, even went needed to put on a ventilator for a a few days.

      • Tracey says:

        More likely that some people who had Pfizer first have had AZ second. Very elderly who have become housebound or moved into a care home between doses as Pfizer is only delivered at a vaccine centre.
        Government policy is even the relatively young who had AZ first are safe to have AZ second unless they developed clot(s) after the first.
        I know there are trials going on, but outside of the trials the advice is to match first and second wherever possible.

    • Tony1 says:

      Neighbor ( 87 man ) has had first Pfizer then 2 weeks ago AZ – no side effects on the first, but knocked him out for 3 days on the AZ.

  • Stephan says:

    Random point but thought I’d mention this as I remember earlier someone was looking at how to transfer Iberia points due to imminent expiry but was struggling. I had the same issue and found the easiest way to resolve was to postpone expiry date by 3 years by doing a 900 avios donation. Iberia confirmed the expiry extension.

  • James says:

    am I late to the party about this Barclays Avios Rewards account

    1,500 Avios every month.
    A joining bonus of 25,000 Avios if you’re a new Barclays customer and complete a full switch via the Current Account Switcher Service within 3 months. You could earn a total of 43,000 by the end of your first year3. That’s enough for two British Airways return Euro Traveller flights to Europe2.
    Or, a joining bonus of 2,500 Avios if you’ve been an existing Barclays customer for four months or more.
    Travel in style with a British Airways cabin upgrade voucher every year for use on an Avios reward flight and valid for two years4.
    Additional Avios for holding new and existing Barclays products.

  • Andrew MS says:

    I am keen to attain (atleast) Silver with Virgin Atlantic. I have Gold with Etihad and see VS offer status match . I was wondering if i made a rewards booking with Virgin , would they then offer me a status match ?
    Thanks in Advance

    • DeB20 says:

      Apparently they will only do it for a cash ticket. That is what I was previously told. Yet, they ran a special offer in the first quarter of this year and offered the status match for passengers redeeming Virgin Points for flights.

      So probably best to ask them if you can get through to them on the phone.

    • Rob says:

      The Virgin policy is that you either show them evidence of previous Etihad cash bookings on routes that Virgin fly (so Abu Dhabi doesn’t count) or you make a cash booking on Virgin and then ask for a match from an airline which flies the same route.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        So Etihad won’t count regardless?

        • Rob says:

          It would if you’d been flying to, say, Tokyo on Etihad as that’s a Virgin route – but they’d want to see your statement to confirm the routes.

          • TGLoyalty says:

            Not Tokyo but get your point. Still a few eastern routes on their map. In my head they’d become America’s, SA and Israel only now. But can see Shanghai HK Mumbai Delhi are still on the route map.

  • Yorkie Aid says:

    IHG credit card free night. I know some other HfPers have experienced problems with the free night voucher posting. I got mine fine last March but this year’s still hasn’t come through. I have sent Creation CS a secure message. Thing is I would like to use it at IC Park Lane and the night I am looking at is currently 77k points. If there are continued delays is it reasonable to book up that rate and then ask for the points to be recredited? Thanks.

    • Anna says:

      It would be interesting to know if anyone has had this resolved! There are reports of complaints going back and forth for months on end and having to get the FOS involved so I wouldn’t complete an actual stay until I found out what the result was going to be unless you can afford to lose the points.

      • Yorkie Aid says:

        Thank you Anna. I can afford the points but obviously I’d prefer not to! 🙂 Getting FOS involved would be a nightmare with the near 18 month delays currently being experienced. Thing is, if it’s a known IT issue then simply recrediting the points used would appear to be a fairly reasonable workaround unless I’m missing something.

        • Anna says:

          They could do it, but whether IHG would agree to doing that on behalf of Creation (or Creation giving you 77k points) is another question. They might just issue you with the certificate (eventually) plus a bit of compo and you couldn’t really argue that they haven’t fulfilled their side of it. Then again, you have a lot of flexibility with a points booking and could cancel nearer the time if it looks as though Creation won’t play ball.

          • Yorkie Aid says:

            Yes, I guess at the moment it doesn’t really matter too much. In fact it could even prove beneficial if they don’t resolve it for a while so long as the validity is extended accordingly once the certificate is eventually issued.

        • Lady London says:

          The head of the FOS resigned recently and backlogs were commented.

          The cost to a company you complain to the FOS about (company pays it, not you) is going up to £750.

          So for any reasonable complaint worth much less than £750 wondering if any card company that doesn’t award a free hotel night the cardholder qualified for, before going to the FOS I might chat to the company one more time about this and their choices.

          Noting we’ve had reports that the IHG card in particular has failed to award a free night that was due, for more than a year for some.

          • Anna says:

            I think it’s complete incompetence at Creation’s end, which might prove tricky to remedy. There’s obviously some IT issue which means that most card holders get the certificate but some don’t. It makes me wonder if they are inadvertently linked to the free card rather than the paid one so the system doesn’t recognise that the free night has been triggered. We got ours promptly in July and October last year so it’ll be interesting to see if this happens again this year – especially as I’ve got them earmarked for OH’s big retirement trip next year!

          • Yorkie Aid says:

            That’s very useful data, thank you Lady London. Who knows what the problem might be although clearly there wasn’t a problem on my account in March 2020. Something must have changed at the Creation end some time after that. Whenever I logged on it had clearly been displaying at the top of the screen “you have qualified for the free night” as soon as I had hit the spend requirement. Time will tell I guess. I shall report back with any progress in due course.

  • mr_jetlag says:

    Trying to book a BA holiday for a 3 week Singapore trip, the problem being that whenever I specify one night hotel only, the website prices up a hotel for the full trip length. I’ve tried building custom trips and it still does this… has anyone worked around this or do I need to ring?

    • Anna says:

      Try a different browser and/or device. This has worked for me in the past after being told on the phone when querying it by a BA CSA that your hotel stay MUST match your flight dates. I am older and wiser now!

    • ChrisC says:

      just done a dummy booking for a random date in November and it all looks OK for me.

      You using the search from the main page block with these 3 options?

      flight / flight + hotel / flight + car

      then select flight + hotel then custom trip?

      As that worked for me.

      If you use the search on this page

      that does tend to not work properly for some reason

      • mr_jetlag says:

        Thanks both, changing browsers let me do it, but now the issue is that it’s not pricing up a deposit and asking for full payment upfront. Might ring Newcastle and see what’s up.

        • Anna says:

          I could never get my last PC to price it up as a BA holiday with only the deposit payable. Had to use a different device altogether. Current PC and laptop work fine. A CSA may well tell you that you can’t just book one night in a hotel, I think they genuinely don’t know just how flexible the system can be!

          • ChrisC says:

            I called BA Hols last week to rebook a holiday as some of the original flights were cancelled and it was better for me to move dates than cancel.

            Not only was just one night fine he was able to price up a different hotel for me no bother. Managed to switch to the IC (where I’m booked for the rest of the trip) for an extra £30

            BA Hols agents really are excellent and I have yet to come across any that are anything but excellent.

  • Rob says:

    Just got the Amex platinum charge card. Is there any way they’d let me pay the £575 fee monthly if I ask or as it’s first year the only option is to pay it all upfront?

    • Lee says:

      I normally call after fee hit your first month bill.

    • Rob says:

      I know people who have managed this in the past. It’s not an advertised benefit but it can be done – whether it needs certain levels of authorisation or not I don’t know.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        I just phoned asked and they talked be through some new T&Cs as the total is £1 higher then that was it.

  • CG says:

    I booked 2 first class avios flights to Dubai in the avios 50% off sale with BA for June 21 using an Amex 2-4-1 voucher. My flights have now been downgraded to Business Class with no explanation. Has this happened to anyone else? Have BA stopped doing first class flights to Dubai or have we been bumped down a class due to someone more important wanting our seats?


    • Rob says:

      More likely to be either a closed cabin or aircraft switch.

      The good news is that you get EC261 compo of 75% of the Avios you used.

      • CG says:

        Thanks. So I got a bit of a bargain in the sale as the 2 flights cost 68,000 avios total – half price and then 2-4-1. Does that mean I should get 51,000 back if I stick with these flights i.e. 2 business class return to Dubai for 17,000? If true whilst I’ve never flown first and would have liked to that’s “not too bad”.

        Do I have to put a claim in before or after the flights?

        Thanks again

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