Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Tuesday 27th April

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

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 (306)

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

  • Harrier25 says:

    Has anyone stayed at the Hampton by Hilton at Bristol Airport and if so, how was it? Thanks in advance.

    • SwissJim says:

      If you don’t need to be at the airport itself, Cadbury House (DoubleTree by Hilton, Bristol South) is a far better option.

      • Harrier25 says:

        I know Cadbury House extremely well but yes, we need to be at airport for a 7am flight on the 10th June to Maderia (fingers crossed!)

        • Harrier25 says:

          Of course we’re of to Madeira….not Maderia. I must remember to get my r’s and i’s the correct way round. 🙄

    • Matt C says:

      Have stayed a few times. Rooms and beds are ok. Restaurant is nothing special but functional if you after burger and fries. The big plus is the short walking distance to the terminal.

      • Travel Strong says:

        and the 15k year round redemption price on hilton points 🙂

        • Harrier25 says:

          Yep, that’s the points redemption rate I got. Never stayed in a Hampton before but they look to me like a posh Holiday Inn Express.

    • Bigmaggot says:

      Stayed here quite a few times at 15k points. You can park in the car park to drop your luggage for free (for 30mins or a hour if I remember) but don’t stay for your holiday or you’ll come back bankrupt. As gold/diamond you sometimes get a drink and snack, their policy keeps changing! Bar/restaurant average but breakfast is fine! They will upgrade you to family room for free if you phone, think it’s 66k otherwise. It’s just across the road from terminal so perfect for early flights.

    • Njb says:

      Stayed there when it first opened. Real issues with noise of a/c – too loud to sleep. Best bit is the proximity to terminal.

  • Freddy says:

    Goodbye points lovers, me and my new plat CB card are off to make some pure cash. All my points cards have been ditched. I’ll come back for some churning of course, farewell

    • Guernsey Globetrotter says:

      All the best Freddy – can’t argue against the fact that sometimes cash in hand is more valuable to us than anything. Me, I’m still holding onto the aspirational holiday dreams … even if they mostly turn out to be cancellation nightmares at the moment!

    • Memesweeper says:

      Enjoy your lack of outsized value opportunities and relish the thrill of a discounted credit card bill once a year. 😁

      • TGLoyalty says:

        You can buy all the points you want for the same or a better price than any Hilton Avios ihg or virgin card.

        Marriott is the only one you can’t.

        • Harrier25 says:

          On a slightly different track, but loosely linked. How do you calculate the monetary value regarding, for example, 10,000 Amex points when converted into Hilton Honors points?

          • TGLoyalty says:

            I value a Hilton at about 0.33-0.4p

            An MR is worth about 1p since it’s convertible to most miles schemes 1:1 where you’d value the mile at 1p

            Therefore, you’ve losing 34-20% of its value sending to Hilton. But if you want to stay at a Hilton and don’t want to buy points it doesn’t really matter?

            It’s always important to remember no point is worth more than what you can buy them for in their best regular bonus sales.

            Hilton and IHG regularly have 100% bonus sales selling for c0.4p
            Virgin/Avios regularly have bonus sales selling for c1-1.1p
            Marriott regularly sell for c0.65p And so on.

            For me Marriott are the only ones I’ll give up MR value for because they are hard to come by and the number you can buy is pretty low.

          • Harrier25 says:

            Thanks TG

  • Anna says:

    Easyjet flight previously departing 12.05 now moved to 19.00 which is going to lose me the first afternoon of a very short stay and mean me transferring to the hotel late at night – have I got grounds to cancel? Flight number is still the same.

    • ChrisC says:

      Depends what the easyjet policy is re schedule changes and cancellations.

      As flight not been cancelled UK/EU261 won’t apply

      • Froggee says:

        I hate EasyJet. I seem to remember they used to define a significant change as five hours but it is now 12 hours so they won’t let you cancel I’m afraid. From Ts & Cs:

        “Insignificant Changes

        If the change is insignificant, we’ll try and tell you about it. Examples of insignificant changes include alteration of your outward/return flights by less than 12 hours, change of accommodation to another of the same or higher standard, changes of carriers. “

        • meta says:

          Has the flight number changed? Even if not, I would ask for a refund. It’s a 7 hour change.

          You could try for reroute on another airline especially if you can argue the shortness of your stay. You could argue you have pre-booked activities. Doesn’t matter what Easyjet’s policy and T&C are. Their terms are not above EC261 and this is still a significant change according to regulations.

          • Anna says:

            Same flight number. I don’t think any other carrier flies to Bordeaux from MAN. I have bookings at the IC Bordeaux but these are flexible.
            I wouldn’t mind if I could move to another date and/or destination in France but I don’t know if that’s allowed given that easyJet hasn’t actually cancelled the flight. I’ll have a proper look at the Ts and Cs when I get time.
            Cutting half a day off a weekend break makes it not worth it – easyJet must be fully aware of this as they only fly there on Fridays and Mondays!

        • Sukes says:

          These terms are for EasyJet Holiday packages. EasyJet flights T&C do not define a duration for what is a significant/insignificant schedule change.

      • Aso40 says:

        Not quite true – compensation would also apply to schedule change like this if informed less than 14 days in advance (as the change is more than 4 hours). It drops to a change of over 2 hours if less than 7 days in advance.

    • Lady London says:

      Are you sure it’s not a different flight number? For 2 months or so Oct-Nov last year Easyjet cancelled all flights except 1 on many routes. People got moved to different flight numbers. Easyjet sent out
      twee little emails claiming it was only a schedule change.

      I thought they had stopped these deceptive emails – which at that time mysteriously included neither the original flight number nor the new different flight number the passenger had been moved to. However recently I got an email from them for a flight in August claiming it was only a reschedule – except it was a flight number change. So a cancellation giving full EU261 cancellation rights not a reschedule. I don’t know if the regulator had had a word with them since last year. But this time both old and new flight numbers appeared in the email.

      If when you bought your ticket the terms said a move of, say, 2 hours later would be expected to be acceptable then the airline can’t decide after the ticket is bought that it’s now 12. 12, btw, being ridiculous anyway.

      Reject the move. They can’t move the goalposts unilaterally after a ticket has been bought.

      Think about what you want and call them, please let us know the outcome. A peruse of EU261 might also state what’s reasonable or could give rise to further rights.

      • Froggee says:

        For what it’s worth, EasyJet did the schedule change thing to me and refused point blank to refund or even escalate my call. Eventually the woman I spoke to said someone would call me back but this didn’t happen. I disputed with Amex and got my money back. Sure I didn’t want to go anyway as my RyanAir return leg had been cancelled but I really objected as I paid a lot more for the flight I actually booked as it was nice and sociable mid-morning as opposed to the crack of dawn flight they moved me to!

      • Anna says:

        When I saw the email LL, I immediately thought of you and checked the flight number, but it’s the same! I imagine this is because there’s only 1 service on any given day so they can’t shuffle me onto another one. I am certainly going to consider the options and report back.

  • Crafty says:

    What’s the most painless way to get IHG to throw me some points for welcome amenity not offered (at Crowne Plaza, as Spire)?

    • SwissJim says:

      Ask?

      • Freddy says:

        Sending pictures of my didgeredoo gets me what I want – perhaps try that

        • Guernsey Globetrotter says:

          But what if they’re not fans of Aboriginal musical instruments Freddy??

    • Aston100 says:

      Email the hotel.
      Probably helps if there is some other issue you need to highlight at the same time.
      You might get 5k to go away.

    • Tiff says:

      Welcome amenity for Spire at Crowne Plaza is what? 600 points? If you think it’s worth the effort then contact them and the points will be added.

      • Aston100 says:

        600?
        EVERY CP I’ve stayed at has given me 400 points.
        I’ve had 600 from indigo and 500 from HI

  • bafan says:

    I’m looking at booking INV-LHR but I think the flight may potentially be canceled. If I book a trip around it and the flight is canceled, what options will BA give me for a reroute? Refund wouldn’t be helpful for obvious reasons.

    • APB says:

      Happened to us for a September flight – morning flight INV – LHR cancelled, afternoon flight too late for connection but we were immediately offered EDI-LHR as an option

      • bafan says:

        What did they suggest for the INV-EDI part?

        • APB says:

          I assume you’ll have to sort that out – not sure tbh. We are actually in Edinburgh and were flying from INV to save the taxes so it was ideal (Although my father does stay in INV). ABZ is obv a slightly closer option if you stay in INV and the flight times are suitable.

          • meta says:

            Is Easyjet still flying to Inverness? You could try for a reroute on Easyjet to Gatwick/Luton if it suits you.

    • ChrisC says:

      What’s the actual routing for the trip(s)?

      These look to be two separate trips and something happening on one won’t automatically allow you to change the separate trip.

  • Simon says:

    Looking to purchase my first car since I’ll be taking redundancy. I estimate spending approx £12/£15k on my own vehicle. What’s you thoughts on the best ways to pay to maximise points? I’m thinking a number of curve payments, but I’d be interested in any other payment methods? (Do garages take credit card payments these days?). Thanks in advance.

    • Anna says:

      It depends very much on what and where you’re looking to buy. A lot of places take crrdit cards, a few even take Amex, though you’re looking at BMW, Audi etc for Amex. Also depends on your credit limits of course and some places have limits on how much you can pay (or pay in one go) on a credit card. If you’re buying a new car you’ll probably have more leverage.

      • The uncivil servant says:

        Ok we get it your buying a BMW! Having worked in the motor trade in the past most places will gladly take credit cards as deposits, usually up to about £3k, and if its more then splitting between cards can take place. In the current climate with new sales at an all time low, almost all dealers will bend over backwards to accommodate any form of payment.

        • Anna says:

          The point is the points! The choice of make of car was entirely dependent on being able to make the payments with Amex. This is HFP, if I can’t generate a couple of premium cabin seats from a significant outlay, I’m doing something very wrong at this stage!

          • Crafty says:

            You chose your make of car on the basis of being able to pay with Amex?

            Anna you need to take a look at yourself.

          • Anna says:

            You need to take a look at such a condescending and judgmental attitude, Crafty. Obviously there were other reasons, but they don’t relate to points or avios so why would I mention them here?

    • Si says:

      Different garages/dealerships will have different rules re. payment so can be luck of the draw of how to make the most of it.

      When I brought my car, the dealership would only take £1000 on credit card, £1,500 on debit card (which I used Curve to make it credit card), and rest had to be bank transfer – with no leniency at all from the manager.

      For my wife’s car, they would only accept debit card or bank transfer. I paid the lot on Curve over several days due to Curve daily limit.

      You do hear of some places taking amex for the whole purchase, but for me, that would only be a bonus and not the reason for selecting a particular car

    • Genghis says:

      Once you’ve finished negotiating, say you’d like to pay by card. Use it as another negotiating stage if necessary. I paid for my car (used) in full on a credit card at a VW dealership

    • Guernsey Globetrotter says:

      Hi Simon – clearly I can’t know anything about your financial position but as you have mentioned ‘redundancy’ I would put it out there that if you have any doubts at all about your future income stream then spending a significant amount of cash on a wasting asset is not necessarily the best idea… apologies if this is totally irrelevant to your situation but you did bring the R-word into the conversation!

    • TicknBash says:

      The used car market is buoyant and short of used cars at the moment = prices are holding fairly strong (demonstrators are exception).

      At point of putting down your deposit is when they’ll be most flexible to ‘lock down the sale’ so max this out.

      A lot of dealers will insist on final payment by bank transfers and is made policy by most.

      • GaryC says:

        Dealers will try to say bank transfer only, but I’ve always pushed back firmly and insisted on debit card after I’ve checked the car over, even if new. They’ve always backed down in the end, for vehicles costing from 5k to over 100k.

    • Navara says:

      Paid for my last car on credit card. Arrange to collect on last day of month it gives them little chance to reject if they have targets to meet

  • Saiz says:

    Booked a cash one way flight for me and my child for summer to Europe. It wasn’t cheap but I managed to book a reward flight for return. Now reward tickets are available! I booked a week ago so what will be the fee to cancel the inbound flight for a refund?

    • Saiz says:

      Sorry I meant cancel the outbound now that reward seats are available for outbound too.

    • Harry T says:

      Depends entirely on which airline you booked with. Why would you try and cancel a cash ticket, when it’s presumably not a flexible ticket?

    • AJA says:

      If it’s BA cancel the outbound cash ticket for an FTV. That will give you most value unless the cash ticket is fully flexible.

  • Anuj says:

    Are Morrison’s more points earned at 5 per £1 even if you buy Morrison gift cards ? I’m 400 points away from a £5 voucher so need to spend £80

    • Harry T says:

      Yes

    • Cabal of rabid baboons says:

      The vouchers are being phased out, they’ll top your balance up so you get your fiver.

      • James says:

        Where do they say this? Their FAQs about the change say the exact opposite.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          That they are being phased out? or that they will top up?

          I was sent a voucher for a free 3600 to top up my balance without asking. Reminds me I’m going to go cash out my last M’s GCs tomorrow

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

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.