Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Sunday 2nd May

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 (233)

  • James. says:

    Still confused with the new IHG rewards nights. I have booked Brighton for 2 nights and it cost me 38,000 in August.

    If I were to book the same now it would cost me 106,000.

    That’s a massive jump.

    • ChrisC says:

      What are the dates and what are the cash rates?

      Their dynamic pricing is a bit (understatement) quirky at the moment.

    • Andrew says:

      It’s a complete mess. You’ve got hotels with lower cash rates than one down the road but charging twice as many points. Seems not to be linked to the cash price at all from what I can see.

      • Anna says:

        It’s all a bit all over the place! When I booked the Kimpton Charlotte Square breakfast was £18 per room. They’ve now changed this to £18 per person and that’s what’s showing on my bill so far! Fortunately I have an email showing the original price. This looks like a blatant cash grab by IHG as later in the year the price goes back to £18 per night …

        • BP says:

          Rates at the Kimpton have been jumping from 42,000 to 75,000 and back for the same dates. The dynamic pricing is all a bit odd.

  • JB says:

    Nearest Heathrow T5 hotel in the IHG chain group (Holiday Inn, Staybridge, Crowne)?

    Hello. I need to spend some IHG points. My flight gets in at 23:10 into Terminal 5 at Heathrow. I was reading and looking at the article/map on “How to avoid the Heathrow Hotel Hoppa fee by travelling on local buses for free” my plan (not being a cheap skate or anything) is Plan B is to take a free standard London bus late at night to the IHG hotel but which bus? Do I;

    1. Get a connecting train from T5 to T2,3 and then get a bus? – which bus 555, 285, 111, 140, 105, U3, 7? from the Central Bus Station and Terminal area to which IHG hotel?

    2. Get a connecting bus 350, 423, 7 from T5 (if I can) to which IHG hotel?

    Thanks in advance, I know HfP readers like a bit of a challenge.

    • ChrisC says:

      Check again because I believe the free bus zone has been suspended so you have to pay the £1.55 fare (card/contactless only. No cash).

      There is a HI and a CP at T4 as well.

      Which bus to get depends on which hotel you want to stay in.

      • JB says:

        Hi there. Thanks for your reply. I’m travelling this year in October. Hopefully, all the restrictions will be lifted and everything is back to normal…..It doesn’t matter which hotel – just convenience.

        “There is a HI and a CP at T4 as well…..” – thanks for this info CC
        Crowne Plaza® London Heathrow T4 hotel and Holiday Inn Express® London Heathrow T4 is directly linked to Terminal 4 by a covered pedestrian bridge.

        I will probably book into one of these two hotels if I can get the shuttle train from T5 to T4 at around midnight?

        • John says:

          No trains are running to T4 as it is closed, which may still be the case in October.

          You can take a bus (paid or beg) and then walk from the outside.

    • Memesweeper says:

      There’s an adequate holiday inn express serving T5, but unless your destination the following day is Slough you’ll be waking up in the wrong area.

      In normal times the best for connecting back to London are the HIX and CP at T4. But are they even open? If not Bath Road is the best choice.

      • JB says:

        In normal times the best for connecting back to London are the HIX and CP at T4 – awesome, thanks Ms.

      • Lyn says:

        I think Rob has done a review of the CP at T4.

        Agree that the question is whether the CP, HIX and T4 train will even be open in October.

        We stayed at the HIX part of the hotel a couple of years ago and it was fine. The T4 train connection with T5 worked well even with some luggage, thanks to advice from helpful HfP commenters, and was easier than the local buses, which tend to get crowded in the evenings. Really good customer service at the hotel. We were given a high level room (as Spire) with interesting views (for my OH anyway) of bustling plane activity at the time.

    • The cyclist says:

      JB, The 140 is a good option from the central Bus station as it travels along the northern perimiter Road/Bath road, but not upstairs at the back, as it will likely smell of p!ss, the usual upshot of late night revellers.

  • MCO says:

    I have an Offer on my Amex for Ermenegildo Zegna. When you click on valid participating locations it says Bond street and Bicester. But the offer terms say “Outlet stores are excluded from this offer.”

    Didn’t get a email when I used the offer. Thoughts on which one of the t&c’s would supersede the other?

    • MCO says:

      Just to clarify I used at Bicester and got the email for £50 off from Bicester village but not the Zegna offer email. They should both stack right?

      • Andrew says:

        If it’s listed as a location then it should track, the outlet bit is probably just standard offer wording. Emails are hit and miss so wouldn’t take that as an indication.

        • MCO says:

          Didn’t get a email. Would it still process automatically or does that normally involve a phone call?

          • Andrew says:

            Will still likely process automatically – emails are 50/50 at best – so just because you didn’t get an email doesn’t mean you won’t automatically get the credit in a few days. To note, the Bicester offer credits as the name of the shop, not as “Bicester”, so you will see a £50 Zegna credit.

          • MCO says:

            Thank you

  • The Savage Squirrel says:

    It’s been so long since I’ve done it that I”ve forgotten….
    Train tickets: (LNER or Cross Country tickets if that makes a difference). What’s the situation re: loyalty options or ca$hback. From memory they had basically reached nonexistent with the demise of LNER’s scheme?

    • Craig says:

      LNER now has their own loyalty system, there’s also a 5% Amex offer on some cards.

    • Pete M says:

      I tend to go via Chiltern on on TCSHBK – 0.85% on non-Chiltern tickets, although LNER Perks is not terrible if you use them once in a while (2% back to use on LNER).

    • The Savage Squirrel says:

      Thanks! forgot LNER replaced with its own scheme (it’s something albeit a boring one). Decision made 🙂

      • Sandra says:

        They were also giving a one off £5 credit to use against a ticket with the new LNER scheme, not sure if that’s still the case as I used mine over a month ago. The LNER credit and the Amex 5% both appear quickly and Amex credits on other train company tickets bought via LNER too (I usually buy a TP Express with the LNER as it’s cheaper that way than a through ticket).

      • John says:

        Make a new account and get another fiver every time

    • bafan says:

      Or find a friend with access to UniDays and get 40% off the cost of a ticket…

  • YC says:

    Is it possible to see if / how many/ who has requested a hard credit check with the free Experian account?

    • Optimus Prime says:

      I do see them on the Experian report provided by MSE Credit Club. You can also see them on ClearScore (Equifax) and Credit Karma (TransUnion).

    • Manny_D says:

      YC were you looking to check if Amex did a hard search for a new application? Would be good to know whether they did (if you have applied for another card that is).

      • Jay says:

        IME Amex only ever do a soft check if you currently hold an account. In fact the last search Amex did was soft even though I didn’t have a card at the time before applying for the Bus Amex.

      • YC says:

        Yeah was just out of curiosity. No hard search for Amex on equifax but current account does so need to be careful with switching game

    • John says:

      Yes, but not all lenders use experian

  • Benilyn says:

    Anyone follow Etihad redemptions? Seems like they release 2 J award seats per fight but wondering if anyone knows their typical strategy (if there is one) to release more. Trying to make J booking for 4, AUH to LHR.

  • Newbie says:

    Any hints at what Che is?

  • Mighty Hunter says:

    I posted here on Friday that I’m unable to pay for BA flights with Amex, who confirm there’s nothing wrong at their end and no transaction has been requested by BA.
    Tried again today, same result, so thought I’d try Paypal and at least get the BAPP 1.5 points/£, better than nothing.
    However, when I go to pay, Paypal removes the option to pay with Amex, which is my normal way with them. This suggests that BA’s systems are unable to process Amex for at least the last 3 days.
    Has anyone else successfully used a BAPP Amex to pay for fights since Friday?

    • Sam G says:

      IIRC you can’t use Amex via PayPal for BA (and other merchants, it isn’t BA specific)

      Are you using the correct billing address and name on card? I’ve noticed some merchants are checking this now (though Amex should/would see it as a decline)

    • Doug M says:

      Paid BA directly with an Amex BAPP last night without problem. Initial problem I had was Android app keep chucking me out, not payment issue, just app reverting to start of process. Did it again on an iPad, process continued to payment screen where all was fine.

    • Travel Strong says:

      Paid BA with Amex (Nectar) yesterday no problem.

    • @mkcol says:

      Are you certain you’re on the BA site?

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.