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The HfP chat thread – Friday 21st May

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

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Comments (421)

  • CG says:

    Sorry for basic question but if I want to book a reward flight for 12 May 2022 using an Amex companion voucher do I need to phone up at 1am Saturday 22 May or 1am on Sunday 23 May?
    I would have though it 1am Saturday as the 12 May 2022 is 355 days after 22 May however looking at the BA website flights are not yet available for booking on 11 May 2022 which they should be if my calculations are right? Don’t want to stay up till 1am twice if I can avoid it!

    Thanks in advance

    • Anna says:

      You can work this out by looking how far ahead you can currently book. So when the day before your preferred date becomes available, you know you need to stay up that night.

      • CG says:

        Thanks so looks like it’s Sunday morning

        • AJA says:

          I think it is 1am on Sunday. But please don’t blame me if it turns out to be 5 hours from now 🙂

          • CG says:

            Thanks. It looks that way! Obviously no blame to those trying to help! Thanks

  • Ian M says:

    Booking IHG hotel for a friend with points..

    I’m not having much luck with using points to book rooms for other people!

    I had a 3 night redemption booking in Panama at an IHG hotel for a friend. Booked on my account with him as the additional guest..

    I emailed the hotel on the day of check-in to inform them he would be checking in and gave them his arrival time. He checked in and all was well.

    I then booked 1 more night yesterday for tonight, in the same way. Then this morning I received a cancellation email from IHG. I tried to login to my account and it said my account is disabled.

    I called IHG and they took me through a lot of security. They would only say my account has been disabled due to suspected fraud. I asked them what the suspected fraud was but they would not say. I explained I have a booking today that has been cancelled and asked if it could be reinstated, he said no.

    Have I broken IHG terms? Will I get my account and it’s 800,000+ points back?

    • Alex Sm says:

      50/50
      This situation needs to be treated by customers as an exceptional favour rather than a norm
      No wonder they put a red flag

      • meta says:

        You should really be booking rooms for other people over the phone if you do it often. They can see that you are not in Panama. You’ll also need to prove now that you haven’t received anything in return for the reward booking.

        • Genghis says:

          You were advised last week to book over the phone and book in the actual person’s name (I made the comment).

          • Ian M says:

            Everything I read about IHG suggested that is not needed.

            Anyway, pleased to say I called them again last night and my account has been unlocked, all is well

  • MKB says:

    We are trying to work out contingencies for our upcoming BA trip to Cancun, from which we are due to return on 7 June, in light of the potential upping of its Covid alert status within Mexico.

    The UK government has stated that the next review of green/amber/red list countries is also 7 June (I think), but you can’t trust them to stick to that. We need to plan for finding ourselves in a country that gets re-categorised as red while we are there.

    What has surprised me is to learn that the UK government explicitly disallow transiting through the Common Travel Area from a red-list country to a third country. The 10-day quarantine in a government-mandated hotel applies to transits apparently: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-air-travel-guidance-for-passengers#transiting-through-the-uk

    So it seems our best bet, should the need arise, will be to find a last-minute flight (not via the UK) from Cancun to a green-list country that will let in Mexican arrivals. Any suggestions on where to consider?

    • Anna says:

      I’m not sure how this is going to work to be honest, but I would think that your passport will show you’ve been in Mexico if nothing else! Or are you planning to stay in a green country for 10 days on the way back?

      • James Pleasant says:

        Presumably like many others, I didn’t want to go there. But. If Mexico goes Red for UK, then you would travel to a green/ amber country in EU etc for 10+ days to avoid the costly hotel quarantine back in UK.

        Trying to cheat ie claiming you came in from Spain gets you a £10K fine each.

      • MKB says:

        That’s right Anna. Divert to a green-list country for 10 days before coming back to UK. Or even am amber one. Struggling to find one that will allow arrivals from Mexico.

        • Anna says:

          You might be struggling to be honest, unless you can fly Cancun to Lisbon at the moment, if Portugal is allowing entry from Mexico?
          Is it not possible to change your holiday plans?

          • Anna says:

            Also, if you can stay in a green country for 10 days, can’t you just come home via an amber country and isolate at home?

        • Sukes says:

          On assumption US entry rules do not change, after 14days in Mexico you could enter US & return to UK from there. Would need ESTA. US currently on Amber list & conceivable it could go green around same time you’re worried Mexico turns red.

          • James Pleasant says:

            He says 7th June. So nobody knows the EU Green countries (seen by UK), which is what this poster wants to know.

          • Anna says:

            I was thinking that, but is anyone allowed into the US from Mexico or just US nationals atm? I know a lot of them have been going to Mexico on holiday due to the lack of restrictions.

        • Anna says:

          I think there are several Caribbean islands on the amber list but no idea if they are allowing entry from Mexico, or if they have direct flights. Belize is also amber if you can get there, it depends how much inconvenience you’re prepared to tolerate! I think you might need a visitors’ visa and a negative covid test.

          • Rory says:

            Im in the same boat as you. I’m doing 2 weeks in Mexico, then headed to the USA for 10 days. You can also do Costa Rica & Dominican Republic from Mexico City. Anyone is allowed into the USA as long as you have a Visa or ESTA, and have spent more than 14 full days outside the UK (or any banned country). Cancun isn’t looking great, but last night they announced that it’ll stay Orange until atleast the 30th. Hoping it’s more of a threat… But Mexico isn’t doing tooo badly, so can’t see it going on the UK red list.

  • Saiz says:

    Urgent, please help. I am traveling to an amber list country. I know I need to fill in a travel declaration form but I have looked and looked and I can’t find the exact form to print/download. Every website just takes me to the .gov page which has advice. I can see the passenger locator form I need to fill in before returning but just can’t find the exit form.

    • mr_jetlag says:

      Google “gov.uk declaration form for international travel” and the DOCX and PDF forms should be the first result.

      • Saiz says:

        Thanks, it’s taking me to the same general page each time and not to the document or pdf. Tried two browsers. If someone has it downloaded could the please email me on sab_c137 at yahoo dot co dot uk and confirm here. Thank you so much as maybe its an error on the website. It seems to be showing the correct search results but on clicking taking me to the same page. Unless there is a place I need to click on the page that I am not seeing.

      • meta says:

        Exit form is no longer needed from 17 May.

    • James Pleasant says:

      You don’t need to fill in any UK govt form when you are travelling TO an amber country.

      • James Pleasant says:

        There’s no exit form required. It used to be your house viewing appointment prior to the 17th May. No longer needed.

        • Saiz says:

          Oh that’s good to know. I don’t know why the airline said it. Relief.

          • James Pleasant says:

            Check that you didn’t mix it up – the country of your arrival could easily have some strict rules you need to observe.

            But rest assured – UK govt has no documents you need to fill in when leaving the UK.

  • Imran says:

    My Bendy transactions with Hong Kong underneath are getting declined. I am not doing any MS, just some regular online transactions, but even they are not getting approved. Any idea how can I resolve this issue? Thanks.

  • James Pleasant says:

    The docile Brits.

    We used to be a proud, sea-faring nation.

    Now most Brits cower at home, afraid of something. What? They don’t know, something bad.

    It is over the horizon, coming. Soon. It’ll be bad.

    The name is Covid. 19.

    Yep, I’ve been vacc’d – but I’m not stupid, the beast is coming.

  • Chris says:

    How do you get banned by something that you don’t have to register for?

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