Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Sunday 25th July

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

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Comments (359)

  • Dylan says:

    Morning all. Upgraded my BA Amex to BA PP over the weekend and as of this morning it’s now showing that I’ve reached my 241 voucher on Amex account management. Any idea how soon it should appear in BAEC? Keen to get seats before they’re gone!

    • BJ says:

      Very quick, could be there by tomorrow. If not there within three days chase it up.

    • AJA says:

      Also check the expiry date when it posts. You may have to call to get the 2 year expiry applied. (It should be even longer as BA added 6 months on)

      • Gavin says:

        Who do you need to call for this – Amex or BA?

        • AJA says:

          I’ve not upgraded before as I’ve always had the BAPP but I believe you need to phone BA once it hits your BAEC account.

  • Mark says:

    ** Can I just point out that this mornings posts with everyone saying hello from all parts of the UK and the world were a breath of fresh air.
    Can we do far more of this and far less of all the Covid, Brexit and devisive stuff.
    Positivity is infectious 🙌

    • Andrew says:

      But that’s no fun!

    • Navara says:

      Morning from somewhere in Wales I can’t spell or pronounce

    • Doug M says:

      I found them even more tedious that the pandemic expertise, Che, Bendy and all those who incorrectly think Brexit was good.

      • Louie says:

        I have a feeling you might have missed the point of Mark’s post…..

      • Nicky says:

        Get over yourself Doug M: I happened, it was voted on, it’s over: move on

        • Nick says:

          Move on? You mean the way brexiteers did after 1973 when that was also ‘done’? It’s perfectly acceptable in a democracy for people to have and to maintain their opinions. The 48% shouldn’t have to be silent forever just because someone else says they should.

          • Andy says:

            +1 to Nick

          • Nicky says:

            Yeah right….I am seen as incorrect which is his opinion, so I give mine and that is not ok, Really!!!! What will be will be and no amount of dredging it up will change anything. I too think it was nice to have happy good morning comments from HPF users….so happy day to all the happy contributors from Newcastle upon Tyne

        • CarpalTravel says:


        • Alan says:

          It would be nice if it was but absolutely no sign of that happening any time soon.

    • Dave1985 says:

      Freedom week!

      • PeterCostell says:

        Christ Dave1985, give it a break with the irritating Freedom Day/Week/Month references every day. It means nothing and is as jarring as the mindless Che/Bendy rants.

        (Good morning from week 4 of ~12 of remote work from a warm Southern European nation. Bless all you fearful who aren’t risk takers and follow the govt’s advice like sheep! More for the rest of us!)

        • Mike says:

          PeterCostell – but is Freedom week ! It has been a long time coming- Rejoice

      • Andrew says:

        Enjoy it while it lasts!

        • Dave1985 says:

          I will Andrew! Better to enjoy yourself rather than just moan on the internet like a lot of people still do, even though everything is now open! Go the pub and enjoy yourselves!

      • ankomonkey says:

        @Dave1985, I noticed that Rob & Rhys didn’t mention today being the end of Freedom Week #1 on the ‘things finishing soon’ thread. Maybe not enough reminders for them…

    • Chris Heyes says:

      Mark Can I add and no more Bendy, Beardy, Curve, Che and any other oneliners
      Positivity is infectious

    • David says:

      I mean, I agree with what you say, but also laughed out loud to hear you say it given some of the covid posts you’ve made recently.

  • Nick G says:

    Can anyone suggest a really nice Hilton chain (I’m gold that’s why) hotel in the Uk for a weekend break ideally with a pool?

    Was looking at the new fellows house in Cambridge


    • Mr(s) Entitled says:

      Double Tree Spa Hotel in Chester is a good option both as a hotel and place to visit.

    • Tariq says:

      Probably the best pool is St George’s Park, has been reviewed here before. Quite centrally located. Have seen good things about Doubletree Chester as below too, but not visited myself.

      • Mr(s) Entitled says:

        The pool at St George’s is good in the sense it is quite big, but it has a feel of a municipal gym. Hotel overall is okay, not great.

        Another good option is the Doubletree in Liverpool. This has a good pool/spa attached. Not ideal for lengths but a great place to relax and there is a ton of stuff to do in Liverpool.

    • The Savage Squirrel says:

      Sticking with the mid-range theme: DoubleTree Cadbury House (called Bristol South but not in Bristol at all). Nice rural location and landscaped grounds, nice pool/gym, nice steak restaurant and Bristol, Bath, Taunton and Wells all within striking distance.

      • Mark says:

        Dated rooms though and terrible service.
        No air conditioning in half the rooms too.
        I wouldn’t go back even if it was a free stay.

        • Tariq says:

          My experience was more along the line of Savage’s, but I’ve only stayed there once and had an upgrade to a decent room (think I was Gold at the time). Plenty to do in the area too – Wild Place park is brilliant.

      • Rob says:

        We stayed there after our recent Center Parcs trip. Lovely setting, the refurb had a bit of an ‘industrial’ vibe inc the restaurant which doesn’t really fit the surroundings, but as good as you could expect for a regional countryside DoubleTree.

    • Aaron C says:

      Hilton Glasgow has always been really good but I don’t know if the lounge has reopened yet.

      • thehornets says:

        That’s nice to hear Aaron C. I am planning on going here soon. Any tips on things to do in the area with older teenagers. Will have a car.

        • Aaron C says:

          Hornets- we don’t have children so no idea what they’d enjoy. Glasgow is a really cool city though so I’m sure there’s plenty for them.
          The lounge as Tariq says is/was superb.

      • Tariq says:

        Lounge used to be brilliant (in terms of happy hour offering) but I prefer the Doubletree Glasgow on Cambridge St. Free off peak on street parking there, decent status upgrades and another brilliant lounge.

    • Mark says:

      I’d head to the new double tree in Harrogate
      It’s very close to the historic city of York and also the Yorkshire dales, it has a pool and spa etc

      • Reney says:

        Thank you to Nick G for asking this question, I am loving following this. I have a free night that needs to be used by end of the year so this is amazing! I feel like I have completely overlooked doubletree in the UK.

        Looking at Mark’s recommendation, Harrogage points vs cash differential seems crazy, 110k points vs £190. Many of the other recommendations are 30k vs sub £100.

    • peter says:

      I’ve had the same question, gold with 60k points to use and was looking for a non-city hotel, decided to go for Cheltenham for 2 nights (40k weekend night, 30k weekday). Hotel seems little bit old (based on comments) but the area around seems nice..

  • Alan says:

    Soo Barclays Premier Avios – has anyone received the 25k bonus yet? It’s been showing in their (extremely rubbish) app since the get go along with more 4×1500 monthly bonus (and 4x monthly fees), the balance finally syncs rather than giving an error but so far no sign of 25k in my BAEC account, just 4×1500 – I thought it was due after the 3rd monthly payment, or was it the 3rd one after your current account switch competed?

    • Joe says:

      Mine still showing as pending in the app – not landed yet !

    • Matthew says:

      Not got mine either. 4 payments, 4×1500 Avios received. Bonus 25,000 showing in app from day one but never moved over. It was meant to appear with the 4th payment and therefore 4th 1500. See what happens next month I guess…

      • Alan says:

        Indeed, given how shockingly bad Barclays IT/app seems to be I guess not a surprise nothing yet but fingers crossed for next month!

  • Pete M says:

    Slightly biased here, as I used to run the contract, but I think the new(is) Heathrow Express trains (cl387) have settled in pretty nicely ( Some of the onboard videos are still a bit laggy, but that’s all I can really think of to complain about. What do others think?

    • Aliks says:

      Sadly I will never get a chance to see them as I live in South London.

    • BuildBackBetter says:

      On a similar note, Greater Anglia new trains are also pretty good. Was in Norwich and trains on all platforms were new ones. Atleast someone made good use of the pandemic downtime.

      • Oh! Matron says:

        Greater Anglia have never been the same since they got rid of the ex west coast rolling stock, for only one reason:

        used to live in Ipswich and occasionally have need to go into London for meetings: For £15, you’d be able to get a first class seat (non expensable) and a full English breakfast (Expensable!) whilst the masses argued for the limited seats in regular class

        They used to do a “curry club” one evening a week on the way back, which was amazing too

        If you could be a chef in what could be argued was the smallest kitchen ever, you could be a chef anywhere 🙂

        • Pete M says:

          Yes, but I am sure you’ll agree that wasn’t even starting to wash its face financially 🙂

    • Super Secret Stuff says:

      The new old trains are nice 😉 I joke, the electrostars are probably one of the best EMUs on the network

  • Ryanfozzie says:

    Good morning everyone!!

    Amex offer advice….

    Currently staying at The Lanesborough and firstly… wow. Anyway, I have The Leading Hotels of the World Amex offer £100 back for spending £350. The offer states to book via Leading Hotels of the World, but it’s valid on checkout spend. My rate was booked direct with the hotel and will be settled upon checkout. I assume the offer will trigger?

    • Harry T says:

      Probably will work.

      • Ryanfozzie says:

        Thanks! I assumed the same (as it’s based on checkout spend), just wanted the warm fuzzy feeling haha!

    • Ryanfozzie says:

      I was wondering today how much membership was!!

      • Metty says:

        ahem…over £2k a year…

        • Rob says:

          If you get unlimited spa usage for that then it’s a bargain. It is, simply, the best facility of its type I’ve ever seen in the UK.

  • L Allen says:

    Someone has hacked my Hilton Hhonors account and changed the email and password! Apparently there’s no customer services on a Sunday who can help. Has anyone else had this, were they helpful in resolving it?

    • Doug M says:

      Not sure with HH specifically, but normally to change a username or password your email would also need to have been compromised, I’d check that too.

    • Anna says:

      How do you know – have you had a notification that the details have been changed or can you just not log in?

    • Doogie says:

      I had mine done a few years ago – they emptied out the measly 30k or so points in it with a stay in Aberdeen.

      Spoke to Hilton CS and messaged the Hilton person on Flyertalk and they were generally unable or uninterested in helping, so just sucked it up.

      • Anna says:

        Surely the reception staff in Aberdeen could have helped?! I’d definitely want to know who was staying on my points.

  • tony says:

    Hypothetical question if I may….

    Say Greece is moved onto the Amber + list. The announcement is made on a Thursday and takes effect from 4am Monday morning. (our current return flight is booked for a Tuesday…)

    Am I right in thinking that so long as I’m in a normal Amber country by 4am on the Monday, then I’m OK to just do the day 2 PCR test, even though i’ll have been in Greece in the preceding 10 days?

    I assume so, otherwise you’d have the bizarre situation where someone returning on the Thursday would be free to roam over the weekend but then have to go into quarantine on the Monday – although given the ‘policies’ we’ve seem emerging in recent weeks, this wouldn’t entirely surprise me, either.


    • L Allen says:

      It’s where you’ve been in the 10 days prior to entering the UK. You have to list all the countries you’ve been in. I’m not entirely sure your plan would work

    • Tracey says:

      I think you are wrong on both counts.

      The person returning on the Thursday is fine. They have returned from an amber country, so just do a Day2 test by the end of day 2 and assuming double jabbed in the UK don’t need to isolate at all.

      You, returning at a time when you have been in an amber plus country within the last 10 days at your time of entry to the UK, need to isolate for 10 days (or 5+ with TTR).

    • Reney says:

      Isn’t the situation you described as bizarre exactly what happened last summer i.e lots of people rushed back before the quarantine rules kicked in so they didn’t have to quarantine on return.

      If the rules came in at 4am Monday and you are still in the country and coming back on Tuesday I would have thought you would be subjected to the rules per L Allen’s comment. But I’m sure others who know better will follow shortly.

    • Mark says:

      That was my understanding too but I could be wrong. As long as you left the country before it goes amber plus or red then you’ve never been in an amber plus country as when you were there it was amber. But interested in hearing other peoples views.

      • Nick says:

        No, it’s the country’s status on the day you arrive back in the UK that counts, not what it was while you were there. So if on Tue it’s A+ and you’ve been there in the last 10 days, then you have to isolate, regardless of when you left.

        • Optimus Prime says:

          Exactly otherwise for the past 18 months people wouldn’t have rushed to come back when the country they’re in is downgraded.

          • Tony says:

            No, because they were rushing to leave the country before the situation changed. The fact they came straight home is the material difference.

            A leaves country C on day 1.
            B leaves country C on day 7

            A flies to country D for nine days then flies home
            B flies straight home

            Country C goes Amber plus on day 8
            Country D stays Amber

            Pax A has to isolate for 10 days, despite leaving country C a week before passenger A.

            So it would make more sense to look at the status of the country on the day you left, not on the day you get home – although I appreciate this doesn’t seem to be the way it works.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      you’d be subject to Amber+ rule as you’d been in an amber in the 10 days prior to the day of your arrival.

      It’s the classification of the country the day you arrive not the classification it was while you were there.

      • Tony says:

        Thanks all

        so does anyone know if an unvaccinated 16 yr old travelling with vaccinated adults can TTR on day 5?

        • Tracey says:

          They can.

          • Tracey says:

            But anyone under 18 doesn’t have to isolate on return from an amber country. From amber plus anyone can do TTR whatever their age.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          Vaccine status of companions makes 0 diff to u18’s arriving in U.K.

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