Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Tuesday 27th July

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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.

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Comments (382)

  • Igloo says:

    Does anybody have any recommendations of nice spa hotels in or around Manchester? I have both Hilton and Marriott points but for this stay I don’t mind paying cash either.

    • Grant says:

      The Mere is worth a look. Bit blingy and footballers wives kind of style but the facilities are decent.

    • Degsy says:

      Mottram Hall which is now a Champneys well worth a look. About 15 miles from the city centre. Lovely part of the world.

    • The Savage Squirrel says:

      Britannia Stockport has a spa.

      Only kidding 😀 Anyway, agree that bling and Cheshire wives are hard to avoid.
      Rookery Hall worth a look too.

    • Igloo says:

      Thanks for the suggestions! I will look into those! I don’t think it’s a Britannia hotel kind of trip lol!

  • ChrisC says:

    Q re the BA 300 mile rule for rebooking cancelled flights.

    Does it apply to BA Holiday bookings

    Trying to help a friend who has a CDG-LHR-USA booking later in the year. CDG-LHR cancelled so he’s wondering if he can start in AMS instead.

  • BJ says:

    OT: O2 customers might want to check their offers and Priority. I got 6 months free Disney+ today despite being on only a £6/month SIMO.

    • Andrew says:

      Yes seems to be a new offer for all customers with the Priority App. Don’t forget your Friday Greggs too!

      • Magic Mike says:

        Not for me on PAYG. But I did already redeem 3 months free over the winter.

    • ChrisC says:

      I got an email the other day saying my subscription would be going up £2 a month!

      • David says:

        Pretty sure that has always been in the t&c if read past the offer. Goes up £2 per month after whatever the offer period offered is?

        • ChrisC says:

          It’s going up £2 but I retain the £ 2 a month discount.

          Still means I’m paying £2 a month more!

  • r* says:

    Does anyone know what time of day virgin ana awards are made available? And is it 330 days out?

    • meta says:

      330 days out. Supposed to be midnight. If you’re looking for more than 1 ticket in F or J, forget about it. The only way to secure 2 tickets with Virgin miles is very close to departure or if you have access to Star Alliance miles, you can book 355 days out with those then cancel and rebook on Virgin at the same time which carries some risk.

      • r* says:

        Thats the problem Im having, I need 2 seats, fine with any combination of J or F, doesnt need to be 2 in the same class but I can only ever find 1 J or 1 F on the flights, never one of each lol.

        • meta says:

          Yes, two seats are only available to Star Alliance members unfortunately. I did a gamble earlier this year and secured two F seats by booking both seats via Star Alliance (Krisflyer) then canceling them just before calling Virgin to rebook via Virgin. Total luck as they could have not gone back to the inventory!

  • Chelseafi says:

    Lounge access Heathrow T5, for two, traveling in few weeks, what are the options to guarantee lounge access, I don’t have any left via my amexGold PP, so I assume I can prebook for £6 and then pay £20 ea? For the offer in pinned article for Friday do these guarantee entry/or can you prebook? Thank you

    • Andrew says:

      Assuming you are travelling economy with no status?

    • Rob says:

      You can’t prebook for Club Aspire and, frankly, it isn’t worth £20.

      If Plaza Premium is open – they seem to be having ‘ping’ issues with staff – it is a better deal but Priority Pass not accepted so you’re down to paying whatever the current rate is. Best deal may be the offer we discuss in this article which runs from Friday. It is worth a premium over Aspire.

      Alternatively, go to the Gordon Ramsay restaurant and spend £60 on a decent meal.

  • KBuffett says:

    I’ve been in the Marble Arch area a few times over the last few weeks. They have been ‘constructing’ something and every time I went past I thought ‘WTF is this?’

    Anyway, it’s made the home page of the DailyMail. So now I know!

    • TGLoyalty says:

      the silly fake hill you have to pay £4 to go up?

      • KBuffett says:

        Indeed. It wasn’t clear what they what was being built when I went past, but it’s certainly ugly. Anyone who’s seen it will know what I mean, it really makes you wonder who makes these types of decisions.

        • JDB says:

          It looks quite nice now it’s finished and should have good views. I think you will find it will be incredibly popular (I’m told it is already fully booked for this weekend) and it’s only there until the end of the year.

    • AJA says:

      That slagheap covered in moss apparently cost a mere £2million. Talk about making a mountain out of a molehill. I can’t help thinking they could have spent the money in a better way. I am tempted to write to our lovely Mayor of London and suggest they should have spent the money to turn Oxford Street into a LTN.

      • JDB says:

        It wasn’t paid for by the Mayor! You need to write to the City of Westminster who commissioned it and say they expect to recoup the money from sponsorship and ticket sales. The commentary is, at best, mixed which may actually persuade people to come and have a look which is what they want. The concept of the poppies at the Tower of London was slagged off until it became super popular and they sold out! Paris is always doing weird ‘pop up’ things…

        • AJA says:

          I know it was commissioned by WCC as a means of tempting people back to Oxford Street but did they do so without consulting the Mayor’s office? He must have had some say.

          I liked the poppies around the Tower of London , this carbuncle not so much. It’s interesting that they’re offering refunds and free tickets for later in August for those who’ve already been as you can’t even look over Hyde Park because the trees in the park block the view! Not sure how you are supposed to see down Oxford Street since it’s to the south of the Marble Arch itself in the roundabout.

          Also turns out the fee to climb the 134 stairs to the top is at least £4.50 for adults but that’s only Mon-Fri. It costs £5.50 over the weekend. They even offer “fast track” so that should appeal to HfPers 😀. Apparently there is a M&S cafe inside too. They will need over 444,000 visitors paying £4.50 between now and the end of January just to break even. Good luck with that. But I do wish them well and hopefully it is a success.

  • ash says:

    Hi, Hope this makes sense. Anyone know if the reward availability for Qatar Qmiles is the same as what shows on BA? I’m thinking of Maldives may next year, booking Qatar economy and upgrading to business with QMiles. If I do credit Amex MR to Qmiles for upgrade can you move them to avios or anything useful? Bit worried I book it covid still hangs around then can’t use the qmiles for anything useful. Booking reward flights through BA for Qatar is really high and not worth it.

    Cheers Ash

  • tom says:

    rumors of avios devaluation on miles to memories blog, you guys hear anything?

    • Andrew says:

      Sounds pretty limited to CX and JL redemptions with a small increase in Avios required. Certainly won’t be having sleepless nights over that.

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