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The HfP chat thread – Friday 30th 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.

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Comments (382)

  • LS says:

    What is the cheapest Day 2 test for return from a green country (with code)?
    Ideally I would want an in-home test that I have to take a photo/video of me doing.

    • LS says:

      Lateral flow ideally as well, so quick result. Google just throws up £250 tests that the supplier has paid £££ to get to the top of the search, and I can’t find sensible ones!

      • stevenhp1987 says:

        Day 2 has to be a PCR test.

        The cheapest as far as I’m aware is Expert Medicals. £28 plus £7.99 delivery.

      • tony says:

        does it let you buy multiple kits at the same time? I need 5 so a saving on the P&P would be welcome but the website seems to require 5 separate transactions.

        • Anna says:

          You’ve got to order them individually but all mine have turned up very promptly via DPD.

          • Lawro says:

            @Anna / others who have used Expert Medicals – are you putting in your actual return travel dates? I’d rather have the kits as soon as possible and prefer to know they’ve arrived before I depart.

          • Simon says:

            You need the code for your PLF, you will have done a test to get back on the plane. Who cares if the actual test turns up or not. You’ve done your part…..

          • Rob says:

            That’s taking quite a narrow definition of “doing your part” I think ….

          • Simon says:

            Narrow, but accurate. How many tests do you need to take?! The whole airport should be full of squeaky clean tested passengers. If I get home, and the day 2 test is there, I will take it and send it off. If it hasnt arrived, I won’t chase it up…..

  • Ryanfozzie says:

    Good morning all!

    Have a upcoming stay at a hotel I’m not going to disclose in this moment from the 1st to 2nd August. For reference, we booked their top suite (special stay) with cash as a spire elite member. Just had a voicemail stating ‘We are sorry but it turns out we overbooked this room and are going to have to downgrade you “.

    Understandably pretty frustrated, I notice the below policy from IHG:

    A Guaranteed RoomBooking on is the best way to guarantee your room. If for any reason your reservation cannot be honored, IHG will provide you with a room and transportation to another convenient and comparable hotel. And, we’ll pay for the full cost of the first night’s lodging price, plus tax. Any advance deposit will be refunded to you.
    So, that being the case, would you expect this policy to take affect in my case? The hotel is not fully overbooked – just the top suite…


    • Nick says:

      If this is the Intercontinental at the O2 they’re known for flouting IHG policy so don’t hope for too much.

      • Ryanfozzie says:

        No it’s not, it’s a Hotel Indigo for this weekend. Only just been notified of the room not being available. Only option they say is a downgrade and the policy is only for total hotel overbooking.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          Bath? I’d get on the phone to IHG they need to compensate for the downgrade.

          • Ryanfozzie says:

            Not Bath (not naming yet as I want to give the hotel a fair chance). They will offer us a reduced rate for the downgrade, but I am wondering if the IHG policy should kick in and thus it be free.

    • Char Char says:

      If you booked on then I would expect it, contact the hotel and ask them but be prepared to fight!

      • Ryanfozzie says:

        I did book on As mentioned, they can accommodate us in a lower room category, just not the suite we booked due to overbooking. The hotel says the policy is only if they are completely overbooked, but personally I don’t interpret it like that…

        • Blenz101 says:

          Does the talk of transporting you to another nearby hotel and paying for your transport not give you a clue that the policy is related to when the hotel is completely overbooked and unable to accomodate you? i.e. if you are walked then they will pay your first night.

          It doesn’t talk about downgrades.

          • Ryanfozzie says:

            I guess that’s why I’m putting it to the public:

            A Guaranteed RoomBooking on is the best way to guarantee your room. If for any reason your reservation cannot be honored, IHG will provide you with a room and transportation to another convenient and comparable hotel. And, we’ll pay for the full cost of the first night’s lodging price, plus tax. Any advance deposit will be refunded to you.

            Now I think specifically “If for any reason your reservation cannot be honored” is the case no? Again, just seeing what peoples feedback is.

          • Char Char says:

            It’s obviously not clear.

    • BP says:

      I’d phone customer service. Have a suitable compensation amount in mind – “I’d like the first night to be complimentary for the inconvenience when this was a booking for a special occasion.”

      • Ryanfozzie says:

        I did try calling IHG CS first of all which was a mistake…. 30 mins of being sent round from person to person for the call to disconnect!

    • meta says:

      I’d expect more from hotel in terms of compensation regarding downgrade. Yes, the difference between the full rate of the original room and downgraded room is not compensation, but they should have offered something extra for the inconvenience such as free breakfast, drinks, substantial F&B discount, etc. Plus a promise of a definite upgrade to a top suite on a next stay. IHG CS won’t help you, but you might have to resort to email hotel’s press rep, negative comment on their IG/Twitter/FB profile etc. to push them to make you a better offer.

      You also need to think about whether downgrade is acceptable to you given the special occasion and whether there are comparable hotels in vicinity with similar suites. You might want to tell them you’d like to be staying there and they pay for the first night. Then it’s up to a hotel whether they want a paying customer or not.

      Be polite, but strong in your demands.

      • Ryanfozzie says:

        So the latest is the following….

        (Just for clarify, we booked a rate at £230 for said top suite with parking + breakfast. The reason for this is because we have the Amex spend £200 get £50 back offer)

        The hotel have said they will give us a rate of £136.20 which is the cost for their cheapest room and upgrade us to the room type just under the booked suite. They did mention how it is pretty much the same, just slightly smaller etc. We also confirmed we can charge back items from the restaurant to the room, so I see it as paying £150 (£200 before Amex offer) for their 2nd nicest room with breakfast, parking and a Sunday lunch. I consider that ‘not too bad’ and not sure it is worthy of such a flight for a begrudged free stay.

        Maybe I will push IHG CS for some points as an extra gesture…..

        • Lady London says:

          They’re not doing a lot for you. Don’t be fooled by the ‘only slightly smaller’. How much bar ( make sure it includes bar)/restaurant spend are they comping you? It seems you are in a worse room and really hardly any better off having lost the Amex offer.

          My gut feeling is you will get there on Sunday and there will be further problems or they won’t really deliver what they are making the room sound like.

          Unless my net cash paid is reduced to £100-£130 and certain the one level down is pretty much same as what you booked in every way… I’d say no thanks this isba special stay and I’d like you to walk me to the better hotel

      • Ryanfozzie says:

        Update on page 7 replying to Lady London…..

    • Lady London says:

      replied Wordpress put it on page 7. sigh.

  • Joe Green says:

    Ideas please – IHG free night certificate have 3 nights to use looks like I am stuck using in the UK. Have 6 + 2yr old children looking for somewhere we can use it for a suite or similar so plenty space anywhere in UK.
    Alternative is booking 2 rooms and paying 3 nights points but think that will get me less value as have to redeem points and anyway prefer a suite to 2 basic rooms.
    So is there anyway suites that can be booked with free night voucher?

    • Anna says:

      Usually standard rooms only however there are a few hotels which let you book family rooms. Unfortunately there’s no way to filter for this – you need to put it that you’ve booking for 2 people then see what the system throws up. Some hotels will show you rooms with 2 doubles or a sofa bed. Off the top of my head CPs and HIs are the best bet for this.
      Otherwise you could book a standard room then ask if you can be upgraded to a family room or suite, you may or may not have to pay for this!

  • Char Char says:

    10% off IHG offer on Curve Rewards

  • Ant says:

    how are people getting the Expert Medical Day 2 test cheap? When i go on their website the Green List Day 2 Test (Home Kit) is £36.
    I am just looking for the cheapest Day 2 test possible.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      What do you mean by so cheap?

      As pointed out it’s £28 + 7.99 delivery so £35.99. See comment and link right at the top of this page.

  • Jacob says:

    Have a honeymoon to Netherlands & France in 3 1/2 weeks, and have held off booking flights with the situation changing.
    Slowly losing hope that the Netherlands will accept UK double-jabbed visitors in time, but reluctant to postpone/cancel as knowing my luck they will!

    Should I rearrange and just stick to France which seems more likely to be trouble free?

  • A says:

    Green energy query…. I’ve taken the opportunity to top up my account by Amex several times over the last year(taking advantage of the bonus on topups) but struggled to get them to reduce my direct debit as the monthly payment “needs to match my usage”. The only option is to get the credit back is by refund. I guess the 10% bonus on topups was helpful but now struggling to audit my account activity to ensure they haven’t refunded that too! They also appear to be refunding back to source card. What do others do, if anything?

    • SteveJ says:

      That’s odd. Same situation, I messaged them and said as is done card top ups could they reduce my DD to £25. They agreed no questions asked. Have you suggested a £££ amount and if so how low?

  • Sandgrounder says:

    Probably been asked a million times, but if I sign up for Ambassador using the current promo and book two nights using the weekend free night before the end of August, will the paid night trigger the promotional free night voucher?
    I know there is an exclusion in the terms, but has anyone had success?

    • YC says:

      Yes confirm it triggers. Issue is where can u use the 40k cert! Points have skyrocketed in every half decent property

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