Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Monday 2nd August

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

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Comments (431)

  • M says:

    BAPP advice welcome.

    I got a BAPP card recently. After just two statements I have spent over 5k, so got the bonus, all good. This was an unusual period for me though with lots of extra spending (that’s why I got the card in the first place).

    From now on I will revert to my usual spending pattern, say 1k a month.
    I could either just keep the card and reach 10k spending for the voucher in 5 months, or I could downgrade/upgrade the card to minimise the fee.

    Are there any downsides to the downgrade/upgrade path? I quite like Amex so would prefer to stay in their good books 😉

    • JDB says:

      The downside is that the upgrade / downgrade routine may not exist forever as it relies on various concessions (and additionally at present non enforcement of terms) by Amex rather than any T&Cs so could change without notice. With the gap between the two voucher types being so great after 1 Sep, it seems likely they will tighten policy to protect the £250 payers/ensure more people pay the fee.

      • Super Secret Stuff says:

        Also the person is locked in at the lower rate right now. Is it worth giving that up? 5 more months and you’ll get the voucher then can downgrade

        • M says:

          Hmm thinking more about it, assuming I spend 5k in 5 months, I will pay about £60 more, but will also get 5000 avios more, so effectively I am buying those avios for £60, with the added benefit of not rattling the boat (and not risking tighter T&C enforcement wrt downgrade/upgrade path).

          So I think I will just keep the card for now.

          • M says:

            Actually, bad calculation, I only get 2500 avios more, so a bit less appealing.

          • TGLoyalty says:

            Personally I’d stick with BAPP. And perhaps add in some BA spend

  • swifty says:

    Morning everyone, what the best card for a sign up now, I have ba blue, and gold buss and ihg, other person has gold amex personal (+supp on my blue). The other person needs another card. Also which rev/and bend should I get pls, anyone? Am new to this and trying to work out the merry go round. I would love it pls if some kind soul could just email me with the answer on how to do it. my email is bodyspa 88 at yahoo couk I’ve driven myself a bit mad trying to work it out myself. Many thanks

  • Stu_N says:

    Hart Shoreditch mini-review

    Had a really nice stay this weekend following suggestions from Rob and others when I asked a few weeks ago. We booked a Skylight Suite which was a good size and nice and quiet as it was at the back of the hotel. Really nice hotel – didn’t feel much like a normal Hilton at all, furnishings to very high standard and I liked the decor, definitely had the design/ boutique feel we were after. Great location for Shoreditch/ Hoxton, staff very helpful and friendly and a good bar. Breakfast was hot a la carte with juice/ cereal/ pastries self service. Really nice weekend, we had cocktails at Happiness Forgets, dinner at Lyle’s and lunch yesterday at Eataly – all within 10-15 mins walk of hotel and all fabulous.

    • Save East Coast Rewards says:

      A Curio should never feel like a Hilton, each one should be unique. I had this hotel booked last year but had to cancel when restrictions had started to increase again in November. Hopefully I’ll get to try it later this year. There’s a few hotels I want to try in London (one is the new DoubleTree Kensington that used to be a Crowne Plaza, I had some good stays there around 2010).

      The Ace Hotel on 100 Shoreditch High Street closed, that also used to be a Crowne Plaza. Does anyone know whether it’s still closed there or has something opened up in its place?

      • Stu N says:

        Can’t say specifically about Ace Hotel but quite a few places had not reopened yet. Mondrian just round the corner from the Hart was closed, for example, and quite a few bars and restaurants were still in hibernation.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          Mondrian is a brand new conversion. Don’t think it opens until late summer.

    • GaryE says:

      Can Emyr get a better deal at the Curio hotel in Shoreditch – Hilton Gold card so would get free breakfast and ‘possible’ room upgrade?

  • Roberto says:

    Data point Horizon stopped my usual points run this morning.
    Wouldn’t go through as usual so I’m assuming they must have pulled the plug before the date that the change of terms comes into effect.
    Anyone else in a similar position that uses the card?

    • Paul Pogba says:

      Just tried to make “a payment” and it declined, it worked yesterday.

  • JSemity says:

    Very much off topic but can anyone recommend a good (but reasonably priced) accountant to do end of year accounts for an SPV property lettings company. I’ve done all the book keeping. Should be simple enough for a clued up accountant. A lot of quotes coming in £500++ which seems a little steep for what would probably be 2 hours work max.

    • JDB says:

      We use accountants for various small pieces of work and I’m not sure that’s too bad a price. You say it’s probably only two hours work, but they need to set up a client agreement letter with you and carry out checks, they are lending you their name and providing professional insurance etc. If you already had a relationship with an accountant, they might look at it as two hours work, but otherwise it’s not something that fills them with enthusiasm.

    • Sam G says:

      That’s the going rate I think – I certainly haven’t found anything cheaper. No personal experience but was recommended theaccountancy.co.uk (basic) or (https://www.optimiseaccountants.co.uk/services/buy-to-let-accountant/) – property specialists – more expensive.

      Am considering DIY – I’ve some accountancy training from a recent qualification and Xero outputs a lot of it for you. Just worried a mistake could end up making it a false economy!

    • JSemity says:

      thanks both. Yes, I was also considering DIY as I do another of my company’s accounts myself. Bit more cash involved with this one though and added complexities with finance & capital expenses

      • Ryan says:

        Personally I quote a minimum of £500 for CT600 and YE accounts, up to £1k+ for a complete package

        I would have confidence that anyone charging less than £500 will just push your work through at the minimum required.

        A good accountant will be worth a higher fee in the tax savings / planning they provide you.

        Definitely a false economy with a lot of cheap quotes

    • Jamie says:

      If your requirements are relatively straightforward, you are happy with not using a big name firm and are confident your records are comprehensive and up to date then have a look on sites like peopleperhour.com. You will find qualified accountants willing to provide end of year accounts/CT600 filing (+/- general advice on an hourly basis) for far cheaper than your current quote.

    • Martin Short says:

      I would quote 650, so take a 500!.
      Its 30years experience you’re payong for.
      Dont forget we have MLR to contrnd with as well as liability

  • bsuije says:

    Sorry if already posted, but just spotted a new offer on my BA Amex – Spend £500 get £50 back at Apple (actually, it says “Apple iPhone” but I cannot see any product restrictions in the T&Cs). First 30k cardholders to save; expires 31/08/2021.

  • Benilyn says:

    Ideas for Central London (near Knightsbridge ideally) for 1 night? Something fancy, up to £300 pn. Asking for a friend with no status etc, so probably try via Emyr.

    • YC says:

      Top end stuff (MO, berkeley, etc) are around 500-600. Cafe Royal on regent st has an amex offer and looks v. good + likely emyr benefits could work out well

    • Save East Coast Rewards says:

      Some of the better Hilton group hotels such as the Conrad St James (as a Conrad Emyr can get you extra benefits) are going for under £200/night when they’re usually over £300

  • Points says:

    Do we see any benefit in the Etihad Amex Platinum offer , book a ticket and get a voucher later to travel by march 22.?Any other way of maximising it ?

    • Blair says:

      Many are wary of Etihad right now. Abu Dhabi govt pride will keep them afloat but they’ll have a much-dimimished fleet and destination map. Perfect if you really love Abu Dhabi as the Heathrow flight is bound to be retained.

      • Rob says:

        Effectively it is now a point to point airline. Staff have told me this. What it means in practice is that there will be no attempt to funnel arrivals and departures into waves and you could easily find yourself waiting half a day for a connection.

    • meta says:

      I’m thinking of paying taxes for 2 people on award booking from London for 2022. I hope it does trigger the offer, no reason it should not.

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