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The HfP chat thread – Tuesday 3rd August

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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 (315)

  • Harry T says:

    Quick question about the Netherlands. My understanding, after reviewing the official website, is that travellers cannot enter from the UK but there are no restrictions on entering from safe EU countries. Does anyone know if there is a set number of days you must have been in a safe EU country before entering the Netherlands? I couldn’t find this information, so it seems anyone can go to the Netherlands, if they pop to France or Germany first…

    • Maciek says:

      No check on intra-schengen so you’re fine to go Amsterdam via Frankfurt.

    • E says:

      I think you’ll still face problems if you’re travelling with a British passport and you can’t prove you live outside the UK. The NL government website says:
      “If you are coming from a country where the risk of contracting COVID-19 is low (a safe country) you do not need to show a negative test result. You are also not required to self-quarantine when you arrive in the Netherlands. This is only applicable if you live or reside in this ‘safe country’.”

      • Harry T says:

        Thanks. Probably won’t be an issue if travelling without border checks though?

        • Tazzy says:

          I travelled Dublin to Vienna (for medical reasons) on a British passport. No one questioned my entry at border control and I was not asked for reasons.

  • Marie says:

    Alternatives to home PCR fit to fly with Randox please. They are reporting 6 days to delivery of kit!
    North west / Midlands based please

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Expert medical?

      • PM says:

        My expert medicals day 2 test, ordered 3 days before arrival, was delivered on day 5, meaning results won’t be known until day 7 or 8.

        Really nice tests, honestly priced (or rather least dishonestly), highly recommended, perhaps not for a test to release.

    • BP says:

      Nope. £88 CTM test only for Scotland. There have been reports of border control checking and making people buy the CTM test if you have another on your PLF. It’s a risk you take…

      • Muhammad Abdullah says:

        Reports where?

        • BP says:

          Tripadvisor forums. Apparently, people have been stopped at Edinburgh airport and made to apply for the CTM test before being allowed back into the country. Personally, I’m going to chance it anyway! Using Randox/Expert Medicals is very much complying with the spirit of the law.

          I suspect the conversation in the Scottish Government went along the line of “Let’s not allow use of the UK test providers as they are related to the Tories and we can’t be seen to support that”. Unfortunately they missed the fact that CTM have links to the Conservative Party.

  • John says:

    OMG Sweaty Betty’s just been sold for £300 million+. What if the offers dry up!!!?

    • Andrew says:

      That explains all the offers then – trying to bump up consumer sales ahead of the sale. Let’s hope the new owners calm down the offers a bit – if I ever see that brand name again it’ll be too soon – I even shudder when I walk past a high st shop now.

      • Jonathan says:

        Oh for a repetitive Amex offer to be the biggest gripe in my life!

      • Harry T says:

        The people demand recurring Lululemon offers!

        • Brighton Belle says:

          I am partial to the Coop will writing service. I’m not sure what my expiry date is to be sure to take advantage of the offer.

      • Tony1 says:

        A form of MS ?

  • BuildBackBetter says:

    Won’t impact many on here, but sharing the news anyway

    Monzo is facing a criminal investigation by the Financial Conduct Authority as the watchdog cracks down on suspected money laundering breaches.

  • Craig says:

    Late question I know, I’ll ask again tomorrow if most people are in bed! My sister finally has her NZ visa, she flies in a few days via Amsterdam and Narita. As far as I can tell Japan is straightforward because she departs on the same day she arrives. However, the rules for the Netherlands more complex and contradictory. On one site it states she’s fine and another says she’s not? One says she needs to fill in a quarantine exemption form and another says no? Any idea?

    • Blenz101 says:

      https://www.government.nl/topics/coronavirus-covid-19/visiting-the-netherlands-from-abroad/checklist-transit-or-short-stay

      Sounds like she can transit under this exception “ You are travelling through the Netherlands to a non-EU country. You must prove that you have a connecting flight to a country outside the Schengen area. The connecting flight must depart within 48 hours of your arrival in the Netherlands. You must not leave the airport’s international transit zone in this period.”

      Not going to find any better answers than the NL own government website.

      • Craig says:

        Thanks Blenz101, what I was also struggling with from this website is that it seems she still needs a quarantine form even though she isn’t staying?

        • TGLoyalty says:

          Assuming it’s referring to the fact she’s not free to see Netherlands between flights …

        • Blenz101 says:

          As she won’t be entering the Netherlands this issue isn’t going to arise. She won’t be leaving the airside transit area.

          If she was entering the country under one of the other potential exceptions then the form would come into play at the border.

          • TGLoyalty says:

            This bits thrown me …

            “As far as I can tell Japan is straightforward because she departs on the same day she arrives.”

            I assumed the complication and form question was she ISNT staying airside like she is in Japan as that isn’t made clear. Apologies for the confusion.

  • Muhammad Abdullah says:

    What’s the limit on cash withdrawal on Bendy in the UK for metal please? Fee free of course

    • stevenhp1987 says:

      Fair usage is £200 per calendar month from a credit card. No such policy with an underlying debit card.

      Max £1,000 per day for a personal card.

      You shouldn’t need more cash than that though!

  • Clive says:

    Rumour Thailand is going on the naughty list this week (Red). I wonder if Phuket will be made an exception.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      The red list should be getting smaller not bigger ..

      • Rob says:

        They are totally mad. Ireland and Germany (the only two lists I have seen recently) put Dubai on their ‘no risk’ Green list. Dubai is seen as safer than the UK to the Germans who keep us on their naughty list.

  • Anony says:

    Any tips on booking the Shangri-La London?

    I’m wanting to go for the Iconic City View Room (unless anyone suggests otherwise!); I’ve been advised to request a room that’s lower down in the building (the shard is narrower at the top, so lower rooms are bigger), and to ask for a bathroom with a view.

    Anyone who’s stayed there can suggest if the above tips are good or bad advice, and can say what else to ask for? I also have the Luxury Circle Rate through my employer but not sure if there’s ways of getting a better package?

    • Rob says:

      This is what Emyr can get you:

      Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
      Daily buffet breakfast for two guests per bedroom in Ting Restaurant or via in-room dining
      $100 USD equivalent Food & Beverage Credit to be utilized at TING Restaurant & Lounge during stay (not combinable, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
      Early check-in, subject to availability and Guaranteed 4pm check-out
      Complimentary Wi-Fi

      Stay Four, Pay Three
      Valid for Travel Now Through 30 Dec 2021. Book By 26 Dec 2021
      Extend the sky-high experience with four nights for the price of three within the city’s most iconic building at Shangri-La Hotel, At The Shard, London. All Rooms & Suite categories offer floor-to-ceiling panorama windows with the best views over London. Bookable until 26 December 2021 and valid for travel until 30 December 2021. Not valid on existing bookings. The “Stay Four Pay Three” can be combined with the “Guaranteed Upgrade Offer” which subject to availability at the time of the reservation.

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