Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Wednesday 8th September

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Comments (508)

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  • JB says:

    I signed up for the BA Premium Plus Amex on the 10th August which was approved and the card arrived the next day – thinking I’d beat the price increase from £195. However just checked my statement and it seems that I’ve been charged £250 membership fee yesterday. Anyone had similar?

    • Rob says:

      Someone else has had the same problem. Push back at Amex and if you get nowhere let me know.

      • Paul says:

        I had the same issue. Still awaiting the £55 refund they agreed to when I complained

    • Stephan says:

      Could you keep the fee as is and ensure you get the higher SUB?

    • Sandra B says:

      Yes same for me and the CS agent quoted me £195 on the phone.

    • Ancient says:

      I am the same. Will contact Amex CS at lunch.

    • Yorkieflyer says:

      Mrs Yorkieflyer upgraded after her early august statement date. The new card arrived with T & C’s stating an annual fee of £195. No correspondence in the meantime stating an increase yet £250 billed today

    • Harley says:

      Same as me , chat said was mistake and they will refund in due course

  • Cats are best says:

    Decided to savour the late summer with breakfast at Colbert. Any HfPers there around 8, I’ll be the chap with the bike.

    • Char Char says:

      Order me a double espresso, I’ll be late

    • WaynedP says:

      Nice gesture.

      Hope you get to share your breakfast with a companionable, like-minded, conversationalist.

      • Rob says:

        Just saw this, sorry. I am taking it easier on Pavilion Road with a coffee and croissant.

  • RJA says:

    Can you track the spend £5000 get 10000 avios offer on the BAPP? Has anyone had an email saying they have triggered it? I’m pretty sure one of our cards has done it and want to switch spend to another one but want to be sure. What date did the offer first appear?

    Has anyone had the second set of 3000 avios for the supp card offer?

    Thanks.

    • Andrew says:

      It started on 23 August

      • Rob says:

        I am in the same boat. I am over £5k but nothing has happened. All I can think of is that some of the £5k is Amex’s FX fee and perhaps they don’t count this? I am doing a bit of extra spend to get over £5k of ‘real’ spend.

        • xcalx says:

          Avios credited and recieved email below.

          Spend £5,000 anywhere, get 10,000 bonus Avios

          We noticed you used your American Express® Card ending xxxxx at Avios. If your transaction meets the offer terms, your credit should appear on your statement within five business days (however it can take up to 90 days from the Offer end date)

        • Andy says:

          I’m fairly close but just got a refund of a BA flight of £1000 from a couple of months ago. Will that increase the amount I need to spend to get the 10000 points or because it was a refund from spend before the period it doesn’t count?

          • CarpalTravel says:

            99.9% yes. I have the same problem and watched as my companion voucher got further out of reach despite the original payment being from the previous “card year”. No reason this offer therefore will be any different.

    • mr_jetlag says:

      I’ve triggered the 10k, points credited but still awaiting the 3k supp bonus.

    • Sprout says:

      10k received for me last week. No e-mail.

      • Peter K says:

        Just checking as I bit the £5k spend 2 days ago. Was spend via PayPal included?

  • Simon L says:

    Hi I’m a platinum bonvoy member , currently in house at a hotel in the U.K. I have asked for a late check out (16.00) which I believe I’m entitled to , however they will not honour even know all room types are still for sale today , am I entitled to comp ?

    • Rob says:

      If it’s not a resort hotel then it is a guaranteed benefit, so you can lodge a complaint.

      • YC says:

        Any complicated brand restrictions like breakfast for the 4pm guarantee (outside of ‘resorts’)?

        • Rob says:

          v. 4 p.m. Late Checkout. Platinum Elite Members and above may check out as late as 4 p.m. local time of the Participating Property. Members can request late checkout when making a reservation through central reservations, at check-in, via the mobile app (where available) or at any time during their stay. This benefit is guaranteed at all Participating Properties, except at resort and convention hotels and Design HotelsTM, where it is based upon availability. Marriott Vacation Club, Marriott Grand Residence Club, and Vistana properties are excluded from this benefit.

          • YC says:

            Thanks – have specifically booked a marriott hotel for this so will be enforcing it later in the week

      • Simon L says:

        Hey Rob , it was a tribute hotel in the U.K. they wouldn’t budge at all with the late check out even though I said it’s guaranteed . I’ve checked out already how , do you think if I contact Marriott customer service via email will they offer anything ?

        • Rob says:

          Worth the email in case. Say you only booked Marriott because you needed late check out.

          • Simon L says:

            Hey Rob , thanks for advice , will do , I’ve got another tribute hotel booked tomorrow (different one ) let’s see what happens then …

    • Harry T says:

      If it’s not a resort or convention hotel, then your 4pm checkout is guaranteed if you booked directly with Bonvoy or with a preferred partner. Show them the T&Cs and stand your ground. I’ve had one or two hotels try this recently and I don’t let them get away with it.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Best to name the hotel so people can actually help

      But yes guaranteed and I would reiterate that to them.

  • exEDI says:

    With new iPhones imminent, what’s the best way to maximize Avios on a purchase?

    • LS says:

      Buy from John Lewis via gate365. Pay with avios credit card. This way you also get 2 year guarantee. You can tick the box to pay extra for accidental damage cover – this is better than applecare as they don’t charge you an excess. Might not be worth it if you are the type who really looks after their phone.

      • Toby says:

        And buy JL vouchers from Morrisons via the current stacking gift card situation?

        • Reney says:

          combine first sentence of LS’s advice and Toby’s advice.

          If you have PAW, last time I checked the Morrison offer ends today(unless it gets extended). Very tempted to make another trip (have a lot of house reno coming up) but I have already brought more than last time the offer was on. Maybe I need to join the Morrison anonymous group too.

        • Amo says:

          For the uninitiated, is there an intro for what this stacking situation is?

          • Reney says:

            If you have a master card that has the Morrison offer e.g VS
            VS CashB + Airtime + PAW + virgin shop away

            if you have the offer on amex

            Amex + Virgin shop away

          • Andrew says:

            Stacking is a fun, but unreliable way to obtain more than one benefit through your choice of purchase channels.

            A straightforward one recently was when I bought a new CO2 cyclinder from Lakeland Plastics for £12. On my MBNA account, they were offering a 10% fund return for spending at Lakeland. In addition, Nectar Connect were offering (if I connect my MBNA account to them via Open Banking) 20% in Nectar Points. So I received £1.20 back from MBNA *and* 240 Nectar Points as a stack.

            Morrison’s currently have multiple offers across various outlets. (Percentages vary).
            Virgin Money were offering me 10% back when I spent at Morrisons
            Virgin Atlantic were offering me 8pts per £1 when I linked a credit card and spent at Morrisons
            PAW were offering me 8pts per £1 when I linked a credit card and spent at Morrisons.
            Airtime were offering me 10% back in phone credit per £1 when I linked a credit card and spent at Morrisons.

            Now, sometimes there is “Card Clash” and if you register for more than one scheme, some or all of the schemes don’t work.

            On this occasion, I have had my 10% back from Virgin Money, but none of the other three have triggered for me.

            I’ve also had 10% back on Amex, which *did* stack with Virgin Atlantic.

          • Reney says:

            @Andrew’s response is way better than mine. My % back at each of those stackers were lower than Andrew probably because I had this deal before.

            Quad stack did work for me this time. I couldn’t get shop away to work last time, went back in and added the expiry date for my card and it worked this time, maybe that helped? 🤷‍♀️

      • Salamanderal says:

        In my experience shopping portals don’t often allow you to collect points on the latest iPhones or Apple watches – something to be aware of.

        • Andrew says:

          PAW states:-

          WOWPoints are not offered on Apple, Android or Smart products.

        • Alex says:

          Absolutely – the BA shopping portal explicitly warns it doesn’t give Avios on newly released products. There’s a list of all products that receive avios and generally an item has to be 6+ months on the market to get on there…

      • Barnaby100 says:

        You only get basica Avios not any additional they are offering at the time

      • Char Char says:

        May find that gate 365 won’t award on new iphone launch products

    • Oh! Matron! says:

      A long thread already but:

      Find a cheap flight to an european city of decent size that has an Apple store. Paris probs best. Buy said phone using curve or similar to incur no FX charges

      Fly with BA or similar. Spend a night in a hotel. On the way back, ensure that you claim your tax back for tourists.

      Assuming a £1000 iphone, that’s £200 ish back, a night in a hotel, and Avios and tier points with BA

      https://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/guide-vat-refund-visitors-eu_en

      https://www.trbusiness.com/regional-news/europe/brexit-ready-tax-refund-kiosks-primed-at-gare-du-nord-eurostar-terminal/195449

      (should you wish to get Eurostar)

      • Paul says:

        But on your return to the UK you will need to declare said iPhone and pay import and other duties 😉

        • KBuffett says:

          Let’s be honest, BorderForce/HMRC don’t really care. If they did, they would do a better job at manning green channels. These figures are too small for them to focus on.

  • Yuff says:

    Does anyone know the rules for getting into Dubai/Abu Dhabi?
    I gather fully vaccinated travellers are ok, at either airport, however I think Dubai is better for u16’s.
    I currently have 4 flights from the Uk on BA to Dubai, another 2 from the Uk on etihad and 2 from Madrid on etihad. I gather u16s get a green pass so avoid quarantine but not sure if that’s from the Uk as well as Spain and applies to Abu Dhabi and DXB.
    This is for October half term so could all change next month especially as the expo is on in Dubai.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Vaccination status doesn’t matter in Dubai you need a negative PCR taken with 72 hrs

      Abu Dhabi allows all vaccinated travellers to avoid quarantine but you have to take more pcr tests depending on how long you stay.

      • Rob says:

        Yes, looks mad. No way am I taking my family of four for extra tests on Day 4 and Day 8, plus then the U.K. fit to fly and Day 2 test.

        • Andy says:

          I did it back in March as I was fed up of Dubai after 3 weeks, but then again I had a rental car and it was pretty easy to find a location which was en route from the hotel and golf courses. All in all it took 30 minutes out of my day at most

      • Harry T says:

        TG is right – unless visiting Abu Dhabi for a special reason, I’d favour a trip to Dubai as it requires far less testing etc. You really need to read the FCDO pages yourself and follow the links to the UAE government pages. They do not screw around in the UAE and the requirements have recently changed for Abu Dhabi.

        On a lighter note, it looks like I’ll be getting a bucket full of tests if I make it to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix this year – this is my reward for moving my booking from last year 😊

    • Blenz101 says:

      If you are just flying into AD and heading straight to Dubai then you can just take the free test on arrival and get a taxi or Etihad car up to Dubai or any of the northern Emirates with no further testing required.

      The AD further testing restrictions only apply if you are staying in the Emirate. But, if you are flying back out of AD you will need to take a rapid test (15mins on the border) or have a negative PCR in the previous 48 to get back to AUH. Your cab driver is unlikely to have these.

      Dubai easier all round!

      • Yuff says:

        We are staying at the Atlantis, 2 double vaccinated adults, 2 u16’s.
        2 of us can travel from Spain direct.
        Not interested if any of us have to quarantine.
        All flights are flexible, I only have flights back from Abu Dhabi to London though, although I could look into that.
        Kids are desperate to go to Atlantis though especially with the extended water park.

        • Blenz101 says:

          New water park extension is great and the extended beach is now a real highlight.

          Coming into AUH or DXB you will just need a clear PCR test 72 hours in advance. In AUH you will take another free PCR test on arrival. Assuming you are going straight to Dubai there is no further quarantine.

          If you do test positive then it’s hotel quarantine at your booked location. No government imposed facilities.

          Out of DXB is whatever rules to where you are flying. If you go back out of AUH you need to cross the land border between Emirates. Assuming you are in a cab you can all do the finger prick test for about 50 AED each (including the cab driver) but more likely you will have had a PCR test anyway to return to Spain/U.K. so can pass with that (your driver will still need a test).

          • Yuff says:

            Thanks Blenz101.
            I’ll make a decision on where we fly to closer to mid October as things might change.
            Nothing too onerous there at the moment………

    • Benilyn says:

      So if you come out positive whilst in Dubai and Abu Dhabi whilst being double vacced, what happens then?

      • Blenz101 says:

        You quarantine in your hotel room until such time as you are free of Covid.

        You won’t be taken away like Barbados.

    • Louise K says:

      FYI the PCR test required for entry to Dubai from UK must be an in person test.

      I had this confirmed yesterday by Emirates support on Twitter.

    • Bob says:

      AD: one pre departure, one as soon as you arrive, one on day 4, another on day 8, then the test in order to return to UK and finally the day 2 test on return here. A minimum of 6 tests plus all the other hoops!

      • Lady London says:

        Would be interesting to know dynamically the overall rates of positivity on all these tests

        • Blenz101 says:

          Well for the UAE as a whole they are testing about 250k people a day in total and finding 950 cases (both asymptotic and not). So about 0.4%. 80% fully vaccinated and offering vaccines to over 12’s now.

  • Andrew H says:

    Haven’t had anything credit from Morrisons. Maybe this is because I used Curve Metal – but my Curve card is registered.

    • Reney says:

      Nothing from Airtime, PAW or SA or all three?

      Various previous report of the offer not posting using Curve. Basically DON’T use Curve for these type of stacking opportunities, just not worth whatever you get from Curve vs the stack.

      I find Airtime + Curve works at Boots and Wilko for me. Tested them at normal times on small amount.

    • Char Char says:

      It’s not just Curve there are several cards registered that didn’t track others that did, Airtime is completely random at tracking.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Didnt track with what?

    • rams1981 says:

      I’ve used curve metal. Airtime/PAW tracked few days after and shops away tracked a week after. I didn’t have 1% cash back for Morrisons set so not sure if this prevents it tracking if you do?

      • Reney says:

        Do you mean the 1% from Curve or were you referring to a cashB offer from the underlying card itself?

        Glad it worked for you using Curve, thanks for the data point. I personally still won’t risk it, also I never picked Morrison for my 5 retailers anyway.

        • rams1981 says:

          cashb from curve. I have just set it to Morrisons so will see if it all tracks again with a test purchase

  • Secret Squirrel says:

    BA AVIOS – Nectar:
    Anyone else only received part of the nectar points from doing AVIOS conversions?

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