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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  • David S says:

    Slightly OT but has anyone noticed the scarcity of Face Masks in the shops ? I live in quite a large town and only Boots had any masks at all. Wierd – wasn’t sure if it was due to kids going back to school or whether it is Boris’s latest plan to limit travel. No mask, no flight.
    Obviously Amazon still has loads

    • Anna says:

      Washable ones are fine for travel if you’re that worried!

      • RobL says:

        Not in France. Friend refused entry for wearing a cloth mask. Luckily the lady behind her offered her a blue paper mask to secure entry to the country. Bof!

      • Greg says:

        Except they generally are not as tight fitting as say FFP2

    • Andrew says:

      For a couple of months Boots has had them on a 241 and other places I’ve noticed have been discounting them – in a nutshell I think now that in most settings in the U.K. you don’t have to wear one, retailers are probably thinking there’s not much demand for them and are shifting their stock.

    • Dayle says:

      I’ve literally never bought one, the odd occasion where I’ve really had to use one – work provided them for free!

      Hopefully they’re phasing them out now

      • Polly says:

        Hope not!
        Even in France here at the local markets, everyone in a mask. Never saw such good compliance levels. Can’t even get a Coffee without code being scanned, or paper certs looked at.

  • Yorkie Aid says:

    For anyone that might be interested we spent two nights at The Leonardo St Pauls at the weekend on the Travelzoo offer (£179 for Executive room 2 nights B&B). This was the feedback I gave the hotel:
    The check-in experience was poor and created a very bad first impression of the hotel. Although we arrived around 3.30pm we were told to come back at 4pm to check-in. Clearly everyone was told this and the queues were horrific. It would have been much better to check people in when they arrived but explain that room access is not permitted until 4pm. Prior to our stay there was absolutely no mention that the rooftop bar required a minimum spend of £50 per person. Our party of four are not heavy drinkers so we felt very penalised by this policy and were therefore unable to enjoy the facility. I have to say I have never experienced such a discriminatory policy in over 35 years of travel. General directional information was poor. For example in the lifts there is no mention of which floor the Spa is located, or reception, restaurant or bar! We were not the only ones who had to work everything out and throughout our stay we were helping fellow guests with where they needed to go. There were no robes or slippers in our rooms (executive). Despite leaving a £100 security deposit on my card at check-in I was told at the bar that I could not charge drinks to my room. After I protested and showed the charge from my bank on my phone a manager was called who eventually rectified the issue. In spite of all this hassle the 10% F&B discount was not applied to my bill on check-out. I did query this and was told it would be applied but this is not the case. I am still awaiting the bill which I was told would be emailed to me. The room itself was excellent and this somewhat made up for the other shortcomings. However I would have been sorely disappointed with the service levels had we been paying anything approaching the rack rate.

    • Anna says:

      Interesting – I don’t feel I missed out now by not going for this!
      So – you’re not allowed in the bar unless you spend £50? Is that in one go (otherwise what’s to stop you having one drink then leaving?) That London never ceases to amaze me. It would be more palatable if they said you can have a table or seat for an hour or whatever (like restaurants do these days) if they’re worried that people will order a coke and then stay there all night.

      • Ryan Gill says:

        I really enjoyed the Radio Rooftop bar at Me Strand recently. I’m from Nottingham, but expect to spend in London. £18 for a Margarita + service isn’t cheap, but you pay for the views and the atmosphere. There was no minimum spend.

      • Yorkie Aid says:

        The £50 min per person applies to the rooftop bar only and you had to book a table in advance (again, there was no mention of this prior to check-in). The regular bar inside downstairs doesn’t have any restrictions though. To be fair the room really was excellent, much much better than the ICPL where we stayed the night before with two large double beds! I would stay there again in spite of the annoyances.

      • AL says:

        The £50 minimum spend is, from memory, also a thing that the Curio Trafalgar St James does. As you point out, nothing stops you rocking up, having a drink and leaving – done that plenty of times. I imagine if you followed their booking policy, and booked a table, they’d want card details…

        I never quite understood these £50 minimum spend deals. Having me in, at London prices, for £50 of cocktails is probably, say, three (£15-£18 each approx.). And I might well take my time. Let me in for a pint, and I’ll be in and out pronto so you can serve the next punter.

        Unless, of course, the bar itself makes no business sense in the first place… 😉

    • BP says:

      I liked Leonardo Royal London City. Stayed there a few times with work pre-Covid. Although I do remember there was no water in executive rooms which I thought was odd.

    • meta says:

      Regarding the bill. I always ask for a printout. It never arrives by email! I’ve been burnt twice with points not posting or lower than expected and you don’t have any proof apart from charge. It’s a struggle then to reason with poorly trained CS.

  • Anna says:

    On The Beach travel company is to provide free antigen & PCR tests for Spain and Greece for the rest of 2021 (though the season is nearly over except for the Canaries).

    • Jashan says:

      I was wondering when a travel agent would do this. Makes sense, minimal cost to them but comes across as a big saving to customers.

      • meta says:

        In some places in Greece, the season can last well into November. Last year it was warmer on some days in November than at the end of October! And sea is still warm for swimming till mid-November…

  • CramondBen says:

    Hi All, I applied for the BA plus card successfully via my wife’s referral link, who has the Platinum card, I understand the bonus for me is 42000 avios, question is how many referral bonus MR pts will she will getting? thanks.

  • VK says:

    are there still long lines at heathrow for immigration or they have finally resolved this issue?

    • Blair says:

      Best to check Twitter daily

    • Travel Strong says:

      When e-gates are open, there is no wait. Seems to be the occasional day of media storm and widely publicised delays – with long periods of normality inbetween. Feels like a bit of a stunt to put pressure on the gov to lift travel restrictions.

      • meta says:

        Nope, a stunt to deter everyone from travelling abroad and spend in the UK.

  • Ali M says:

    Quick one…With the FTV for tickets booked with voucher and avios…
    1-Do the avios get refunded?
    2-I take it the Cash doesnt get refunded?
    3-Passenger names can’t be changed,can the destination be changed and does avios availability rules still apply?

  • Robert says:

    My dad and brother both just got emailed a 45k sign-up over for the BAPP card. Does this stack with referral links (e.g. 47k?), or if they use a referral link will they only get 42k?


    • Tom says:

      It won’t stack.

    • Sean says:

      The email says only via a special link (supplied) and by 30 September – so wont stack with referrals.

    • CramondBen says:

      got the email as well, the 45k bonus is for BA member, went for OH’s referral link of 42k, expecting for 42k only, we’ll see.

  • Venturelog says:

    Just an update re the Malaysia Airlines gift offer of £10 Amazon GC. It arrived via email! Filled in the email, got a code, logged onto Amazon and applied to receive it.

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