Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Sunday 31st October

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Comments (367)

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  • Chelseafi says:

    Planning a trip to Greenville SC March or April flexible with dates, using BA 241, I have both new and old and want to use old if possible. Been loads of times to SC as we are visiting and staying with friends & we usually fly direct to Atlanta return using 241, now thinking of an open jaw, flying to Philadelphia in first, staying 2 nights, so we would have one full day to maybe do a little shopping and go for dinner. Then book an internal flight with either cash or Avios (I have plenty) to fly Philadelphia to our friends local airport Greer SC, we would then fly home from Atlanta in Club. So would like any advice on Philadelphia what to do & Hotels, I only have Amex Plat hotel status, I have points in Marriott, IHG and Hilton or just pay cash. We will just use taxis and or hotel shuttle. We will have one suitcase each, so wasn’t sure how this works with cash or Avios internal flight? What’s the options for booking the flights, do I just have to call BA as it’s open jaw and would they also book my one way internal flight? The reason I am looking at this option is, Philadelphia seem to have better availability in first and would like to see another part of US albeit for only 2 nights, at the same time I also want to feel comfortable and not complicate my trip, much appreciate any advice.

    • Nick says:

      Philly is a lovely city and there’s plenty of historic sites if that’s your thing (it’s one of the oldest cities in America and has lots of old political memorabilia). The huge museum at the top of the Rocky steps is good too.

      Food wise, definitely go to the Amish cafe in the market for lunch. They’re modern Amish (use iPads etc) but the food is traditional and very tasty.

      Transit system is good so you probably won’t need taxis much. Train serves the airport.

      For your domestic flight, it’ll have to be on a separate booking but you can do it online yourself. Can’t be mixed with a 2-4-1 booking. Unless you have OW status you won’t get a bag free in economy on AA, but this is only $25 each in any case. Or book Business and it’s included.

    • Phil W says:

      The Kimpton Monaco is lovely and is well located. Would certainly stay there again.

  • Roger says:

    BA 241 VOUCHER search seems go be down for me, as I am able to get results if I do not selecte view voucher option

    • Michael AC says:

      Down for me too. It’s forcing me to select a stopover but not working anyway.

      • AlanB says:

        Yep, down for me as well. Trying to juggle the booking of a 241 flight and separate flights and hotels via BA holidays and already to trigger the holiday but can’t get the 241 to return a result

  • kpk1981 says:

    First Avios booking to The Maldives in December and now about to book a resort. Wife has asked about what happens if BA cancel/move the flight and I don’t know as always done package holidays! Would insurance pick this up (will get the most cover I can) as presumably BA is not liable?

    • blenz101 says:

      Once booked BA have a responsibility to get you to and from your destination along with a duty of care (i.e. if they move your return flight they will cover accomodation and food costs and non-alcoholic drinks costs). Generally changes under 4 hours you would have to just accept as they wouldn’t be considered significant.

      If they cancel the flight altogether they would look to reroute you on another airline in the same cabin you booked, most likey Qatar.

      Travel insurance can simplify the claims process but the airline does have ultimate liability.

    • SteveJ says:

      I don’t think travel insurance covers your hotel cost if BA moves your flights. I believe that’s your query? Others may have specific experience. If I were you I’d be making a flexible booking at the resort.

      • memesweeper says:

        “I don’t think travel insurance covers your hotel cost if BA moves your flights”

        that depends on the policy — I think @blenz was suggesting it might be easier to claim on insurance than tackle BA, assuming you are covered.

        • blenz101 says:

          Yes, I was suggesting getting a policy with suitable cancellation and delay coverage if you are going to get travel insurance anyway (which you really should).

          There are examples daily here where airlines fail in their legal obligations with passengers haveing to resort to CEDR / MCOL to enforce their rights.

          • kpk1981 says:

            Thanks everyone. Unfortunately The Maldives don’t really do flexible bookings as the best resorts are only through travel agents (booking direct is much more expensive) and was always going to go to USA with 2-4-1 voucher until I somehow got the perfect dates to Male. Have looked at top insurance policies and not a lot seem to include airline cancellation. Will keep looking.

  • Jan M says:

    Is it just me or is the Amex website playing up? Was waiting till today to apply for the BA Amex card (cause I only got the Gold in August) but when I try and log in it keeps telling me that an unknown error has occurred…

  • Ming the Merciless says:

    Apologies- I’ve been on holiday so may not have kept up on the creation saga!

    Just returned to a letter from creation telling me they have closed my account under section 12. On logging in they’ve also given me a good Will payment of £14Xx which I assume is to cover loss of voucher, loss of points(20k to be transferred) and annual fee till May. Which nicely brings my account balance to £0.

    An interesting turn of events. I Auden I was pretty unpopular with them after hammering the account for a while.

    • John says:

      Yes someone else said their balance was wiped, but you are lucky that you had such a high baalnce. I’d be happy with your result as it would save me the time of complaining

    • Toddy says:

      Hi Ming
      Did you have a balance with Creation? I believe another reader received a payment to cover this balance, which would take their account to £zero (therefore allowing them to close it under section 12).

      It would be very interesting if this payment actually covered points and/or free night voucher…

    • SteveJ says:

      Page 3 before the first Creation discussion. Almost disappointed, the chat thread is slipping!

    • stevenhp1987 says:

      I had similar, although my balance was only £63.35. Closed few days ago.

      Received the letter yesterday. Just one line.

      “We’re writing to inform your account has been closed with immediate effect on 26th October under clause 12 of your terms and conditions.”

      They say there are no notes as to why its closed on their system.

      Your lucky you had a higher balance!

      I’ve recently sent back some items so will be getting refunds on the card soon… I’m sure that’ll go well…!

      • SteveJ says:

        That’ll be interesting, their own Ts and Cs day you can request an immediate refund of credit balances, wouldn’t surprise me if they make it hard.

    • stevenhp1987 says:

      Quick question…

      Did you put a large sum through last month? I put through over £10k.

      I wonder if they’re cutting those off who still put through large sums without curve incase they need to pay out for the points etc. Limiting their liability.

      I also had my curve metal monthly few come out a few days prior which they may not have liked?

      • BP says:

        Potentially. I totally took the p*** out of the account – was close to £400k this year. Not had a S12 closure but stopped using it except to send the balance of some refunds to Che. I kept a small positive balance so that they need to go the hassle of sending me a cheque at some point.

        • Mike says:

          BP – high five. If there is an open window don’t just look through it – climb through it ! Enjoy for MS points

    • Rui N. says:

      Well, I wish I haven’t paid my £3k balance and get closer under S12 🤣 now I have to fight for the £142 interest

      • stevenhp1987 says:

        I wish I hadn’t paid off £7,300 the day before closure!

        Doubt they would have closed it then!

        • Ben says:

          Are these closure letters being sent to people who have already been given notice of getting their accounts closed on Dec 3rd in the original cull? Or are they a new batch of cards Creation are closing?

          • Ming the Merciless says:

            I got the first letter then this one out of the blue. I’ve got a 8k refund due in the next month or so as well so I’ll update you on how easy this is, or not!

          • stevenhp1987 says:

            I had the 60 day notice. Also closed early anyways.

    • Paul Pogba says:

      This makes me think I should bring forward my Christmas shopping and put it all on the IHG card

  • Keely says:

    Morning all … if I get the Amex gold card (the one with the free lounge passes) , am I right in thinking that the supp doesn’t get lounge passes , only the main cardholder?

  • Russel says:

    Regarding BA executive club being unavailable November 13-16, Will you be able to change or cancel (already booked)Avios flights during that period?

    • Nick says:

      Yes but the Avios won’t be redeposited until after the freeze is over, transactions will essentially be put into a queue and retriggered later.

    • Rob says:

      Should be fine unless you make a change which requires more Avios, at a guess.

  • Niall says:

    Stuck in a long queue (priority queue) in Palma. Unlikely to make the checkin by 1 hour before scheduled departure, but the flight is delayed more than 2 hours anyway. Online checking was giving me an error.

    Assume this is an experience more and more people are having with longer queuing times from covid document verification. Assuming it shouldn’t really be a problem when flight is delayed?

    • Nick says:

      They won’t close the flight if there are people still in the queue for it, covid or non-covid.

      • Nick says:

        And delays will sadly be a common feature today, given the horrific weather in the heathrow area. Squally winds and shattering rain don’t make for good flying conditions!

        • Niall says:

          Cheers Nick, you were right! Interestingly plane still not taken off from Heathrow to here. Looking like it could be close to the 3 hour delay time. I saw a few flights delayed from Heathrow this morning, but not as bad as this.

          Any advice on the best way to check the reported reason for the delay. And if BA do say ‘the weather’, but this flight was worse than the rest so that excuse doesn’t quite stack up, anything that can be done?

          • Jonathan says:

            The weather is a perfectly valid reason for delays today & it’s irrelevant if your flight affected more than others as they can’t just push every departure back by the same amount.

            If they need increased spacing between slots then some will be cancelled, others delayed slightly & some delayed a lot. There are also then knock on impacts with slots for particularly SH aircraft which fly multiple routes on same day.

          • Jonathan says:

            Duty of care obviously still applies if you are delayed significantly or bumped due to combining flights but definitely no compo for this scenario.

          • Jody says:

            It’s windy in Palma too. We’re currently relaxing on deck on our cruise ship, and the flags are going mental in the wind! It’s actually really nice, means it’s not too hot, but I can imagine it affecting flights.

            Have also heard about the horrendous weather back home too.

            Hope you’re not delayed too long.

          • Niall says:

            True Jonathan, didn’t mean to suggest the weather isn’t a valid reason for a delay. But looking at all flights around the departure time of this one, there are small delays of 5 – 40 minutes. This one was 3 hours 7 minutes. I’m not expecting the exact same, but the difference is significant. So I understand some might be cancelled and knock in effect etc, but if the only factor was the weather it seems strange the difference.

            Besides, surely if we consider an even more extreme example of let’s say all flights in the morning being delayed by 15 mins say because of the weather, then a significantly later afternoon flight is cancelled because of the build up and BA choosing to use that slot to reduce some of the more minor delays. The choice to cancel was surely in BAs control?

          • blenz101 says:

            What does it actually matter the official reason for the delay? It isn’t going to get you home any quicker and there is nothing “to be done”.

            It is is weather, it is outside of the airlines control. If it is any other reason they can cite “pandemic” and again currently absolved of having to provide compensation. As others have said duty of care still applies.

          • JDB says:

            @Niall – you won’t get compo I’m afraid. While there are essentially commercial decisions (and practical aspects like crew hours, aircraft rotations) being made to re-establish the schedule during and after weather incidents, CEDR and MCOL will not award anything. It’s no fun being caught up in these delays but the ops people are having a tough time too. It’s stopped raining near LHR but it’s still very windy, gusting 40mph+.

          • Niall says:

            Cheers. Appreciate the responses and advice.

            It is true, I won’t get home any quicker.

            I’ve failed to claim on EU261 when entitled to in the past because of the thought that I may be contributing to a compensation culture. But after a just-shy-of-3-hour delay in the past due to circumstances very much within BA’s control, and less than helpful staff who would not help when missed a separate ticket connection you left 3.5 hours for, you start to feel differently about claiming what you are entitled to!

            Flight was 2 hours 45 min delayed and due to an aircraft swap.

          • Pete1968 says:

            Storms cause Cop26 chaos: Thousands of delegates stranded as ALL trains are cancelled out of London Euston as torrential rain, 80mph gale-force winds and TORNADOES batter Britain

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