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The HfP chat thread – Friday 3rd December

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

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Comments (402)

  • Tom says:

    Thoughts on Moxy Warsaw Praga? (Platinum status – I know it won’t mean a lot there but still).

    I’m not very impressed with the choice in Warsaw (I’ve done Marriott recently, it was okay but the only real highlight was the view, Westin was passable, haven’t done Sheraton ). The Bristol looks great but not sure if it’s worth it as I’ll be staying on my own for 2 nights.

    • RichS says:

      The Sofitel Warsaw Victoria has been great every time I have stayed, with comfortable rooms and views over Pilsudski Square.

    • Ian M says:

      The Moxy in Praga is nice, very new and in a very nice location in Praga.

      Hotel Bristol is my favourite Marriott hotel in Warsaw. I’ve spent 20 nights there this year. Beautiful building, nice rooms and normally very generous with upgrades. Also a wonderful breakfast.

      The Sheraton Grand is also good, I prefer this to the Marriott (although the lounge at the Marriott was always great – but haven’t stayed there since covid). Sheraton also generous with room upgrades normally.

      • GeorgeJ says:

        Would agree with Sheraton, stayed there in November for three nights, nice room upgrade. Didnt bother with breakfast as there is a nice cafe on other side of Ujadowski.

    • Harry T says:

      Moxy beds are terrible – I would stay anywhere but a Moxy for anything other than a single night stay at an airport.

    • Cats are best says:

      For business I really like the Hilton on Grzybowska, tried others over the years, but still prefer it.

      There’re a few restaurants in walking distance, plus convenience stores, but the hotel food is good enough to eat in. Club sandwich and a couple of beers is my usual arrival lunch treat 🙂

    • Phil W says:

      We enjoyed the IC and had a room overlooking Culture and Science Palace. Restaurant was lovely as well. Though it’s a bit of a walk to the touristy areas.

    • Gavin says:

      I stayed at the Raffles hotel recently on the FHR rate, as well as The Bristol (they are opposite each other). Thought the Raffles was significantly better! Would definitely recommend.

  • Grimz says:

    Travelling home tomorrow from Orlando and I got an email from Chronomics with a link to upgrade my LFT test to a PCR for £25 which would make total cost £43. I had already bought a new PCR from them for £58 via BA. I hope they refund me for cancellation of £58 test. This is x 4 so a good saving!!

    • Johnny5a says:

      Same situation with me, I’ve written them a note, asking for a refund for the different. I have to say their service has been good. My tip to speed things up is drop off at TUI if you can.

      My test will delivered by DPD at 12:55, I did the test, cycled to TUI store 6 miles away and dropped off, got my result at 20:35 same day.

  • Peter says:

    Hello HFPs. A few days ago there was a feature about 3 hour PCRs not being good for day 2 tests. I see that Halo Verify at Sofitel T5 are offering day 2 arrival PCRs with a 5 hour turnaround for results. Priced £59. Does anyone have experience using this service? It seems to be ‘spit and go’ rather than the usual swabbing. How come they can do quick results but Express Test or other can’t?

    • Polly says:

      Someone mentioned it might be connected commercially to Imperial College, so they already have the set up in place,. Know some hospitals already require faster PCRs than just LFTs on admission. We are using them next week, but definitely some have already, on here. Am sure they will post.
      Express would need a whole new lab processing system to do sequencing, and who knows how long gov requires that for. So l guess, just not worth it.
      But thank goodness for Halo.

    • John says:

      More of a case of can’t be bothered than physically can’t

    • Frankie says:

      I can’t seem to buy them on their website. The button to add to basket in greyed out! 😢

    • Sarah says:

      I regularly use DAM Health for PCR tests, they do a same day before midnight service for £69. At the minute they’re saying 24 hour turnaround on day 2 tests, but I tested on Weds at 12.30 and had the results at 22.35 that day. It’s not quite 3 or 5 hours but a reasonable option. It was a bit chaotic at their Clapham site on Wednesday but usually I have no issues. I believe they do 3 hour testing at their Fulham site as they have an on-site lab (don’t know if that applies to day 2 though)

    • Jen T says:

      I’m doing this on Sunday morning so will report back then.

  • Jamjaw says:

    I know asked a lot, but what are current best prices for lft and pcr? Need 24hr pcr turnaround if possible? Also, thoughts on current needs if flying to Geneva and going to French resort? Particular if there is a need for an lft to get into Switzerland for return flight…

    • Susan says:

      google pcr + “moneysavingexpert”. MSE has a list of many of the approved providers and the costs including where there are discounts for specific airlines etc. Great resource.

  • Annie says:

    Good morning. Considering upgrading curve to metal for hmrc payments. Any problems with transactions lately? And also is there a minimum subscription time please? Thanks

    • Ian M says:

      I’ve had no problems with payments to HMRC, but there is the limit in place now of £10,000 per month.

      • Mr(s) Entitled says:

        The old T&C’s stipulated £10,000 per month. The new ones posted 1st Dec simply state £10,000 without any time window. I’ve left a message for Curve via their chat asking for clarification but as yet I’ve not received a response.

        • Ian M says:

          Oh interesting! Well I was doing well over £10,000 a month without any issues.

        • Ian M says:

          It seems my last comment didn’t post, maybe because I had a link to the Curve T&Cs page?

          Anyway, I checked this, it is definitely £10,000 per calendar month..

          “Curve Fronted fee
          To cover the cost of enabling you to use a credit card as your payment card to pay merchants who only accept payment by debit card or who impose a charge or deny certain cards.

          Please note that your credit card issuer may also charge fees.

          No fees on Curve Fronted spending up to £10,000 per calendar month and thereafter a fee of 1.5% of the total transaction amount.

          1.5% of the total transaction amount.

          1.5% of the total transaction amount.”

          • Mr(s) Entitled says:

            Which differs to what they say in the app:

            “What’s Curve Fronted?
            Updated on 3 days ago, 11:59 PM
            Curve Fronted empowers you to pay with your Curve debit card by using an underlying credit card in situations where the merchant wouldn’t normally accept credit cards.

            The 1.5% service fee helps us cover the costs of those transactions so you can take advantage of this feature and keep your spending records in one place. The fee is charged instantly – the total sum along with the fee will be displayed in the ‘Wallet’ tab under the same transaction.

            Curve Metal customers aren’t charged a fee for the first £10,000.00 they spend via these types of transactions (but from 1 December 2021 we charge a 1.5% service fee on the total transaction value in excess of the limit).”

            I’ll defer to the official T&C’s on their website, carry on regardless, and see what happens.

          • The Savage Squirrel says:

            Yes, the limit is from 1st December. Lucky HMRC – employee PAYE takes most of the 10k every month for me from now on, so it means they got a load of my personal tax shoved through 2 months early to dodoge the limit. I’m sure some higher earners will have done the same.

        • Js says:

          Wish you luck getting a reply from curve!

    • Jonathan says:

      6 month minimum subscription for Metal.

    • Polly says:

      Annie, my payments went through ok 2 weeks ago. No issues. Will be cancelling down to free card next month.

  • WillPS says:

    I’m now 3 nights off going Diamond with Hilton.

    All my stays for the foreseeable will be in the UK, and probably mostly in Hamptons.

    Is it worth £150 of mattress runs to get the status? Gold doesn’t seem to do much other than get a quick mention at check in.

    • Anna says:

      Depends if you’ll use it, lounge access always sounds like a good perk. I’m only gold but always get great recognition, always had room upgrades and breakfast for everyone, which is great when you’re staying with hungry teenagers!

      • Pete says:

        Lounge access is nice but the percentage of hotels within the Hilton brand family in the UK that have them and are actually functioning is not great.

        • Neil Spellings says:

          Most hotels that have lounges but aren’t opening them are offering food/drinks vouchers instead. I was at St Georges Park Hilton a few weeks ago and got £15 per day food/drink bill credit in lieu of the lounge being closed.

      • WillPS says:

        Interesting – do these lounges provide hot food or something? If so that could make the diff, although I suppose I would have to factor in the cost of staying in a Hilton branded property rather than Hampton.

        Breakfast is a great perk but Hamptons do it for free regardless.

        The only perk I can see that I definitely will get use of is the point boost, but I doubt I’d get £150 worth of additional points.

        • Anna says:

          Sounds like you need to do a bit of research! There are threads on sites like Flyertalk which discuss the merits of various lounges, I think you have to go outside the UK to get the best ones though. Probably not worth it for Hamptons, but the breakfast offerings in even some of the less pricy properties can be quite splendid, e.g. Doubletree Harrogate.

          • Mr(s) Entitled says:

            You get the breakfast with gold so that is not a reason to chase diamond.

            Hilton have extended the membership period through to 2023. If you plan a big trip away in that time that includes a decent Hilton I would do it. Some of the lounges around the world are excellent. Based on your current travel pattern however I wouldn’t bother.

          • Anna says:

            I know, I just meant there are some much better options for breakfast than Hamptons, and often at similar prices!

        • Rob M says:

          The lounges vary massively by hotel. For example, I’ve had really good experiences in Bankside pre-Covid – not sure how open that particular lounge is now though. As other examples, Gateshead Hilton lounge was nice, The Hague was good also. Not sure how any of them are doing post-Covid.

    • Harry T says:

      There’s no real elite benefits at Hamptons, and certainly nothing special about Diamond vs Gold at such hotels. However, you will earn more points and the status could be useful if you are ever on holiday. Perhaps use points for your final three nights?

    • John says:

      Do you have 27 nights in 2021? If so, you only need 15 nights in 2022 to get diamond.

      If some of the 27 nights were actually stayed in 2020 they won’t count though.

      UK Hampton food is acceptable but not great. Breakfasts in the other brands are much better, though how much this is worth is debatable.

    • Lady London says:

      I think Hilton lets award nights count for status? Why not spend some points and save your cash?

      Day rooms also count.

      • Lady London says:

        I am not the greatest Hilton expert so can one of the many on here please confirm? I’ve forgotten if day rooms get night credit or just stay credit

  • Mick S says:

    The Creation CC closure is real 🙁
    Big red banner on logon, explaining the card has limited functionality.

    (for me it was limited functionality since the day I got it 🙂 )

    • Maciek says:

      Still no response to the complaint. FOS will be busy with these soon!

      • DJ says:

        Just had a letter through the door, dated 25th November 2021, stating that they are unable to provide a response at present due to internal delays.

        I am not surprised really.

        • EwanG says:

          They *are* working through them – they acknowledge they are unable to cope with the unprecedented number of complaints!
          Sent a letter in almost 3 weeks ago and received an email reply today partly sorting out the complaint (which I’ll accept) although advising me for the first time they will not transfer the points earned.
          That will be the next battle as I’m owed >20k points since the Nov statement plus my 2 free night vouchers….!

    • Crafty says:

      Anyone yet had their account closed without having received the letter?

    • StevieKicks says:

      @Secret Squirrel white account closed for me 🙁

      • John says:

        Just used white card online and still working. I used it with curve.

      • Jill ( Kinkell ) says:

        My black account seems to be OK. ….operating as usual ‘cos I’ve been a good girl!

    • Phil W says:

      Where did you see that? When I log into the app, I see no difference. Might head out and give the card a tap somewhere.

    • Anna says:

      Screenshots taken in case the points disappear! I still haven’t been given a reason for my account being closed (and no, I don’t believe that “common sense” should inform me in this scenario!) What strikes me though is that nobody has received anything other than what Creation freely gave them in all this, they were the ones making the mistake and failing to comply with their own Ts and Cs (if they’re going down that route, again it’s very hard to tell with so little communication).

      • Will says:

        I’m certainly a little less sympathetic that yourself Anna towards the closures, it’s in the teens they can close accounts for any reason, but agree with you entirely that creations compliance, NYC and anti fraud checks appear to have been very thin on ground and regulator should be looking very hard into this.

        • Char Char says:

          The only reason Creation are annoyed is because they developed a card that lost them money the more people used it, is that the customers fault?

          I am sure if they had reduced their earning rates like they did with the Asda cards they would have found many people just not using the card, sounds like they have been shut down by their top management.

        • Lady London says:

          They can close for any reason but they still have to pay out all the benefits promised in the contract ie the card agreement, timely. They don’t get to rewrite the contract and walj away from promises just by closing accounts. They have to pay out in full. Delay in providing benefits should also be compensated.

      • Char Char says:

        All i got was the rubbish letter no mention of Curve or anything, everything else seems to be rumour from people on the phone to them.

        From the original person who said it was common sense to expect the card to function differently. It certainly isn’t “common sense” to expect no points, no voucher and no refund, only someone with an incentive or grudge would make such a ridiculous statement as fact.

        I imagine someone got fired over this card probably being their biggest loss maker.

    • Yorkieflyer says:

      As per the letter I have the red banner on my white card, mrs Yorkieflyer no letter no banner.
      Both cards used in the same way no NS&I or out of Curve T&C’s

      • H says:

        I have just left my card in debit by 99 and told them that this is the annual fee refund – let’s see what happens!

        • Sundar says:

          And if they report your outstanding balance to the credit reporting agency at the time of closure ? Do you think you will be able to encourage them to then “correct” the outstanding balance issue on your credit file ?
          Just saying, hope you have thought this through.
          Personally, I have cleared out any pending balances and if a refund comes, I can ask for a “cheque in the mail”.

        • Brian W says:

          I wouldn’t do this, they will charge you interest and you don’t have any valid argument to reverse this. Next month you will get a missed payment marked on your file too……………Your argument to get your £99 returned is certainly valid, but underpaying your card balance isn’t the way to rectify it if you want a positive outcome!

        • Lady London says:

          Don’t do it.

  • Will says:

    Was originally booked. on a 8.30pm flight gva-lhr , cancelled a month ago. Rebooked after much sweat onto 6.30pm. Now that is cancelled on 15 days notice. 5.30 is full. 4.30 is too early amd lose ski day. Can I expect BA to pay for hotel in GVA (on french side due to Swiss covid rules?) and take 7am next day ?

    • S says:

      If you have status, they’ll probably pay out. If not, not without a fight

    • Sam G says:

      BA can rebook to Swiss so that could be an option, might take some pushing. Otherwise they should pay but you might get some initial pushback being +14 days.

      • Jonathan says:

        4 hour change? Wouldn’t say that’s a slam dunk in terms of rerouting or hotel costs. Worth asking but not sure I’d pursue to MCOL. Should still get a morning’s skiing if somewhere local like Chamonix or Portes du Soleil.

        • Lady London says:

          It’s not a reschedule Jonathan it’s a cancellation. Therefore time difference is completely irrelevant.

      • Lady London says:

        No compo as >14 days notice
        But you do get duty of care regardless of how long notice us given see my other reply. Doesn’t matter where the hotel is.

    • Lady London says:

      Yes. Duty of care applies even if they cancel it a year ahead! EU261 gives you right to be transported as reasonably close to original flight timing as possible, your original flightwas 8.30pm, you definitely cannot make any earlier flight. Hotel, meals.

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