Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

The HfP chat thread – Wednesday 8th December

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

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.

Please only comment under the main articles on the site if your comment is directly related to the topic of the article.  This has long-term benefits as it keeps the commentary relevant for people who read those articles in the future.

Old chat threads are hidden from the HfP home page.  If you want to look for something in an old thread, click here.  This brings up all the articles in our ‘General’ category which includes the chat threads.

Comments (452)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Harry Holden says:

    Does anyone know if You First can change the dates on a booking or is it just standard customer services?

  • ben says:

    I need to book my IHG Spire free night before the end of 2021 otherwise I will lose it. I can make an advance booking for sometime in 2022 – any ideas of the best London hotels? I see IC Mayfair is available as is Kimpton Fitzroy. Seems a waste staying in a posh hotel as it is just me staying on my own (and there isn’t even a free breakfast) but somehow psychologically it seems more of a waste just to use it on a business trip on a Holiday Inn or similar.

    • elguiri says:

      Have you double checked expiry date recently? Mine has been extended to 31st Dec 2022…

    • rams says:

      it it booked by or use by? I have one expiring this year which I assumed was use by – have I got this wrong?

      • jsto says:

        I’ve got one expiring in February (which had previously been extended automatically) – anyone have any joy in getting these extended further through contacting IHG?

        • elguiri says:

          Mine was until end Feb and then sometime in the last couple of weeks been extended until end of 2022 without any contact from myself.

          • Ben says:

            This is April 2020 to Dec 2021 so already extended. I’ll keep tabs on it.

    • ianM says:

      i used one at IC Mayfair and it was a total disappointment

  • YC says:

    If booking multiple rooms at Marriott. Do you get the points for both rooms if you merge the bills at the end of the stay?

  • bafan says:

    I’m finally coming back to the UK next week. Flying BA from JFK. Are the lounges worth going early for or just fine?

  • Michael says:

    Anyone here who has suggestions of how to get from London to Bogota in Colombia on 24/12 or 25/12 ideally with a return for 08/01 for a little money as possible or how I can possibly use my Avios or Virgin Points.
    There seem to be no options via BAEC with Avios including not on IBeia (via Madrid as there seems no availability). I am also gonna try via Vrigin ATlantic, to see if Delta might be an option via NYC, Houston or Miami.

    I have never flown to this destination before, so any tips are appreciated. I am happy to fly economy, as long as I can get there ideally with no more than 1 connecting flight. I am happy to consider other European airports, if not to far off.

    • Michael says:

      Also, what is the best way to check for Iberia reward flights? Does anyone know if they are flying form the US to BogotaColombia and if I could potentially use Avios for such routing too?
      Any other airlines to consider where I could use Avios of Virgin Points?

    • elguiri says:

      Pre-covid have use the various routes, which might or might not still be available:
      FRA-Caracas (4hrs)-BOG with Lufthansa
      LHR-MAD-BOG with Iberia
      FRA-JFK (Delta), 15hrs, JFK-SJO (3hrs)-BOG with Lacsa (pack for NY in snow and Costa Rica humidity).

      Other route looking at for next year is flying to US on BA with avios (NY, florida, ATL) and then using avios to get down to BOG with AA on reward flight.

      If your final destination isn’t actually Bogota, then there are also direct flights from Florida to Barranquilla, Cartagena, Santa Marta.
      You can also fly from Spain to Medellin (again this was pre-covid)

      • Super Secret Stuff says:

        TAP should be able to get you there too and probably the cheapest

    • Not Long Now... says:

      LMGTFY, £1050, LHR-YYZ-BOG Air Canada…. or £935, CDG-DFW-BOG American…

    • GeorgeJ says:

      Plenty of options coming up on google flights via US and Canada. Nothing especially cheap.

      • SamG says:

        I went for 390 on Air France / KLM last December but nothing coming up anywhere near that now when friends were looking for Jan. Air Europa seems cheapest otherwise AF/KLM especially if you are flexible a little bit

        Iberia pretty pricey & can’t imagine miles works out well in economy

        US transit adds a test currently presumably? And Air Canada operating A319 and land at 4am so not ideal at all!

  • Harry T says:

    Thank you to HFP for flagging the chance to book rooms at the W Abu Dhabi for the 2020 Grand Prix. It’s taken a while but we’ve got here in the end for the 2021 GP, after the hotel kindly moved our stay from 2020. Somehow five SNAs cleared into a Fantastic Suite and we have a direct view of the track, which is about 20m from our balcony. Definitely the best use of 120k Bonvoy points I’ve found, but I couldn’t have done it without HFP 😊

    • Rhys says:

      Send us some photos if you have the chance!

    • FFoxSake says:

      Fantastic result with the hotel Harry – and a race in Abu Dhabi that actually has something riding on it for a change. Enjoy it 🙂

      • Harry T says:

        Thank you 🙂

      • BuildBackBetter says:

        We all know the ending. Ham will lead and Max will crash into him so that he wins by number of races won.

        • Graham-Walsh says:

          You could be right there 🙂

          Well jealous on this. I should really try and plan it one year. Flew to China for the weekend for the GP once in VS Prem on points/cash getting best value from here.

    • Michael C says:

      Harry, that’s fabulous – know how long you’ve been planning it!

    • SamG says:

      Very jealous, what a race to be at !

  • Bent R says:

    US Travel – Vaccine question.

    NY/MIA Christmas/NYE

    1. Is there an expiry on your vaccination status from your your second dose. E.g. I had mine in June’21 I assume I am safe for entry. Or is there no expiry time?
    2. Has anyone been to Miami and to they check vaccination status e.g.

    • JenT says:

      1. No expiry time (the CDC website is the authority here).
      2. Can’t help unfortunately as was elsewhere in the USA this month.

    • John says:

      Isn’t it illegal to check vaccination status in Florida

    • The Canuck says:

      Miami will not check for vaccination when you are going around restaurants, bars etc. But airline will check to ensure that you are vaccination to travel to US as this is a federal requirement

    • HBommie says:

      If flying BA, Verifly worked from MIA on the return, the agent glanced at it.

      My second was in May and travelled in Nov, no issues.

      I wasn’t staying in Miami but there were no checks at all in any venues in Florida apart from at check in.

  • Secret Squirrel says:

    I only need an extra 690 IHG points for a future redemption.
    Apart from buying 1000 from the store, are there any other ways of acquiring 1000 or less? Thanks

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.