Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Forum Replies Created

  • in reply to: New York City – pre booking a cab

    If you are staying at a “better” hotel, the best route might be via the concierge?

    in reply to: Chat thread – Friday 30th September

    Anyway to still get 10% off on Amazon gift cards? No offer on my Amex but am I missing any other way?

    I’ve got 10% rebates at Spar on BoS, Halifax, & MBNA. Maximum reward 10%, my local store stocks a broad range of gift cards.

    in reply to: Post new Amex statement credit offers here!

    £100 Rebate on a £750 spend at Dell. Expires 14/02/23.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Thursday 29th September

    I think this is new…

    “We’re delighted to share with you an exciting new way to collect Avios.”

    The Aer Lingus E-store is now promoting In-store collection of Avios. 70-80 stores involved. Usual suspects. Harvey Nichols, Hughes, Patisserie Valerie, Jewsons, Browns, Clarks etc.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Wednesday 28th September

    I for one would jump at the chance of earning or burning loyalty points on a decent sleeper train experience.

    There aren’t really many “decent” sleeper train experiences though. It’s always a bit of a compromise.

    There is the “charming” element of it. Or there isn’t. When you’re standing alone at a freezing cold Perthshire Station, with the rain, sleet or snow coming sideways whilst waiting for the 00:02 service. You board and get your cabin, and dive under the covers to try and warm up. It’s 00:10 and you stop at Stirling, then Falkirk. Then the carriages bounce about at 00:50 in Edinburgh as they are shunted around.

    Off again, for a poor night’s sleep to disembark in London. It’s 07:45, you’ve had a rubbish night’s sleep, you haven’t put your contact lenses in as it was too shoogly approaching Euston. Off to Paddington to buy a peak single ticket for the final leg and stand all the way to Reading.

    Of course, it can be worse – albeit with no fault of the Sleeper.

    It’s 0508, you’re the only person being dropped off and the staff haven’t cleared the platforms of snow yet. You trudge to your parents house through the snow, carrying your luggage as you can’t trundle it.

    Taking out the key to your parent’s house, you go to unlock the door. Only to realise they went to bed in auto-pilot and put the deadbolt on.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Thursday 22nd September

    Couple of interesting new offers appeared on my MBNA and BoS cards.

    10% Back at Sainsbury’s – max £30 return
    10% Back at Esso when using the Esso App to pay – max £70 return


    So basically the normal price just with free bottle of prosecco.

    I showed this to Mrs Squirrel. Mrs Squirrel is from Yorkshire (for non-UK readers – people from Yorkshire have a reputation for being really tight careful with their money). After grasping that it was indeed £35 for a small portion of ordinary fish and chips, she now appears to be having some sort of seizure. Probably best not to mention that this won’t even include scraps….

    I’ll stick with the staff canteen – £5.50

    Fish that is so big it hangs out the box/off the plate.
    Hearty portion of chips
    Mushy or garden peas
    Tartare Sauce
    2 large onion rings
    Quarter lemon

    And all so hot that you are having to juggle it between hands as you go back to your desk.

    in reply to: Post new Amex statement credit offers here!

    £50 rebate when you spend £200 at Hilton. Check the list of participating hotels as usual.

    None of them are cheap any more, but I’d say if you haven’t done Chicago you shouldn’t miss it. Although if you want cheap you need to stay outside the city and prepare to get public transit in and out. Which is largely excellent

    Sorry, forgot Chicago from my list. Milwaukee and the beer caves were on the same trip too.

    Have you got set dates? Also, are you actually doing a mattress run for a particular chain? Las Vegas can be good value at certain times, plenty of places for $200 or less in the hotter months or mid-week. Depends on what type of hotel you want.

    I keep active accounts with IHG, Marriott and Hilton. October and November really. Avoiding the English school holidays.

    in reply to: Virgin Credit Card cashback experiences?

    You received £1,114 cashback for a stay at a Holiday Inn? Wow! I assume it was a long stay?

    It wasn’t a stay.

    We’d negotiated a fine rate for a conference booking in return for full payment 14 days in advance. Our Accounts payable refused to settle as it was in breach of policy.

    So I had to pay then reclaim on expenses. I hadn’t realised there was an offer, Just needed to use a card on which I had a 12,000 limit. It was only when I was checking that a different offer had triggered a few months later that I found the generous credit.

    in reply to: Virgin Credit Card cashback experiences?

    I’m still chasing my original £130.

    £130??! Which retailer are you getting £130 cashback from on a Virgin Atlantic credit card?

    It’s not hard.

    £1,114 for a Holiday Inn 10% rebate back in April.

    in reply to: Virgin Credit Card cashback experiences?

    In last conversation he stated the cashback department required a screenshot of the offer to prove I had it on my app at the time of use.

    Well, that’s utter nonsense. Not sure about Apple, but the Android version takes a blank screen pic now if you try to take a screen shot.

    in reply to: Post new Amex statement credit offers here!

    New Marriott luxury hotels offer. £100 back on £400 spend.

    in reply to: WTF – Registering with Barclaycard

    Am I only the only one that has had a saga trying to get a Barclaycard Avios card? They have asked for my life history, inland revenue submissions, bank statements and pay slips. I have a 999 credit score, AMEX Platinum, never been refused a credit card, and not borrowed money part from a mortgage. I could not even register on the app, they would not recognise my passport, What a bunch of a••••••s 😡

    “999” Credit Score isn’t a good score. It’s essentially a default “not much data” score.
    You’ve got a very poor credit history – “not borrowed money”.
    There’s clearly an exception being flagged up where the records and residency (non-UK passport?) you are supplying don’t tie up.

    Sounds like you are a in a difficult position. You want to be a customer more than they want you to be a customer.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Tuesday 13th September

    Question for the rail experts on here – I’m taking my mum, aunty and sister to Edinburgh in January and was hoping to travel by train from Preston or Manchester but Sunday services seem to be massively disrupted by engineering works at the moment and I can’t find any information about when these are going to end! Certainly it doesn’t look possible to return on a Sunday for the duration of the current ticket booking period and we need to be back for work etc on the Monday. Does anyone know any more about this?

    *My mum has limited mobility so we need direct trains!

    The January weekend timetable won’t be firmed up by Network Rail until after Halloween.

    My eco-colleague here whines that I drive or fly to Scotland instead of taking the train. Plain fact is that I can book leave right through to March 2024, book flights right through to August 2023, but still can’t book Christmas 2022 (or even November weekend) rail tickets.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Monday 12th September

    “The preparations for the funeral represent a colossal logistical, security and diplomatic task, with tens of thousands of people expected to travel to London over the coming days.

    Foreign embassies are already handling hundreds of calls from private citizens enquiring whether it would be possible to land in the capital on the same day of the funeral, and rushing to book flights and accommodation.”

    If anyone is staying at a luxury hotel in london on Sunday night, they might wake up to breakfast with a president or a prime minister.

    “Staying” as in booking a night, or “staying” having been booked for the night by a dignatory?

    in reply to: Chat thread – Saturday 10th September

    A hedge fund will bring all London employees (a few hundreds) to Orlando Disney in 1st weekend of Dec, business class seats will be very tight around that time.

    I have no idea of the economics here, but at what point is it cheaper to charter your own aircraft?

    When you are going to fill an aircraft (or 2), you can be sure that the Airlines will be negotiating a very keen price.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Saturday 10th September

    So that’ll be a Friday out, Sunday back.

    most people will take the opportunity to travel around, so not eactly those 2 dates

    So what’s your relationship with these travel arrangements?

    Are you organising, attending? Your content seems a bit wishy washy and doesn’t align with the actual organisation of getting, say, 500 staff to Disney to attend a 2 day event when there are 100 or business class seats a day.

    *And* ensure that the normal work of the business isn’t disrupted.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Saturday 10th September

    A hedge fund will bring all London employees (a few hundreds) to Orlando Disney in 1st weekend of Dec, business class seats will be very tight around that time.

    So that’ll be a Friday out, Sunday back. There aren’t enough non-economy seats on the three direct flights on the Friday to fly everyone business or higher if there are “hundreds” going.

    32 Business Seats on a Gatwick BA 777?

    They’ll just speak to BA, Virgin or TUI and book an entire aircraft (or 2) and sort out premium catering for all staff.

    Which, as they won’t want to leave the aircraft idle for a long weekend, might mean there are surplus last minute seats available for points redemptions.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Friday 9th September

    Just noticed PAW has Hilton at 2/£

    None of the other cashback/points earning sites have had hilton for well over a year.

    You could earn double that at some ex-Hilton sites by staying at a Britannia and clicking through from PAW.

    Has Rob ever done a review of The Grand in Scarborough?

    Sadly the days of a 12% PAW rebate on a major airline seem to be long gone. A last minute “J” booking for my boss, me and 2 others (reimbursed by Pharma) to LAX certainly had me smiling.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Thursday 8th September

    It’s better than nothing but a 3% rebate on official Heathrow Parking has turned up on PAW.

    After a really sparse time, there’s around 130 Travel offers showing on my primary PAW route, and about 20 on my current employer version. Mostly are really shabby 1%-3%, but it’s a good idea to keep an eye on them.

    in reply to: BP £10 cash back

    Annoyingly, I think I used the only BP filling station (Richfield Avenue, Reading) in the area that’s not on the participating list.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Wednesday 7th September

    Another email nudge from JLP today about the changeover from HSBC to NewDay. It feels like they’ve had an underwhelming response to their switch campaign.

    “If you hold a John Lewis Partnership Credit card, we’d like to talk with you all about your experiences with it!”

    Nothing would persuade me to have sub-prime lender, NewDay, on my credit report.

    in reply to: Chat thread – Tuesday 6th September

    Probably travelling to New York for Business soon (for the first time). Once I get the green light from my manager, I’ve heard I’ll need to book travel via CWT (Carlin Wagonlit Travel).

    Can anyone that’s used them advise: 1) Will I get tier points myself and 2) Will I earn points for the flight?

    Or do these go to some sort of central pot for the firm?

    Yes you get Tier Points / Avios via CWT.

    Same goes for hotel points.

    You enter your loyalty number into the system when booking and it’s stored for future use.

    It’s rate dependent – my employer uses CWT (who are, kindly, absolutely useless) and some of the rates returned earn no points or TPs as they’re deeply discounted. Be aware of that. A good example is our corporate rate on BA Q fares which are already the bargain basement BA economy fare.

    Those fares can be really useful if you are allowed to book the negotiated rate for yourself through the travel agents.

    In the days of BMI, the negotiated rate of £80 return on LHR – EDI/GLA (as long as there was a seat left in economy) up to and including the day before departure was an amazing bonus.

    in reply to: Post new Amex statement credit offers here!

    I did wonder about that, but I just got a quote from from DUB in sterling, so the only way they could work it out is by dissecting the trip details that are always carried through to the credit card provider. Was wondering if anyone had any past successes which would give me confidence to give it a go…

    Give it a try. You might have discovered an easement where Dublin departures are priced in Sterling to accommodate NI residents.

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