Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Forum Replies Created

  • in reply to: Singapore and back in F. Service thoughts
    JonathanC 107 posts

    Yep

    Unfortunately the only other airline options using the 241 voucher hardly know what the eastern world is…

    IB is very focused on Latin America (long haul)

    EI doesn’t really know what long haul flights are that aren’t centred around the U.S.

    Not either of their faults, they have flights to where their core markets need and or want to go to, plus there’s no point in bothering with destinations that’s not economically viable for them when they’ve got some partners who’re strong in the area.
    Just a shame BA have got a lot of work to be doing as it in the first place, before they think about improvements where us HfP readers would like to see it more than anything

    in reply to: Singapore and back in F. Service thoughts
    JonathanC 107 posts

    There’s no using an Amex 241 voucher when flying SQ…

    JonathanC 107 posts

    The email also thinks the spend requirement to receive the 241 voucher is £10k per year, not £15k

    JonathanC 107 posts

    Their own systems are crap, forget about investing for partner availability.

    Couple of changes to the itinerary and we couldn’t check in at the airport. The staff took 30 mins to sort it out.[/quote]

    We can hope that Shai will focus on the IT systems one day, since he tries hard to make a success of the airline. Although it’d require a lot of money being spent, it’d heavily reduce the amount of cs staff needed in Swansea

    Things like it taking the airport staff 30 minutes to sort is unfortunate but part and parcel of old IT systems – occasionally

    in reply to: Virgin points more valuable than Avios?
    JonathanC 107 posts

    Although I’ve not read any of the comments, answers to this topic headline, there’s no concrete answer of yes or no to are VS points more valuable than Avios, it’s all a case of personal preference.

    Which airline do you like using the most, do you have status with either one, does one or the other have a cabin that you happily more for to fly in when the equivalent on the other carrier(s) is substantially cheaper, how often do you use each other’s partner airlines and get the points credited to your VS or Avios account, do you save all your points for reward seats in partner airlines etc. there’s a lot of very different points you need to look at properly before making a choice or decision on which type of points is better value than the other

    Again like I said above, it’s more down to personal preference more than anything

    JonathanC 107 posts

    VS helpline staff don’t try to deny that booking points seats for SQ is difficult when using their points as availability is heavily restricted.

    We can hope that VS will invest heavily in their website so that looking for reward availability on their partner airlines and other SkyTeam airlines isn’t like it is right now, where a phone call must be made.
    On a plus note, at least many of us will hardly need to be making any phone calls to BA’s csa department for fiddly bookings in the coming future, it’s taken them long enough to invest in their website, but they’ve finally recently announced a complete rebuild (near-enough) of the current system

    JonathanC 107 posts

    Does anyone have any experience of backlash on Amex’s part if you accept a retention offer, do the spend and then close the account as soon as you’ve been given the bonus points at all ?

    I’ve been offered 12k points for £1k in three months, but I should be able to do it within a month, then cancel the card as soon as the points credit, I’ve got VS+ card for until around February at the earliest when I might get rid of it, and I’m not redeeming my MR points immediately as I’ve also got the free MR card (ARCC)

    JonathanC 107 posts

    What is crazy is that hotels don’t even try to encourage you to book with themselves if there’s no incentive to do so, I’ve seen it numerous times where Hilton charge pretty much the same as HfP’s favourite booking portal for non chain hotels, or where you haven’t got status, hotels.com .

    It quite simply doesn’t make sense, as you get approximately 10% return on your hotel stay through a stamp for a reward night, then if you book in advance and or when there’s a promotion, you’ll also get 11-12% via TopCashback

    With this sort of thing in mind, why do some hotel chains not focus more heavily on better pricing to book directly with themselves, plus Rob mentioned above the amount booking websites charge the hotels…

    in reply to: Virgin Atlantic credit card reward voucher
    JonathanC 107 posts

    I’d ring VS at this stage and ask what they can do. After all, they are the only ones whose comments – at this point – matter.

    Don’t forget that unfortunately not all VS call centre agents are the brightest bulbs in the bunch, I’ve had before and the first agent doesn’t understand the problem and what I’m trying to get at, the next call, I’ve explained the problem to a different agent and they understand the problem straight away
    Part and parcel of needing to ring a call centre…

    in reply to: Virgin credit card voucher expiring – extension?
    JonathanC 107 posts

    There’s nothing you can do to extend the life of your voucher.
    To avoid it going to waste, just redeem it for clubhouse access, something’s better than nothing

    JonathanC 107 posts

    Although there’s been some bad mouthing of Aeroplan above, it’s a good program to use if you occasionally fly Emirates and or Etihad not enough to bother with own programs (or don’t like SkyWards hard expiry), as you can credit flights from both airlines to Aeroplan.

    Choosing the right program is usually easier said than done, as all have advantages and disadvantages if you’re not particularly fussed over which one you go with and just need one to credit flights from a variety of airlines.

    JonathanC 107 posts

    I personally wouldn’t bother booking with BA at all, just use TK for the whole journey.

    BA is only really worth bothering with if you’re in dire need of TPs.

    With TK, wherever you sit, you’ll get IFE and proper catering, yes TK is more expensive but BA pulled out just about everything that made them attractive from narrow body operated routes years ago.

    Plus if you book TK, they’ll handle your transfer and look after you if things go wrong, do a self transfer and you’ll lose your next plane ticket if there’s problems, not usually an issue if you’re looking at a long layover, but you never know what might happen

    JonathanC 107 posts

    It’s probably better to just book the whole trip with TK instead of BA (unless you’re in dire need of a TP booster), that way you’ll have you connection taken care of by them, you’ll also get a seat better than CE even if you opt for Economy on TK.

    TK are more expensive than BA, but there’s a reason, and a good one

    I only used BA to fly to IST last year to use an evoucher, if it wasn’t for that, I’d have flown TK

    in reply to: BA or CX to Hong Kong in Premium Economy
    JonathanC 107 posts

    I got put in a WTP seat a year ago on a flight from ALG, it was a 20 year old (or thereabouts age range) Boeing 777-200, and from siting in the seat, it was clear to me that was hardly worth the premium, maybe so if you needed extra TPs and or extra baggage and it’s the cheapest and or easiest way of doing so.

    It’s not too say that this is case with all airlines, many do make some real effort, VS’s offering is usually in high demand

    in reply to: Upgrade – Thank you BA
    JonathanC 107 posts

    A pleasant surprise !

    Just a shame that a recent article suggests that BA aren’t looking after their best lounge as well as they did so if you’d have gone say a number of years ago or so, the general way the airline is being run these days !

    in reply to: Seat selection in Club Europe
    JonathanC 107 posts

    Seems crazy that you can book “buisness” and not be able to select your seats! Thankyou

    This is how BA have pretty much always been, Rob has said before about seat selection fees on a CW flight and how a couple could easily spend around £500 (!!) deciding where they’d like enjoy their flight.

    BA is one of the few airlines around that charges a premium to those who’ve booked a cheap Business Class ticket and don’t have status

    in reply to: LATAM Pass
    JonathanC 107 posts

    You can also credit LATAM flights to VSFC, and I think it’s more generous than the basic earnings you’d get if you have an Avios account.

    I’m not sure how many points you’d get if you credited say using a VSFC Gold versus a BAEC Gold though…

    in reply to: Fare evader on British Airways
    JonathanC 107 posts

    BA will be have been or are expecting a fine from U.S. CBP for transporting an inadmissible passenger…

    JonathanC 107 posts

    Thanks for the replies everyone.

    I think I’m just going to order when I get home, since the ATM fees will just about wipe out any saving, plus if I buy from John Lewis, I can use my credit card of theirs I’ve got and earn some points on top

    in reply to: Club Suite seat swapped to old Club World
    JonathanC 107 posts

    You should complain to BA and see if they’ll compensate you in some shape or form, since they’ve ultimately screwed up, and they should at the very least acknowledge and try to make you satisfied.

    It’s like when Rob mentioned a little while that when VS changed the aircraft at the last minute and they were then sat in an old UC seat instead of an A35X / A339neo, he was told that he’d get 10K points as a sorry, but at the time of writing, it never appeared…

    You’ve got nothing to lose when trying your luck in these sort of circumstances

    in reply to: Earning Avios on overseas purchases
    JonathanC 107 posts

    It all depends on where you’re travelling to, in many countries cash is king, and if you something you’d like to buy or pay for a service, they won’t have a card machine at all, I’m in Colombia right now, and that’s very much the case !

    When I stopped over in Miami on my way, I ordered a pizza, and was told I’d have to pay 4% surcharge to use my card ! Luckily I had some cash to cover it instead of paying such a ripoff for a country where bank cards are in just about everyone’s pocket

    in reply to: Flight price increases
    JonathanC 107 posts

    It’s difficult to know how pricing engines work, unless you’re someone who works in that field !

    It probably depends on a variety on factors generally, availability, how much cash the airline has got, for example if they’ve just to pay out a load of UK261 claims or been fined by immigration authorities for transporting an inadmissible passenger etc.

    It’s annoying when prices go up heavily, it’s just the way airfare prices work.
    You might need to look elsewhere if it’s too much

    in reply to: VS / Downgrade System-Wide Voucher – P Class
    JonathanC 107 posts

    Some airlines have special booking codes for reward seat bookings, some don’t.

    VS does, A: Economy reward, P: Premium reward, G: Upper Class reward.

    I’m not sure about all the cash booking codes off the top of my head, and given that it’s not really relevant, theres not really any point going any further.

    in reply to: Beyond San Francisco
    JonathanC 107 posts

    California is not entirely walkable, but you can take CalTrain and combine it with Uber/Lyft with the same cost to enjoy it care-free.

    San Francisco is incredibly hilly in certain areas, even the strongest legged people will notice it times, especially if you’ve been on your feet all day

    in reply to: Crediting a non VS flight after status is achieved
    JonathanC 107 posts

    Yeah I’m currently Red level, and I’ll be flying via Miami, not Los Angeles !

    I’m just trying to figure out if I’d be better off crediting the flight another time rather than before I’m on the plane

    I’m not sure if anyone’s found any success doing this sort of thing with other airline programs ?

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