Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Forum Replies Created

  • in reply to: Rotterdam (or anywhere)
    tootsci 75 posts

    I’ve been to all the destinations mentioned bar Haarlem, most recently Rotterdam and a quick look at Leiden, and you can’t really go wrong with any of them to be honest. All nice places to have a wander around, even Rotterdam which isn’t as ‘pretty’ as the others. Depending on which you pick, day trip(s) to the others are very do-able with fast and frequent trains.

    in reply to: Crediting Avios on Vueling to IB?
    tootsci 75 posts

    Thanks, yeah it’s the post-booking bit that seems to be the issue. I might give them a call…

    in reply to: Crediting Avios on Vueling to IB?
    tootsci 75 posts

    It’s a VY number, does that mean I can’t?

    in reply to: Crediting Avios on Vueling to IB?
    tootsci 75 posts

    Unfortunately as my Iberia account is brand new I have to ‘earn’ on it before I can transfer into it I believe? I have some Avios from previous trips with Vueling that I will transfer once I’ve ‘activated’ my Iberia account

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    @meta Thanks for the tip that co-pay is now aligned whether booking via BA or IB. I’d missed that.
    Isn’t business off-peak MAD-LIM-MAD 85k avios though (+£211)?


    @tootsci
    no harm at all with a cheapo fare out to Madrid to save the avios. Just to be clear, it’s generally recommended to book the return back to LON to “protect” the connection and get luggage checked through. Maybe if you are travelling HBO you aren’t so concerned with that, but I’d say it’s worth it (and you can also check out the lounge at Madrid which I seem to remember was reviewed recently).

    So it sounds like my oversight on the Iberia Plus account for the Avios transfer won’t be an issue then which is good

    Yeah I think as I’ll go over to Madrid the day before my main flight I’ll go cheapo, and then on the way back as I’ll just want to get back home at that point I’ll book all the way through.

    Thanks for your help!! 🤩

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    @tootsi it’s business off-peak

    Ooh ok that’s way better than I thought for MAD-LIM-MAD then. @zio kindly did a check for me as well, and for LON-MAD-LIM-MAD-LON it was 110k Avios + tax, so looks like I can save a chunk of Avios if I just get myself over to Madrid e.g. on a cheapo airline and then get my Iberia from there – even with having to book the Iberia through BA due to not realising the 90d issue with the IP club? Unless I’m misreading things?

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    Good luck! You’ve done very well, mine took 7 years 😂. I am a bit lazy, though. My “push” was the thought of putting Dr on my bank cards, etc. I think I may also be rather shallow 😂😂😂

    Ha ha thanks! It’ll be about 4.5/5 by the time I finish. Don’t worry that’s one of mine too 😂

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    It may be different next year – this year Easter is very early, and next year it’s very late, so peak dates (and demand) will adjust accordingly. It’s a moveable redemption feast!

    Yeah I’d like to get it locked in sooner rather than later really. Plus the trip is the ‘reward’/celebration for (hopefully!) getting the PhD I have been doing part-time as a mature student alongside my day job for the last 4 years – so having a date locked for my trip will focus my mind for the final push of writing my thesis lol!

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    @tootsci How many seats do you need? Return Madrid-Lima-Madrid is 68k Avios + tax. You already have enough for that. If you add London for the return you can just use less Avios more cash.

    Just the one seat. Is that Avios + tax for economy? I’m looking at business for this trip to have my first ever experience of ‘turning left’ (hope Iberia doesn’t disappoint, I’ve read mixed things about the service, though really all I actually want is a lie-flat bed for my middle-aged back and knees!)

    So if the issue is the higher costs going from London on the outbound leg, then I could do MAD-LIM (or Quito) and then LIM-MAD-LON on the inbound leg. I’ll definitely go to MAD the day before on the way out to make sure I’m there for the long-haul section but it would be simpler to go all the way through on the way back.

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    One way or another I think you are flying business!

    Yes did it last night. I had a look at one of the articles @NorthernLass flagged and it looks like I can transfer some Amex points over as ‘activity’ so will do that this evening . As I may use my 241 with my partner on a trip to Thailand with Qatar in a couple of years I better make sure I don’t need to do something similar with the Qatar scheme!

    Btw, the 241 vouchers aren’t valid on Qatar, only BA, IB and Aer Lingus.

    IB is the only scheme that makes you jump through hoops with ensuring your account is “active”. BA, you don’t get RFS pricing unless you’ve earned in the past 12 months but y9ou can still actually book with Avios (non RFS). Qatar you don’t need activity, just connect a Qatar account to your BA account and Avios will be sucked from BA automatically.

    Ohh, rookie error! Back to the drawing board on using that 241 then!

    Good to know that Qatar is straightforward though should I ever decided to book something through them. I would never have occurred to me that things would be anything other, but I am on a steep learning curve when it comes to the Avios game!

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    One way or another I think you are flying business!

    Yes did it last night. I had a look at one of the articles @NorthernLass flagged and it looks like I can transfer some Amex points over as ‘activity’ so will do that this evening . As I may use my 241 with my partner on a trip to Thailand with Qatar in a couple of years I better make sure I don’t need to do something similar with the Qatar scheme!

    Btw, the 241 vouchers aren’t valid on Qatar, only BA, IB and Aer Lingus.

    IB is the only scheme that makes you jump through hoops with ensuring your account is “active”. BA, you don’t get RFS pricing unless you’ve earned in the past 12 months but y9ou can still actually book with Avios (non RFS). Qatar you don’t need activity, just connect a Qatar account to your BA account and Avios will be sucked from BA automatically.

    Ohhh, rookie error! Back to the drawing board on how I get to a white sandy beach for that 241 then lol!

    Good to know that Qatar are at least straightforward if I do ever need my Avios to book with them

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    I’d book Madrid / South America online then ring up within 24 hours and get Madrid / uk leg added on the end. You’ll want to start the journey in Madrid to avoid higher Avios and taxes

    This is what I did for my upcoming trip to Peru

    I’ll look into that thanks

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    One query – if you can hit £3k of spend in 3 months to get the sign up bonus, what is stopping you from making £7k of spend in the remaining 9 months of your card year to trigger the voucher?

    Supermarket shopping of £100 weekly (I don’t know how this fits into your budget but I’m using it for easy numbers) would get you about halfway there, for example.

    Oh yes, that’s my plan, I just didn’t get the card early enough to get there before I intend booking this trip (have avoided having a credit card for some time due to my awful mismanagement of one in my younger days…). I’ve said to my partner that I’ll use the 241 on a nice trip for us the following year seeing as I am sloping off for 3/4 weeks by myself next April/May!

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    One way or another I think you are flying business!

    ha ha yes I think so! 🙂

    You can always choose one of the “more pricing options” when you have selected your flights and are given the “total price”. This will not necessarily give you the best “value” overall, but if it’s what you want from your avios you should be happy.

    If you are flexible on dates, it will not only be cheaper to visit MP on an off-peak date after the school Easter holiday, but the weather will be more reliable in May (or end of April).

    If you don’t have the Iberia account active you can’t take advantage of the lower charges “starting” your journey in Madrid, but since BA don’t fly direct to Lima you would be changing in Madrid anyway. In most people’s opinion this is a good thing as you will be on Iberia for the long flight. I’ve just done a dummy booking off-peak return to Lima (Iberia flights LON-MAD-LIM) 110,500 avios + £454 so it sounds like you are there even without losing value with one of the lower-avios-higher-charges options. However @meta is right that the best thing is to book 3 separate legs.

    Ah that sounds ok, thanks very much for checking for me. I’ll take a look then at the peak/off-peak charts and look to shift it to straight after the Easter holidays.

    It might sound daft, but I’m less bothered about paying a bit more in charges than I am about ‘making the most’ of my Avios. Gathering the Avios has been a right mission these last couple of years (I think my partner will be glad not to hear me yelling “Stop! Have you checked to see if I can get Avios on that?” for a while lol!) so I don’t want to ‘waste’ them. So if the only thing I have ‘lost out’ on by not realising I had to have the active Iberia account in time is the charges rather than there being a big difference in the amount of Avios needed, I can live with that, if that’s correct?

    As I’m going to travel over to Madrid the day before and likely hand luggage only, and so don’t need to worry about checking bags all the way through, is there any significant benefit in going over to Madrid by another airline (EasyJet, Vueling) and then doing MAD-LIM with the Iberia flight booked via BA?

    Open that IB account now so it is there next time! I think you also have to make a credit to it as well; I’m sure Rob has done an article on what sort of activity will activate the account.

    Yes did it last night. I had a look at one of the articles @NorthernLass flagged and it looks like I can transfer some Amex points over as ‘activity’ so will do that this evening . As I may use my 241 with my partner on a trip to Thailand with Qatar in a couple of years I better make sure I don’t need to do something similar with the Qatar scheme!

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    BA and Iberia have the same surcharges now unless you add UK-Madrid.

    Since you are not using the voucher, you should book separately three legs London to Madrid, then Madrid-Lima/South America and South America-London. This will save you most cash and on the way back you will be able check through bags. I’d go the day before to Madrid before your flight South America in order not to miss the long-haul flight.

    Thanks, yes definitely going to go the day before as the idea of missing the long-haul section makes me twitchy! I’m likely going to travel with just the 2 pieces of hand luggage as will be doing hop-on hop-off buses when I’m there so my trusty old travel backpack from my younger days should mean I don’t need to worry about checked luggage hopefully

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    You can book IB award flights via BA but I think the surcharges are higher. You then need to make separate arrangements to get to Madrid, so for your first redemption, for simplicity’s sake, you might just want to go with BA from London!

    If you have a bit of flexibility, remember that most of April next year will be peak pricing due to the Easter holidays, you pay fewer avios on off-peak days.

    Yes, that’s a pity but if it’s higher surcharges or not use any Avios at all, I’ll guess I’ll just chalk it up to experience and take the hit.

    I do have some flexibility, I had gone with April as a good balance between what’s the optimal time for visiting Macchu Pichu without ridiculous crowds and seeing the salt flats in Bolivia with the mirror effect during the winter. But May could also work, MP is busiest Jun-Aug I believe and the salt flats are still good all year round!

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    You might be a bit late to be able to transfer avios to Iberia in time to book, in that case.

    One-way cash flights are very expensive so a better option is, e.g. fly out business and back in premium economy (or the other way around) if you want to save avios.

    Oh no, that wasn’t something I had considered! I’ll take a look at their website now, but that puts a spanner in the works…….

    I’d like to do business both ways even if it means paying some more cash but want to maximise what I do with the Avios

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    https://www.headforpoints.com/category/avios-redemption-university/

    This is a great series of articles – there is one on using avios on Iberia which can give good savings in comparison to BA. It’s a bit out of date for BA pricing but still relevant to IB.

    https://www.headforpoints.com/2024/01/08/where-does-iberia-fly-long-haul/

    More up to date, it doesn’t actually matter if you don’t have a 241.

    Super, not sure if I’ve read those or not (all my research is making my head spin!) but will check them out thanks! 😃

    in reply to: Advice on Avios redemption to South America
    tootsci 75 posts

    Welcome to the forum (and well done on posting successfully without a duplicate!).

    You’re right, there are a lot of things to consider, and you are jumping in at the deep end thinking about an ex-EU open jaw.

    Two further pieces of info will help clarify your options with what you have collected so far:
    How many of you travelling?
    Do you have an “active” Iberia account more than 90 days old? (Needed to transfer your avios over).

    It’s just me travelling (have promised the other half that I’ll use the 241 for a trip for us!)

    I don’t have an active Iberia account – sounds like that is an issue then?

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