Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Forum Replies Created

  • in reply to: Ideas & Japan
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    A pity if you’re not including Kanazawa, a gem.

    in reply to: BA vs. JAL for LHR- HND route
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    @aseftel Hi, we are currently in BA Club Suite.

    soft product JAL would be better but can you also comment on hard product? apex vs. Clubsuite?

    I’m at a disadvantage as haven’t flown club suite yet, first flight next month! But in a different class to old CW

    in reply to: The HSBC Premier Mastercards thread
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    @yorkieflyer – it isn’t exactly that there is a month’s notice, but if you don’t give at least a month’s notice (as with Virgin) to cancel or downgrade (if you have the WE) you may get charged the fee and then go round in circles trying to get it reversed and, as you may have observed, HSBC are very good at circles.

    Cheers JDB ah well will not have used the card other than for lounge access for a month before so will be a zero balance and will tough it out with them. Can’t be as much trouble as Barclays have been?…..
    N.B. been terribly spoilt in my 20+years with First Direct,would never change my main account!

    in reply to: Inverness Lounge
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    staffed by Scottish Mr and Mrs Doyles.. aye you will have another wee one!

    in reply to: BA vs. JAL for LHR- HND route
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    Definitely much better, we were rebooked from BA when they hadn’t restarted their flights. Better service and food by a mile

    in reply to: The HSBC Premier Mastercards thread
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    @Tariq. That’s usually the way it works. But you must phone in at least 1 month before end of year/statement date can be different. I was almost caught out by that. Ask them the downgrade you, even if happens after the 1st year anniversary, to save your points. They usually agree to refund the fee. But you must stress you want any bonus points applied, and that you are not continuing with the fee WE card. It does need the phone call though.

    , think it’s best to get the agreement over the phone to downgrade, esp if you are preserving a large points balance. We have had this conversation through last summer, it’s an ongoing issue.

    Can I ask where the minimum month notice comes from? I was intending cancelling just before the 2 yr anniversary

    in reply to: Sri Lankan flights using Avios
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    If I recall correctly VAT is applied to airline tickets sold locally

    in reply to: No Amex
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    I just finally settled with the Green Charge Card which suits my needs perfectly…£60 a year which I get refunded thoughout the year with offers. 1 MR point per every £1 spent and an extra year’s warranty cover on 2 x TV’s and a washing machine. No bonuses to chase anymore (been there, done that) and use the MR points to purchase Hilton points whenever Amex run the 30% bonus promotion. I use my Barclaycard Hilton where Amex isn’t accepted, and have the free Virgin Atlantic catd for EU spend. I’m as happy as Larry!

    off course the fee free card is also an option, only difference i think being the extra appliance warranty

    in reply to: No Amex
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    From a marketing perspective, it’s just much too complicated and it no longer has any vaguely premium cachet; It will be interesting to see if Amex does radically rethink the Platinum product in the UK or just continues to pay people to take it off their hands and/or hold it.

    Really hope Amex rethinks plat benefits. Remove the statement credit offers like HN, dining credit and instead use it make the insurance better and add one or more status like Hyatt.
    Personally think the Hilton and Meliá gold are underrated. Plus some more lounge collaboration with airlines to stay away from the riffraff using Ppass.

    The majority of the ‘riffraff’ as you so eloquently put it are using PP obtained via Amex Plat…

    Isn’t that exactly the problem he’s referring to? amex Plat has become so mass market with the ‘give you your money back’ offers (dining credit, Harvey Nichols) that too many people are getting access to lounges via it. If the benefits were re-thought, including a direct contract with lounges rather than via Collinson, and that resulted in a card fee hike, many of us would be happy to pay it. I’ve never been refused Lufthansa Senator lounge access using Amex Plat, and that is vastly superior to the experience of say Escape Manchester (when rarely admitted). The LH lounges have a wide variety of seating and food and you can work or lounge there easily. Too many UK lounges have simply become rooms where Priority Pass holders can compete to see who can get p1ssed the fastest.

    I think its actually too many Bonk on the Beach customers and Holiday extras bundles that are the problem with UK lounge access

    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    Thanks all, I think I’ll try downgrading to the free card, then upgrading next year back to the paid one to get the voucher again.

    there is of course no guarantee you’ll be accepted for the upgrade, it’s not automatic

    in reply to: IHG Diamond status and Ambassador
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    @yorkie, it’s widely known and has been advertised in articles on other travel/points sites so nobody’s giving anything away here!

    I know but its a continuance of a theme and although I’m sure IHG know, the more these things are blabbed about the more they are taken advantage of and eventually the cost and visibility results in nice things being taken away. We’ve now got some folk pointing out free night vouchers being a bit sticky, well good luck if it happens to you and you’re comfortable with an opportunity but why go around spelling out the detail and spelling out stuff in words of two syllables, being too lazy to have a dig, asking blatent questions and to cap it all as we know sometimes then ringing up the company to ask if something is a mistake! Daft as a brush some folk in my humble opinion. I’m not excluding some bloggers from the same criticism by the way.

    in reply to: Upgrade across two accounts – GRRR
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    agree re calling, in my experience VS staff are helpful and friendly and not the usual call centre nightmare, I know its not the modern way to dial up, but definitely best with Virgin. Oh and you can be a nominated user of your wifes’s account if she gives permission and sets up a password, again by calling in!

    in reply to: Inflatable foot rests
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    I would go ahead and take them on board. The worst is they could tell you to deflate and you apologising.

    I never understand this reasoning. It specifically says they are not allowed. There is no grey area, it’s very clear. Why anyone would do this knowing they are prohibited is beyond me.

    There was a thread on FT about this, and several BA staff commented a definite no no.

    many peeps are strongly advised to keep limbs raised for medical reasons so if this is the case I’d just do it

    in reply to: Inflatable foot rests
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    Permitted on other airlines, including SQ, but there is quite a list of requirements: BA have obviously decided that it’s too much hassle for their passengers to comply, or for their staff to ensure that passengers comply OR they have a different risk assessment to SQ.

    (From SQ website, which also includes diagrams)
    You must also meet the following requirements:
    Your child must be able to fasten the seatbelt under his or her arm when using the inflight bed.
    If your child is under two years of age, he or she must be removed from the convertible inflight bed and secured with an infant seatbelt whenever the seatbelt sign is switched on.
    Convertible inflight beds must be packed and securely stowed in the overhead compartment or under the seat in front during taxi, take-off and landing.
    Convertible inflight beds cannot be used at the emergency exit rows.
    Convertible inflight beds must not interfere with or prevent the seat in front from reclining.
    Convertible inflight beds must not damage the aircraft seat if they need to be attached to any part of the seat.
    Convertible inflight beds should not exceed a total dimension of 115cm (when the length, width and height of the fully deployed bed is combined), and will be counted as part of your cabin baggage allowance.
    Convertible inflight beds cannot be combined so as to allow two or more convertible inflight beds to occupy several seats.

    Beds? who suggested a blow up bed? tho’ not a bad idea!

    in reply to: Inflatable foot rests
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    Have used them in premium economy on both BA and VS without any comment and without being aware of what appears a senseless rule

    in reply to: IHG Diamond status and Ambassador
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    Sent email to

    In under 1hr, had a succesful reply and my expiry date know showing 31/12/24


    +1 here too on Mrs GG’s account – emailed and got replay in a couple of hours 🙂

    That potentially saves an annual Ambassador enrolment fee in order to extend the good old Creation churned Diamond status for another year…


    in reply to: IHG Diamond status and Ambassador
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    I have similarly had my diamond extended to Dec 24 by email, is it linked to the email extending status to ex credit card holders I wonder?

    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    Is it possible to fly direct from HKG to Koh Samui (preferably with a LCC)? Skyscanner is not showing any options.

    Bangkok airways does or at least used to fly the route and long hops can be good value with a discovery airpass, 3 sectors required

    in reply to: Tax free shopping in EU (Spain)
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    I’m pretty sure those who moralise about tax evasion are often those who max out tax avoidance schemes. I can’t help but have a big grin when such folk have come a cropper when dodgy tax avoidance schemes have been ruled un lawful and the poor dears claim hardship and are unable to pay back the tax and blame the sharp suited fellas who told them it was all kosher

    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    I am a FD client since I came to the UK 15 years ago. Their website and app look almost the same they did when I opened the account. But other than that, if you just use them to get paid and not much else I cannot see why they would be liked or not (the little they do they do well).

    I once paid foreign checks into the account and asked for details on the costs and the head of fx replied by post with all exchange rates used.

    I am amazed FD has not informed us of anything regarding the lower costs on foreign fx.

    I’ve banked with FD for over 20 years as my main account, they are no fuss, you can speak to a real person easily and quickly, make very few mistakes, one only in all that time which they fixed by speaking to another lender, it could have led to the loss of an interest free deal and cost 4 figures and they fixed it in hours. They are pretty much gimmick free and don’t dumb down stuff ie call a current account what is is not my piggy bank or other such nonsense I’ve seen with children’s accounts like Monzo. What’s not to like?

    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    This Algbra thing sounds amazing.
    What is the catch?

    Algbra website says:”We are not a bank. We are a movement”. Fills me full of confidence…not!

    Oh I just love that

    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    Lots of HfP readers will have the MBNA Horizon card from when their various airline cards were closed.
    With Cashback on foreign spend, S75 and fee free, there’s no way the maths ever works for preferring a fee paying card to this.
    There are always cheaper ways to get over the line if you really need to hit a bonus…

    Yes, still a winner hoping Lloyds have forgotten about it

    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    I don’t really see how (without using Curve with an avios card) you could beat the 1% Chase cashback unless you’re going to spend more than 1.5k? Unless of course you really need S75 protection

    The Chase 1% is only for the first year?

    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    Realise this may be too complex to be worth the savings/benefits for some, but for foreign-denominated goods/services I use (in order of preference):

    Algbra for anything up to £100 that I can pay for using Google Pay, i.e. contactless in-person as well as some in-app and web payments. 0% FX fees and earns 1.5% cashback up to a total of £22.50 a month (i.e. £1500 in transactions).

    Curve for anything non-GP up to £100 during the week. 0% FX fees up to £1000 a month with the free tier. I have this linked to my free Barclaycard (downgraded from the Plus once I’d earned the voucher) so get 1 Avios/£.

    Algbra for anything non-GP up to £100 during the weekend (due to Curve’s weekend markup). Still 0% FX fees but non-GP transactions only earn 1% cashback up to a total of £10 a month (i.e. £1000 in transactions).

    Chase for anything non-GP up to £100 during the weekend, once I reach Algbra’s £1000 monthly cashback limit. Don’t like to have my money spread around too many accounts so I use this as more of a backup where necessary.

    Aqua Reward credit card for any purchases of £100+ where I feel I want the section 75 protection. 0% FX fees and earns 0.5% cashback (sadly rounded down to the nearest £5 and only paid annually). If I don’t feel the need for s75 (e.g. it’s a hotel where I’m paying on check-in) I revert to one of the above methods.

    For foreign-denominated cash withdrawals I use (in order of preference):

    Starling for cash in countries where there are fee-free ATMs (i.e. most of Europe, plus some other countries). Gives 0% FX fees with no monthly limit, just the daily £300 withdrawal limit which most cards will have.

    Chase for US cash withdrawals – no fees at Chase Bank ATMs (most other US banks/ATMs tend to charge a fee). Again, 0% FX fees and so this also provides a back-up if I’m close to the daily Starling limit. £1500 a month foreign ATM limit, but no daily limit.

    Algbra as a tertiary back-up to the above, should I be getting close to my monthly limits. 0% FX fees but it’s unclear what the monthly withdrawal limit is.

    Curve I suppose would be a quartenary back-up, though I’d try to only use this during the weekend due to the FX markup. The £200/month limit is also rather onerous.

    Blimey I like to get value but this seems terribly complicated

    in reply to: Club World LHR – JNB sweet spot?
    yorkieflyer 259 posts

    BA can’t sell the flights cheap because of flight inefficiencies. The A380 aircraft arrives to JNB in the morning and doesn’t leave until the evening.

    Cape Town fares are similar (higher in fact) and don’t use the A380 – though the planes do sit around all day there too. I’m guessing if they turned around immediately, they’d arrive back in London after the curfew.

    Virgin come straight back in the morning as did The BA Durban flight

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