Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Forum Replies Created

  • in reply to: BA Avios reward seat release time
    zio 175 posts

    I haven’t done the maths but I expect it’s because 2024 is a leap year so you have a 2nd late night ahead.

    zio 175 posts

    The cancellation cost doesn’t increase with time, and the flights are cancellable up to 24 hours before outbound flight. Some more detail here
    Edit: see also latest posts today on this thread suggesting what circumstances may lead to a £35 rather than £1 cancellation fee.

    in reply to: DragonPass – combine with Priority Pass?
    zio 175 posts

    It is definitely possible, and clearly allowed as per the T&Cs, to guest someone in on DP if DP holder is using a pass themselves.
    OP would like to use DP for his (accompanied) children while he uses HSBC instead of his DP. This is not explicitly mentioned in the T&Cs.

    in reply to: Miss first leg of flight
    zio 175 posts

    I assume OP hasn’t booked yet because they say they could save £300 with a different routing. Reading the post again it does indeed sound as though they are considering MAD-LHR-SCL which is unlikely to be the best idea.
    The straight answer to the question asked remains a hard no, you can’t miss the first leg of a booking.
    This article may help OP with routing options:

    in reply to: DragonPass – combine with Priority Pass?
    zio 175 posts

    The DragonPass+ terms don’t explicitly say you can, but I think you would be unlucky not to be allowed to use 2 passes (just ask to scan twice) for your children while you use your HSBC cards.
    I don’t currently have PP to check t&cs, but would again expect you could swipe twice for accompanied children.
    You are of course at the mercy of individual lounges having capacity for DP or PP.

    in reply to: Miss first leg of flight
    zio 175 posts

    Most of the price difference will be APD departing the UK.
    You can book MAD-SCL-MAD-LHR with IB to save the APD, and get your luggage checked through, if you actually need to get back to the UK.
    If you are originally travelling from the UK you will then need a separate ticket to MAD. Safest to book this for the day before your long haul as your connection won’t be protected.
    Do not skip the first leg of a multi-leg booking. As per @BAFlyer above this will result in your entire ticket being cancelled.

    in reply to: Cabin upgrade voucher
    zio 175 posts

    It’s definitely one voucher each (if you want to book returns).
    Some uncertainty remains over whether you can get a phone agent to do this in one booking (one positive report last year), and whether any part of BA IT might allow you to select 2 vouchers at once (again one potential report). Both would be useful, especially if trying to book at midnight.

    zio 175 posts

    I feel the “recent topics” tab does a good enough job of telling me which threads I need to catch up on.
    I sometimes think it would be nice to have it flagged if someone has replied to a post or @tagged.
    A fruitless search for a post this morning led to my musing about having individual favourite posts. I admit it probably isn’t a priority but I don’t know how easy it is to implement this sort of thing.

    in reply to: Cabin upgrade voucher
    zio 175 posts

    Ah, ok. I looked but couldn’t find the post in question.
    I’ve only got one voucher on my BAEC a/c atm. The next is sitting with Barclaycard waiting to be triggered.
    When I trigger the voucher I will experiment and report back. Unless of course anyone else feels like providing a data point on this.

    in reply to: Cabin upgrade voucher
    zio 175 posts

    Well done on getting the flights you wanted. That’s the main thing, and also looking on the bright side you can get a night flight home and still have another voucher to use.

    I also haven’t been able to select two vouchers in app. I think someone got lucky, or more likely they were they at crossed purposes when reporting success.

    A bit of a nonsense that the agent wouldn’t let you(!) use two vouchers. I think this is a further sign that the IT just isn’t set up to allow two vouchers on a single booking. I also think mentioning using “half a voucher” is likely to confuse agents. It’s a shorthand I have used here before, but for the average agent and, I believe, for the IT, you are wanting to make a booking “using” the voucher.

    When you are feeling time pressure T-355 on prime routes, you rightly say it is frustrating that even agents apparently need to do two separate bookings to use these vouchers in the way most people will want.

    zio 175 posts

    T&Cs say within 5 working days. Mine arrived sooner.
    Just checking: you do have Avios Rewards activated in the app don’t you? There’s no voucher just for having the premier account.

    in reply to: InterContinental Porto advice
    zio 175 posts

    Just reporting back on this in case it’s helpful for anyone.
    Lovely hotel, lovely city. Only problem is that I’ve come home with a daily habit of a bottle of port and 6 custard tarts.
    The construction in front of the hotel is ongoing and apparently won’t be finished before 2025. It didn’t worry or disturb me but it does spoil the view and necessitate a small detour if wanting to turn left out of the hotel.
    I booked one night with my last cc voucher (king classic), two nights on the ambassador weekend rate (expecting an upgrade I booked the slightly odd split level “suite” which now seems to have been rebranded as king classic historic centre view), one night on points (king classic, 57k). Comms with the hotel in advance were excellent and as expected I stayed all 4 nights in the junior suite I was allocated.
    The room was very comfortable and well equipped, though the red marble in the bathroom felt a little oppressive and dated; but then again maybe opulent is the word.
    Daily treat in addition to the mineral water top up: fruit bowl on arrival, pastel de nata (x4), half bottle of port (twice). The $15 F&B credit was good for 2 beers from the minibar.
    Breakfast (free as diamond) was extensive and included IC branded fizz, just in case that’s your preferred way of preparing for a port tasting. Coffee not great, however: the in-room Nespresso was better.
    Staff all friendly, efficient and very helpful.
    Overall, I would definitely stay again. I felt the location (building works apart) was perfect.
    Thanks to @meta and @redlilly for their input.

    in reply to: Driving in Iceland (in winter)
    zio 175 posts

    @NLE Thank you for the helpful and reassuring reply. 4×4 suggestion, the weblink, and the recommendation to drive first and stay in Reykjavik last were all particularly useful.
    Any advice about advisability of driving in the dark? I’m not expecting many street lamps! However, I am reasonably experienced and confident at driving single-lane rural roads in the dark… just not in the snow.
    I’m thinking about moving on from Vik as far as Hofn. Do you have any other suggestions for places I ought to try to get to?

    @TS thank you for further validation that this isn’t a bad idea.

    in reply to: Creation Financial Services bashing
    zio 175 posts

    the gender neutral X [ I’m pretty sure this can’t be “Mr X” 😉 ]who threw all their toys out of the pram including invoking the ICO although “they were using a service which allowed debit card payments to be made via a credit card which I’ll call C [LOL]. They were sending funds from Creation via C to another business I’ll call N [ROFL], then paying the funds back from N to Creation.

    Yes, the thread does seem to be withering, and having used my recovered voucher last week I have no more skin in the game.

    Wondering if the thread has become the HfP record… there was a troll-y thread (possibly deleted?) in the first weeks of the forum which I think made 80+ pages before we grew up.

    in reply to: New Zealand with the upgrade voucher?
    zio 175 posts

    Your plan feels optimistic, but not necessarily because of shortcomings with the voucher.
    Apologies if I am teaching egg-sucking, but you need business class or premium economy (or potentially a mix) reward seats to be available on BA planes. These go live 355 days in advance so your plan of booking in Feb for Aug means people have had a 6 month headstart on nabbing them.
    To get an idea, you could do a search for Aug 2024 now and see what is available 10 months out. I’ve never looked for NZ reward flights but my suspicion based on chat here about indirect routings is that you will find slim pickings.

    in reply to: Sicily hotels
    zio 175 posts

    No Hilton or IHG hotels. I stayed in B&B type places as I did a circuit of the classical sites. The one which sticks in the mind was Villa Seta near Agrigento/valley of the temples. Great hospitality and an unbelievable breakfast. It also has a pool/bbq area so a bit more than a typical B&B.

    Antelope Canyon certainly is wonderful (though an hour’s tour will be at least $50pp, so it may not fit the brief).
    Page/Horseshoe Bend is undeniably a long detour but Tigress has expressed a desire to visit. It is a stunning view which I found somehow easier to take in than a “straight bit of canyon”, to use The Savage Squirrel’s memorable phrase.
    Anyway, we agree that it is a possible if not entirely recommended route.
    I’m jealous of the 50 days @Tiger has to plan, but the US is so big and varied that some things will inevitably have to remain on the bucket list.

    Haha, you’re asking the wrong person. I have no intention of spending even one more night in Vegas. For me there is America the Beautiful and there is Las Vegas. YMMV, of course.

    Absolutely option 2. Have relaxed breakfast in Vegas, maybe photo stop at the Hoover dam, drive a little of the rim road, find a sunset viewpoint… or go for it – you could just hammer it to horseshoe bend and come back via the NP east entrance for sunset. Might be pushing 8 hours in the saddle though.
    I know you are going in spring but in the summer option 1 would be positively bonkers.

    in reply to: Increasing card limit
    zio 175 posts

    The only time I have asked for a raised limit it was a phone call. Actually from SA to Lloyd’s, iirc because i needed to pay for some hire car issues which were settled later via Amex platinum insurance. Anyway limit was I think trebled 4k to 12k. It’s whatever the company/bank is willing to do though. No one knows this except the card issuer so pick up the phone. They can only say “no”, or “call us again in 6 months”.

    in reply to: Driving on wrong side of the road (for Brits)
    zio 175 posts

    Chance of this having repercussions in the UK is zero. Because there wasn’t an accident. Suggest you continue to “avoid driving in such countries if possible.”

    I love chewing up the miles on a US road trip as much as the next person, but you aren’t visiting the area for the hotel…Flagstaff is giving yourself a long drive potentially before sunrise or after sunset at the canyon. As you may be discovering, hotels in GC village charge handsomely for the convenience even though so few rooms have a rim view. I recommend you have a look at Tusayan. You won’t find wonderful hotels but you will find more choice at slightly lower prices, and only 15 minutes from the village.

    in reply to: Voucher expiration
    zio 175 posts

    Not sure when you did this though… Have a read of this thread
    All you can do is call and ask.

    zio 175 posts

    I posted on this last quoted thread. To try to add some clarity, this is what I did when using the voucher in April. This booking was for one person, using one voucher.

    T-355, outbound booked online. LHR-AUS £225 + 67,500 avios. In the BA app this appears as “BA Barclays cabin upgrade voucher redeemed -67,500”.

    16 days later, return added by phone (using 0344 number at 12.32pm). This generated 2 lines in the app. First “BA Barclays cabin upgrade voucher redeposit 67,500” and then “Reward flight -135,000”. I paid an extra £225 when booking the return.

    1 For me, at least, it was possible to book online at T-355.
    2 I did not attempt to phone overseas at 1am, but the agent who added the return was not surprised or fazed by the request.
    3 The return used the same avios/TFC level and cost exactly the same as the outbound. The total cost was £450 + 135k avios.

    in reply to: Family holiday to Istanbul / Turkey
    zio 175 posts

    Sounds like you are already being talked round, but it’s impossible to recommend staying in and around Istanbul for 12 days to a family visiting for the first time. There are enough “big hitting” first time tourist things to last you beyond 3 days, but it will be hot and hectic. Have a think about what you are really interested in seeing and plan accordingly how much time to stay. If your kids’ main reason to visit is the cats, you can reassure them that Istanbul doesn’t have a monopoly…
    Antalya area is tourist central but that does mean a variety of accommodation/activities/ food which will suit anyone.

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