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News Round-up

Wednesday 5th February 2020

See these pages on TSTW for all the:
Hotel promos, and lounges cars & parking promos or buy points deals

Earn up to 6000 bonus Accor points from 3x 2 night stays

The latest Accor promo is worth up to 6000 Accor points, which is worth €120 of Accor hotel stays, or you could take 6000 Avios (credit them to Iberia, then use Combine my Avios), but that wouldn’t be a sensible choice.

Each stay must be for a minimum of 2 nights. Existing bookings do not qualify. Reward nights will not qualify.

The first stay will earn 500 bonus points. The second earns an additional 2500. The third would earn another 3000, making a total of 6000.

You have to register first and then book by 6th March, for stays from 14th February until 7th June.

Eurostar - Book direct to and from Amsterdam from 11th February

The Eurostar trains to Rotterdam and Amsterdam have been direct outbound but require a stop for customs clearance on the return journey.

From 11th February you will be able to book tickets for the new services which are direct in both directions.

The Amsterdam direct trains begin on 30th April. Rotterdam direct begins on 18th May.

Eurostar Logo

IHG Spring Promo - up to 4x points

IHG have launched their spring promotion for 4x bonus points. On your first night you’ll get 1000 bonus points.

From nights 2-5 you get double points. From nights 6-14 you get triple points. From night 15 you get quadruple points.

This is valid for stays from 15th February until 15th May but you must register and book no later than 15th April.

You must register through this link before staying. Even if you have no current plans, register now and then you won’t forget.

Full details of the IHG Spring Promotion 4x bonus points.

IHG Spring Promotion 2020 4x points

Virgin Atlantic / Flying Blue: Earn and redeem from 13th February

13th February marks the start of full integration between Virgin Atlantic Flying Club and Air France KLM Flying Blue. You will be able to earn and redeem Flying Club miles for Air France KLM flights, which opens up a whole load of new destinations.

You will also enjoy status benefits across all the airlines.

Virgin Atlantic Flying Club - Upper Class Bed
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club - Upper Class The Loft

Lufthansa begins flights from Newcastle to Munich

Another boost for northern travellers. Lufthansa has begun direct flights daily except Saturdays. This is the first flight for Lufthansa from Newcastle.

The A319 will depart Newcastle at 13.40, arriving at 16.40.
The inbound departure is at 11.50 for arrival in Newcastle at 12.55.

Munich is one of Lufthansa’s two main hubs for connections worldwide. You can fly the A380 first class from Munich but you have to go to Frankfurt if you want to try one of the last remaining 747s with first class.

Get 1400 Avios on a 3 day car rental at Avis with Aer Lingus

Collect at least 1400 Avios with Avis through this Aer Lingus promo. Book a group C car for 3 or more days before 31st March for rentals until 31st May.

You get 700 bonus Avios on top of the standard 700 Avios. You need an Aer Club account number to use this offer. Aer Lingus Avios can be moved to BA with the “combine my Avios” function. Not valid on Prestige or Van rentals.

Get up to 3000 Avios or Accor points with Europcar

Europcar – Earn up to 3000 Accor ALL points and get a 25% discount. Book through this link until 1st march for rentals until 15th June. 3000 ALL points is worth €60 of hotel stays, or you can convert to 3000 Avios (convert to Iberia, then use Combine my Avios).

Jet2 adds direct flights to Iceland from Birmingham and Manchester

Adding to flights already available from Leeds and Newcastle, Jet2 will operate twice weekly flights from October through April.

LATAM will leave oneworld on 30th April

From 30th April you will no longer be able to earn or redeem Avios with LATAM. Originally this wasn’t due to happen until 30th September. There is talk of individual airlines such as BA maintaining a bi-lateral arrangement with LATAM but there are no details yet.

Until 30th April you can still redeem for tickets after 30th April, but will not earn BA tier points or have access to any oneworld status benefits after 30th April.

This is your last chance to get to Easter Island on LATAM with Avios.

Royal Air Maroc will join oneworld on 1st April

Royal Air Maroc will become a full oneworld member on 1st April. oneworld frequent flyers will enjoy the full range of oneworld benefits and services when travelling with Royal Air Maroc, and will be able to earn and redeem awards.

Finnair increases to 8 Heathrow flights

Finnair will operate 8 daily flights between LHR and HEL during summer.

Finnair is a oneworld partner and can be booked with Avios. The LHR-HEL flight falls into zone 2 of the BA partner airline pricing chart, so it would be 9000 Avios each way in economy or 16500 in business. This is actually slightly fewer Avios than with BA, but the taxes are about £60 higher.

(For those in the north, it’s perhaps more useful to know that you can use Avios to fly to Helsinki from Manchester on Finnair.)

Qatar begins flying Qsuite from Manchester on 14th February

By March, 2 out 3 daily flights from MAN to DOH will have the Qsuite business class studio.

From 14th February on flight QR027/028
From 1st March on flight QR021/022

Qatar Airways’ Qsuite won “Best Business Class Seat” in the 2019 World Airline Awards.

Doncaster Sheffield unveils £10m investment

There’s a definite surge in activity for norther airports recently, which seems positive for all the travellers not close to London. Last week, Eastern Airways announced new routes from Teesside.

After Leeds Bradford revealed a £150 million plan to build a new terminal (and hopefully make some improvements to their lounges), now DSA (formerly Robin Hood Airport, just off the A1 near Doncaster) have lined up £10m for improvements to the terminal.

There are also plans for a new station on the East Coast Mainline which would make DSA only the second UK airport with direct rail access.

Hyatt 25% Buy Points discount

Rather than bonus points, Hyatt is offering a 35% discount when buying points through this link. Same difference. The annual limit of 55000 stays the same. Full details here.

Priority Pass adds a lounge at St Petersburg railway station

St Petersburg Moskovsky railway station lounge is now accessible through Priority Pass, for passengers with a valid train ticket for that day.

Air France introduces domestic business class

Air France is the only carrier to offer a business class service on flights within France. It looks set to follow the typical “blocked middle seat” arrangement. Fares will include lounge access, and catering will offer wine and Champagne.

Air France Domestic business Class Champagne
Air France Domestic Business Class Seats

IHG 75% Buy Points bonus

IHG is giving a 75% bonus on Buy Points until 27th February. The annual limit is increased to 150,000. Note that IHG regularly runs a 100% buy points bonus.

You’d be paying 0.5p per point here. My minimum valuation is 0.4p. It is possible to do much better than this, and I generally wouldn’t redeem for less than 0.8p.

Only go for this bonus if you have imminent plans, need the points, and have calculated the redemption value. Make sure you pay using a card with a 0% forex charge.

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