British Airways abandons Tokyo Narita
British Airways announced yesterday that they were planning to consolidate their flights to one airport in Tokyo, and give up flying from Narita completely. Narita is a long way from the centre of Tokyo compared to Haneda and given the cost of maintaining two bases in one city, it makes sense. I have always enjoyed flying from Haneda apart from the very early flight times. (read more about our BA flight from Haneda here)
Fortunately, they are going to make the second flight at a much more civilised time. The times starting from 29 March 2020 will be:
BA007 LHR 1135 – 0710+1 HND B777
BA005 LHR 1530 – 1055+1 HND B789
BA008 HND 0850 – 1310 LHR B777
BA006 HND 1315 – 1725 LHR B789
The second flight is definitely more appealing as I would much prefer to fly on the B787 than an old B777 (unless it has the new CLub Suites). In even better news from 1 July BA005/006 will switch to their A350-1000XWB with Club Suites (no First). You can read our review here.
Revolut free to offer access to lounge during delays
If you haven’t heard of Revolut, it is another handy card for travellers to have on their travels. REvolut’s main draw for me is that it allows you to withdraw foreign currency abroad for free. You can simply transfer money into your account instantly via the app and then withdraw your chosen currency.
Revolut is basically like a prepaid card with an app and physical plastic card, but it does work out more cost-effective and have some extra features via the app than most others. You can spend in 130 different currencies fee-free plus hold and exchange 25 currencies in the app. The advantage of being able to hold currencies is that if the exchange rate was good now, for a country you are planning to visit later, you could buy some of the currency now to spend later at the current rate.
The big advantage of Revolut versus other pre-paid cards, cash or 0% MasterCard or Visa credit cards is that their exchange rate uses real-time inter-bank rates without fees (except at the weekend). You can also make £200 or €200 per month in free ATM withdrawals. There is enhanced security which is also useful when travelling as you can enable/disable contactless payments, swipe payments etc from the app instantly. You can top up your Revolut account by bank transfer, debit or credit card. Some credit card companies have been treating top-ups as a purchase which obviously means you would get miles or points. However, I would test this first with a small top-up as other are treating it as a cash advance which could incur a fee.
One feature I like in the app is the ability to send or receive money instantly to people such as splitting the bill without them needing to have a Revolut account. You can also send fast ( 2 minutes), free money transfers to bank accounts in 120 countries, which is a plus point when you look at how much your bank charges you to do it! To get the card you need to open what they call a current account.
There are three types of account:
- Standard – free
- Free Euro IBAN account
- Spend in over 150 currencies at the interbank exchange rate
- Exchange in 30 fiat currencies up to £5,000 per month without any hidden fees
- No fee ATM withdrawals up to £200 per month
- Premium – £6.99 a month
- Premium customers can spend, exchange and transfer unlimited amounts of money with the interbank exchange rate.
- Withdraw up to £400 each month in free international ATM withdrawals, with a small 2% thereafter
- Travel insurance
- Metal – £11.99 a month
- No fee ATM withdrawals up to £600 per month
- 0.1% cashback within Europe and 1% outside Europe on all card payments
- Get access to a concierge to help you manage your lifestyle
TLFL has a special offer for you to get the Revolut plastic card for free rather than paying the usual £4.99 delivery fee. Simply follow these steps to get your free card:
- Go to the Revolut website using this link
- Insert your mobile number
- Follow text message URL to download Revolut on the Google Play or Apple App Stores via the link
- Open an account (takes 30 seconds)
- Top up £10/€10
- Select and order Free Card [Standard Delivery]
- Verify your identity (Tap more -> Profile -> Verify identity)
Revolut are now giving Premium and Metal customers complimentary access to airport lounges worldwide during flight delays. With Revolut’s Premium and Metal cards, customers whose flights are delayed for an hour or more will have complimentary access to over 1,000 lounges in 500+ airports in over 100 countries.
Premium and Metal customers can now relax in the comfort of an airport lounge with SmartDelay as they wait for their delayed flight, regardless of their type of ticket. Premium customers can also bring one accompanying guest with them to enjoy the same benefits, while Metal customers can bring up to three complimentary guests.
To use the new benefit, Premium and Metal customers must visit the Revolut app and register their flight details. Should the registered flight be delayed by more than 60 minutes, customers will immediately receive a complimentary airport lounge pass sent straight to the Revolut App.
Money off Qatar and Malaysia Airlines with American Express
A couple of new offers have popped up with American Express Platinum cards. Although the fee for the card is very high, I usually recoup my fee by using the offers during the year.
The offers are:
Get a £80 statement credit on a transaction of £800+ online at Qatar Airways when you book by 27 March 2020. Valid once per Card for the first 8,000 Cardmembers to save. It is sadly not available on ex EU as it is only valid on flights (cars and hotels don’t count) departing from UK airports booked directly from qatarairways.com.Payment is required in full in pounds on the American Express Card to which the offer is saved.
If this offer doesn’t work for you but you have the card, did you know that you can make a saving on Qatar flights by booking trough American Express travel? On my last flight I booked it was around £60 cheaper and the savings seem to work on ex EU too.
Get a £100 statement credit when you spend £1000 or more on a flight ticket at malaysiaairlines.com/uk by 6th March 2020. Valid on direct flights only. Valid once per Card Member for the first 5,000 Cardmembers to save.