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More on Curve Card and cash withdrawals and earning points

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A quick update on this subject, which has been discussed at length on HfP this week.

Whilst Curve announced last weekend that they were changing the coding on transactions, which would make ATM withdrawals visible to your card issuer, it turns out that they did not actually go through with this change until Thursday.  We were told it was happening last Monday.

If you made a cash withdrawal during Monday to Thursday and it was treated as a purchase – which it will have been – this does not necessarily mean that your card issuer will not pass on these new charges.  You need to have a transaction done from Friday onwards before you can be sure.

I did test Creation (IHG, Marriott credit cards) and MBNA (Horizon) transactions yesterday so let’s see how these end up.  You might want to wait before doing any further withdrawals.

Curve will pay you £10 for trying it out if you use our link.

Want to earn more points from credit cards? – February 2023 update

If you are looking to apply for a new credit card, here are our top recommendations based on the current sign-up bonuses.

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

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5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 21st February 2023, the sign-up bonus on the British Airways Premium Plus American Express card is increased to 35,000 Avios from 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

35,000 Avios (ONLY to 21st February) and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

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Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

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Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

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Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers Read our full review

For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending.

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Comments (201)

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  • Tom1 says:

    O/t we have just booked our first BA 241 trip for next year. It will be our first BA long haul so looking for tips on what we need to do when..

    Out in J to BKK, back in F from DOH

    We don’t have any BA status so assume I can’t reserve seats for the J until 24 hours before, but F I have already reserved in MMB.

    Anything else we ‘need’ to do before hand – like lounges, book treatments etc?


    • John says:

      In J without BA status you can’t book the spa, you just turn up and see if they have any spots left.

    • BJ says:

      Seats LHR-BKK are usually ok for couples within 24h if you want one of the backwards middle pairs. However, IME it is highly unlikekly you will get a window aisle facing pair unless you pay for them. If there are any left within 24h they will likely be snapped up by regional connecting pax who can check in several hours before you.

      Lounges: I would recommend getting an amex platinum card even if just holding it for a few months to get the bonus, insurance for your trip, lounge access and hotel and car hire status. This gives yoj priority pass which you can use at many lounges and the platinum card itself gets you into T5 Pkaza Premium Lounge. Don’t know how you plan to get from BKK-DOH but regardles priority pass will be useful at BKK. My favoured lounges at BKK at the moment are Cathay lounge which is food to order and buffet, or the much quieter Oman Air lounge which can be accessed with Priority Pass. BKK is a good airport to to on a lounge crawl if you wish but alliwbtime to get to your gate.

      Immigration at BKK: You will receivee a pass on board for fast track immigration. It is almost always the quickest way to go but standard immigration worth a quick look.

      Bangkok Airport taxi: Ignore all the nonsense about BKK taxi drivers, they are mostly fine and will create no problems if the customer doesn’t,. No point paying 2-3 times the price for a private transfer when you can be down to official rank and be half way into town before locating and exiting the airport with a private driver sometimes. On return to the airport, hail a moving taxi 20m down the road from the hotel. Offer the driver 500 baht no meter and he should be your friend. If he say 600 he is trying it on, decline and hail the next taxi, don’t negotiate because 500 already good, most would do no meter for 400 outside rush hour. For journrys in city insist on meter. Try to hail moving taxi or use one you see people getting out, best to avoid stationary taxis at major tourist spots.

      • Brian Porter says:

        Be very careful doing a “no meter” back to the airport in BKK. They go the non express-way route sometimes and I ended up missing my flight because of it.

        • BJ says:

          It can be an issue but the same could happen with the expressway too sometimes. I usually tell them expressway and most comply. I always leave Sukhumvit about 2h 45min before my departure time and never had a problem even in rush hour. However, that’s knowing I have premium check in and access to fast track security and immigration.

          The main problem I find with Bangkok taxis is drivers not knowing directions. Had a few disputes over the years about whether to use expressway; tgedrivers let you out without charge to take another taxi if agreement cannot be reached.

        • mr dee says:

          What is Hilton Sukhumvit like?

        • BJ says:

          @Mr Dee, don’t know but John commented he will stay there this week so ask him in a few days. His comparison witb thd DT will bd interesting as the latter is a 10k points a nught cheaper.

      • swhostring says:

        BJ – why do you go to Thailand?

      • CV3V says:

        Completely disagree regarding BKK taxi drivers, especially to the airport, but if you pay 500 baht you will be fine – i used to pay 250 baht. I have a list of encounters with BKK taxi drivers. The airport train is my preference.

      • Delbert says:

        We always hire an AOT Limo at Swampy [the desk right outside of arrivals] as had too many problems with BKK taxis.

        AOT are great. The drivers invariably know where they’re going, all cars are Easy Pass enabled with the tolls being included in the price and there’s enough room in the boot for two large suitcases and two cabin cases and the air conditioning is always on.

        On the way back we always book with a BKK Limo company that we’ve been using for years. It’s well worth paying the extra as there’s never a problem.

      • Tom1 says:

        Thanks all for the detailed responses.

        Yes – got PP through amex plat thank yoU. Actually going straight from BKK to hkt, so I assume we will have to clear immigration, collect bags and check in again? From hkt to sin before looping back to bkk for couple of nights, then dmk to mle for a morning flight to get seaplane, then mle-doh. All with LCC so PP will come in handy.

        Have booked Hyatt place Sukhumvit on points which looks decent with rooftop pool.
        Didn’t know about immigration – thanks.

        • BJ says:

          Since BA will not check bags through I cannot see any alternative to immigration, bag reclaim and check in. However, it is not difficult, bag reclaim is immediately behind immigration and customs and exit immediately behind that. On exit where you see all greeters standing take escalator or elevator upstairs and you are in departures. It will be a long walk from the plane to immigration though. It is years since I made such a transit, it was done airside if you had a through ticket and baggage checked through to final destination but I am not sure if that was only available to Thai Airways passengers. Regardless, given stories on immigration queues at HKT I think better to clear in BKK.

          You mentioned DMK, if you have Air Asia sectors I recommend you change your seats to a hot seat if you have not already picked those.

  • Down the Back says:

    OT: Can anybody confirm Hilton reward stays are eligible for the Lufthansa 2.5k points offer ? I’ve read the t/c’s but don’t see anywhere it says rewards stays are not eligble ? If reward stays are not eligible how about using points and cash would they be eligible ?



    • BJ says:

      Unfortunately, reward stays are definitely not eligible regardless of whether you pay 100% points or a combination of points & money. I’ve done 7 stays this month, 2500 posted for all of them except the ine I used points & money. Has also been confirmed on FT.

      • Down the Back says:

        Thanks BJ, that is exactly what I was looking for, I too have had 6 stays all posted quickly in to my newly set up Miles and More account. I have 3 x 1 night coming up over the next 2/3 weeks in the US so will probably just use points only, if the £100 rebate for £500 spend in Hilton USA on Amex was running for another 3 weeks instead of 8 days I would have used cash.



    • BJ says:

      If you book with cash take care to stick with the main rate types. I think Rob commented earlier this month that some special rates like travel industry are also ineligible. That is not mentioned in t&c either.

      • Rob says:

        Reward stays are not eligible. The T&C’s of the promo are rubbish. It was only after complaints from me on here (copied to Hilton) that they changed the landing page to actually explain how you set it up with your LH details.

  • Andrew says:

    Don’t think I’ve spotted this in Bits yet, but “The Scotsman” is reporting that Norwegian is abandoning its Edinburgh-USA routes.

    Global Investment Partners, are putting the blame squarely on failings of the SNP/The Scottish Goverment.

    • RussellH says:

      Was that today’s Scotsman? I cannae find anything in today’s Herald…
      Different market I know.

      What is the Scottish Government supposed not to have done? Provided subsidies a la Ryanair??

      • APD says:

        Correct, they ‘failed’ to hand them a lucrative handout, courtesy of the Scottish taxpayer.
        Bunch of chancers, albeit ‘governments’ attract this nonsense in the first place, with free handouts and no small print clauses.

        • Mark2 says:

          surely that’s the English taxpayer?

        • Callum says:

          How on Earth are they chancers? The SNP promised to greatly reduce APD but then never did. When you’re selling tickets at such low prices, that makes a big difference!

          Whether this is actually the reason is another matter, maybe the routes just weren’t popular enough and they want to save face?

      • Rob says:

        Not reduce APD as promised.

      • CV3V says:

        The Scotsman has a rule where it blames the SNP for everything.

      • Alan says:

        As long as they don’t scrap Oslo – I’ve got positioning flights booked for there in January!!

  • Wally1976 says:

    OT – wife and I both got the Hilton Barclaycards early this year and using our free nights next weekend. I know there’s a 2500 point bonus for the first time they’re used at a Hilton hotel and seem to remember there’s a way of triggering it without paying for the room on it. Something like buying a packet of crisps on the card…?

    • BJ says:

      Just charge something to your room such as a drink at the bar ir a coffe and settle up on check out with hilton visa, that should do it. You get 2500 points x4 for first 4 stays within a year of taking out card.

      • Cormac says:

        And make sure that your Barclaycard is set up within your Hilton profile.

        • Wally1976 says:

          Thanks BJ and Cormac

        • shd says:

          2500 Hilton points is worth how much now?

        • BJ says:

          @she,, Rob values them at 0.3p per point I think. Based on redemptions I do I make it closer to 0.5p. However, my valuation will need to be revised down to reflect recent devaluation at the lower end.

    • John says:

      I didn’t pay for anything and I got the bonuses for my next 4 stays, which incidentally were all award stays. These posted automatically to Hilton and didn’t show up on Barclays statement.

      Before this happened, I had prepaid for 4 stays which were to be after those award stays, and as the bonuses didn’t arrive with these 4 Hilton transactions I complained, eventually received 8 bonuses in total plus £50 “compo”.

      If I had known you get the bonuses the first times you actually stay rather than with the transaction then I might not have complained but I guess I got lucky

      • BJ says:

        I guess you had your Hilton visa card on your profile then and associated with the reward stays? It must be what triggers the stay bonus.

  • Andrew says:

    Hilton Sukhumvit is very good. I have stayed in a lot of BKK hotels and this is my favourite. Great rooms, staff and location. Book an executive room – the lounge is very good. Suites there are very good.

  • Roger says:

    Anyone having trouble with Curve paying HMRC.
    The old beta card that seem to work few days ago seems to have stopped too.

    Large bill due and unable to use this card.
    Don’t know where they want to take this card.

    • Jeff says:

      Curve are screwing up big time.
      Made a claim using a curve connected card, now they blocked me (without stating its blocked on my app) from using it at shops and ATM’s

      No response via chat either
      The customer service call center seem more confused and agitated than me!

      Marketing a service and then sending comms about charging customers for the obvious unique selling point!

  • Mary says:

    Just as an FYI, Moneysavingexpert reported this about curve withdrawals:

    “Only Lloyds has so far replied, confirming that a withdrawal on a Curve card will be classified as a withdrawal on their credit or debit card statement.”

    Source for quote:–all-in-one–debit-card-to-offer-fee-free-spending-abroad-/

    • Andrew L says:

      Thanks Martin Lewis & co for brining it to the attention of all the credit card companies…..idiots!!

      • callum says:

        I’m afraid you’re the idiot if you think they didn’t already know about this…

        It’s amazing that on the one hand you have some people paranoid that the banks are tracking their every move etc. and on the other you have people who think they aren’t even aware that hundreds of transactions from Curve marked as cash are ATM withdrawals. Even if we were to (incorrectly) assume no bank staff members read blogs like this, it would be incredibly obvious to them.

        So I echo your thanks, but with sincerity, as that is genuinely useful information. This blog told us the exact opposite! (I don’t mean to sound too bitchy about this – I obviously still value the information from this site – hence my regular visits – so thanks Rob regardless!)

        • Andrew L says:

          Cheers Callum. Thanks for your views. Have a nice evening.

        • Callum says:

          You’re welcome (and just to clarify, I was just “using your own phrase against you” – don’t really think you’re an idiot!).

  • TGLoyalty says:

    Not bookable on IHG website yet but does anyone know what happens if I was to book via principal website for a stay in December will my spire status be recognised and earn points etc?

    I know no one can tell me for this exact scenario but I’m hoping someone has had similar experiences at other hotels which are moving from independent to IHG

    • Alan says:

      Should do. I’ve booked a Voco property in Gold Coast for next year even though they’re not showing the brand name yet, did appear on the IHG website though so must be a few steps ahead in the process to those properties.

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