Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Your Curve Card now works with Apple Pay

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Curve Card launched Apple Pay integration yesterday.

This means that, at last, you can add your Curve Card to your iPhone or Apple Watch.

Whilst this was a slightly odd missing feature – Google Pay has worked with Curve for some time – it is also fair to say that it isn’t necessarily a key one.  The key selling point of Curve Card is that you can consolidate all of your existing credit cards onto it, meaning that you don’t need to carry them all around.  This isn’t a problem with Apple Pay, since you can add all of your existing cards anyway and it doesn’t make your phone any heavier.

Curve card

The only obvious upside is if you have a Visa or Mastercard which does not work with Apple Pay.  You can now get around this by linking it to a Curve Card.  The same goes for any card you may have which does not support contactless payment, as Curve Card is contactless.  You can also route foreign currency payments via Curve to avoid the 3% FX fee on your underlying card.

You can learn more about Curve Card in our main reference article here.  Curve Card is FREE and, indeed, Curve will pay you £10 for trying it out if you use our link.

PS. As regular readers will know, you can no longer use Curve Card to pay HMRC for free. Unless you have Curve Metal at £14.99 per month, Curve now adds a 1.5% fee to your HMRC transactions. In virtually all scenarios, this means that it makes no sense to use Curve to pay your tax, even though you will receive receive points on the underlying Visa or MasterCard you link to Curve.

There is no Mastercard or Visa where the points are worth 1.5%.  You could make a case for the Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard which earns 1.5 miles per £1, so you are ‘buying’ miles at 1p, but I still see that as a bit toppy.

Curve is now actively advertising on Google (bidding against the phrase ‘HMRC’) the ability to use it to circumvent the rules banning credit card payments.  Very odd.

best travel rewards credit cards

Want to earn more points from credit cards? – July 2024 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

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

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £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.

Marriott Bonvoy American Express

20,000 points for signing up and 15 elite night credits each year Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 30,000 points (TO 16TH JULY), FREE for a year & four airport ….. Read our full review

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

30,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

40,000 bonus points AND (to 27th August) £400 to spend at Amex Travel Read our full review

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

18,000 bonus points and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

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 an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

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

Capital on Tap Business Rewards Visa

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.

Barclaycard Select Cashback Business Credit Card

1% cashback uncapped* on all your business spending (T&C apply) Read our full review

Comments (141)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • MD says:

    OT Is anybody else having problems viewing statements using the new Creation app? Using it for my IHG premium card. I can see my balance details and latest transactions etc. but when I try to download any statement it just says “unavailable, please try again later.” Been saying this for weeks. I can view them fine online. TYIA.

    • Brighton Belle says:

      The old Creation app shows statements. The new one doesn’t or at least I couldn’t find them so I have stuck with the old app. The login is slightly different in picking out 2 numbers from your password but the old app is vastly more functional. Why do companies offer inferior upgrades?

      • MD says:

        @BB I didn’t know there was an old app, I assume I’m using the new one! I use my fingerprint to bypass the passcode. The statements aren’t super obvious, but if you click on ‘”spending” in the bottom menu you see a (fairly useless) summary of your spending, and there’s a “view statements” option below that. But none of mine will download…

        • Brighton Belle says:

          Thanks for pointing that out and it works.

          Mine download ok on Apple kit and I can save them to Dropbox. If you choose share>print and then pinch zoom out it re-renders the screen and another functional arrow displays in the top right. This has a save to Dropbox or somewhere else function.

          • MD says:

            Thanks for the feedback. I’m on Android, but useful to know it works for someone anyway. I’ll delete it and start from scratch then.

  • Martha says:

    Ot. Avios reward booking.

    If I want to change or cancel the inbound after I have flown the outbound, is that still possible?
    Is it done through calling BA?
    and what are the cost?
    Do they refund the avios for the inbound trip not taken?

    • Rob says:

      You CANNOT cancel an inbound once the outbound is flown. You CAN change the date of the inbound.

      If you think this is a risk you may want to cancel and rebook as 2 x one-way flights, assuming availability still exists to rebook, as you can then cancel the inbound for a full refund.

      • Martha says:

        If I change the date of an inbound and to a lower class booking, would I be refunded Avios?

        • Rob says:

          Good question. No idea!

        • ali says:

          I would imagine so but subject to a £35 per person change fee.

          They’d happily let you change to a higher class by paying the avios difference, so it would make sense for it to work on reverse.

  • BrianN says:

    Hi, I know it mentions it in the article but just looking for any further thoughts.

    Do we think this £50 will trigger for advance purchase bookings? E.g. booked before 30th April but for stays after 30th April.

    • Cat says:

      Probably, yes. It has for me in the past. Pre-paid rates are processed in the same way (and AMEX won’t know when the booking is for) so as long as your card is charged before 30th April, it should trigger.

      • RussellH says:

        I wondwer what happens when a payment does not appear under the name of the hotel, but under the name of the hotel owner / management.
        I have just extended our stay at the DoubleTree Girona in Catalonia.
        Both the first and the extension appear on card statements as Urh Management Sl. Girona.
        You might have to fight Amex in this case?
        [I have just made Hilton Visa aware of this and hope that I get triple points for the tranaction.]

        • Crafty says:

          RussellH – when you stay, if you want breakfast, ensure you set your MyWay to that. This is the only hotel in the world where I’ve had a problem getting my breakfast comped “as you have already taken the points”. Still got it in the end, but took a lot of arguing!

          • RussellH says:

            Thanks for the tip!
            My Way is set to breakfast…
            I had a minor niggle over breakfast at Newbury last summer. The breakfast guard was very doubtful, but finally let us in. Check out staff apologised, saying it was quite obvious we got free breakfast there.

  • Anna says:

    OT – balance transfer to IHG – how long does it take from the debit appearing on your IHG account to the credit appearing in the other card account? I know it’s creation but I’ve usually found this to be more or less instantaneous with other providers previously.

    • mark2 says:

      Now that Lloyds no longer allow fee-free balance transfers with interest for a few days, are you saying Anna that you have done that with IHG?

      • Anna says:

        I was going to see how it worked but the transfer hasn’t appeared at the other end 24 hours later!

        • mark2 says:

          In the T&C it says up to 7-10 days, but also 3% charge. Lloyds took 2-3 days and no charge.

          • Lady London says:

            Hold on…. Every night the money you transferred has not reached where you sent it, the institutions in the chain have banked it and are earning overnight interest on it.

            Those transfer times look ridiculously high.
            So I think we’ve worked out where money is being made by the fintechs.

            The trouble is, this is starving the life out of nice banks like Metro Bank that as actually give us branches where we can actually go in and talk to people to resolve any issues.

            Having spent 2 bouts of over 2 and a half hours each trying to get Revolut agents to actually solve getting a pin code to me today, but without success for the 2nd day in my life I have tried to fix this, I am getting nostalgic for a proper competent bank.

            The Revolut agents favourite technique seems to be to provide nonfunctional solutions from a script then disappear for 1hr 15mins whilst you
            are frantically trying to get them to respond, then come back nearly 3 hours later (I’m not kidding!) with ‘you seem to have gone away I’ll just close this’.

            I will probably get roasted for this by @Jon and our more politically correct commentators but I almost wish I had British Airways Indian Call Centre back.

          • Shoestring says:

            the Monese CS team close up shop at 5pm and go and put their feet up with a bit of tea and Love Island, then it’s back to work at 8am – so when they blocked me for no good reason the other night from using the free £15 code, I just had to hum quietly to myself for 15 hrs until they deigned to offer some CS again and reset my passcode (which I didn’t mess up by the way: I turned on the app & I was blocked)

            giving me ample time to realise I was only missing out on a possible £5 as I can get 10% off on £100 Amazon any time (pretty much) and often better

            certainly nothing to fret about

      • James says:

        Is that correct? Since when?
        I last did a fee free transfer in early January. Have been checking regularly, but only getting 0% plus fee offer currently..

  • mark2 says:

    Has anyone managed to load a Monese card at Pay Point in the last few days please?
    I did on 26th, but today it failed at Coop and Tesco both of which I use frequently.

    • Kai says:

      Did one at coop yesterday

      • mark2 says:

        I appears that I have hit the £2500 per month (now that Post Office is no longer possible).

        • Boi says:

          Are you saying Monese only allows £2500 per month? Pretty sure I have done more than that this month alone. I do £1000/wk @coop minimum. I think I did £1.2 last week..

          • RD says:

            I think the limits are £2500 per week or £5000 per month

          • mark2 says:

            Correct; I cannot read one email and copy to another.
            It is the £5000 limit that I hit.

          • Phil G says:

            Pardon my ignorance please, but can you top up monese at paypoints in brighton

          • rams1981 says:

            The £5k is a pay point limit? Post office when it worked seemed to be unlimited.

          • The Urbanite says:

            @Phil G The first ever Paypoint topup I paying with a Brighton was actually at a shop in Brighton proper, not far from the station.

  • nick says:

    Cancelling a Virgin Premium card before the next £160 fee hits:

    Will you be asked to pay full balance due on date of cancellation?
    I am also still waiting for the cash advance fee refunds (from revolut). What is this comes back after I’ve closed card?

    • Shoestring says:

      you get 30 days to pay off full Virgin balance on closure

    • AndyGWP says:

      Ah. When I downgraded (which involved cancelling premium and applying for non-premium), they wanted me to pay off the outstanding balance before they would close it. Different scenario but same process?

    • Jill (Kinkell) says:

      Virgin will transfer any credit to a bank of your choice. I closed my card last week ( avoiding renewal fee) and a retail refund put me in positive balance which Virgin asked where I wanted it transferred to. All sorted within 48 hours. Very friendly, professional CSrep , no issues

      • nick says:

        Hi Jill

        Did you have to immediately pay off the amount due? or just let it be collected on the next direct debit date?

        • Jill (Kinkell) says:

          I’d paid off amount due so zero balance, then the refund appeared. Contacted Virgin and it all went smoothly

  • Alex M says:

    OT: Any advice on where to credit upcoming stay in Lotte hotel? Don’t have membership with them and don’t want to open one as it will be just a one off stay. Thx!

    • Pangolin says:

      Do you mean the Korean chain?

      You’re obviously talking about non-hotel partners like airlines and car rental, I imagine. Last time I checked (a couple of years ago when I stayed in Korea) there was nothing doing on that score.

  • stevenhp1987 says:

    OT: My Marriott 50% bonus points from the Amex transfer have landed in my account.

    My balance has gone up to what looks the right amount, but the line item doesn’t appear on my transaction history… Guessing it’ll appear tomorrow.

    • Grant says:

      The $64m question, Steven…

      Were you targetted with the offer by email or did you check with Amex CS that it was available to you?

      • Grant says:

        and when did you make the transfer?

        • stevenhp1987 says:

          Yes, I was targeted.

          Transferred early November. The regular points hit my Marriott account 11th Nov.

          • Grant says:

            Thanks. Useful data point

          • Stu_N says:

            Thanks, mine have all arrived too. I did a series of transfers from early Nov to late Dec and can see all the individual lines posting as expected with same narrative as Pangolin.

            I was also targetted for this.

    • Pangolin says:

      Thanks for this. I just checked my account and also see the transfer. I even checked it about two hours prior and there was nothing there so this has just gone through.

      I do see the line item on my history: AX MEMBERSHIP REWARD ENGLAND

      I received the email offering the bonus also (targeted).

    • Tim says:

      I wasn’t targetted, but did it speculatively. No bonus points for me (yet, at least), anyone out there who wasn’t targetted but has recieved them?

      • Robert says:

        Got the 50% bonus points today, too. Was targeted, and statement shows the credit on the same date as the original transfer hit my account (had to scroll back a bit, but under the original 120,000 points is the additional 60,000, so all is good. I can now cancel my Amex safe in the knowledge the points have transferred.

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