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The HfP chat thread – Monday 18th October

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Comments (472)

  • JP-MCO says:

    A while back it was mentioned on here that points had stopped being handed out for HMRC transactions fronted by Curve and rebilled to HSBC Premier World Elite. I looked through the terms & conditions for the cards and noticed that HMRC bills weren’t explicitly stated as being ineligible transactions nor was there anything else that could have been used as justification to withhold the points. I decided to take it up with HSBC and raised a complaint. Within 24 hours someone rang me and said that the points had not been added correctly for my HMRC transactions and they would add them retrospectively for me.

    It certainly doesn’t seem like HSBC have, as a hard and fast rule, stopped adding points for HMRC transactions that are Curve fronted. In my experience at least, if you query it by raising a complaint they will add them for you.

    • Simon says:

      Nice one

    • BuildBackBetter says:

      Nice, that’s going to be the next one blocked.

      • JP-MCO says:

        Would you rather I hadn’t shared with the forum? Rob/Rhys, feel free to delete my post if you feel it’s not helpful. Sometimes I don’t know why I bother.

        • ThePenguin says:

          No, its alright, HSBC know what’s going on, they are fine with it!

          That’s why we can still churn Amex every 6 months, use Curve with Amex and load and withdraw from Rev as much as we like, oh and of course MS IHG………..haha

    • Blenz101 says:

      HSBC complaints team will happily throw points or more usually cash at you £50-£100 for even the most basic issue.

      They will likely have had no idea what you are talking about beyond some points not posting.

      The issue will arise for you when you try to raise the same complaint several times. You are only going to get paid once per issue. You must know that HSBC have taken an active decision not to award points on HMRC transactions via Curve.

      Whilst in theory helpful posting it here if several hundred people now call up raising the same complaint looking for thousands of points in compensation each it may draw very unwelcome attention from a very risk averse bank.

      Loading your taxes onto the bank as unsecured lending is not the kind of retail transaction they are anticipating.

      • JP-MCO says:

        If a company wants to modify the terms and conditions of a product I’m completely fine with that. What I won’t accept is a substantive change to a product where there is no change in the T&Cs and nothing informing me of this change in writing. As far as I’m concerned there is something wrong in the points posting to my account because HSBC haven’t informed me in writing of a change to the product or variated their T&Cs. Customers should not be hearing about substantive changes to a product third hand from an internet forum, it is HSBC’s responsibility to communicate them directly to customers.

        • Blenz101 says:

          HSBC do not award points on cash like transactions. You are getting around this by using Curve.

          You aren’t complaining that you don’t get points for paying a debt you owe to another credit card provider using Curve to act as a debit card? Or is that debt different in your mind?

          You get points on retail spend where credit cards are accepted.

          Getting the points added is great as a one off. See how far you get with HSBC though the second they get a sniff of anything not above board with the way you use their services.

  • Tom says:

    For special events IHG points are a real bargain. Candian Grand Prix June 2022, Intercon in Montreal 30k per night or 480 CAD. Abu Dhabi is similar this December with points being the clear winner when compared with cash rates at the Crowne Plaza Yas Island.

    • Tom says:

      Over 800 CAD is what I meant, already did the GBP conversion in my head!

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Though the cash prices are something you can pay 2443 AED for a base room or 2763 for a 1 bedroom sea view suite (sleeps 5) well worth the extra £60 or so pn supplement I reckon

  • Gavin says:

    Offers on my ARCC

    £25 back of a £100 spend for Laithwaites
    £30 back of a £150 spend for Hush (whatever that is)
    £300 back of a £1000 spend for Cazoo

    • Richie says:

      There’s proof Laithwaite’s wine is too expensive, I’m sticking to Waitrose.

      • Rob says:

        Don’t think that technically counts as ‘proof’.

        Do you get direct mail for Wine Flyer? It still gets sent out. I promise you that it costs Laithwaites FAR more than £25 – in fact probably closer to £100 – to sell £100 of wine via Wine Flyer direct mail. This is cheap marketing for them if it gets you to buy when you otherwise wouldn’t.

      • Babyg says:

        Waitrose have 25% sales for their wines/bubbly all the time… i think we can all agree that shops make money on booze, but based on your thinking, you should probably stop shopping at Waitrose given their discount is similar to Laithwaites….

        Previous Waitrose 25% sales – June 21 April 21, March 21, November 2020

    • Babyg says:

      yay.. i always wait for the £25 back of a £100 spend for Laithwaites type ones..

  • Sprout says:

    Called Creation this morning to get my IHG card unblocked as unable to make my usual payments to Che ;-). Card was duly unblocked and the fraud prevention team mentioned that they would be permanaently blocking payments to Che shortly.
    Therefore we might not have the full 60 days before closure….

    • TGLoyalty says:

      It’ll always be a case of which blinks first Rev or Creation.

      • BuildBackBetter says:

        Rev really burning thru their shareholder funds to pay for these topups?

    • elguiri says:

      Does interest accrue on Creation from that spend?

      • Sprout says:

        yep, but only at @2% per month (from memory!). So pay off in a day or so and it’s immaterial.

        • elguiri says:

          thanks. just for clarity, pay off entire balance, or just the amount that was spent on that method. Am assuming they would take any payments from least costly-to-me amounts first…

    • Guernsey Globetrotter says:

      Let me get this straight – you called up Creation and explicitly mentioned you needed your card unblocking in order to make payments to Che?!! … and then people wonder why these routes get closed down…

      • Harrier25 says:

        It’s well known that Sprouts lack brains! 😠

      • Sprout says:

        No you haven’t got it straight – try re-reading

      • TGLoyalty says:

        Have you never had a call or had to make a call to get a card unblocked after a suspicious transaction has been flagged?

        They go through your last few transactions so I’m guessing the guy at the other end (seems to be the same chap) reads Che and then says it’ll be blocked soon….

        • Harrier25 says:

          Okay, my apologies Sprout. I misunderstood.

          • Jonathan says:

            I’ll take that as an apology to me as well for when you called me an idiot for the same reason last month! As TGL says, you can’t not acknowledge the transaction if it generates a block.

          • Harrier25 says:

            My apologies to Sprout & Jonathan.

      • JDB says:

        It doesn’t really matter at this stage as most routes are being closed. Creation was ahead of the Curve as it were and the others are all being told to address the problem(s). EMIs in particular, but also Virgin, Barclaycard.

  • BrotherBear says:

    Good morning

    Couldn’t find by searching – there is an acronym used on here for an employment benefit scheme operated via payroll – something like PAW I think. Can anyone let me know what it is actually called please?

    Also, anyone have any good other recommendations or salary sacrifice schemes that can be implanted by employers?

    Thanks in advance

  • Jonathan says:

    Thinking of getting the Amex BAPP for the sign up bonus can I simply downgrade to the free BA card after hitting the spending target (~2 months) and the points post or will Amex take a dim view and cancel the sign up points?

    • DJ says:

      Not always available.

      I have tried in two occassions to downgrade my card, via the call centre in Brighton, and they said the computer didn’t give them the option to downgrade. It looks like it will be considered on a case by case basis.

      I have since decided to keep the card anyway, as the earning rate is great on day to day spending.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      You can just cancel it completely. What’s the advantage of downgrading?

      • Jonathan says:

        No advantage really unless you want to keep the free card for spending and get a pro rata refund on the BAPP card.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          But a clear disadvantage because it stops you getting a BAPP bonus in 2 years time …

          You can apply for another free card ie nectar for ongoing spend which doesn’t block you from BAPP nor Plat bonus.

  • Mco says:

    In continuation from my post from last week. Had an award ticket issued by Cathay on BA metal from USA-LHR-NCL. BA have cancelled all LHR-NCL flights on Christmas day leaving me in LHR for 24hrs. This is of no use to me as I need to be back home for Christmas.

    Spoke with BA who are saying they can’t touch it as its a CX ticket. The flight numbers are BA and not code share as someone asked me to check that.

    CX are saying that there is no award availability a day before (which there isn’t) so they can’t do anything.

    What are my options?

    • Lady London says:

      MCOL both and let the court sort it out.
      Trouble is, who else is going to fly LHR NCL on Christmas day?

      I believe the obligation is to get you between start and end points not particilarly anywhere in the middle. Obvs Christmas arrival is a hugely important date and you may not be able to travel earlier. If you can, then BA as operating airline governed by EI261 cannot refuse you (ie ticketing airline Cathay) any seat that’s being sold for cash they can’t insist on award seat.

      Send a Letter Before Action with all details of booking to jointly, CX and BA and ask BA to contact CX to ensure ticketing of your reroute.

      Tell them you’d be prepared to travel 1 day earlier (EU261 strictly speaking doesn’t cover earlier as Sam G pointed out recently but don’t mention this). Add, that with your return home as booked for the most significant Holiday Date in the UK, Christmas, if a seat cannot be provided to Newcastle on same day as booked then you will be forced to purchase costly alternatives such as a reroute to Newcastle by another routing perhaps via Paris, Amsterdam (eg on KL or AF) or other connection point instead in order to arrive in time for Christmas i.e. the booked time. Request their urgent assistance.

      Personally I’d also line up 2 or 3 quotes for Addison Lee or Black Lane (BA will also check Tristar’s prices to verify validity of your quotes due old relationship with them) or similar car service to meet your flight and provide LHR-NCL on Christmas Day. I would expect quotes to average £1k? (£600-1500). Only enclose these with your LBA as an alternative if all the quotes are that bad otherwise just present this as what it turned out to cost, at MCOL.

      State you’d really appreciate their urgent action to provide the reroute requested following BA’s cancellation. If a reroute is not provided promptly and within no more than 21 days from the date of this letter, in order to get home to NCL for Christmas Day as booked you will be forced to purchase alternative transportation and will MCOL to recover all costs plus interests for this from them.

      Even an expensive duty of care night at the Sofitel T5 with meals and costs appropriate to Christmas, does not cut it if BA’s cancellation deprives you of the opportunity to reach family for Christmas Day as booked (don’t mention hotel or they will transport you the day after Christmas and tell you to suck it up).

    • Paul says:

      Very few domestic shuttles operated on Christmas Day, you’d probably end up having to go via Europe if you insist on flying. Train will be cheaper and quicker… depends how belligerent you want to be. You could try getting a reroute USA-Europe-NCL, but no idea on chances. If you really need to be home for Christmas suggest you swallow the train fare or return earlier…

      • Andrew says:

        No chance of getting to Newcastle by train on Christmas Day, there are practically no services running on Christmas Day anywhere on the network.

        • Mco says:

          Are car rental companies open at Heathrow?

          • Mco says:

            Budget seems to be open. Could I rent a car and bill them later?

          • Lady London says:

            Could you rent a car?
            Even if possible noting there isn’t any realistic chance of compensation from car hire co if a booked car isn’t available when you turn up, I would not drive to NCL from LHR after arriving on a Transatlantic flight.

            It would be a safety issue especially with potential of winter weather.

            Therefore car/taxi services.
            Get them to issue you a ticket for acceptable replacement flights asap, or win at MCOL.

    • Sam G says:

      Try asking CX specifically to contact the “oneworld liaison” desk and see if they can get BA to open the inventory / put some flights in the PNR for CX to ticket for a rebooking a day earlier. I don’t have any experience of whether BA are reasonable about this or not but it’s worth a go, on their own ticket they’d do it without award availability.

      Unfortunately this is a common problem with partner awards- great when they work, messy when they don’t!

      I wouldn’t rent a car – I believe BA are funny about paying out for that. You’d have success (either from BA customer relations or MCOL) with a taxi (even if it’s more expensive!)

      • Nick says:

        BA will make available a seat on a domestic flight in this situation, they won’t make any fuss. You just need to ask your ticketing carrier (CX) to ask them through the official channel. BA can’t do anything directly as they don’t own your ticket.

    • AJA says:

      It was me who asked if it was BA or CX flight no’s. The problem you have is that if BA has cancelled all flights between LHR and NCL on Xmas day you can’t be rerouted on another BA flight. That means you are stuck with either another airline (unlikely to be anyone other than EasyJet and not from LHR) but technically EC261 allows alternative airlines OR another form of transport to NCL eg train or taxi.

      Is there a possibility of flying USA to AMS or CDG on AA instead of LHR on BA and then on to NCL?

      EC/UK261 means BA /CX are obliged to get you to NCL as soon as possible per your original flight time arrival in NCL. You’re lucky because its a BA flight transatlantic and BA flight number even though CX issued. Technically CX need to reissue ticket so they should be amenable to alternative routing. As SamG says you need to ask CX to invoke Oneworld Liason to get BA to play ball and open availability but the trouble is that the EC 261 only talks about availability after original flight ie a delay and what you’re asking is for a date earlier than you booked.

      • AJA says:

        @MCO where in the US are you flying from? That might help CX if you give them specific alternative routing to work with.

  • fivebobbill says:

    * Re Switzerland in reply to VerdantBacon from yesterday, in case you missed my reply in yesterdays thread.

    My hotel actually DID ask me for my Covid cert/vax proof, and I showed them my code in the French app which seemed to be ok for them.
    Just to add, when I said before that on scanning the French app a red light showed, whilst this is true every time, their scanner still showed my name and vax details, it was when accompanied by that red light which brought the confusion, hence the need to speak to a superior sometimes.
    So sill use your French app if you have it.

    • VerdantBacon says:

      Thanks FBB I did miss your reply last night, very useful to know, seems it’s just a minor inconvenience at worst and we’re only there for 5 days so I’m sure it won’t get too annoying having to talk our way into a McDonald’s!

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