Travelex new BA Miles rulesBack to Forum
Anonymous9 Nov 2010
I have cut down my use of Travelex following the reduced exchange rates given when you book in the BA store. I exchanged some currency over the counter today and tried to claim some BA miles. This is no longer possible on commission free transactions. So basically you have to pay commission to get miles or use the BA service and get less currency for your money. Whichever it is the equivalent of buying miles at a more expensive rate than you can buy direct from BA. This is not a benefit and BA should ditch Travelex and travellers go elsewhere. Profiteering from loyalty is just not honest.9 Nov 2010
I have to agree, I think there was an Exec Club email recently which said that they were reducing the number of miles which makes it even worse value for money. Have not used Travelex for a number years now.9 Nov 2010
Agree, I will not use travelex and the BA deal is very poor. I have found that my cash card gets funds from almost any hole in the wall anywhere and generally at very attractive exchange rates. BA Amex used for everything else as again exchange rates are competative fees clear and BA miles are earned.10 Nov 2010
The rates that Travelex offer by ordering and paying for your currency on-line and then collecting at the airport are about the best I’ve seen, beating M&S and the Post Office, and you have the convenience of collecting them at the airport. You can’t earn BA miles on these transactions though, or BAA WorldPoints, but the rates are so much better that it’s worth forfeiting the miles/points.
On a related note, I did fall-out with Natwest over the fact that as they now charge a commission for the use of a debit card to pay for foreign currency, this is a new arrangement with their Visa debit cards which have now replaced the previously issued Maestro cards. They wave the charge if you buy your currency from an RBS group branch but otherwise you have no choice but pay it unless you visit a BdC with cash. Anyway, just a word of warning to anyone paying with a Natwest debit card (not sure if other banks do the same) for foreign currency, there will be a small charge so calculate that into finding the best deal.10 Nov 2010
This charging with a debit card was another reason why I stopped. I had used both a Cahoot debit card and a Lloyds debit card and was charged a fee. When I complained I was told it was Visa that make the charge. I managed to get some back on Cahoot but it was too much trouble and hard work.10 Nov 2010
Yes that’s what I was told by Natwest, that Visa made the charge so their hands were tied. Obviously they had advised me of the change to my T&Cs, but who reads those leaflets, so they wouldn’t refund the charge. Debenhams seems to be offering the best rates on the high street these days beating M&S which used to be the cheapest.10 Nov 2010
Andrew. I too had the same problem with Natwest. When I called them to ask about the ‘commission rate’, I was told that this would be added to any foreign exchange purchase unless I was buying from someone linked to the RBS group. The girl also said that travelex should have informed me about the commission charge. When I spoke to them, they told me it was nothing to do with them, it was Natwest making the charge!
As it happens, I called Natwest to check their rates and I would have been a lot worse off had I got my money from them and not had to pay commission but even so, the banks will take your money any which way at the minute.10 Nov 2010
Oh absolutely – the person I spoke to in the call centre pointed out I could get the currency from an RBS branch without the Visa charge to which I responded that if they charged a competitive exchange rate then I wouldn’t have a problem doing so – they didn’t have much of a response for that!
Back to Travelex – I spookily just got an email from them asking me to fill out a satisfaction survey – maybe they’re reading the BT forum!10 Nov 2010
Reviving this, although obviously it’s now Avios miles and Travelex…
tried some transactions firstly on the Travelex website, for collection of the currency at Heathrow, and then through the BA site.
As you would imagine, there are two different rates.
£1,005.96 – 1520.00 USD
BA site (Travelex) no Avios earning
£1005.19 – 1,471.00 USD
BA site (Travelex) Avios earning (1050 Avios)
£1005.19 – 1,471.00 USD
Now the obvious point is that if you use the site and don’t collect avios – say you are a leisure traveller who just trusts the brand of BA, well, caveat emptor.
As for those of us who do collect avios – I don’t know why, habit, I guess, we earn 1005 avios for this transaction, at a cost of the difference between the two rates quotes above = $49
Now to buy 1000 avios costs £31, but there’s a special offer on at the moment until 2 August where you get 5-30% bonus depending on how many you buy in increments of 1000 (this qualifies for the lowest bonus of 5%).
£31 in dollars is around $49.
So while the offer is on there’s a 45 avios gain.
Which really wasn’t worth the effort, to be honest.16 Jul 2012