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UA "TravelBank" Q&A , with new option to deposit funds

UA "TravelBank" Q&A , with new option to deposit funds

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Old Jun 14, 22, 9:04 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: WineCountryUA
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The United Travel Bank has been around for many years. UA had a program where purchasing a ticket on united.com would receive a $5 Travel Bank bonus. This was called united.com Club and had an annual $25 subscription fee. This ended in early 2020. But funds are still accessible for 18 months after earning.
Also at one time the Travel Bank had a Gift Registry pre-2018.
For more on those prior Travel Bank Programs, see "TravelBank"- United.com Club & Gift Registry Q&A - No new/renewals as of 23 Apr 2019

Then for a period of time, Chase / UA offered a 1.5% cash-back Travel Bank credit card where the cash-back went into the Travel Bank, that ended Sept 2020
Chase United TravelBank Card becoming non-cashback Chase MP Gateway Card 21 Sept 2020

*NEW* In July 2020, the Travel Bank was recasted as a cash pre-funding option that might have a short term bonus offering -- cash or miles or both.
Additionally it might be used for bank credit card travel reimbursement funds (no longer for some --such as AMEX )

TravelBank Terms and Conditions

What can I use Travel Bank funds for?
1. Only for an all UA operated itineraries
2. *NEW* Award fees & taxes and subscriptions appears eligible for use of TravelBank funds
3. Not for in-flight purchases, post-purchase E+ access or upgrades, ....

There have been reports that the Travel Bank option may not appear if doing Advance Flight Searches with options selected such as upgrade availability, ...
Purchases as need to be in USD $ and point of sale USA
For those with "Business Travel" option, when your account is linked to a UA corporate account, TravelBank may not be available. It does seems to be available for "Break from Business" usage

It may sometimes still fail to show and you may need to use an phone/twitter/FB/... agent
Sometime the app is more reliable


Do Travel Bank funds expire?
They could per T&Cs
- Older methods for funding -- united.com, travel bank card cash back .... have 18 month expiration from last deposit
- New cash funds have a 5 years expiration from deposit
- Bonus from cash deposit -- depends on promo T&Cs but recent terms have been 4 months
- Each $1 TravelBank Cash issued as Chase purchase bonus is valid through June 30, 2022
- CLEAR signup
$100 TravelBank credits will be valid for 9 months (late Aug/early Sept 2021) after the credit is deposited into memberís accounts.

Where can I see my Travel Bank balance / expiration?
Look in your My Account section and click on Details. https://www.united.com/en/US/account/travelbank

Funds have to be used / trip booked by expiration. Travel can be after expiration

Where can I add funds?
https://www.united.com/offers/travelcash
Members can choose from six purchase amount options and once purchased the value remains valid for five years from the date it is deposited in your TravelBank account. Purchases are not refundable and are limited to $5,000 per day per MileagePlus account. This purchase is also subject to all of the TravelBank terms and conditions.
Do I get PQP credit for flight purchases with Travel Bank funds?
Yes, UA treats the Travel Bank funds just like a cash purchase

What if I refund a ticket purchased with Travel Bank funds?
With a refund, the funds go back to original form of purchase, so the Travel Bank portion of the funds go back to the Travel Bank. (insufficient data to know if that is with the original expiration date or a new date). More recent reports suggest ETCs may be used unless this is an cancellation within 24 hours of purchase.

Can you use Travel Bank funds in conjunction with a Credit Card and/or ETCs?
Yes, you can select to pay in whole or in part with Travel Bank funds and then the remainder, if any, with the other forms of payment. There have been mixed reports about ETCs -- YMMV

Can you "deposit" your ETCs (or FFCs) into your Travel Bank?
No

Can I use the Travel Bank funds to purchase a ticket to someone else?
Yes but you have to be the purchaser

Can I transfer Travel Bank funds to someone else?
No

Can I cash out my Travel Bank funds?
No

What merchant category is Travel Bank?
It's treated as an airline purchase. American Express posts it as a ticketing fee while pending and then changes to just United Airlines.

Why does Travel Bank state "This offer has ended?"
This message appears during website maintenance.

Does Travel Bank count as a reimbursable incidental with American Express?
This topic is discussed in a separate thread. Do not contact Amex.

Does Travel Bank count as a reimbursable incidental for other credit cards? Post your experiences
Yes, for BoA cards
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Old Dec 31, 20, 1:16 pm
  #136  
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Just a quick thanks to everyone here for the tip. I missed the promo but still got $250 Hilton AMEX credit for TB purchases. I assume once my AMEX annual fee posts I can do it again correct?
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Old Dec 31, 20, 1:28 pm
  #137  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
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Originally Posted by uastarflyer View Post
Just a quick thanks to everyone here for the tip. I missed the promo but still got $250 Hilton AMEX credit for TB purchases. I assume once my AMEX annual fee posts I can do it again correct?
It's calendar year based, not cardmembership year.
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Old Jan 4, 21, 5:15 am
  #138  
 
Join Date: Dec 2020
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Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
what do you have to lose on this? The longer you wait the smaller your chance of this counting for 2020. That is of course assuming you plan on buying some UA tickets in the coming years and worse comes to worse you get 5x MR points
So, this AM we have success!!! Procrastinators can rejoice in the world LOL!!

Amex Plat
12/31 UA TB 2x$100 Purchases Made online
12/31 Charges listed as Pending
12/31 Charges changed to posted
1/3 Credit Posted

* I canít access meter to check if this applied to Ď20 or Ď21 credit BUT I assume Ď20 because I did 2 other identical charges/credits same days for streaming credit & wireless services which arenít effective in Ď21

Perhaps this year Iíll try a tad earlier
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Old Jan 4, 21, 9:10 am
  #139  
 
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Originally Posted by rxsamg View Post
So, this AM we have success!!! Procrastinators can rejoice in the world LOL!!

* I canít access meter to check if this applied to Ď20 or Ď21 credit
It's definitely 2020 credit as it goes by the charge date, but why can't you access the meter?
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Old Jan 4, 21, 9:19 am
  #140  
 
Join Date: Dec 2020
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Originally Posted by ctownflyer View Post
It's definitely 2020 credit as it goes by the charge date, but why can't you access the meter?
Unsure, kept showing data not available. I read many others had same issue. Maybe due to airline selection recently done? (literally on 12/31 just before transactions)
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Old Jan 4, 21, 10:38 am
  #141  
 
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Originally Posted by rxsamg View Post
Unsure, kept showing data not available. I read many others had same issue. Maybe due to airline selection recently done? (literally on 12/31 just before transactions)
Try in an incognito browser.
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Old Jan 4, 21, 9:40 pm
  #142  
LAX
 
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With regard to the inactivity clause, is it safe to assume that any activity (ie: addition of new funds) will extend the life of the entire balance? For example, if I had purchased $100 Travel Bank funds on 1/1/21, as long as I add more funds before 7/1/22, the original $100 will not disappear (assuming no use during this time frame). TIA.

LAX

PS: I am aware of the 5-year expiration regardless of activity.
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Old Jan 4, 21, 11:37 pm
  #143  
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Originally Posted by LAX View Post
With regard to the inactivity clause, is it safe to assume that any activity (ie: addition of new funds) will extend the life of the entire balance? For example, if I had purchased $100 Travel Bank funds on 1/1/21, as long as I add more funds before 7/1/22, the original $100 will not disappear (assuming no use during this time frame). TIA.

LAX

PS: I am aware of the 5-year expiration regardless of activity.
All deposited funds have 5 year life, bonus funds have specified life. The 18 months refers to the $5 per ticket which has been discontinued.
Each of these types of funds have a separate expiration -- click on the expiration date for detials
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Old Jan 6, 21, 7:47 pm
  #144  
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 24
*** For those of you who cannot apply Travel Bank funds***

It is because you have most likely selected an upgrade option. I was unable to select TB funds until I unselected Economy Plus, as soon as I unselected that option, TB funds showed up. Just United being as usual.

Last edited by WineCountryUA; Jan 6, 21 at 8:08 pm Reason: Using symbols, spaces or other methods to mask vulgarities is not allowed.
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Old Jan 9, 21, 7:17 pm
  #145  
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: DEN, ORD
Programs: United 1K, Hilton Diamond, Hyatt Globalist, Marriott Gold, Hertz PC
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Should TB funds automatically go back into your account? In this case, I originally tried to book an itinerary with a combo of ETC + TB + Credit Card for the remaining balance, which somehow it worked online. However, it ended up never ticketing and I had to call 1k desk to get it sorted out. Realized, as has been mentioned in the forum before, that adding a third payment method caused the issue. Either way, the agent had to remove the TB and just apply the ETC and remainder on my CC. The correct amount posted on my CC and the ETC was used, but I haven’t received my TB funds back in my account. It has been a week... Do I need to call to get it manually put back into my account or is there typically a delay with this and it will eventually go back in my account automatically?
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Old Jan 9, 21, 7:28 pm
  #146  
 
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Originally Posted by BDFlyer15 View Post
Should TB funds automatically go back into your account? In this case, I originally tried to book an itinerary with a combo of ETC + TB + Credit Card for the remaining balance, which somehow it worked online. However, it ended up never ticketing and I had to call 1k desk to get it sorted out. Realized, as has been mentioned in the forum before, that adding a third payment method caused the issue. Either way, the agent had to remove the TB and just apply the ETC and remainder on my CC. The correct amount posted on my CC and the ETC was used, but I havenít received my TB funds back in my account. It has been a week... Do I need to call to get it manually put back into my account or is there typically a delay with this and it will eventually go back in my account automatically?
I can't speak from experience, but I think if you don't have it now, you'll have to get some manual intervention.
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Old Jan 10, 21, 8:04 am
  #147  
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
I can't speak from experience, but I think if you don't have it now, you'll have to get some manual intervention.
Fair enough. Iíll give the 1k desk a call today and hopefully get it sorted out. Thanks
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Old Jan 13, 21, 2:18 pm
  #148  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
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Can I use travel bank funds to pay for luggage and/or seat selection?
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Old Jan 13, 21, 2:28 pm
  #149  
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Originally Posted by freedom2020 View Post
Can I use travel bank funds to pay for luggage and/or seat selection?
No (unless it is a part of the flight purchase)
Travel Bank funds can not be used for auxiliary fees
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Old Jan 14, 21, 6:44 am
  #150  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
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Somehow I missed TB as a way to get the airline credit on my Hilton amex. When I went to my TB account, I found a $50 thank you bonus I didn't know I had. It's dated 1/4, before I put money in. Does anyone know what this is for?
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