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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 member’s 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 7, 20, 8:45 pm
  #91  
 
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
It is a payment option, look for "Travel certificates and United® TravelBank cash"

Note it will only show for all UA operated itineraries -- just like ETCs
Thanks! Weird I dont see it, it's a UNITED flight between EWR and Cancun UA 1052
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Old Dec 7, 20, 10:03 pm
  #92  
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This promo expires Wednesday, December 9. If you'll be buying UA tix within the next four months, I honestly can't think of any reason not to take advantage of this promotion.
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Old Dec 8, 20, 6:14 am
  #93  
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Originally Posted by Brian Chen View Post
Thanks! Weird I dont see it, it's a UNITED flight between EWR and Cancun UA 1052
holy crap, there are some cheap EWR-CUN flights. $210 in First.

Shows just fine for me. See screenshot.

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Old Dec 8, 20, 6:28 am
  #94  
 
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Smile Not if your TB Balance is Zero

Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
On United.com, when viewing your account and there you can see your balance. Direct below the balance it has "View Details"
Hi WineCountry. Thanks for the speedy reply. I went to My Account and there was no "View Details" under my balance. However, I took advantage of the "10% TravelBank" Promotion and added $1,000 to my account. Once there was a balance ($1,100) the "View Details" hyperlink appeared. So, for those out there that have exhausted their TravelBank balance to zero, they will not see the "View Details" until they add additional value in their TB account.
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Old Dec 8, 20, 11:35 pm
  #95  
 
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Is there some reason the expiry date (for the promotion) is always just about to expire? It looks like it keeps on renewing itself?
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Old Dec 8, 20, 11:56 pm
  #96  
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Originally Posted by msp3 View Post
Is there some reason the expiry date (for the promotion) is always just about to expire? It looks like it keeps on renewing itself?
A lot of things nowadays are on shorter time frame to allow flexibility to react if conditions change. It is safer to keep renewing vs going long.
Also near-term expiration might encourage folks to act now versus waiting, not know if it will still be there later.
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Old Dec 9, 20, 5:54 am
  #97  
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Originally Posted by msp3 View Post
Is there some reason the expiry date (for the promotion) is always just about to expire? It looks like it keeps on renewing itself?
This is only the 2nd time they have this 10% promo; there was another one in-between offering miles. If you look back at the 20% off gift cards promo from Marriott this May ... that one never came back. It is hard to predict that and if you think you'll be able to use the funds, why wait? Guess we are all hoping for a January promo for the obvious reasons, but will there be one? With the situation worsening, UA will likely be looking to bank some cash ... so I'd say it is likely we'll see another one. Time will tell.
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Old Dec 9, 20, 6:51 am
  #98  
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Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
If you look back at the 20% off gift cards promo from Marriott this May ... that one never came back. It is hard to predict that and if you think you'll be able to use the funds, why wait?
And these funds are way easier to use, because you can apply online with mixed forms of payment. I still have $170 orphan on a Marriott gift card.
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Old Dec 9, 20, 10:52 am
  #99  
 
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Does anyone know if travelbank funds can be used for upgrades or is it strictly for purchasing tickets?
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Old Dec 9, 20, 11:12 am
  #100  
 
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Originally Posted by BusinessCasualSport View Post
Does anyone know if travelbank funds can be used for upgrades or is it strictly for purchasing tickets?
The only place I have seen it an option is ticket purchase.
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Old Dec 9, 20, 6:51 pm
  #101  
 
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Can you add travelbank funds anytime or only when there is a promotion?

For example the current 5-10% bonus promo runs ends tonight 12/9. Will it be possible to load travelbank funds tomorrow 12/10 after this promo expires?
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Old Dec 9, 20, 7:12 pm
  #102  
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Originally Posted by mster View Post
Can you add travelbank funds anytime or only when there is a promotion?

For example the current 5-10% bonus promo runs ends tonight 12/9. Will it be possible to load travelbank funds tomorrow 12/10 after this promo expires?
yes, the reopened Travel bank. You can add funds outside of these promotions as well. Check out the thread in the Amex forum in particular
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Old Dec 9, 20, 7:36 pm
  #103  
 
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May be old news, but I was surprised to be able to use some TB funds and part of an ETC on one ticket. Really adds value to the TB program!

Screenshot (FT Disclosure: On the blog that I own) and more details:
https://www.dansdeals.com/points-tra...ns-one-ticket/
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Old Dec 10, 20, 8:12 am
  #104  
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If one cancels a ticket bought with TB funds, how is the refund processed? Back to TB or some kind of travel credit?
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Old Dec 11, 20, 4:54 am
  #105  
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Originally Posted by UA Fan View Post
If one cancels a ticket bought with TB funds, how is the refund processed? Back to TB or some kind of travel credit?
back to TB
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