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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 members 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 15, 20, 3:33 pm
  #121  
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
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Originally Posted by alany611 View Post
Going nuts over this. Not sure if it's a result of me searching for the same flight over and over, but the prices of my flights have increased almost 30-40% in the time I've been trying to figure this out (hopefully the price will go back down after waiting for an hour or two).

Every time I get to check out, I try to use my Travel Bank but there is no option under "Redemption Options." The following is an example from Google Images with the Travel Bank option boxed in red:



When I get to the payment screen, I don't see the Travel Bank option anywhere. What gives? I have $500 in my TravelBank that's been there since November. I checked to see if maybe I couldn't redeem that balance because I was booking a Basic Economy fare, but it's the same even with Full Economy. Please help!
I ran into the same problem recently on a United ticket with a short connection on LH. I suspect that UA priced it such a way that the LH portion made up the bulk of the fare, thus making it ineligible for Travel Bank.

Booked with another airline instead.
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Old Dec 15, 20, 4:05 pm
  #122  
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Originally Posted by Sleepy_Sentry View Post
I ran into the same problem recently on a United ticket with a short connection on LH. I suspect that UA priced it such a way that the LH portion made up the bulk of the fare, thus making it ineligible for Travel Bank.
Travel Bank can only be used for an all-UA itinerary. They don't need to break up the fare any particular way to achieve that.
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Old Dec 15, 20, 5:50 pm
  #123  
 
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Yeah Ive noticed the same, next reservation I book Im going to be more specific and use part of the travel bank funds because I have the bonus in there and itll expire soon. It just hasnt shown up for me though as well
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Old Dec 15, 20, 9:08 pm
  #124  
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Originally Posted by Sleepy_Sentry View Post
I ran into the same problem recently on a United ticket with a short connection on LH. I suspect that UA priced it such a way that the LH portion made up the bulk of the fare, thus making it ineligible for Travel Bank.

Booked with another airline instead.
any non-UA/UAX flight on an itin will make it ineligible to use TB funds. In fact, anything with a non-UA segment, and the UA Payment Options will be greyed out and say something like these options are not available based on your current selections.
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Old Dec 24, 20, 9:43 am
  #125  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
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Originally Posted by alany611 View Post
Left out clearing cookies on my list of troubleshooting steps, I had done so using a Chrome extension

also good to know now that I should be asking for Web Support, would save me the first transfer
I had the same issue and spent an hour on the phone with web support. They claimed it was a temporary glitch in The Matrix. They did end up booking uover the phone and waive the fee
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Old Dec 28, 20, 8:18 am
  #126  
 
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What does a receipt using Travelbank funds look like?

I am wondering what a (recent) receipt looks like when using Travelbank funds to purchase a flight. Specifically, I am wondering if I will be able to pay for all/part of a business trip with Travelbank funds and get reimbursed for the total flight cost. My company is fairly lax on what will count as long as the receipt shows some sort of financial instrument ... old flight credits, gift cards, etc. If it looks like some sort of points or miles it will not work, and it the receipt only shows the dollar amount spent apart from Travelbank (via CC) then that will not work either. So if the receipt shows as one or more line items for payment - e.g. one for the Travelbank funds, one for a Credit Card, that will work for me.
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Old Dec 28, 20, 8:40 am
  #127  
 
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Originally Posted by jeph36 View Post
I am wondering what a (recent) receipt looks like when using Travelbank funds to purchase a flight. Specifically, I am wondering if I will be able to pay for all/part of a business trip with Travelbank funds and get reimbursed for the total flight cost. My company is fairly lax on what will count as long as the receipt shows some sort of financial instrument ... old flight credits, gift cards, etc. If it looks like some sort of points or miles it will not work, and it the receipt only shows the dollar amount spent apart from Travelbank (via CC) then that will not work either. So if the receipt shows as one or more line items for payment - e.g. one for the Travelbank funds, one for a Credit Card, that will work for me.
Method of payment: Miscellaneous DocumentMaster Card ending in 0536Miscellaneous DocumentTravel CertificateDate of purchase: Sun, Dec 27, 2020Airfare: 154.00 USDSeptember 11th Security Fee: 5.60 USDU.S. Passenger Facility Charge: 4.50 USDTotal Per Passenger: 164.10 USDTotal: 328.20 USD

This was using Travel bank and putting $1 on CC.
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Old Dec 28, 20, 10:19 am
  #128  
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Originally Posted by jeph36 View Post
I am wondering what a (recent) receipt looks like when using Travelbank funds to purchase a flight. Specifically, I am wondering if I will be able to pay for all/part of a business trip with Travelbank funds and get reimbursed for the total flight cost. My company is fairly lax on what will count as long as the receipt shows some sort of financial instrument ... old flight credits, gift cards, etc. ......
As the above example shows, it is just another form of cash payment. I have had no trouble getting full reimbursement.
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Old Dec 31, 20, 7:27 am
  #129  
 
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Am I too late for 2020 Amex Plat Credit?

JUST received Amex Plat...if I activate United & add $200 to travelbank will it apply to 2020 credit for triple dip or is it too late? Any experience with last day of month?
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Old Dec 31, 20, 7:45 am
  #130  
 
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Originally Posted by rxsamg View Post
JUST received Amex Plat...if I activate United & add $200 to travelbank will it apply to 2020 credit for triple dip or is it too late? Any experience with last day of month?
Should work just fine
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Old Dec 31, 20, 7:47 am
  #131  
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Originally Posted by rxsamg View Post
JUST received Amex Plat...if I activate United & add $200 to travelbank will it apply to 2020 credit for triple dip or is it too late? Any experience with last day of month?
If it psts today the credit should b e for 2020.
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Old Dec 31, 20, 7:54 am
  #132  
 
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So the million dollar question (err, make that $200) is do TB purchases post same day?
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Old Dec 31, 20, 8:04 am
  #133  
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Originally Posted by rxsamg View Post
So the million dollar question (err, make that $200) is do TB purchases post same day?
There's one way to find ut...
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Old Dec 31, 20, 9:33 am
  #134  
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Originally Posted by rxsamg View Post
So the million dollar question (err, make that $200) is do TB purchases post same day?
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
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Old Dec 31, 20, 11:13 am
  #135  
 
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Originally Posted by Xyzzy View Post
There's one way to find ut...
Be the DP you want to see...
Submitted. Ill report back for the next procrastinator who finds this thread
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