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Cruzin Terri

HAL refuses to apply AMEX Platinum Benefits to our cruise

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We booked a Christmas cruise at the last minute using our Platinum AMEX card (yes, it is the right one).  Our TA put in the tracking number and it was refused.  She was told that because it was a last minute sale, no promotions were applicable.  

I never considered the Platinum Benefits as “promotional” but a benefit of having the Platinum Card.  My TA (very seasoned) has gone as high as her district HAL sales rep and they refuse to budge.  

Has anyone else had the Platinum benefits refused.  I have used it in the past with sales and never had a problem.  Why this time? Feels like the Grinch that stole Christmas.  We are in the Pinnacle Suite. This means $300 of OBC that we lose because HAL will not honor the AMEX benefit.

Terri

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Did you book it directly from Amex? If you book it directly from amex you can try contacting american express to see if they can get it credit on your behalf or they can just credit your amex card

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31 minutes ago, jameslee said:

Did you book it directly from Amex? If you book it directly from amex you can try contacting american express to see if they can get it credit on your behalf or they can just credit your amex card

No, I booked with my TA.  I booked once through the Platinum Travel Service.  It was the most underwhelming experience.  I have a great TA.  She has done this for me numerous times and it has never been a problem until this time.

Terri

Edited by Cruzin Terri

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I guess there are no replies until it happens to you.  This was the first time that I was denied the AMEX platinum benefits.  It seems that HALis getting very selective as to when they will apply it.  AMEX says they have no control over HAL applying the benefits.

Terri

Edited by Cruzin Terri

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1 hour ago, Cruzin Terri said:

I guess there are no replies until it happens to you.  This was the first time that I was denied the AMEX platinum benefits.  It seems that HALis getting very selective as to when they will apply it.  AMEX says they have no control over HAL applying the benefits.

Terri

That’s a shame-I figured AMEX could go to bat for you.  Just because you book last minute shouldn’t make a difference.  I wouldn’t be impressed either especially since you’re in the Pinnacle.  Sorry this has happened. 

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The reason for my non-reply (and probably others) is that I haven’t a clue what the Platinum benefits are that you are referring to.  I have a Delta Amex Platinum but the only thing I can think is remotely similar is where you book through their travel.

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$300 OBC, choc. Strawberries and sparkling wine. Just thino HAL is being very unreasonable since this is a card benefit and not a promotion.

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If it is a card benefit have you called AMEX?  HAL is always very clear with me that promos are generally not stackable.  I am always re-faring my journeys.  

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If it's a card benefit, isn't AMEX the one who would be providing it?  I've pretty much stopped using my AMEX because they've gone way downhill in their customer service, and I get better return on other cards.  However, their T&Cs do note that there are category & fare restrictions.  Sounds like you're running into that for this specific trip.  Sometimes the answer is "no" and they cannot do anything about it.

 

 

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8 minutes ago, Cruzin Terri said:

$300 OBC, choc. Strawberries and sparkling wine. Just thino HAL is being very unreasonable since this is a card benefit and not a promotion.

 

We have never been able to use the above Platinum cruise benefits UNLESS we booked directly through Amex travel which is always typically higher than our TA. The current (and past) spend 500 get 100 amex offers have always be applied no matter where the booking occurs.     

 

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If you are referencing the Cruise Privileges Program then I can see where things are blurry.  Maybe they are no longer passing on the benefits to TA’s and want to keep it in-house with the Platinum Card Travel Service they have listed.  That’s my only guess.

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We have never been denied the $300 shipboard credit when we used our Platinum AMEX card -- but we never booked last minute.  And we stay mainly in the Pinnacle Suites or Neptune Suites.  

 

AMEX has stopped giving free Pinnacle Grill dinners and a free bottle of cheap wine.

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Always have gotten the benefit using TA.intil this time. What changed? Spending big bucks for Pinnacle Suite.

Terri

Edited by Cruzin Terri

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I wonder if your TA forgot to go to the AMEX portal for Travel Agents to book.  It's very clear in the AMEX T&Cs on the ways it has to be booked by a TA. There are also some fares excluded from time to time - your TA should have been aware of these.  It's not always just book and pay with your Plat.   (the same kind of things apply when people try to get Plat bennies when they incorrectly book a hotel - that's my experience.)  

 

If you still have time outside of a cancellation window, maybe have the TA cancel and then document going through all the proper channels and steps - you'd then have a case if you met all the conditions and didn't receive the OBC.

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2 minutes ago, slidergirl said:

I wonder if your TA forgot to go to the AMEX portal for Travel Agents to book.  It's very clear in the AMEX T&Cs on the ways it has to be booked by a TA. There are also some fares excluded from time to time - your TA should have been aware of these.  It's not always just book and pay with your Plat.   (the same kind of things apply when people try to get Plat bennies when they incorrectly book a hotel - that's my experience.)  

 

If you still have time outside of a cancellation window, maybe have the TA cancel and then document going through all the proper channels and steps - you'd then have a case if you met all the conditions and didn't receive the OBC.

My TA did everything she was supposed to do.  She put in the tracking number as she always has and then was told that it was not applicable because of a flash sale.  I would have used a different card had I known the AMEX benefits were not going to apply. My TA is very seasoned and knows the ropes.   

Terri

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Oh a flash sale!  Lucky you!  I would consider it an offset and be happy with my purchase.  It seems to me that the compensation you are pursuing is with Amex and not HAL; and Amex holds the option to modify the compensation per their T&C’s.  I would let it go as a lesson learned and enjoy my cruise.  Life is too short.

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1 minute ago, Cruzin Terri said:

My TA did everything she was supposed to do.  She put in the tracking number as she always has and then was told that it was not applicable because of a flash sale.  I would have used a different card had I known the AMEX benefits were not going to apply. My TA is very seasoned and knows the ropes.   

Terri

No need to get the pantie in a twist.   Like I said, there are times when certain rates are not included, you got one this time.  Usually, if booked on the correct AMEX portal, a note will be there indicating  the exclusion (from my experience in dealing with AMEX and having to tell customers they have an ineligible fare.).  

 

Did you get a copy of the specific T&Cs for your Flash Sale fare?  

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6 minutes ago, slidergirl said:

No need to get the pantie in a twist.   Like I said, there are times when certain rates are not included, you got one this time.  Usually, if booked on the correct AMEX portal, a note will be there indicating  the exclusion (from my experience in dealing with AMEX and having to tell customers they have an ineligible fare.).  

 

Did you get a copy of the specific T&Cs for your Flash Sale fare?  

Panties not in a twist. Sorry if I came across that way. Thanks for your reply.

Terri

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Well I certainly learned something new from this thread! I have never been able to have this apply unless through Amex direct and that been the consistent answer through several TA's. It seems I have been leaving a considerable perk behind. I will try harder next time to get it!  Thanks for the heads up on this that it may indeed be possible!

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3 minutes ago, Crusinsusan2 said:

Well I certainly learned something new from this thread! I have never been able to have this apply unless through Amex direct and that been the consistent answer through several TA's. It seems I have been leaving a considerable perk behind. I will try harder next time to get it!  Thanks for the heads up on this that it may indeed be possible!

 Your TA has to use the AMEX portal to get it AND you have to book an applicable fare and length of cruise. Ask the TAs if they have access - if they say "no", either go directly through the Plat line to book or try another TA...

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The Amex Platinum Cruise Benefits do say "Not combinable with corporate or group rates or offers unless indicated." I recently booked a super deal on a Celebrity cruise and couldn't get the Amex added on. However, on my last HAL cruise (which was a good deal, but not a flash sale / last minute deal) it was added. Neither of these were through Amex Travel directly... just TAs that are part of the Amex Travel network.

 

Sorry it didn't work for you on this one, but hopefully the deal is still good enough to enjoy!

 

PS: I always have them verify at time of booking whether the Amex benefit can be added (usually takes them 20 minutes). This does alter my "value" of the cruise and has once had me decide not to go forward with the purchase. It also allows me to use a different card and get 3% back.

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We did not receive the Platinum AmEx benefits on a June 2018 Baltic cruise. We booked a Pinnacle Suite over 6 months before departure under a HAL promo which included 2 nights in a Copenhagen hotel pre-cruise, transfers and a pre-cruise event. It was clearly stated on the HAL website that this promo was not combinable with anything else. Our long-time TA whom we use through our Platinum AmEx card also clearly stated that we would not be able to receive the OBC, etc. 

 

So, in answer to your question, it has happened to others. 

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22 minutes ago, killsport said:

The Amex Platinum Cruise Benefits do say "Not combinable with corporate or group rates or offers unless indicated." I recently booked a super deal on a Celebrity cruise and couldn't get the Amex added on. However, on my last HAL cruise (which was a good deal, but not a flash sale / last minute deal) it was added. Neither of these were through Amex Travel directly... just TAs that are part of the Amex Travel network.

 

Sorry it didn't work for you on this one, but hopefully the deal is still good enough to enjoy!

 

PS: I always have them verify at time of booking whether the Amex benefit can be added (usually takes them 20 minutes). This does alter my "value" of the cruise and has once had me decide not to go forward with the purchase. It also allows me to use a different card and get 3% back.

Thank you for this!! Great advice.

 

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2 hours ago, Cruzin Terri said:

Panties not in a twist. Sorry if I came across that way.

 

You DID NOT come across that way.  At least, not to me 😉 😄 

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FWIW, I've never been able to use the Amex CPP benefits in combination with any other HAL promos (especially OBC related promos) though I've done it on other cruise lines. Maybe it's just a HAL thing?

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