Virgin Atlantic Credit Card e-money cash advance

I don’t think they do on the main page for Fronted - it seems clear from reading Curve Fronted | Curve that I can pay my credit card bill with a credit card, and that it’s “totally free” for Curve Metal users.
Would be lovely to see that the precise stats from Curve, but it’s safe to say less than 1% of readers will click the link to see what the Fair Use policy is.

But even if nothing is written, it is indeed totally free for Metal users. If some underlying cards charge you for some type of transactions it’s still free on the Curve end. And you would be charged with or without Curve for the very same transaction elsewhere. Fronted simply enables you to use the card where you normally couldn’t. It’s just logic, there is no even need to read the Fair Use policy or the T&C.

Let’s put it this way: PayPal says that you can link credit cards and use them for free, be it for shopping or for sending money to someone else. One day your credit card decides that if you use PayPal to send money, they will charge you a fee. Does PayPal have to warn you about it? No, it’s still free on their side, it’s up to you to know the terms of your underlying card. PayPal is not charging anything.
The fact that fronted enables credit cards on places where they normally can’t be used doesn’t take away you responsibility to know your cards terms and be aware of any changes. And if fronted is sponsored as free for Metal users it’s true because it’s still free, Curve is not charging anything.

I think I will stop answering because I am repeating myself and what I am saying seems so obvious to me.

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It’s possible to use a credit card instead of a debit card to make payment with a number of organisations. However, often a fee is taken by that organisation. The main use of Curve Fronted was to avoid the fee and obtain spend benefits such as frequent flyer miles. With the charges, which now possibly apply to all Mastercards, that’s now pointless so it removes a major benefit of having Curve.

Of course, there’s also only a handful of credit card companies in the U.K. and not thousands and Curve has promised information of fees applied by them on three occasions but then has remained silent.

I agree that this discussion is pretty fruitless though. If Curve and a minority posters here think this doesn’t impact on the service and it shouldn’t concern Curve, I’m pretty sure that will prove to be wrong. We’ll see and in the meantime I’m on day three of my request to cancel the card. I’m also taking action against Virgin as they failed to advise when fees would be applied and when I called them after a charge their customer service department said it was Curve and not Virgin applying the charges. That’s another story it’s even less fruitful to discuss here.

Will Virgin Atlantic Credit card now charge a fee if we try to withdraw money using the Curve card?

It’s been really handy for me to pop my curve card into an ATM and take some money out of my Virgin Credit Card when I really needed it!

It would be great if you can keep us updated about the action against Virgin credit card.

I tried a while ago and even requested to speak with the most senior manager they can pass me to, and that manager answered that it’s impossible to refund because they already made it clear back in 2021. Plus, if they refund my charge, they would have to refund to other users.

Sure I’ll do that. I had another stalling letter from Virgin today and they ‘promise’ to respond now in another four weeks. Since I asked their Customer Services if my first 5% charge was due to Curve or Virgin and they said it was Curve, I don’t see how they can refuse a refund. It may need to go the the Financial Ombudsman service though. As I made three more Curve Fronted transactions after Virgin said it was nothing to do with them the costs mounted up.

Of course, Joel was supposed to update us on this but many people have now requested this and the update was promised about a month ago. It looks as though all MasterCard transactions may now be liable to debit interest and/or fees which would likely be the end of Curve in the UK. Maybe that’s why Curve has failed to engage. I asked them to close my Metal account five days ago but that hasn’t happened so I’ve contacted the Financial Ombudsman Service.

If that is the case, of course Curve needs to issue refunds when it’s due, but I doubt it’s Curve charging extra money when you make transactions. I mean, the extra charges are online transactions where the merchant is Curve and do these separate online transactions happen at a later time? Or, as an alternative situation, when you use your card with Curve do you already have a charge with some % surplus within your original online transaction? If the answer to both questions is NO: then no, it has nothing to do with Curve.
I guess it’s easy to check, just see your card statements and check if you have extra transactions in favour of Curve or (and this should be the case) if you just have interests/fees applied later by your credit card on the transactions made with Curve.

Sorry, I obviously wasn’t clear. Virgin eventually decided they were making the charges, but no one had told the Customer Service agents. On the basis that they were not Virgin charges I made another three transactions the same day. Virgin have refused to refund those even though I used the go back in time function so the payments were reversed. Virgin seem to have a policy of not refunding these fees under any circumstances much to the bemusement of Customer Services when I acted on their instruction that they weren’t Virgin charges and then cancelled the transactions. They have been unable to justify the Virgin position and indicate the fees will be refunded until looking in to it further when I suspect they find a directive. My circumstances are a bit different from most thought as, as I’ve said, I spoke to CS and they advised Virgin won’t applying fees and also reversed them almost immediately. They also have a recording of that conversation. If they stick to not offering a refund I don’t expect the Financial Ombudsman to agree.

It mean’s that I won’t be using Curve again with Virgin and it seems this may apply to all transactions irrespective of the card issuer when MasterCard is used via Curve, at least in terms of the immediate charge of debit interest until that transaction is repaid in full. With 21 to 28 APR debit interest for purchases fairly common now that makes Curve uneconomical to use with MasterCard and with only Visa left probably means the end of Curve’s business model in the UK. That may explain the silence from Curve in all of this.

Ok it’s clearer now. But what type of transactions were the other 3 ones? Curve fronted ones? E-money transactions which didn’t require fronted? Or just standard services/shopping?

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Curve Fronted. But subsequently people have suggested all transactions, including purchases routed through Curve, are subject to debit interest even when the balance is cleared monthly. That’s obviously a major change if correct.

I don’t think that’s the case at all.
The change in the conditions of the credit card is clear and it is about e-money transactions. And as already explained the ones going through Fronted are indeed e-money transactions.
Normal tranactions should be fine.

You can do one last test by buying a 1€/£ gift card on Amazon (or topping up your Amazon account with 1€/£, it’s the same) and see what happens. I’m sure you won’t have interests applied because of the MCC passed.

I’m in the process of cancelling my card and don’t want to use it again unless that causes issues with the glacially slow closure process. I’m just reporting what others have said if you take a look on the forum. I’m surprised by this and suggested what you have. Since Curve seem unable or unwilling to provide any information everyone is in the dark. They must know if MasterCard transactions are being charged for now.

To be honest I don’t see any advantage of putting standard UK transactions though Curve. OK with a few retailers with Curve Metal you get cashback but I can beat that by using, for the moment anyway, my Amazon branded card which gives 1.5% back rather than 1% via Curve. And I don’t have to pay £150 a year for the pleasure of doing so.

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this sentence shows that you still do not understand why you are being charged a fee, and why you will not get a refund even after complaining to the financial ombudsman.
Mastercard has nothing to do with this. Curve has nothing to do with this. Virgin charges you fees based on the terms of the contract you have with them, even though they used to be lenient about it.

Er, actually it shows you’re not reading my posts correctly, even the one the clarifies the situation.

Of course I’m not trying to complain to MasterCard or Curve. My complaint is to Virgin since they applied the fees.

The impact for Curve is that it makes it financially uneconomic to use Curve Fronted which is why I am cancelling the card. Even if Curve Metal was free it still would not make sense to pay a 5% fee and debit interest at the higher cash advance rate to use it with Virgin.

What do I get from Curve for £150 now (assuming the MasterCard issuers universally in the UK are not charging debit interest in which case it’s even worse)? One percent cashback on a limited range of retailers and no foreign currency fees on weekdays. I can get the former on all transactions with Chase and the latter all the time with 0.25% cashback with Barclays MasterCard. Where’s the benefit? Perhaps you could advise me with your financial expertise?

I can confirm there are still a few credit cards in the UK that do not charge a fee for fronted as I have one of them. Obviously debit cards won’t charge a fee either.
I’m not advising that you keep paying for metal if you can’t profit from it anymore, I’m just saying the fees from virgin are in line with their terms and are highly unlikely to be reimbursed. They’re not charging fees because the transaction was from curve, they’re charging fee because of the MCC of that transaction (most likely paying a credit card or ATM withdrawal?) which obviously is not something lenders want people to use a credit card for and that’s why they charge fees.

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They will return the fees in the circumstances I outlined. First, I spoke to their Customer Services and was assured the fees had nothing to do with Virgin. Second, I used Curve’s Go Back in Time so the transactions were reversed. There are wider issues that Virgin apparently said fees would be charged more than a year ago and then didn’t implement them for 11 months or so and apparently relied on email to advise then of the new conditions. They don’t have my email address so I got no notification.

There are indeed, for the moment, some cards which still accept Curve Fronted. I have two at least. However, the situation is far too uncertain to gamble that there might or might not be charges especially when Curve themselves are unwilling to offer any assistance. As such I think it’s the end of Curve Fronted, and if MasterCard issuers are now all charging debit interest on all and any transactions including normal purchases, that’s the end of Curve in the UK. I’m glad I didn’t invest…

At first, people were just panicking and assuming it was an all transactions and created multiple threads about the same topic. But in reality the fees were applied only on fronted transactions.

The only different experience suggesting a fee an all transactions seems to be this one which was just reported 13h ago in another thread:

Now I don’t even know where to answer because people should have stuck on the first thread about this topic, which is this one, so I am ignoring all the others. There was no need to open new threads even if the card is different, if the issue is the same.
Anyway, if Curve sends the right MCC for a normal purchase to the HSBC UK credit card and they still charge a fee, then it is HSBC that has to be confronted. They need to be asked which MCC they are receiving for the transactions they are charging fees on and why they feel entitled to do so. Of course also Curve should confirm they are sending the right MCC.

It is not a Curve problem in any way, meaning that of course commercially speaking it becomes a problem if people have no more interest in using Curve because of the fees, but Curve can do little to nothing about it.
As of now, all of my credit cards (I have 4) work just fine with Curve.
Only one of them charges interests but only based on the e-money MCC. For normal purchases it is fine just like the other 3.
I understand that for UK credit cards it might be different, but still, it has to do with them, not Curve.

Thanks for quoting me on this thread.
Great that Curve is working for you just fine.
I agree, the interest was not charged by Curve but it was the MCC they passed along that caused such charge. However their support team do not respond and chasing them is not worth my time.
While you are right that Curve can’t do anything about it, what they can do is pass on the correct merchant category and a have responsive support team because using their card adds no benefit to me other than being able to mask my card for online transactions. It’s also not my responsibility to be constantly on top of this as I am a user/customer and don’t work for Curve.

No, wait, if Curve did pass a wrong MCC (meaning that, if you used directly your credit card without Curve for the very same purchase you would get the right MCC and would not have extra charges), then Curve can and must do something about it, it’s basically their fault. It’s your credit card conditions but it’s Curve mistakenly triggering them.
Different story for Curve fronted or even general e-money transactions that don’t require fronted. For those, Curve can do nothing.

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Like you I am (was?) a beta tester. Using the same underlying card. These interest charges only started happening recently (circa this year). Due to this, I am using Curve less and less.