New UA Club Rule...CCs Only

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by EyeOnTheSkies, Jul 30, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. EyeOnTheSkies

    EyeOnTheSkies Silver Member

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    From an email today:

    "We want to inform you that effective August 1, 2012, United ClubSM will accept only credit and debit cards as forms of payment for premium liquors and fine wines. Visa®, MasterCard®, American Express® and Discover® cards will all be accepted for these purchases.

    In addition to premium bar service, United Club offers select complimentary beverages, as well as light snacks, high-speed wireless Internet access and more.

    Thank you for being a United Club member."


    I can't imagine the bartenders are very happy given that no cash out/change will probably lead to a reduction in tips. I get not having cash on planes but this is getting ridiculous.
     
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  2. bonnerbl
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    bonnerbl Gold Member

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    Don't understand it myself.
     
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  3. colpuck
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    colpuck Gold Member

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    Working with cash is a PITA. the clubs seem to have communal tills, so it is hard to assign blame if cash is missing. Also you have to worry about running deposits, securing it at night, and getting change from a bank every day. As someone who used to work with a lot of cash it is PITA at any level.

    This will however hurt the bar keeps who will see their tips go down.
     
  4. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Totally agreed about PITA factor of cash management, but do people really tip in cash most of the time? That seems weird to me.
     
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  5. colpuck
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    colpuck Gold Member

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    When i hit the free booze I tip a dollar a drink. I frequently have to ask the bartender for change, so I can tip him/her.
     
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  6. radonc1951

    radonc1951 Gold Member

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    I do. That is why I carry $1 bills around. I would use the dollar coin but it feels so much like a quarter that giving it as a tip makes me feel cheap:oops:.
     
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  7. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Absolutely. The bartenders will now be making change for passengers from their tip pool rather than the till. That's annoying for them.

    I understand why the company is doing it and as a consumer it doesn't really affect me one way or the other. But it sucks for the bartenders. That said, they aren't company employees, so maybe the company simply doesn't care.
     
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  8. Black Cloud
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    Black Cloud Gold Member

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    The most interesting takeaway for me is that apparently UA considers the transactional cost (and risk) of handling cash higher than that of the fee a CC company takes.
     
  9. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    I assume most folks traveling through the club have a CC so probably not a huge deal.
    Not a great business practice when you limit a customers way to pay.
     
  10. sfogate
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    sfogate Gold Member

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    It might be part of their contract with the CC that we "push". We have boarding priorities (2,3,4) for those CC holders.
     
  11. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    I don't have direct knowledge of companies' decisions in this regard, but as a consumer it seems that most companies feel this way, not just United. I see lots of businesses encourage me to use credit, like credit-only checkout lanes at the supermarket, farmers markets and restaurants that use Square for payments, the lunch line at Chipotle where everyone swipes their card and no one bothers with receipts. When one person starts fishing for pennies, everyone else gets held up.

    The only businesses I'm aware of that think cash is a better deal are the small businesses actually operated by the owner. Apparently these people think that because they are operating the register, they don't have to worry about employees skimming off the top. So, for them, the interchange fee seems like more of a scam. Big businesses that have to worry about employee theft are more likely to view interchange fees as a fee for service.
     
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  12. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    There are already $3 discounts if you use a United-branded card. This new policy does not rule out other cards, so I think this is unlikely. The discounts should be enough.
     
  13. CGK
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    CGK Gold Member

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    I tip in cash every time I visit a lounge. How else would one tip if they only order free booze or soda?

    The vast majority of people I see in the lounges only drink the free stuff or soft drinks, and tip in cash, if they tip at all.
     
  14. ssullivan
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    ssullivan Gold Member

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    Yep. I always tip in cash for the free cocktails.

    And, often if I need change, the bartender makes it out of the tip jar, not the cash register. In fact, they probably do that for me 75% of the time I'm out of $1 notes and ask for change. They also never seem to mind.
     
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  15. colpuck
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    colpuck Gold Member

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    I don't think it is a risk so much as an absolute pain to work with cash, that combined with the fact that fewer people use cash today it is a surprise that they held on to cash for so long.
     
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  16. CGK
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    CGK Gold Member

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    Yes, they do seem to make change from the tip jar most of the time at the lounges I frequent. I can't recall a time when a bartender seemed unhappy about making change, either.
     
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  17. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Maybe they can include some "tip chits" in next year's 1K package.
     
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  18. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Oh, yeah, for free booze, sure, but for premium where I'd be paying anyway, I'd just add it to the charge.

    I'm typically someone who uses a debit/credit card because I can better track my spending.
     
  19. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Sure, but I'd bet that the vast majority of the customers are taking the freebie, not the premium.
     
  20. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Point. You can tell I'm not a big drinker. :)
     
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  21. tommy777
    Original Member

    tommy777 Co-founder

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    There is? I thought that was a CO thing that's not working anymore. Any links?
     
  22. Captain Oveur
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    Captain Oveur Gold Member

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    At the rate things are going, we'd be lucky to get anything.
     
  23. mht_flyer
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    mht_flyer Gold Member

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    I seldom drink in the club, once in while I'll have a bloody mary or a beer but it's probably more like 1 in 8 visits that I actually do have a drink (other than a soda or juice :) )

    As for that, I'll usually give a buck for a tip if I have a alcoholic drink, but never for a soda.

    That being said, I'd NEVER EVER pay extra money for a premium brand. The brands they give for free are good enough for me in my opinion.
     
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  24. Tom
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    Tom Silver Member

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    The other benefit is that the credit card data can then be sold / given to the government / etc., in the continuing erosion of our rights to privacy. :)
     
  25. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    I give a buck for a soda if they give me lime with it (if I ask).
     

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