Short Changed on HHonors Earnings Overseas?

Discussion in 'Hilton | HHonors' started by ChrisUNC, Mar 10, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. ChrisUNC

    ChrisUNC Silver Member

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    I recently completed a 3 night stay at the Trafalgar in London. My folio was just under 1,000 GBP. Since HHonors converts to USD for awarding points, they claimed the USD equivalent of my near 1,000 GBP folio was $1,350. My credit card, however, lists the charge closer to $1,650.

    Does anyone know what Hilton uses for the "published rate of exchange" mentioned in the T&Cs?

    While I expect some variance in exchange rates, this seems a bit excessive.

    "Points awarded for stays at hotels within the Hilton Worldwide portfolio outside the U.S. will be based on local currency converted to U.S. dollars. Local currency will be converted into U.S. dollars weekly, using a published rate of exchange in effect at time of conversion. This rate will be determined at Hilton HHonors Worldwide, L.L.C.'s sole discretion, based on standard currency conversion methods but may vary from currency conversion rates used by credit card companies."
     
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  2. WilliamQ

    WilliamQ Gold Member

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    I might be barking up the wrong tree here but have you considered additional fees charged by your credit card on top of (actual amount + conversion rate) + bank fees + card fees?

    You can always check with the card company how did they arrive at the figure USD 1,650 when your bill is ~ 1,000 GBP and they will be able to clear it up for you.
     
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  3. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Any taxes that might be included in your CC bill but not in the portion of your folio that earned points? Just a thought...
     
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  4. mattsteg
    Original Member

    mattsteg Gold Member

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    This is almost certainly what is happening.

    Take a look at a domestic bill - the points awarded will not match up perfectly with your CC bill there either.
     
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  5. blackjack-21

    blackjack-21 Gold Member

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    Hilton properties in the UK indicate that VAT is included in the rates, so that's probably what happened as HHonors doesn't give points for taxes anywhere. Isn't the current UK VAT about 20% ?
     
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  6. ChrisUNC

    ChrisUNC Silver Member

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    My CC doesn't charge any fees for foreign transactions and the conversion rate used was 1.67, which is on par with what one would expect.

    VAT being included in the room rate is probably the most likely explanation as taxes are not broken out separately on the folio.
     
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  7. marcwint55

    marcwint55 Gold Member

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    I would contact Hilton and find out if perhaps they converted based on Euros rather than Pounds. It probably is not the case, but certainly worth a phone call.
     
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  8. WilliamQ

    WilliamQ Gold Member

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    I certainly makes it harder to know for sure short of reaching out to Hilton.
     
  9. MSYgirl

    MSYgirl Gold Member

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    I have two separate Hilton stays coming up in Scotland and England, and both confirmations note the VAT is included in the room rate. I would agree this seems to be the discrepancy, but I'll check my folios/postings after my stays out of curiosity.
     
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  10. mattsteg
    Original Member

    mattsteg Gold Member

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  11. ChrisUNC

    ChrisUNC Silver Member

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    I contacted Hilton the same day I created this thread. Still waiting to hear back - they said it could take up to 4 weeks to get with me. Not what I would consider stellar service for a diamond member.
     
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  12. MSYgirl

    MSYgirl Gold Member

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    I have one stay tonight and another in a week, so I'll let you know what my results are in the end.
     
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  13. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Did you call the Diamond Desk? I have gotten them to make adjustments on the spot to earned points when the problem was clearly HHonors', like failing to award me the 500 bonus points for booking with the co-branded AMEX card. This seems like something that could be resolved with a call to the Diamond Desk. At least they shoud be able to explain the discrepancy, which I believe is due to VAT being part of the folio.

    I just checked out of Hilton Sydney today where the British system of including taxes in the daily room rate is also used. I will report in about 72 hours whether or not I too notice a similar discrepancy.
     
  14. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    And the answer is that it is the damned VAT. The points for my stay at Hilton Sydney just posted. The folio showed no entry for taxes because, like in the UK, they are included in the daily room rate or any incidentals. I just got the bottom line: the 5-night stay cost me AU$2,486.14. That is the amount that my Citi Reserve visa was charged. Using the currency converter, the equivalent in USD is $2,259.16. The base points I earned for this stay is 20,581, meaning that the folio-eligible spend, i.e. taking out the VAT, was US$2,058.10.

    The difference between the total cost for the stay (US$2,259.16, including VAT) and the HHonors points-eligible portion of this total (US$2,058.10) is almost exactly 10% (9.8% +/- difference in conversion rate). Therefore, the discrepancy can be accounted for exactly by the VAT, which is 10% Down Under:
    Aussie VAT.jpg
    Q.E.D
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2014
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  15. WilliamQ

    WilliamQ Gold Member

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    Always good to know.
     

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