A few years ago I decided to start paying annual fees for a credit card.
Why you might ask?
I’m not usually a sucker for ‘rewards points’ or other thinly veiled attempts to lure my business away from competitors, but after a number of years using my PC Mastercard (free!!!) and getting nothing but Loblaws dollars back (nothing wrong with free groceries), I decided it was time to see if there was anything more suited to my needs as an occasional traveller who likes to rent cars while on vacation.
Renting a car while travelling can get expensive, especially when you factor in the insurance and additional coverages for damage waiver, etc… but it can also be a very rewarding way to see parts of a country you might not otherwise have access to.
I also believe that you can tell a lot about a culture by the way they drive… Yes, everyone knows Montreal cab drivers are assholes, but did you also know that you can get yelled at in Corfu for driving in the smaller towns during their afternoon nap time? Or that in reality there is no such thing as lane on a road in Mexico? Or that honking means ‘Hello’ in on many roads in Cuba?
The reason I got the TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite card was because it includes ‘free’ Collision Damage Waiver insurance and 24/7 roadside assistance on all car rentals, it provided me with access to a special travel booking website where I could earn 9x the reward points, and it covered other short term travel insurances (cancellation, travel medical, etc…).
So, when we finally decided that we would be starting our trip in Auckland NZ, I went online to my ‘special’ TD travel website only to find that the price for the flight we wanted was ~$300 more than it was on Redtag.ca.
I spent hours on the phone with both TD Travel Rewards Centre, Expedia for TD, and also Redtag, to try and get the flight we wanted for the price we wanted and with the points we were (read: should have been) entitled to by booking it with the Visa.
Talk about a waste of my time.
We finally ended up booking our trip with Redtag.ca, because they gave us the best price, but I am seriously re-considering my loyalty to this TD Visa after all the hoops I had to jump through to book our trip.
All administrative shenanigans aside, we are ecstatic about finally getting our trip off the ground on Dec. 31st, 2012 at 08:10.
Here are the details:
AIR CANADA Flight #791
31-Dec-2012 8:10 am
31-Dec-2012 10:30 am
TORONTO, PEARSON INTL / LOS ANGELES
AIR PACIFIC Flight #811
31-Dec-2012 9:30 pm
02-Jan-2013 5:15 am
LOS ANGELES / NADI INT’L
AIR PACIFIC Flight #411
02-Jan-2013 9:45 am
02-Jan-2013 12:50 pm
NADI INT’L / AUCKLAND INTL