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Monday, June 24, 2013

Mabuhay Miles Redemption Has Gotten Difficult.

My first ever credit card was an HSBC Mabuhay Miles.  The reason being that i liked the idea of getting free mileage for my purchases.  For a very long time, i was very satisfied with HSBC and Mabuhay Miles because i was able to redeem without a hassle.  Just recently however, i got a communication from HSBC informing me that mabuhay miles will only be earned for platinum holders and that i should exchanged my unredeemed points for miles or other award items.  I was sorry to hear that but then who get's sad about those things right? Credit cards are not even necessary.

Anyway, since i have free miles i decided to redeem it for a flight to Cagayan de Oro.  I called up the mabuhay hotline 2 weeks ago to inquire and the one who answered was very accomodating and informed me that their office has transferred to Petron MegaPlaza and that my ticket will be issued by Pal express. Since i am not going to be the passenger, i needed to go there personally or have a signed redemption form and gave it to my representative. So i went there monday last week taking the mrt during lunch hour so that i will be able to reach them around 1pm.  I work at Tektite, Ortigas by the way so getting to Petron Mega Plaza in Makati was such a big deal for me.  I waited for about 30 minutes or more until my number was called only to be told that they needed to verify if there is a pal express flight available for the particular date i wanted. The only thing is that the pal express attendant has just taken their lunch break and that i have to wait some more.  I decided to just come back on saturday since they are open from 8 to 12 in the morning.

Saturday came and i arrived at PAL office at Petron Megaplaza just around 9 am. Again, i waited for 30 minutes even when there was only 2 before me being entertained. There were lots of service counters on attendance but only two are entertaining guests, apparently because it's what their system currently allows. I was told that they are in transition and that they are addressing the problem. Anyway, when it came to be my time to be entertained i was told that Pal Express no longer has a representative there and that they are holding office at Charter House in Legaspi Village. It's a good thing it's a saturday and that my car has gps installed else it would have been so much more frustrating.

I was able to find Charter House and then again i waited some more only to be told that there were no longer free slots for mabuhay milers on those dates from july 22 onwards. The earliest would already be in august. Normally a flight to cdo will only take 6,500 miles for regular flights. The service counter said i could still take the flight i wanted but that i have to shell out more miles 9,750.  This is the one thing that I didn't understand.  If they said, that all seats were taken i would have let it go. But then i was told that, there are no more seats for mabuhay milers and then later on backtrack on what he said and tells me that there is but its in exchange for higher miles? Can you not make it easier for us Pal Express? I get the feeling that customer service is not the primary concern for PAL and PAL Express.  So disappointing, and to think that it's been several months already since they've merged.

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