Avios To Nectar Transfer Is “Currently Unavailable”…

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I intended to transfer some of my Avios over to Nectar this weekend, only to be met with the following message when I attempted to do so:

As you can see from the above, it’s therefore currently impossible to make a transfer from Avios to Nectar on a weekend (or evening), because you have to ring the call centre during standard business hours. Transfers in the other direction – from Nectar to Avios – still work fine and can be easily completed online.

What’s going on here?

For now, I’m just going to file this as a temporary technical issue, which will hopefully be resolved soon.

A couple of other possibilities do spring to mind though.

I have wondered about the security of the new system, given that Avios can now effectively be redeemed instantly (and basically anonymously) for cash-equivalent products via Nectar at Sainsbury’s/eBay/Argos. That’s surely a lot more interesting to a potential scammer than booking flights or hotels with Avios. It’s possible that by requiring phone call (and maybe asking for more details) that risk can be reduced.

There’s a very slim chance that something more nefarious is going on (eg. planning to change the value of transfers), but I doubt it. I am concerned that the 0.8p valuation of Avios may be too high in the long run, but would be very surprised to see any changes for at least 6-12 months.

Bottom line

I don’t think there is anything to be too concerned about here – for now.

Do bear in mind though, that if you want to make a transfer from Avios to Nectar, it might not be possible during weekends and evenings, so plan accordingly.

Comments

  1. Mark says

    I had the same issue at the start of the month. The phone call was fairly painless but there was a delay in getting through to someone. I wondered was it just to make the thing more inconvenient and reduce the numbers making the transfer. It is also not an instant process like before. I waited about 5 days for the transfer to happen.
    I agree the 0.8p seems a bit high. It might be worth considering moving avios into nectar and then if the exchange rate moves, you should be able to transfer them back at a higher rate?

    • Joe Deeney says

      Interesting. Yes, it crossed my mind too whether they’re seeing more Avios to Nectar transfers than they planned for, so want to just make it a little bit harder.

      I think’storing’ points in Nectar might well be sensible – even if it’s just for the flexibility. I doubt we’d see the Nectar to Avios rate improve, but rather a change to non-equivalent transfer rates (so you lose value if you kept transferring one-way then the other). I would have guessed the rate would be 0.5-0.6p, maybe 0.65p. 0.8p is great.

    • Craig Sowerby says

      Sounds reasonable if you are confident of cashing out Nectar points in due course if the partnership implodes.

      I can’t really see too many people rushing to “buy” Avios at 0.8p, especially during COVID. But cashing out Avios at 0.8p can make a lot of sense. If you have “professional travel hackers” contemplating it, I can only imagine the general public thinks it’s a better deal than trying to figure out how to use their Avios on flights…

      So the flows might be moving in an unexpected direction, especially since Avios will have been accustomed to a lot of incoming revenue from Tesco…

  2. Rat a tat says

    It’s been like this for over a month now, when you phone it then takes up to 10 working days to complete

    • Joe Deeney says

      Uh oh – That doesn’t sound ideal… Hope they track them down soon! I was just about to transfer some more across myself, might leave it for a day or 2 no 😉

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