No Avios For You: Match.com Is Canceling Memberships

Well this is turning into an adventure. Last week I wrote about how British Airways was offering 150 Avios per dollar spent on match.com memberships when going through their shopping portal.

Avios-Dating-Site-1

This seemed like an incredible opportunity to generate tens of thousands of Avios for ~0.67 cents each. While we’ve seen some shopping portal glitches in the past, that didn’t seem to be the case here. The British Airways shopping portal had been offering 75 Avios per dollar spent on match.com subscriptions for quite a while, and they were having a limited time promotion where you could earn double Avios with all retailers.

Avios

So perhaps they hadn’t fully considered the implications of awarding 150 Avios per dollar spent, but I don’t think anyone would argue this was a fat finger mistake on their part, or anything. Within a day or so of making a purchase, British Airways’ shopping portal began to show pending Avios for purchases, which is great.

British-Airways-eStore

However, unfortunately the pending Avios were only based on the base package price, rather than the entire membership fee. That’s unfortunate, given that for many of us over half of our purchase was the membership add-ons.

Match.com seems to be canceling memberships

I’ve received several reader reports over the past few hours suggesting that match.com is sending out membership refund emails, despite no such request being made:

Your Refund has been Processed

Per your request, we have processed a refund for $572.57 on your Match.com account. As a result, your subscriber benefits – which includes sending emails to other members – end on 03-05-2017. This refund request should be received by your bank or credit card company within the next 72 hours.

In addition, the auto-renewal feature on your account has been turned off so you will not be charged again. You may continue to use your Match.com account as a subscriber until 03-05-2017, and after that as a “free member” to search and send winks.

Warm Regards,
Match.com Customer Care

matchdotcom

I’m not sure what exactly is triggering this. I’ve received these reports both from people who have purchased bundled packages, and also those who purchased non-bundled packages. So I’m not sure if they’re canceling new accounts that were opened last week but that don’t have any activity yet, or what.

I haven’t received such a notice, while a family member did, so this doesn’t seem to be totally consistent.

Now what?

I’m not terribly surprised by what’s happening here. Many people who want to cancel for free are being told they can’t, while many others who didn’t want to cancel are being told their accounts will be closed and they’ll receive a full refund. So what do I recommend at this point?

If your account was auto-canceled, I’d just let it be. Getting them to reactivate and post the Avios to your account will be a lot of hassle.

If you’re in a similar situation to me and haven’t received a refund, I’d recommend waiting until tomorrow and then filing a claim for missing Avios through the online shopping portal. That’s because you have to wait at least five days before filing a claim.

This can be done by logging into the online shopping portal with your Executive Club account, then clicking on “My eStore.” Then at the bottom of the page you should see the missing Avios claim form.

BA-Avios

I don’t think it’s too much of a stretch to suggest this could be resolved favorably. British Airways doesn’t seem to be disputing that the payout is 150 Avios per dollar, but rather they’re just restricting what’s eligible, despite no such mention in their terms.

However, ultimately this may come down to what match.com is willing to pay British Airways for.

If you took advantage of this deal, was your account canceled? If not, are you planning on filing a missing Avios claim tomorrow, or what’s your plan?

Comments

  1. I did not receive a refund. Furthermore, I spoke with them on the phone, and they sent an email saying a refund has been denied. All they did was turn off the “auto renewal” subscription feature and pointed to the Terms & Conditions and that subscriptions are nonrefundable.

    This is a mess, and I may be out $500+. I’m not happy with BA or Match.com or you, lucky.

  2. Eharmony cancelled my sub without notice and fully refunded via PayPal,(how I paid) yesterday

  3. In order to maintain the integrity of their site I’m sure they put a lot of effort into scrubbing fake or disingenuous profiles. Some probably didn’t put much thought/detail in their profiles and would have been flagged in some way regardless, but combine matching those accounts to Avios click-throughs and you probably end up with auto-cancels. If you’re someone who just joined for the Avios you won’t fight them on it, if the Avios is what put you over the edge to join and you were flagged you’ll likely stay on even without it, or at least you’ll fight it more genuinely.

  4. @ keitherson — I’m sorry you feel that way, though I’m not sure why you’re “not happy” with me? I took advantage of the deal myself, and shared what I did. I’m in the same situation as others. We followed the terms, and hopefully the promotion will be honored as expected. Everything could decide for themselves if they wanted to take advantage of the offer or not, and I’m hoping this would be resolved favorably for everyone. Would you rather I not have shared the deal, or…?

  5. @Keitherson just a DP for you and maybe some hope. I requested a refund this morning and was denied. However, about an hour ago an email came back saying I was granted a refund and my account has been canceled. I dunno If they screened my profile and saw how painfully obvious it was that it was dummy account or what. Good luck.

  6. Keitherson, I’m very sorry that Ben put a gun to your head and forced you to gamble on this. Ben, you should be ashamed.

  7. A shopping portal has reneged on a deal when it turns out the promo deals can be exploited in ways they didn’t realize?

    THIS HAS LITERALLY NEVER HAPPENED EVER IN RECORDED HISTOR-oh, wait, it happens all the time.

    http://viewfromthewing.boardingarea.com/2011/10/05/months-of-shopping-portal-meltdowns-when-deals-are-too-good-to-be-true-blame-the-mileage-member/

    If only the people whining about this were experienced FT members who could see things like this thread…

    https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/american-airlines-aadvantage/1060581-aadvantage-eshopping-cartera-questions-discussion-vendors-consolidated.html

    Oh, wait, whoops, they are. My bad!

  8. Mad at Lucky?!? Seriously?! You’d have to be an idiot not to see this as a risky deal. Take some personal responsibility…

  9. Keitherson,

    I will buy your profile for usd20. 20 is better than 0. Once I can login into your account, I will PayPal you the money. Now cheer up.

  10. Keitherson – At the time you made your purchase, did it seem strange to you that a lot more people weren’t jumping on this incredible deal that was publicized on every FF/mileage website on the interwebs? Does it still seem strange? Getting the miles credited was the first big risk, the second big risk is getting a good value in exchange for the Avios from BA. Risk on risk. Need to check with your risk management staff before you get in on these deals.

  11. Bottom line…. Yes this was a great “deal” and yes it could have been a legitimate marketing error (more likely was). Humans make them all the time … it can be as simple as a keystone in online retail ( I made them while working for a well known online company). But …. they should treat all customers the same. 1) Cancel them all, 2) approve them all for the base and not the add ons (in this case let the customer decide if they want to cancel) or 3) end the promo when they did and let it all process as advertised – then at least try to get some good press out of it —- like some of the sign up names people used. worldwide coverage “could” be good.

    No hard feelings for Lucky… he posted the details and you can decide to play or not. I almost did play but waited too long and the deal was dead. Wait for the next “pricing error” and try again. If you get 50% of these crazy errors than you are doing well.

  12. Mad at Lucky because Match.com is not honoring the promo? SMH

    Please Lucky, keep doing what you are doing…….

  13. I thought long and hard (no sexual reference intended) about plunking down a few hundred bucks to add more Avios to the ones earned with the BA Visa card. Ironically, I decided not to, not so much because the promotion seemed iffy, but because I don’t think very highly of British Airways [nickel-and-dime, sardine-packing flights] nowadays. The best use of Avios points is anywhere except BA.

    Anyway, hope everyone comes out whole (either gets to earn/keep the Avios bonus or gets a full refund). Too bad Match.com and eHarmony didn’t see this coming… law of unintended consequences.

  14. If you change the zip code in your account to one of the “exception states” that are eligible for a refund within 3 business days, they’ll process it right away. Was denied, changed my address to one of the exception states, called right back + referenced that I was in one of those states and the processed immediately!

  15. I had already made a big lifemiles purchase a few days prior so I skipped on this one as it seemed to risky. Hope you guys get your miles or refunds.

  16. Well, kinda expected something like this to happen. Sorry for those who are in a poor situation but this is the nature of these type of deals. Hopefully, you will at least get refunded.

  17. Sorry but anyone who jumped on this knew(or should have known) they were taking a risk. There was a reason all the bloggers were reporting on it and once that happened it was only a matter of time before the deal was killed. Does Match really want a bunch of fake profiles added by people who are just trying to game the system for miles?

  18. I just received an e-mail for my refund, which I did not request. I purchased the basic package for $203.99, which would have given me a little over 30,000 Avios.

    This is pretty ridiculous-I wasn’t greedy in adding extras and I made a legit profile on Match. To me, it seems likely that everyone who signed up through the British Airways portal for 150 Avios per dollar is probably going to have their membership canceled.

    British Airways doesn’t want to honor this promotion. I can understand not honoring those memberships in which a bunch of extras were added but they should have at least honored the basic memberships.

  19. I sent an email to cancel on Saturday. I received an email this afternoon saying the full amount has been refunded.

  20. The other side of the battlezone:
    well eharmony just closed my account and i got my refund fyi. Still, if you want huge rewards, you need to take risks, this is life. If you dont dare to take risk then you should not join the wagon. Thanks for the info Lucky, i wish you should post those amazing possible deals, but next time you should put a disclamier in those deals saying you would not take respobibility and take your own risks.

  21. eHarmony only emailed me about the closure, but a refund hasn’t showed up on my account. For those of you who received a refund – did you call them? How long did it take for the refund to show up?

  22. Some may remember the Wyndham Rewards 4x SPG balance promo that was canceled after about 2 hours. I did this and got 100k Wyndham points. So I agree with the others, I knew there was a risk but chose to take it and got the points, since in that case they honored those that jumped. I would have been disappointed if it didn’t work, but was willing to take the chance.

  23. Just got the Match.com refund email about 5 min ago. I didn’t “max out” the promo, so I was going to keep the miles. I only logged in once to setup my account, and wasn’t overly bogus about my profile. I wonder if the refund is being triggered by Match or BA.

  24. Yes do not be greedy. Oddly enough I need a date and the services of Match would be of value. Back to bar hopping for me.

    The YouFlowers, 123Inkjets and Kiehls purchases worked out as expected. I ordered dried fruit via YouFlowers, OEM cartridges via 123Inkjets and travel size via Kiehls. The OEM cartridges are unopened returns based on the expiration dates and the condition of the items.

  25. I also just got an email today saying they cancelled my membership. Didn’t request it. All I signed up for was the basic 12month plan for $215. would have gotten 32000 Avios. Bummer.

  26. I saw Lucky’s post last Friday and I considered going for it, but ultimately made my own decision to sit it out because of the risks. I appreciate the post because I certainly want to know about opportunities like this so that I can make my own decision about whether or not to proceed.

  27. Chris, I also got a closure email from eharmony, but no refund.
    did your avios pending also delete?

    I’m thinking to let it ride. maybe the Avios will stay if they don’t actually refund?

  28. Given the track record of most shopping portals, the surprise here isn’t that the avios won’t post but that BA and its portal don’t even feel the need to come up with a plausible excuse. At least they could have waited a few weeks then claim “merchant has no record of your order” which is ebates’ favored reply.

  29. Always “pull the trigger” vs. “wait and miss it”. Kind of intriguing and as they say, don’t take more money to the casino than you can afford to lose. I did this twice. Got 2 refunds and 2 refund emails but then 2 extra charges fir the same amount. So who knows what’s going on. Submitted 2 missing Avios requests. At worst, I am sure I can break even though there’s no way I would ever buy Avios at that price.

  30. Lucky (or anyone), do you have screenshots of the terms of this offer, like the full terms? Given that shopping portals seem to be a problem, its likely that there are some terms in there that allow them to not give you the full amount. They may not be in the clear terms of the offer, but they are probably available somewhere. It just seems so odd to me, as a lawyer, that portals could keep getting away with not giving you what they say they would give you, if there weren’t some contractual provision allowing them to do that.

  31. Also, anyone who suggests you have legal liability for this is insane. It sounds like a lot of people didn’t do their own due diligence…

  32. For anyone still interested in a free 75 Avios per $ spent on Match.com, reliable BeFrugal.com is, and has been offering a 75% rebate on all new Match.com subscriptions. That is still stackable with the 25% off coupon on their site.

  33. I didn’t take advantage of match.com offer, but I purchased some luggage on NM for 16avios/$. It arrived today and I’m hoping to keep it. However, avios still have not tracked. Tomorrow morning will be 5 days so I will try to fill out the missing avios form. I’m just adding this in here for people who are worried that their avios haven’t tracked. It seems to not be merchant specific but just the shopping portal getting overwhelmed and being behind.

  34. If BA make an offer, they better honor it for those that did buy. Even if it was a mistake and cost them a few £.
    If i buy promo tickets on BA, later to find out i did a mistake on the travel days i selected, there is no way i get refunded in full. Cause i will be pointed towards the ToC….

    But no problem, i havent flown BA for a few years, and most likely will not in the near future eighter. Their product suxxx and pax just fly them of their reputation from the good old days.

  35. My guess is that profiles that were obviously setup for the purpose of the Avios are the ones they are going after. Probably if you spent the time to fill in all the details/questions such that it really looked like you were joining because you wanted to be a member you have a better shot at keeping the points.

  36. Just adding my name to the list. I set up an eharmony account and received a cancellation email and PayPal refund.

  37. My two small iTunes purchases are showing as pending. Only 168 Avios, but that is still 168 more Avios than I was expecting!

  38. Yeah, the harmony didn’t pan out either. But did anyone go for the Lifelock or Quickbooks? They aren’t pending yet, but it would be even better points per dollar.

  39. Well i scored well, two one night stands since my avios points credited.
    So not only the points but also happy times two times over and another session tomorrow night.

  40. Another Data Point here, ordered the max subscription and extras from Match and DID NOT ask for refund yet as I wanted to wait and see how things shook out after BA’s 5 day window. Match sent a refund/cancellation email last night.

    Obviously as with everybody else, I would have preferred that Match and BA had honored the promo, but hey – cookie crumbles.

    Still, thanks Lucky for sharing. I appreciate it.

    Everyone who can afford to pay hundreds of dollars to take advantage of the deal is a grown-up (though some do not behave like it). Yes, sometimes the headers on articles can be a little exaggerated and click-baity, but once again that’s the game. This is clearly not a non-profit charity. This blog serves a mutual purpose as a benefit to the writer and reader. Lucky needs to make his nut, and hopefully the reader gets something from it, but the takeaway and what they do with the information is up to each person.

    Point is NO ONE PUT A GUN TO ANYONE TO MAKE YOU DO ANYTHING. Put on your big boy pants and nut up. We play the game, these are the risks we take.

    Please keep sharing. Cheers.

  41. EHarmory just emailed me they closed my account and due to terms of service violation I may not get a refund. I don’t mind not getting points, but i don’t look forward to fighting to get my payment back. (not lucky’s fault). Anyone have suggestions if I have to fight them?

  42. TravelingOn, I’m on the same eharmony boat as you, sorry I can’t offer anything useful. Currently trying to contact their support via email to at least get an explanation. It’s feels uneasy to know there’s a chance my money is gone with no avios in return at their mercy…

  43. I dont mind not getting points, either. but i will fight them if i end up not getting either AVIOS or refunds.

  44. eharmony shut me down as well
    email was as follows:

    “Dear Customer,
    Based on recent review of your account information and activity, eHarmony has made the decision to close your account. We do not disclose the specific reason for our decision, however, for your consideration we can provide some general information regarding such closure decisions.

    The most common reason we may choose to close an account is for a violation of our Terms and Conditions regarding the misrepresentation of personal information, such as name, age, address, marital status or criminal history. On rare occasions, we also may close an account due to specific complaints about the content of a profile, communication, or for any other reason as stated in our Terms and Conditions.

    If you have purchased a subscription and we have confirmed that a Terms and Conditions violation has occurred, your subscription dues may have been forfeited.

    For any questions related to this action, you may visit our Frequently Asked Questions section concerning the closure of user accounts. You can find this information at the following link:”

    It happens to be in the fill ins i wrote stupid two word answers since i was doing it for two family members as well and had no patience to make it seem legitimate

  45. I went around and around with them on the phone yesterday and was told I was not eligible for a refund. Then I got an email this morning saying I was being refunded the full amount. Yay.

  46. @Lucky: I got my match.com account refunded. We are on good terms again qt 😉

    @Credit: You can buy this account for 20.46, sure.

  47. @Larry eHarmony was shutting down folks and the email which I believe was boilerplate that indicated there *might* be no refund if terms of service were violated. However I really, really doubt they would do that for an account that had only be open days as you’d have a total chargeback case. Also folks who paid via PayPal which can show returns faster indicate they were getting refunds despite that language being in the email. Really folks got a little too spun up on this and I say that as one who jumped on match.com. I believe that nearly everybody will me make whole one way or the other. Just lots of hyperventilating in the meantime.

  48. Thanks for the responses, all.

    I wonder whether it’s worth waiting 35 days to see if my Avios go from pending to credited before I call eHarmony and ask for a refund. i.e. if the Avios post I don’t care that they canceled me, but if the Avios vanish, then I want my money back. If I wait 35 days for Avios to post and they don’t post, I wonder if I’m less likely to get refunded by eHarmony.

  49. Another couple data points:

    Match.com has cancelled and refunded last night without my request. E-harmony has done the same this morning only no refund as of yet and they claim I violated the T&A. Ironically, I put little effort into the match.com profile and actually put a great deal of effort into making the e-Harmony look real so this has nothing to do with how your profiles looked. If you used the portal, you’re getting shut down. Simple as that.

    Interesting point: I used PayPal for match.com and a CC for e-harmony. This confirms what the above commenter has suggested about PayPal. Let’s give it another 72 hrs before we get huffy.

    Another aside: I’m surprised no one took advantage of Pingo. It finally posted today. $5 phone card with no monthly fee for 3,000 avios. My best deal of the weekend. Oh, how things turn out sometimes…

  50. @Keitherson, some of his fanboys are mad at you because you blamed him for your own mistake. I’ll go one further.

    If anyone actually thinks that Lucky gives a flying frack about you, your life, or anything BUT the referral money he makes if you apply/receive a credit card from his link, well, you’re either ignorant of how much each referral is worth, or you’re just plain stupid.

  51. If if he Harmony doesn’t refund the money then isn’t it almost guaranteed that the points will post

  52. So what is the problem that match.com and e-harmony have here? They offered a promo, people signed up with real money, what exactly is the issue here? Didn’t this promo work out exactly as they had hoped?

  53. I bought two different match.com subscriptions — one for my wife’s BA account and one for mine. On hers, we bundled and then cancelled when it looked like they wouldn’t honor. On mine, I just got a refund e-mail from match.com.

    I don’t think there’s anything to complain about here. It looks as though match.com has the right to close your account and refund you in their discretion. And it looks as though BA’s shopping portal retains the right not to give you the points if your purchase is cancelled, so I don’t see any foul. You win some you lose some. If Match or Harmony were not refunding, that would be different. But these are the terms we agreed to — fair play all around.

    But, here’s my conclusion: I’ll never do business with match and the episode should lead people to believe that it’s not a worthy company for anyone’s business. The 75/150 points seems designed to lure people into a recurring subscription service and what match has done here is, instead of honoring the commitment, decided that they are not interested in people who signed up for the miles because they are not likely to be lured into upsells or future automatic billing. That’s fine — they apparently gave themselves that right. But they should take the reputation that comes with crap like that.

  54. Match.com cancelled mine too. Oh well. Better to have tried and lost (and gotten a full refund) than to have not tried at all.
    Now I just need to go spend $500 more on my Amex Plat card.

  55. People should stop assuming that just because something is in print on the internet that it must be absolutely true and does not require scrutiny or careful consideration. That’s what being a responsible adult is all about. Unfortunately, many go on the internet not understanding this. Figuring stuff out for yourself. Shopping portal points is frequently a crap-shoot. Sometimes it works out great sometimes not so much. If you are a pro at mileage earning you know that frequently there are pitfalls and quite often things don’t go smoothly. If an internet article tells you stock abc is going to explode but instead it plunges and you had bought the stock, thats your own damn fault for pulling the trigger. If your greed makes you choose a bad path then learn from it.

  56. I got my cancelled-at-your-(non)request email today. At least the Match.com miles were pending. Three other offers I took BA up on never have posted in any form. Total scam, from a lousy airlines. Just as happy not to have the miles.

  57. I have received cancellation from match.com as well but when i called them they said the refund has been processed.

    I also received similar from eharmony, but they have not refunded and various email still have no respond. Anyone in the same boat with eharmony?

  58. I think the eharmony is like a cheating website, I fill in all item are turth, after subscriptions they also close my account. I don’t know why and send them email no respond.

  59. @sean and others on the same boat.

    Shall we do something with BBB or just charge back with cc is enough? I’m using my sapphire reserved, do they have anything like consumer protection or something like that?

  60. Well….my account is still active, and avio points still showing as pending.. maybe I’m way down the pipe line and just waiting for cancellation to come eventually?

  61. My match.com subscription was cancelled and refunded without my request.

    I went on their live chat today to ask why, and this is what I was told:

    “We have proactively issued you a refund for your recent purchase. We identified that you subscribed through a third-party marketing offer not authorized by Match. Once we identified this unauthorized promotion, we shut it down and worked quickly to issue a refund for those affected.”

  62. Just another DP – my eHarmony a/c remains open…probably because I was genuinely interested in opening an a/c with them and have already exchanged messages with a few members 🙂

    The icing here – I see the miles as a pending transaction. Thanks Lucky!

    I’m curious if anyone in a similar boat with match has had a similar experience like mine.

  63. I was one that had received from eHarmony the message “your account has been canceled due to fraudulent activity and you may get no refund”. I was waiting to see what happened, and had not contacted BA or eHarmony. Today my cc activity shows a refund from eHarmony. So I suppose the Avios will vanish as well. Oh well, was worth a shot. I’m glad/relieved eHarmony decided to refund and I didn’t have to fight it. I bet they are getting a lot of flak and decided to refund everyone after all.

  64. TravelingOn
    same here.
    I still see the points pending though.
    I was actually hoping for no refund, then the points may have stayed, and if they didn’t I am sure it would have been a simple dispute.

    I am really wondering if ANYONE managed to earn anything from all this. for example someone with a “real” match.com /eharmony acct.

  65. Received refunds from Eharmony :(, was hoping no refund… Anything we could do to save those points ?

  66. My eHarmony and Match have been successfully refunded. O well, at least i don’t need to explain it to my wife 😀

  67. @elad @Richard

    Yeah, I was hoping the same. :/ Just glad I didn’t get stiffed BOTH points and $.

    @Edy

    Haha my wife ok’d me to use her email to open an account as well. However, by the time I got to hers eHarmony would only let me buy the 3payment plan. Even when I canceled and tried again, and specifically selected the one-time payment they selected 3 payments on checkout. I think they got wise and were coding their system to charge that way so you’d get fewer Avios. It was actually probably some payment violation, as they would let me select one-time and then charge me in three pieces.

    I canceled hers again and gave up at that point. That changed of charge type actually struck me as more devious than anything else about this. (I tend to agree with the win-some-lose-some mentality). I was tempted to take screenshots and post online about how they were changing my payment.

  68. Haha, just got credited 17K+ Avios even though eHarmony refunded me weeks ago 😀 This one turned out more than ok!

  69. Me TOO!! also on Eharomony (with a refund). never got the Match.com (was already expired). anyone got the match.com points after the refund?

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