This is a blog on another domestic topic (which I think we all need!). And it is about the strange disjunction in the rules for plastic card use in the UK.
On the one hand, it is easier than ever to use your card online or electronically (think Amazon one-click or the new underground contactless system). On the other, there are more and more restrictions if you want to use cards in some specific circumstances.
That is exactly what happened to the son today. He was bringing his stuff back from Edinburgh before going to Cairo for a few months, and he had booked a car on his card at Herz . The only trouble was that between booking and turning up to get the car, his card -- the only one he had with him -- was eaten by a Clydesdale bank machine. HSBC told him that they could see no reason why that would have happened, but once eaten ... well it was eaten.