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If you have spent any time around frequent flyer sites, blogs, or even just checked your email from time to time, you probably already know that Chase is the issuer of several different points and miles reward credit cards. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but some of their current offerings include:
United MileagePlus Explorer Card
Southwest Airlines Card
The Hyatt Card
Priority Club Select Card
Sapphire Preferred Card
Marriott Rewards Card
All of these offers come with pretty generous sign-up bonuses that range from two nights in any Hyatt hotel in the world, to enough points for two domestic round-trip airline tickets, to up to six nights in a Marriott hotel, etc…. This is in addition to the regular points and miles earning potential you have by using these cards.
As you can easily see, this list includes many of the huge airline and hotel companies in the world. These cards, and their sign-up bonuses, make up some of the main ways in which you can quickly increase your miles and points totals. I personally have had a positive experience thus far with Chase and with many of their rewards cards. In fact, I currently have three of their rewards cards. There are many other families who also have multiple Chase rewards credit cards. If it were up to me, I would actually get a couple more of these cards for the great sign-up bonuses and benefits that they offer!
However, all good things come with a price, and Chase may have developed a bit of a negative opinion towards those of us who would like to take advantage of several of their great offerings. A couple of years ago, during the heat of the “credit crisis”, Chase seemed to have a policy in place where someone could only get a new Chase card once every six months. While I have no clue as to whether or not that was an “official” policy, that seemed to be the reality based on multiple reports on message boards. That once every six-months “policy” seems to have slid by the wayside in the last year or two, but Chase might be tightening up their criteria again.
In the last few weeks some slightly unfriendly wording has been spotted in the terms & conditions section of Chase credit card applications. You know, the boring lawyer-y sounding part written in the small print. This wording basically says that if you have received a sign-up bonus on any rewards card then you may be denied subsequent bonuses on other “similar” rewards cards. It continues to say that Chase customers who have a history of getting credit cards just for the “promotional pricing” may be denied a second card with “promotional pricing”. To me promotional pricing does not equal sign-up bonuses, but I also don’t necessarily speak Chase legalese. I am pretty good at reading between the lines though, and to me those lines say, Watch Out! There are some reports of people who are getting turned down for Chase cards because of having a history of being a “credit card churner” (someone who gets the card just for the sign-up bonus, cancels, and then does it again after a period of time).
Because of all the great rewards credit cards that Chase offers, I have no desire to be on their “black list”. So, I am being very selective and careful with Chase. Since I already have three Chase cards, I am betting that I would be pushing it to get four. There are people who have four Chase cards, but there aren’t many people who have been approved for more than that. In truth, who really NEEDS more than that?! I am planning to put a good deal of time between my last Chase application and my next one…..at least six months in my case. I also use the Chase cards I have for way more than just the minimum spend required to get the sign-up bonus. I have now also seen language from Chase that they may take the miles or points back if you close your account within the first six months.
Overall, if you are seeking your first Chase card, you have nothing to worry about. If you are seeking your second Chase card and have waited at least a month or two since applying for your first Chase card, you should have no problems. But, if you are in the same boat as me and already have multiple Chase cards, I would proceed under the yellow flag…..with caution. Be very selective about the offers you are applying for, and put at least a few months between applications with Chase.
It seems that many people have great success in getting Chase to work with them to get the card approved if you are initially declined, if you talk to them. This may mean simply explaining why you need this specific Chase card (for example, if you are going to start flying that airline or begin staying at that hotel frequently), moving some of the credit line from another Chase card over to the new card, or even closing down an existing Chase account.
Hold on tight, be patient, and be careful with your Chase applications, and hopefully you can spend quite a long time going around-and-around collecting fantastic bonuses from Chase’s line-up of rewards cards! This is Little C hanging on tight going round-and-round on the carousel. I knew I had a lot to learn from a toddler!
I’d love to know how your Chase applications have been going. Success, denials? Am I just being a crazy over-reacting mommy for thinking Chase is trying to stop the sign-up bonus fun? What Chase card do you plan to apply for next?