Chase Ink Bold Bonus Seems to be Worsening

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We have just recently gone through some interesting things with Chase and credit card sign-up bonuses.  The first week of April saw the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card bonus go down to 40,000 points from the 50,000 points it had been at for almost a year.  Our first warning that was happening was when the offer changed directly with Chase, the affiliate links (like mine) soon followed within a couple of weeks and changed to the lesser bonus to match what Chase was offering.  Of course, 40,000 points after spending $3000 in three months is still a very good bonus for that card, but it is less than what was offered previously.

As you may have read on some other sites this morning, we now see that the Chase Ink Bold business card sign-up bonus has changed on the Chase website from 50,000 points in the first three months after spending $5000 to 25,000 after the first purchase and 25,000 more points after spending an additional $5000 within the first three months.  That is $10,000 spending required to get the full 50,000 points.

The good news is that my affiliate link is still offering 50,000 points after spending just $5,000 on the card in three months.  That is a much more manageable amount for many families and small businesses.

Application Link: Ink Bold℠ with Ultimate Rewards

This really is not surprising since Chase has been offering much more generous sign-up bonuses recently than their Amex competitor.  In fact, the The Enhanced Business Gold Rewards Card® from American Express OPEN currently has no sign-up bonus.  It did have a huge 75,000 point one-day bonus a couple months ago, but it is now back to no points as a sign-up bonus unless you are targeted with a better offer meant just for you.  For what it is worth, I did get targeted for a 50,000 point Amex Gold Business offer a couple months after I got an Ink Bold Business card.

The new Ink Bold Business is probably the credit card I want the most right now.  I have the old version of the card that ended in November 2011, but there have many reports of people with the old version of the card getting the new card and the related sign-up bonus again, so that is high on my priority list – especially now that the sign-up offer may be changing in the near future.  The new version of the card awards 5x points in some categories that would really benefit my family/business:

Earn 5X points per $1 on the first $50,000 spent annually at office supply stores, and on cellular phone, landline, internet, and cable TV services

Earn 2X points per $1 on the first $50,000 spent annually at gas stations and for hotel accommodations when purchased directly with the hotel.

Earn 1X point per $1 on all other purchases, with no limits on how much you can earn- redeem your points for what you want through Ultimate Rewards

The annual fee of $95 is waived the first year, there are no foreign transaction fees on this card, the Ultimate Rewards points earned transfer 1:1 to United, Hyatt, Marriott, British Airways, and more, and additional employee cards are free.  You can read about my experience getting the card here.  I used my blog as my business, and while it is indeed a business, it was a very, very small business when I applied for the card, so think creatively about a business you may be running if you want this card (eBay, Etsy, running a website, etc.).

Let’s say that you spend $500 per month on a cell phone family plan, cable, internet, and your land lines – that comes to 30,000 Ultimate Reward points per year for expenses you were going to have anyway.  I know my family spends at least that much in those categories annually (heck, our family plan with four iPhones cost about half that amount by itself)Also keep in mind that office supply stores often sell gift cards to other stores and retailers, and that you can also get 5x for purchases in those stores……that can easily be another huge chunk of miles each year.  (Just be careful not to do anything to abuse that perk and/or raise red flags with Chase).

I will keep you posted if I get an official information about the sign-up bonus available via my affiliate inks that I am allowed to share, though typically even if I get a hint, I can’t share it until the very end, if at all.  I will absolutely be applying for this card myself – perhaps sooner rather than later.  I’d love to know if you already have the card, or if you plan to get it in the near future.


Disclosure:  I do receive a commission if you are approved for a card using my links in this post.  As always, your support of this site is appreciated. 

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.



  1. I’m Noob, just signed up for the CSPreferred. Got DH to do as well. We both have met our spend and I am looking for the next card. I am planning to do the Chase checking acct/Freedom/SPG strategy you outlined earlier. Am trying to figure out which card to apply for next and next step. I was awarded the CSPreferred around 3/15. I have to wait at least 30 days before new app, right?
    So the question is: what order for next 3 months – New Chase Ink Bold, Freedom then SPG?
    DH is leery of having so many Cards. We pay off every month. Finally taking our first trip with AA miles this summer. Will be spending a lot on food and London flat.
    Thanks – really helpful

  2. I have the old INK and want the NEW INK too…any idea on how long your link for the 50k/3k in 3 month offer will last? I am waiting to close my mortgage on the 23rd and i cant apply for anything until after that….ugh

  3. @GrouchMama, congrats on getting the CSP and meeting the spending requirement! As to the order, that is a good question. I guess it depends. If spending requirements are an issue, you might be wise to get the Ink Bold in the near future, especially since the Freedom bonus is not all that high right now. Of course, since one is a biz card and one is personal, you can do them at the same time, but you do need at least 30 days between Chase personal apps. I like to put more distance between mine, but many do have success putting a month between them. You can apply for the Amex SPG at the same time as your next Chase as they are from different banks.

    @LarryinNYC, agreed, but I bet this is just more of the trend we are seeing. Hope you are making some good progress on the Amex 10K and will be ready for this one soon. 😉

    @d, your guess is as good as mine right now. I think last time my link lasted about a week and a half longer than the link from Chase, but no telling if that is an indicator for this time. We had essentially months of notice on the CSP, but I at least had no notice on this one until we saw the public offer change yesterday. Certainly isn’t worth jeopardizing your mortgage over though.

  4. Not suprised at all. I have a feeling that there will be further tweaking to the Ink card going forward also. I could easily see them lowering maximum amount of spend that can be put into the 5X catagories. If the incentives of the card are not producing the margin that they target, they will keep changing things.

    I guess that people are going to have to earn points and miles the old fashion way. Through actual revenue stays at hotels and airline tickets.

  5. @eds, I agree that banks will tweak with deals to make sure they are profitable. As to earning miles and points the old fashioned way, I think there will continue to be other ways to earn miles and points, but the game will continue to change, and we will continue to change with it.

    @Asen, I have a link to my experience getting the card, what questions they ask, etc. about half-way through this post. Those questions seem to be consistent with other reports. It was not overly difficult. At the time, I think I said my revenue for the year was about $1000 or so and they approved the card with that low revenue and just a few months under my belt, so it wasn’t too hard to get approved. That said, I did have to give up a bunch of personal credit line to get it. I have since gotten that back via another Chase account.

  6. I’m going to move on this quickly. I buy lots of Staples FAR software products so this card is very important for collecting those free UR points! Thanks for the tip to move on this right away.

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