Chase Card Churning Over
Last year the miles & points community took a hit when Chase decided to restrict approvals on certain cards for people who had opened up a number of new credit cards. Specifically you cannot be approved for a Freedom, Sapphire Preferred or Slate card if you have opened up five or more new credit card accounts across all banks during the past 24 months.
This news was tough and while there has seemingly been an occasional exception to the rule, for the most part Chase has stuck to their guns. For many, the thought that they could at least get a Chase Ink business card or a co-branded credit card was a sort of silver lining. Unfortunately things seem to be changing again.
Doctor of Credit is reporting that a reliable source has confirmed Chase Ink cards and Chase co-branded cards (IHG, Marriott, Southwest, etc.) will soon be subject to the 5/24 rule. Apparently the timeline is as follows:
- March – Chase Ink cards will be subject to the 5/24 rules.
- April – Co-branded cards will be subject to the 5/24 rules.
If this report is true, then starting in April, credit card churners will no longer be able to get approved for any Chase cards at all.
This is bad news for people looking to churn through Chase credit card bonuses regularly. I know a lot of people liked to get two Southwest cards for the Companion Pass and also liked to rack up hotel points with some of the other cards. Now it seems if you want a product, you better hold on to it, because you most likely won’t get approved for it again.
Fortunately rules aren’t written in stone and Chase will have to see the kind of effect this has on their numbers in the long term. If the economy weakens or if they see a significant drop in new approvals or other metrics, then we may see a loosening. It will take awhile for this to all shake out, but for now it is bad.
Should You Apply Before April?
The first consideration as to whether or apply should be if you are ready. Does getting a new card make sense financially and does it fit in with your overall plan? If the answer to that is yes, then it is probably a good idea to identify the Chase co-branded card that is most desirable and get it before the rules change. I know I personally have an eye on one or two different cards.
I’m not going to lie. The last few months have been brutal with one piece of bad news after the other. The economy is good, banks are making money and now they seem to be tightening the belt a bit. While I believe things will loosen at some point, for now we just have to deal with the new reality of this vastly different landscape.