My Chase Ink Retention Experience & Strategy Going Forward

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Chase Ink Retention

Chase Ink Retention & Why Keeping Cards is a Good Idea

I am a huge fan of the Chase Ink cards. In my family our businesses rely on Chase Ink and both my wife and I have a Plus and a Bold (discontinued) card. These cards of course have a $95 annual fee which is normally justified by all of the Ultimate Rewards points we earn.

With that said, I’m not sure if it makes sense to keep multiple cards and pay multiple annual fees. My wife’s oldest Ink card is a Bold Mastercard which she has had for a couple of years. In the past she has received a “Spend $5k receive 10k points” bonus as a retention offer (which worked out to 7x), but the annual fee still applied.

In that past scenario, the 10,000 bonus points more than offset the annual fee so it made sense. Today I had to call on my own Ink Plus. While I wasn’t sure if I would receive a similar offer to my wife or any offer for that matter, the results were actually as good as could be expected.

Today’s Ink Retention Call

Chase Ink Retention
Photo by PlantronicsGermany

After calling the number on the back of my card I eventually made my way to the retention department. The retention agent was very nice and after asking a few questions, she almost immediately offered to credit the $95 annual fee. This means that this Ink Plus will be a no annual fee card for the next year and will continue to earn valuable points for me.

One other important factor is longevity. Even though small business cards like the Chase Ink Plus/Bold don’t show up on a personal credit report, they do help to build your business’s track record with the bank. Chase is very strict with business card approvals and having a long track record with them certainly helps with approvals.

Why Not Cancel & Reapply

As many of you know, Chase has language in their applications that you can apply for a card again and get a bonus 24 months after receiving it before as long as the previous account has been closed. Since I already have other Ink cards, I could theoretically close this one and wait for the 24 month timeframe to get another.

Well that has sort of changed. Chase has cracked down on churners and is being incredibly strict with approvals for their own branded cards. (Ink, Freedom, Sapphire, Slate) This means that by keeping this card, I am not only strengthening my relationship with the bank, but am also making sure I still have access to the card’s benefits. If I close all of my Ink cards, Chase may decide to not approve me again based on their new rules.


Several people I know have received the same annual fee credit on their Chase Ink cards. It used to be nearly impossible to get them to waive the annual fee, but perhaps with these new application rules, new retention strategies have gone into effect. Now more than ever it seems a good strategy to keep your Chase cards (especially Ink) rather than churn them.

Shawn Coomer
Shawn Coomer earns and burns millions of miles/points per year circling the globe with his family. An expert at accumulating travel rewards, he founded Miles to Memories to help others achieve their travel goals for pennies on the dollar. Shawn also runs a million dollar reselling business, knows Vegas better than most and loves to spend his time at the 12 Disney parks across the world.

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  1. I called Chase Ink today prompted by this post (thanks, btw!) and simply said that I had hit the AF and wanted to know if there were any retention offers on the card. CSR asked me if I was wanting to cancel the card. Not wanting to actually say yes, I replied, “Well, I’m considering it, so I wanted to know if there were any offers to help me decide.” She took another five seconds and said she could offer 10k points for $5,000 spend in 3 months. I would have preferred the AF waiver, but I wasn’t bold enough to press it. I accepted, and I was off the phone after she read the disclosures. It was a 2-3 minute call.

  2. Chase has waived the Ink Bold fee for me every year for many years (since just after the card came out). However, I always spend about $150K per year on the card and when I have asked, they always said in light of my spending patterns they were happy to waive the fee. The other reason I keep the Ink Bold is that I am still grandfathered into the bonus for spending $100K in a year so I get a good earn with the card.

  3. Called this week re: DH’s Ink Bold card. Immediately offered a $95 credit to show up in a month or 2. I mentioned he has the annual fee on Ink Preferred coming up in 2 months and given same deal on that one. Still may cancel the Preferred as he doesn’t need both and could apply again in 2 years.

  4. Shawn, when u called, did u say u want to close an account or simply asked to waive the fee? I called on Sunday , was only offered to downgrade to ink cash

  5. Might be worthwhile to mention the loss of the Lounge Club benefit. I’ve found that having something concrete to point to is helpful when requesting the annual fee be waived.

  6. I am behind on this. I never got to getting a CSP or Chase Ink and now I do not know what to do with UR. I have applied for more than 5 cards in the last two years. My new application round is coming up but I took CSP off the table. Any ideas?

  7. Wow, I was planning to cancel my Ink Bold this week, but will try your method instead. Didn’t want to keep it, along with the Ink Plus. Now I can. Thanks

  8. As usual, YMMV.

    Did not work for me. First agent said – we never waive the fee on the Ink Plus. I kept asking, nicely, and eventually got to a retention specialists. The first agent, who I had laughing, told the 2nd agent what I wanted, but again I was told – no way. The 2nd agent was not at all friendly, just businesslike.

    In the old days I would just HUCA, but with the recent musings about Chase it seemed best to let it go and just downgrade this one to the Ink Cash.

    • Yes definitely YMMV. I believe the available offers are in their computer and thus HUCA doesn’t really work if they stood firm. There are different levels of offers but if they let you get off the phone then they probably don’t have anything to offer.

  9. I got my INK Bold AF waived three weeks ago. I simple asked if there is any retention offer for my card . I got the offer after 2 minutes silence. I spent about 7K /year.

  10. I am jealous. I spend $20K+/year on each Chase Business Card (real business with employees and revenues) and didn’t get any retention offer so I cancelled the Bold.

  11. Nice info and congrats on getting the AF waived. I’ve had the 10k UR for $5k spend retention in the past. Will be calling again soon, so will be interesting to see. Kind of a toss-up for me to get $95 AF waived or 10k UR. Obviously UR are worth more than 0.95 cents, but nice to minimize cash expenses (AF).

  12. That is a great result. I heard many people failing to get retention from Chase recently. (But all personal cards I guess.) Did you simply ask for an offer? Or threaten to close the card (I think they said Chase rep simply agree to close the cards for them…X_X)?


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