The Shopping Cart Trick (Stores List, What Works, FAQ) [2020]

The shopping cart trick is one of the most popular methods for getting approved for credit cards without a hard pull. It’s thus a very popular trick for people with low credit score and other people looking to get credit without hurting their credit score too much.

This article will show you how the shopping cart trick works, a list of stores you should try it at, and the steps you need to take to increase your odds of it working for you.

l’ll also explain some of the pros and cons of the shopping cart trick (like how it can both help and damage your credit score).

Interested in finding out the top travel credit cards for this month? Click here to check them out!

What is the shopping cart trick?

The shopping cart trick is a way to get approved for credit cards without incurring a hard pull on your credit.

It’s a great method for establishing a credit profile and for getting approved for a credit card when you have a low score or can’t afford the hard pull.

December 2019 update: There are some reports here, here, and here of the Shopping Cart Trick still working for people. It’s definitely not as common as it once was but it seems you might still have a shot at some stores like possibly Overstock. My advice would be to check the MyFico forums and see the linked threads above for potential stores.

Tip: Use the free app WalletFlo to help you travel the world for free by finding the best travel credit cards and promotions!

Does the shopping cart trick still work?

As of December 2018, many data points are suggesting the shopping cart is dying out so proceed with caution. Approvals are still happening but hard pulls are becoming increasingly common (even when only the last four SSN digits are given). *SEE UPDATE ABOVE*

It’s a good idea to check on recent data points in comments, forums, etc. before trying out this method with a specific store.

Also, keep in mind two things.

One, the shopping cart trick does not work for everybody. I would give it a try at a handful of stores before I give up. If you can’t get the offer to pull up, then maybe try it again a couple of months down the line.

Second, the stores that it works for can change from time to time and some could result in a hard pull.

Preparing for the shopping cart trick

Before you try out the shopping cart trick you need to take care of a few things to make sure that you’ll stand a good chance of getting an offer.

Turn off pop-up blocker

If you don’t turn off your pop-up blocker or ad-blocker, you won’t be able to view the pre-approval offers.

So be sure that you do this.

If you already are running a pop-up blocker you may not be running it in a private browser or Google Incognito so you can just pull up a private browser if you don’t want to worry about disabling and enabling your ad blocker.

Opt-in to credit card offers

You absolutely must opt-in to credit offers to get this trick to work.

If you don’t then you will likely not ever receive a pre-approval offer.

If you need to change your opt-in status you do that here.

How to do the Shopping Cart Trick

There are several steps that you need to follow in order to get the shopping cart trick to work properly.

Follow the steps below very careful to ensure that the trick works for you.

Clear your browser history, cookies/cache

Before trying out the shopping cart trick you need to clear out your browser’s history along with the cookies/cache.

If you’re using Chrome for your browser you can just open up a an Incognito browser window.

Create an account

Next, you need to navigate to the website’s store that you want the credit card and you need to create a new account.

Be sure to use the same contact information (email, address, phone, etc.) that you would find on your credit report.

Some people forget to put in their middle names or middle initials and this can be a problem so be sure you enter the name exactly as it is found on your credit reports.

Another common problem is when an address is abbreviated in one profile and not in another. So if you input “Lane” in your address on your account for the store, make sure that your credit report doesn’t have your street listed as “Ln.”

Note: You should also try this without creating an account if the trick is not working. Sometimes checking out as a guest will work.

Add products to your shopping cart

You want to add items in your shopping cart to get this to work. You can try to add different amount of product to try to get the trick to work. Many will use $50 increments starting with $50 and then working their way up.

Some believe that there is a correlation between the price of items in your cart and the credit limit that you receive. So if you’re hoping for a high credit limit, consider adding a lot of products to your check out card and then just working your way down.


Next, you’ll want to advance to the checkout stage and input all of your billing details (avoid autofill from putting in your details).

Make sure that you do not check out and purchase the items.


Now it’s time to wait for a pre-approval pop-up to appear.

This is key: if the pop-up requests you to put your last four digits of your social security number into the pop-up then the shopping cart trip has probably worked.

However, if it asks for your full social security number then the trick is likely not working and your application will probably result in a hard pull.

Below is a pre-approved offer I pulled up from the Victoria’s Secret website (it was an experiment — I swear) while checking out as a guest. I had $366 worth of items in my cart and got pre-approved for a credit limit of $750.

Getting the pre-approval offer to show up isn’t the hardest part though. It’s getting the card without the hard pull that truly complete the trick. Sometimes the hard pulls can take a few days to show up so be on the lookout for them after you apply for a couple of days.

Can you do the shopping cart trick on mobile?

Yes, people have had success with Androids and iPhones pulling up the shopping cart trick pop-ups on mobile.

Just make sure you’re visiting the full “desktop” site and not the mobile site.

Shopping Cart Trick stores list

There are many stores that you can use (or at least attempt to use) the shopping cart trick for.

But the most common credit cards that work for the shopping cart trick are many of the Comenity credit cards. One credit card that seems to work very often is the Victoria’s Secret credit card and another very popular to try is the Wal-Mart credit card.

Keep in mind that some of the stores below might result in hard pulls — it’s hard to ever know 100% for sure that you won’t get a hard pull.

Comenity Store Cards

Synchrony Store Cards

Wells Fargo Store Cards

The shopping cart does not work for:

If you apply for one of the cards below, you will likely receive a hard pull — don’t expect the shopping cart trick to work.

  • Amazon
  • Kohls
  • PayPal
  • Target

How many times can you do the shopping cart trick?

You can do the shopping cart trick multiple times and many people have done it many times in the past. Sometimes within the same month or week.

However, your account can get shut down if you do it too much.

Also, if banks see you opening up a lot of accounts in a short amount of time, that’s going to look bad and your credit score will take a hit as well.

So play it safe and don’t get too aggressive with your shopping cart tricks.

Why do people do the shopping cart trick?

The shopping cart trick is very popular because it can help you reduce damage to your credit report and get approved for cards even when you have a bad credit score.

I’ll walk you through some credit score basics as a refresher and then talk about the pros and cons of the shopping cart method.

Credit score basics

Knowing the basics of how your credit score works will help you understand how the shopping cart trick could both help and hinder your credit score.

Your FICO credit score is determined in the following way:

  • Payment History (35%)
  • Utilization (30%)
  • Credit History (15%)
  • New Credit (10%)
  • Mixed Credit (10%)

Payment History (35%)

Payment history is the #1 factor for determining your credit score.

Late payments will stay on your credit report for 7 years, although some bankruptcies will remain on your report for up to ten years!

Luckily, the negative effect of late payments and other negatives begins to lessen as more times passes.

How much a late payment affects your credit score depends on a mix of factors, including:

  • How late they were and the number of past due items listed on a credit report
  • The amount of money still owed on delinquent accounts or collection items
  • How much time has passed since any delinquencies, adverse public records, or collection items

Utilization (30%)

Utilization is your credit to debt ratio.

to find this, divide the amount of debt you have by your total credit limit. So for example, if you have a $10,000 total credit limit and owe $5,000 in debt, then your utilization is at 50%.

If you have low overall credit limits then the shopping cart trick can benefit this category a lot.

Credit History (15%)

The credit history category consists of the of the following factors:

  • Longest opened account
  • Average age of account
  • Time since newest account
  • Time since each account was last used

The most important of these factors is the age of the longest opened account while average age of accounts is second.

You need to be mindful about your average age of accounts because that can be affected by opening up too many store credit cards.

New Credit (10%)

This category is most known for its effect felt from hard inquiries.

Hard inquiries result when your credit is pulled for review by lenders and certain other institutions and they differ from soft inquiries in the latter don’t affect your credit score.

Other factors besides hard inquiries in the new credit category are:

  • How many new accounts you have
  • How long it’s been since you opened your last account

This is another major factor that the shopping cart trick can impact, as discussed below.

Mixed Credit (10%)

This category evaluates your overall “mix” of credit lines.

So for example, it wants to see if you have a diverse range of credit consisting of different types of credit lines like student loans, auto loans, home loans, credit cards, etc.

Tip: Use the free app WalletFlo to help you travel the world for free by finding the best travel credit cards and promotions!

Benefits of the shopping cart trick

Here are the major benefits of the shopping cart trick.

Get approved for cards with low credit scores

This is very important for people who have no credit or payment history or very low credit scores who can’t get approved for many credit cards. It gives them a shot at actually opening up a new credit card and therefore benefiting their credit score.

If you have no credit history then the shopping cart trick can be one of the best ways to improve your credit score. Just continue to make your monthly payments on time and eventually you will start to establish a credit profile.

Decrease utilization

It also can decrease your utilization which will improve your credit score. For people who have large balances on credit cards, this can help lower their utilization a little.

Just remember that many of these credit limits are not going to be very high so the benefit to your credit to debt ratio is going to be low.

You can always try to get a credit limit increase once you’ve had your card form 6 to 12 months. Many times, you can get a credit limit increase without even incurring a hard pull.

Maintain a perfect score

A hard pull will usually lower your credit score between 2 to 5 five points, depending on your credit score. If your credit score is lower and your credit profile is very thin, you could receive an even bigger hit to your credit score.

But this trick could also be useful for someone who is trying to work their way up to getting the perfect credit score.

Drawbacks of the shopping cart trick

I’ve talked about how you can avoid the damage from a hard pull which is great for preserving your score and allowing to your credit report to be less blemished.

But these cards will still report to your personal credit report.

This means that they could lower the average age of accounts and also hit you with a new account which will lower your credit score. The impact tends the biggest when you don’t have a very established credit profile. So if this is your first credit card you might get a pretty big drop in your credit score.

The good news is that this drop will be temporary. Give it a few months and your score will probably be back where it needs to be.

Improving your credit score

Getting credit cards without credit pulls isn’t the only way to boost your credit score and it will only do so much.

Luckily there are a few ways that you can quickly boost your credit score.

Get a “starter” credit card

Secured credit cards can help out tremendously.

If you have a poor credit credit score, you’ll likely struggle to get approved for many credit cards.

However, there are many credit cards available for people with bad credit like store credit cards, such as the Zales credit card.

Get added as an authorized user

Adding yourself as an authorized user to a credit card can be a great way to raise your credit score immediately (relatively speaking).

Becoming an authorized user can improve your credit score by doing these things:

  • 1) Lowering your credit card utilization
  • 2) Improving payment history
  • 3) Increasing the average age of accounts
  • 4) Diversifying your credit (this factor plays a very limited role).

Balance transfer to business credit card

The strategy here is to transfer a credit card balance to a business card because most business card balances to not report to your personal credit report. So while you’re still responsible for paying the balance, it’s almost like that balance doesn’t exist for purposes of your credit report

Consolidate your revolving credit into an installment loan

Did you know that installment loans are not factored in to your credit score?

This means that if you can transfer over your debt from a credit card to a bank installment loan then you can immediately lower your utilization.

I’ve seen people raise their credit scores by 100 points overnight with this method by bringing maxed-out credit utilization down to 0%.

Goodwill letters

Your payment history makes up 35% of your score and is therefore the most important factor in your credit report, so it’s vital to take care of this factor.

If late payments or delinquencies are holding you back, then trying a goodwill letter might be one of the best ways to quickly improve your credit score.

They don’t take much time to put together and there’s usually very minimal risk with giving them a try so it’s always worth it to try your luck with a goodwill letter.

Get errors removed

An Federal Trade Commission (FTC) report found that 21 percent of a representative group of US consumers found a “confirmed material error” in one of the credit reports issued by the big three credit bureaus.

So there’s a 20% chance or better that you have an error on your credit report that does not belong and that is damaging your credit score.

Consider performing an audit on your credit score

You can read more about all of these methods here.

Final word

The shopping cart trick is still alive and well in 2018. For the time being, you can pick up credit cards with no credit pull and help build up your credit profile or just add some credit to your profile without incurring a hard pull.

Just keep in mind both the pros and cons of the shopping cart trick and your credit score won’t take a major hit.

Which American Express Hilton Card is Best for You? [2020]

Offers contained within this article maybe expired.

American Express offers four different types of Hilton credit cards. While all of these cards earn Hilton Honors points they all offer something a little different and so you want to pick yours carefully.

In this article, I will break down all of the different types of Hilton Honors credit cards offered by Amex and give you some insight into which types of cards will be best for you based on your personal travel and spend goals.

American Express Hilton card overview

There are four different types of Hilton cards offered by American Express and the differences that you will find between these cards include things like:

  • Annual fees
  • Bonus earning rates
  • Free nights
  • Elite status
  • Travel credits
  • Airport lounge access

I will go into detail about the different cards below but here is a breakdown of all four of them:

  • Hilton Honors American Express Business Card
  • Hilton Honors Credit Card from American Express
  • Hilton Honor American Express Surpass Card (this card was formerly known as the American Express Hilton Ascend)
  • Hilton Honors Aspire

Tip: Use WalletFlo for all your credit card needs. It’s free and will help you optimize your rewards and savings!

Hilton points worth

It’s a good idea to know how much Hilton points are worth so that you are not thrown off by the high bonus multipliers on their credit cards.

For example, the Hilton Honor American Express Surpass Card earns 6X at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations. Earning 6X on a category would usually be exceptional but Hilton points are not worth as much as most travel points.

Typically, travel points will be worth one cent or higher but when it comes to Hilton points we use WalletFlo valuations which are .52 cents per point. Since the point valuations are roughly half of one percent this means that you can divide any bonus categories by two to see the effective cashback rate.

So looking at the 6X at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations, if you divide that by two that means that you are getting around 3% back when you use the card at restaurants and supermarkets. Getting around 3% back on categories like that is pretty competitive with other hotel cards which is one reason why I like the Hilton credit cards.


All of these Hilton credit cards are subject to the American Express credit card application rules.

These are rules like the 1/5 rule, 2/90 rule, and also the 4 or 5 credit card limit rule. And in addition the Amex once per lifetime rule applies as well. The good news is that there is not a Hilton family rule so you can get approved for multiple Hilton cards.

If you do not understand all of these rules or are not clear on how they work then you should check out the new free app called WalletFlo. WalletFlo will automate your eligibility for all of these credit card rules and even notify you when you should apply.

Are you are under Chase 5/24?

If you are currently under the Chase 5/24 rule meaning that you have opened up fewer than five accounts in the last 24 months then you probably want to go for a Chase card first.

But, if you really want Hilton points then you can always go for the Hilton Honors American Express Business Card which will not count towards your 5/24 status. The card earns 12X on Hilton purchases and 6X on the following:

  • Airfare
  • Car rentals
  • Dining
  • Grocery
  • Phone Bill
  • Shipping

The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card also comes with complimentary Hilton Honors Gold status which is a fantastic mid-tier elite status offering free breakfast and upgrades. This is the same elite status that comes with the $550 annual fee American Express Platinum Card so it’s a very valuable credit card perk.

Do you want to avoid annual fees?

If you are someone who does not like to pay annual fees you can get a Hilton card with no annual fee. It’s known as the Hilton Honors Credit Card from American Express.

With this card, you can earn 7X on all of your Hilton purchases which is pretty solid. It also earns 5X at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations and 3X on all purchases.

This card does come with a complimentary Hilton Honors Silver status but I don’t value that status very much so I don’t think it’s that significant of a benefit. But if you spend $20,000 in a calendar year, you’ll earn Hilton Honors Gold status (more on that status below).

So for a no-annual fee card it’s a pretty all around credit card in terms of its bonus earning potential. One great thing about this card is that it has no foreign transaction fees so it’s perfect to use on your travels which was not always the case. (None of the Hilton cards have foreign transaction fees.)

Do you need or want airport lounge access?

If you are somebody who wants to dabble in airport lounge access, the Hilton Honor American Express Surpass Card is a fantastic card.

It earns a whopping 12X on Hilton purchases which is very good. It also earns 6X at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations and 3X on all purchases. So it’s good for every day spend but it is also a great card for certain types of people interested in airport lounge access.

That is because it offers you 10 Priority Pass lounge visits per year that you can use for yourself or for additional people traveling with you. So for example you could bring in your entire family into an airport lounge for free. This type of airport lounge access pass is fantastic for those who are not super frequent fliers.

On the other hand, if you do a substantial amount of flying then you might want a better airport lounge access pass. In that case, the Hilton Honors Aspire is a much better option.

The Hilton Honors Aspire comes with an entire suite of benefits that not only include lounge access but also top-tier elite status with Hilton known as Hilton Diamond status. So the Hilton Honors Aspire will provide better upgrades and it also has a fantastic earning rate of 14X at Hilton properties.

Tip: Use WalletFlo for all your credit card needs. It’s free and will help you optimize your rewards and savings!

Do you stay at Hilton resorts?

If you stay at Hilton resorts at least once a year, then you can use the Hilton Honors Aspire’s $250 resort credit to offset your purchases, including your room rates. Advance Purchase Rates/Non-Refundable Rates are now NOT eligible for the resort credit for any property.

I’ve used this resort credit at some pretty amazing hotels like the Conrad Maldives and it has been a great way to knock down the cost of my stays.

In addition to that $250 resort credit, you also get a $250 airline credit that can be used on incidental expenses like baggage fees, lounge passes, etc. Together these two credits can completely offset the $450 annual fee of this card and allow you to essentially profit $50 each year.

But there is also one more type of credit you can use with the Hilton Honors Aspire….

We used our credit at the Hilton Conrad Maldives underwater restaurant, Ithaa.

Do you spend money at hotels on amenities like a spa treatment?

If you are somebody who likes to have spa treatments and to treat yo’ self whenever you visit a hotel the Hilton Aspire also offers a $100 property credit at Conrad and Waldorf properties on stays of at least two nights.

These are some of the most expensive Hilton properties that you will find so this type of credit is not for everybody. Also only certain types of rates can trigger this credit — you can’t book advanced purchase rates which are usually cheaper.

Do you spend $15,000 or more a year on credit cards?

The Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card offers a free night when you spend $15,000 or more on it per year.

The Hilton free night certificate offers some of the most valuable free nights you will get with any hotel card because they can be used on even the top tier properties that sometimes go for as much as $1,000 or more per night!

The Hilton Honors Aspire also offers a free night that you can earn with spend but it requires $60,000 worth of spend in a calendar year. That’s a lot of spend just for a free night but the good news is that you get a free night every year as long as you hold the Hilton Honors Aspire.

A good card combination could be both the Hilton Honors Aspire and the Surpass Card if you spend $15,000 on it each year. That would net you two free nights and you could cover an entire weekend potentially capturing several hundred dollars or even over $1,000 in value.


If you are not completely sold on the high annual fee Hilton Honors Aspire card then you could start off with one of the lower annual fee cards like the Hilton Honors card with no annual fee or the Surpass. Then, you could always upgrade to the Aspire later.

The big thing to watch out for is that if you upgrade to the Hilton Honors Aspire card, you will not be eligible for a bonus for that card later on. So you want to wait around until you receive an upgrade offer from American Express or simply inquire with them about potential upgrade offers.

Do you want a lot of points?

If you are trying to earn as many points as possible then the two cards I would look at would be the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card and the Hilton Honors Aspire. Sometimes you can find a welcome bonus at 150,000 points for each of these cards which is pretty incredible.

The most expensive Hilton properties go for 95,000 points per night so this easily covers a free night at the most luxurious properties but you could also cover two to three nights at some very good hotels with that many points. If you combine bonuses from two cards, then you could come closer to utilizing the fifth night free which greatly increases the value of your points.

Final word

It’s nice that you have so many options for Hilton credit cards to choose from. If you consider all of the factors above, you will be able to make an informed decision on what Hilton card is best for you.


What Credit Scores Needed to Get Discover Pre-Approval Offers? [2020]

Discover pre-approval offers can give you some extra assurance when applying for Discover cards.

But how exactly do you get these offers and what do they mean for your approval odds?

This article will take a close look at what you need for Discover pre-approval offers and show you how to check for them. I’ll also provide you with some specific credit scores that pulled up pre-approval offers in the past. 

Interested in finding out the hottest travel credit cards for this month? Click here to check them out! 

What are Discover credit card pre-approval offers?

Discover pre-approval offers are special offers that can be pulled up for applicants who have a high chance of getting approved for various Discover credit cards. However, they do not guarantee approval.

Tip: Use WalletFlo for all your credit card needs. It’s free and will help you optimize your rewards and savings!

What Discover credit cards can I get pre-approved for?

Below is a list of Discover credit cards you might want to try to get pre-approval offers for.

  • Discover it Secured (example)
  • Discover it Cash Back
  • Discover it Student Cash Back
  • Discover it Student Gas & Restaurants
  • Discover it Balance Transfer (example)
  • Discover it Miles
  • Discover it Chrome 

The Discover it Cash Back is a terrific no-annual fee credit card that allows you to earn 5% back on quarterly categories. You’ll earn 1% back on all other purchases. 

And at the end of the year, cash back earnings are doubled the first year so it equals to 2% back on all purchases and up to 10% back on your quarterly categories (and you get a free FICO score). 

Here’s a historical look at what the Discover it quarterly categories have been over the past five years.


  • Q1: Gas Stations, Ground Transportation, and Wholesale Clubs
  • Q2: Home Improvement Stores & Wholesale Clubs
  • Q3: Restaurants
  • Q4: & Target


Q1: Gas & Ground Transportation (including car rental)
Q2: Restaurants & movies
Q3: Home Improvement Stores &
Q4: Department Stores,, Sam’s Club


Q1: Gas & Ground Transportation (Car Rental, Taxi, Limo, Public Transport)
Q2: Restaurant & Movies
Q3: Home Improvement Stores, Department Stores, and
Q4: Amazon, Department Stores, Clothing Stores


Q1: Restaurants and Movies
Q2: Home Improvement Stores, Furniture Stores, Bed Bath Beyond
Q3: Gas stations
Q4: Online Purchases, Department Stores


Q1: Restaurants, Movies
Q2: Spring Style (shows a picture of a flower) Clothing and home improvement
Q3: Summer Fun (shows a picture of a gas pump handle) Gas stations
Q4: Holiday Shopping (shows a picture of a gift bow) Department stores,


How to check for Discover credit card pre-approval offers

You can find Discover pre-approval offers here. 

Does checking for Discover pre-qualified offers affect my credit?

Rest assured, filling out the pre-approval form will not impact your credit score — the websites even states This won’t impact your credit score.”

This is because Discover will not perform a “hard pull” when applying for pre-approval offers. Instead, it’s more of a “soft pull” that won’t bring down your credit score. You can read more about how credit inquiries affect your credit score. 

How to pull up the offers (Discover pre-approval tool)

The online Discover pre-approval page requires you to input more data than most pre-approval pages.

In fact, you might think that it’s a full-on credit card application since it requires your full social security number along with income and other information.

So to get your pre-approval complete the following:

  • Step 1: Go to the pre-approval page
  • Step 2: Enter in your personal information:
    • Name
    • Address
    • Student status
    • Total Annual Gross Income
    • Monthly Housing/Rent Payment
    • Housing Status
    • All nine digits of your social security number (SSN)
    • Checking or Debit Account
    • Savings, IRA, or Money Market Account
    • What card benefit is most important to you
  • Step 3: Check the boxes and click “Check Now”


If you are 21 or older, you can include income that is reasonably accessible to you.

So for example, you would (typically) be able to include your spouse’s income when reporting your total annual gross income.

Discover pre-approval form.
Discover pre-approval online form.

What credit score is needed for Discover pre-approvals (approval odds)?

I did some research on approval odds and found pre-approved offers for the following credit scores:

The bolded are self-reported approvals.

Of course, the lower that your credit score is, the higher that your interest rate will likely be and the lower your credit limit will be as well. Also, if your credit score is low (lower 600s), you might only get approved for the secured credit cards.

My advice would be to try to get into at least the mid 600s to go for pre-approvals but obviously the closer you get to the 700s, the better.

Can you be denied for pre-approvals?

Just like with other major issuers, it’s possible to be denied for a Discover card even when you received a pre-approval offer.

Be aware there are some offers you might receive that probably don’t mean anything special for your approval odds, such as the offer found here on myFICO shown below:

Here’s The Card We Found For You

The Discover it card is changing the game.

Your Offer

  • No Annual Fee*
  • 0% Intro Purchase APR* for 14 months and then 10.99%– 22.99% Standard Variable Purchase APR.
  • 0% Intro Balance Transfer APR* for 14 months from date of first transfer, for transfers under this offer that post to your account by July 10, 2014 and then 10.99% – 22.99%Standard Variable Purchase APR.*
  • 3% of the amount of each transfer .

* See rates, rewards and other info

Notice there’s no specific language about being “pre-qualified.” Also, the interests rates can be telling.

Fixed APR or APR range

Like some other issuers, many remark that your approval odds are better when you’re shown a fixed APR versus a range of an APR.

So for example, if you were shown an APR of 15.4% your odds might be better than if you were shown an APR range of “18.2% to 20.3%.”

Pre-approvals and hard pulls

One cool thing about some pre-approvals is that when you get approved, you might not incur a hard pull on your credit report.

I’m not sure how to predict when this happens, though, and I would generally expect to receive a hard pull so you’re not caught by surprise.

What credit bureau does Discover pull?

Discover will likely pull your Experian credit report but it’s possible that they might pull your credit reports from TransUnion and Equifax. You can read more about which banks pull which credit bureaus here

Discover credit card application rules

You can only hold a maximum of two total Discover credit cards. But keep in mind that your first account needs to open for a year before your second card can be opened. 

You are also limited to one student card. To automate your credit card eligibility be sure to check out the free app WalletFlo.

Discover Reconsideration Line

If you’re denied for a credit card from Discover then you can always call their reconsideration line phone number at: 888-676-3695 or 1-800-DISCOVER.

Read my article on tips for the Chase Reconsideration line here to learn how to handle a recon call. While that article is for Chase, many of the same tips would apply for the Discover it.

Discover Deals

Update: No longer available. 

Don’t forget that if you get approved for a Discover credit card, you’ll get access to Discover Deals.

This allows you to earn great cash back rates at major stores like Walmart, Target, and many others. You can also find discounts at stores like BestBuy.

When using tools like Cash Back Monitor and EvReward to monitor the cash back rates, you’ll notice that Discover Deals is often at the top of the earnings, so it’s truly a valuable program.

Other pre-approval links

Other major issuers also offer pre-approval/pre-qualified offers.

Some of them have unique quirks and I write about them in the articles below so you can know what to expect.

Amex pre-qualified offers

Citi pre-qualified offers

Chase pre-qualified offers

Final word

If you’re interested in a good cash back credit card then you should think about trying to go for a Discover pre-approval. It’s pretty easy to check for your offers and if you get lucky, you might even get approved without a hard pull.

And lastly, you can get pre-approved offers with credit scores in the mid-to-low 600s, so many people could potentially qualify.

How to Get A Barclays Credit Line Increase [2020]

Sometimes you just need a little bit more spending power on your credit cards and a credit line increase is a perfect way to get that.

The thing is, it’s not always clear how much to ask for with a credit line increase and sometimes you don’t know if your request will result in a hard inquiry or soft inquiry on your credit profile.

In this article, I’ll break down everything you need to know about getting a credit line increase with Barclays.

Barclays credit line increase rules

Before requesting a credit line increase, you likely want to wait six months from the date of account opening.

This is because Barclays, just like most other banks, likes to get a sense of your spending and payment habits before issuing a credit line increase.

However, there are data points out there showing people waiting only one month and successfully getting a credit line increase.

If you requested a credit limit increase but were rejected, you can request one again in as soon as one month although it might be better to wait until your credit score has improved.

If your credit line was decreased you may have to wait six months from that time to request an increase.

Tip: Use the app WalletFlo to give you auto-reminders of when to request credit limit increases!

How to request a Barclays credit line increase

There are three ways to request a credit line increase with Barclays:

  • Online
  • Phone
  • Chat

I’ll detail how to request an increase online below but if you want to request a credit line increase via phone, the customer service phone number is 1-866-928-3075.

If you can’t get through immediately, you may also try: 1-866-603-7217 or just simply called the number on the back of your card.

The benefit of requesting a credit line increase over the phone is that you might be able to speak to a supervisor and convince them to perform a soft pull on your credit for the increase.

If you want to request a credit line increase via chat, simply log into your account and then click on “contact us” located at the top of the screen. Then just simply click on “chat” and that will prompt the chat box.

You can enter “I would like to request a credit line increase” and an agent should respond shortly to help you with your request.

You can also pull up the chat feature via the Barclays mobile app.

Barclays website chat feature
You can request a credit line increase via chat.

To request a credit limit increase online, simply log into your account and then click on “Services.” A drop-down menu will appear and simply click on “Request credit line increase.”

How to request a credit line increase online.

Once you click on that, you will need to click on one more button to access the online application form. The page should automatically re-position and you just need to click on “Request a credit line increase” one more time.

After that, you will have access to the online application form where you can finalize your request.

Barclays credit line increase online application 

The credit line application form will ask you to fill out the following information:

  • Occupation
  • Residence Status
  • Additional credit line amount requested
  • Total annual gross income
Barclays online credit limit increase form.
Barclays online credit limit increase form.


You simply need to select an occupation that fits you best from the drop-down menu.

There is an “other/not listed” option if you can’t find your occupation or are not sure what to select.

Residence Status

You will need to select whether you rent, own, or have a different type of set up. Unlike some other applications, they do not ask you to input the amount of monthly rent or mortgage payments.

Additional credit limit requested

This is where you will input the additional line of credit you are interested in. If your current credit limit is $2,000 and you want to be increased to a total credit limit of $3,000, then you would input $1,000 here.


It’s very important to remember that you can include accessible income if you are 21 years or older.

Accessible income is basically income that is reasonably available to you such as income from your parents that is regularly used to help you with bills or that goes into your account.

Gross annual income may include wages, retirement income, investments, etc. If you are under 21 include only your independent sources of income.

You don’t need to include alimony, child support, or separate maintenance income if you don’t want Barclays to consider it a basis for repayment.

After you submit your details, you might instantly receive a credit line increase or your request might go under review. If it goes under review, it could take several business days for you to get a response.

Generally, I would follow up by calling one of the customer service phone numbers above if I did not hear anything in one week.

Hard pull or soft pull?

The standard seems to be that if you request a credit limit increase, that will result in a hard pull. But if you receive an automatic credit limit increase that will come from a soft pull.

The language on the credit line application form seems to suggest that you should be prepared for a hard inquiry:

To request a credit line increase, please complete this form and click ‘Continue’. This authorizes us to obtain a current credit report to review your credit information, employment history and any other information necessary to process this application. By obtaining your credit report in this way an inquiry will appear on your credit report which will be available by other creditors. This inquiry may have an impact on your credit score.

However, there are mixed data points out there regarding whether or not a credit limit increase will be a hard pull or a soft pull.

For example, here is someone reporting that they requested a credit line increase and after their limit was increased (from $2,500 to $3,500) they did not receive a hard pull.

Sometimes banks will not do hard pulls for credit limit increases in lower amounts such as $500 or $1,000. But if you wanted a significant increase such as $5,000 that could result in a hard pull.

Again, if you are very concerned with avoiding a hard inquiry, consider calling customer service and asking about soft inquiry credit limit increases.

How much of a credit line increase to request?

The million dollar question is always how much of a credit limit increase should I go for?

I think requesting a ~25% increase is generally a conservative approach. If you want to be more aggressive you can shoot for something closer to 50%.

Here are some self reported data points of prior credit line increases with Barclays:

Many people feel like Barclays is stingy with credit limit increases. Therefore, you may want to lower your expectations, especially when it comes to your first credit limit increase request.

Credit line increases with other issuers 

You might also be interested in reading about getting credit limit increases with other issuers. 

Barclays Credit Line Increase FAQ

Can you be instantly approved for a credit line increase?

Yes, you can be instantly approved for a credit limit increase.

What cards can I get a credit line increase for?

You can request a credit line increase for any card issued from Barclays including popular cards like the Aviator Red, Wyndham Rewards Visa, Uber Credit Card, etc.

Can I get an automatic credit line increase with Barclays?

Yes, it is possible that sometimes Barclays will automatically increase your credit line after you have had the account open for a while.

Final word

As you can see, it’s pretty easy to get a credit line increase with Barclays. You can do this in a matter of minutes online, over the phone, or via chat.

If you are requesting a credit limit just be prepared for a potential hard inquiry on your credit report. Also, be mindful of the minimum waiting time periods so that you are eligible for an increase.

How to Get American Express Pre-Qualified Credit Card Offers (Links) [2020]

Are you looking to see if you’re eligible for American Express pre-qualify offers for credit cards?

This article will walk you through how to check for your American Express pre-qualified offers and show you some things you can do to increase your chances of getting an offer. 

I’ll also show links where you can get pre-qualified offers for other major banks like Chase, Citibank, Bank of America, etc. 

Update: Some offers are no longer available — click here for the latest deals!

What are American Express pre-qualified offers?

American Express pre-qualified offers are special credit card offers Amex allows you to pull up that usually mean you stand a good chance of getting approved.

They do not mean that you will be instantly approved and some people do get rejected even when applying for a pre-approved offer.

Tip: Use WalletFlo for all your credit card needs. It’s free and will help you optimize your rewards and savings!

How to check for American Express pre-qualified offers

You can check to see if you’re targeted for Amex qualified offers in four easy steps.

  • Step 1: Go to the Amex website 
  • Step 2: Click on “Check for Offers”
  • Step 3: Input your personal information
  • Step 4: Submit your information

 Step 1: Go to the Amex website

You can check for Amex pre-qualified offers by going to this link.

Step 2: Click on “Check for Offers”

Toward the top of the screen you should see a tab that says “Check for Offers.” Click on that.

Picture of the main login page for American Express
The main log-in page shows the link to check for offers.

Step 3: Input your personal information

You’ll need to input the following information:

  • Full name 
  • Address
  • Last four of your social security number 
Screenshot of the page asking for personal information
You will need to input your personal information to check for pre-qualified offers.

Step 4: submit your information

Once you input your information, click on the “View My Card Offers.”

If you’ve been pre-qualified then some offers should show up.

You could also try calling American Express and checking if there are any pre-qualified offers for you.

RSVP code offers

This is also the page where you can submit your RSVP codes to claim your targeted mailers. Sometimes American Express sends out special RSVP codes that allow you to access increased offers for credit cards. So don’t throw away mail from American Express!

CardMatch Tool

You can also try to bring up pre-qualified offers via the CardMatch tool. This is a third-party tool that performs a soft pull on your credit in order to show pre-approved offers. Just like pre-qualified offers for Amex, the offers that this tool provides are not guaranteed to be approved.

What cards can you get pre-approvals for?

I’m not exactly sure which Amex cards you can get pre-approvals for, as this is something that can change over time. But some cards that you might try to get pre-qualified offers are:

What credit score is needed for Amex pre-approvals?

It’s not 100% clear what credit score is needed for Amex pre-approvals but you’d generally want to get in the 700s for your best odds.

However, if your score is in the 600s then you can still definitely get pre-qualified offers. 

I’ve even seen reports of people getting pre-qualified offers with credit scores in the mid-600s.

Just remember that the lower your credit score, the lower your approval odds will likely be. At a certain point, it makes more sense to just focus on improving your credit score and putting off going for pre-approval offers, as tempting as they can be.

Does Amex perform a soft pull or hard pull?

Amex will perform a soft pull on your credit report when they conduct the pre-approval. 

They even state:

Check with confidence: this is not a Credit Card application and your credit score won’t be affected.

It seems that it’s becoming more and more common for Amex to perform soft pulls for their existing customers when they apply for cards.

It used to be that only soft pulls were done when an applicant was denied but now even some approvals are resulting in soft pulls.

You should always be prepared for a possible hard pull when applying for an Amex card but there’s definitely a possibility that you won’t have a hard pull if you’re already an Amex customer.

What’s the difference between a soft pull and a hard pull?

There’s a huge difference between a soft pull and a hard pull. 

A soft pull will not affect your credit score.

On the other hand, a hard pull will bring down your credit score.

How bad will your credit score be affected? 

The amount that your score will get brought down depends on your credit profile.

If you have a very established credit profile or a perfect credit score, the hard pull may only bring your score down a point (some say there might even be no effect).

On the other hand, if you have a very thin credit profile with a lower score, your score could go down over ten points.

In most cases, though, you’re looking at a 3 to 5 point drop due to a hard inquiry.

The good news is that your credit score will quickly go back up, usually in 60 to 90 days. After one year, the hard inquiries won’t have any effect on your FICO credit report and after two years it will fall off your credit report entirely.

What credit bureau will Amex pull?

If Amex does conduct a hard pull on your credit report, they will usually pull Experian, although it’s not guaranteed. If you want to learn more about which banks pull which credit bureaus you can read more about them here. You’ll find that there are certain trends with many issuers where they tend to pull one specific bureau.

What if I don’t have any offers?

If you don’t pull up any pre-qualified offers then don’t sweat it — plenty of people get approved even when no pre-approval offers come up for them.

I would probably check every three months or so to see if new offers popped up, but I wouldn’t be checking it on a daily basis.

Can Amex deny me?

As stated, just because you are pre-qualified, that does not mean that you will be approved.

There are plenty of data points out there of people getting pre-approved and then getting denied.

If you have a good credit score (720+), established credit history, and no blemishes on your credit report, I’d say your odds are very high of getting approved if you are pre-qualified. 

What if I get denied?

If you are a current Amex customer and you get denied for a credit card, there is usually only a soft pull on your credit report (unless there’s been a big change on your credit report).

However, some people have reported that they’ve applied for pre-qualified offers and after being denied, they noticed that Amex only performed a soft pull on their credit report. 

So if you get denied, there’s a possibility that your credit score won’t even be impacted if they don’t run a hard pull.

Targeted offers

American Express is also known for sending out valuable targeted offers.

If you want to receive targeted offers you can do these three things to improve your odds.

1. Don’t apply for any Amex cards

It seems that Amex likes to send out targeted offers to people who are not currently customers.

That’s not to say that current customers can’t receive targeted offers (they receive plenty) — it’s just that you might have an easier time coming across targeted offers when you have a great credit profile but are not currently a member of the Amex family.

2. Opt-in to Amex offers

To make sure you’re receiving offers from Amex, you need to make sure that you’re opted in to their marketing communications. You can go here to manage your communications with Amex

I chose to select all of the communications, just to ensure that I didn’t miss anything. However, you probably only really need to opt-in to “New Card and Credit Offers.”

How to opt-in to receive Amex credit card offers.

3. Opt-in to credit card offers

You should also make sure that you’re opted-in to receive pre-screened offers with the official Consumer Credit Reporting Industry. This would likely mean more junk mail overall but many times there will be some great offers that come through so it’s worth sifting through a bit of junk mail.

If you’re not currently opted-in you likely won’t receive any offers. You can do that here.

Amex Platinum 100K

The American Express Platinum is a fantastic card with many rich benefits and one very special targeted offers is the Amex Platinum offer with a 100,000 point welcome bonus.

The standard public offer is for 60,000 Membership Rewards after you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months so this offer is significantly higher and you can find out more about this offer here.

Amex Application Rules

American Express might send you out pre-qualified offers but it’s up to you to make sure that you’re not violating one of their key application rules. 

If you do violate these rules you’ll likely be denied.

Here are the most important Amex application rules that you should be aware of. If you would rather automate your eligibility for these rules just check out the new free app WalletFlo

Once per lifetime

American Express will typically limit you to only welcome bonus per lifetime.

In reality, there are ways to get around this. Sometimes Amex will send offers out that don’t contain the once per lifetime rules.

Multiple credit cards at once

Amex will generally not allow you to get approved for two credit cards at once — you usually need to wait about a week.

Some people still get lucky and are able to get approved for two cards at once but they are mostly outliers. Also, note that Amex this rule only applies to credit cards and not charge cards, so it’s possible to get approved for two charge cards at the same time.

2/90 rule

Amex will allow you no more than two credit cards within 90 days. Again, this rule only applies to credit cards.

Top 3 Amex cards

The Platinum Card from American Express

Top 10 Travel Credit Cards

The Platinum Card from American Express is one of my favorite travel rewards credit cards with its high welcome bonus, 5X on airfare and its lounge access benefits which are much better than virtually every other premium credit card.

 American Express Gold Card

The new Amex Gold Card is a very attractive option, too. The standard public offer is for 35,000 Membership Rewards but you can find referral offers that offer 40,000+ Membership Rewards.

But what really makes this card stand out are the bonus categories which are:

  • 3X on airfare 
  • 4X points at Restaurants
  • 4X points at U.S. supermarkets (up to $25,000 in spend per calendar year)

The card also comes with a $120 dining credit, which offers a $10 monthly credit that can be used at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, and Shake Shack (read more about that credit here). With the addition of a $100 airline credit, it’s very easy knock down the effective annual fee to just $30.

Amex EveryDay Preferred

  • Earn 50% more points 30 or more times on purchases in a billing period and
  • 3X at US supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases
  • 2X at US gas stations
  • $95 annual fee

The Amex EveryDay Preferred is one of the best cards for earning tons of Membership Rewards. If you do a lot of shopping at supermarkets this card will be one of the most valuable cards you can get. Earning 3X on up to $6,000 at US supermarkets is great but that 50% bonus can put the earnings over the top.

Other banks pre-approval options

American Express isn’t the only bank to offer pre-approvals for their credit cards.

Plenty of other major banks also offer pre-qualified offers.

Bank of America pre-qualified offers

Barclays pre-qualified offers

  • Barclays no longer allows you to check for your pre-qualified offers.

Capital One pre-qualified offers

Chase pre-qualified offers

You can read more about Chase pre-approvals here.

Citibank pre-qualified offers

Discover pre-qualified offers

HSBC pre-qualified offers  

  • HSBC used to have a pre-qualified checker but it is no longer available. 

US Bank pre-qualified offers

Final Word

Amex pre-qualified offers are nice because they can give you an idea about which Amex cards to go with and sometimes they even result in soft pulls that don’t even impact your credit when you’re denied.

But you don’t need to receive a pre-approval to get approved for a card. So I’d give it a shot to see if I had any pre-approvals but I’d be more focused on building a solid credit score so I could apply for some of the best Amex cards.

Is the ($550) Chase Sapphire Reserve Annual Fee Worth it? [2020]

The Sapphire Reserve comes with many industry-leading benefits and travel perks but it also comes with a hefty $550 annual fee that puts a lot of people off. This article will take a close look at the value that the many Sapphire Reserve perks offer to answer the question: is the Chase Sapphire Reserve annual fee worth it?

Is the Chase Sapphire Reserve annual fee worth it?

The Chase Sapphire Reserve’s $550 annual fee can easily be worth it if you utilize the card’s benefits such as its bonus earning on dining and travel, travel benefits, lounge access, and travel and purchase protections.

I’ll talk about each of these below and illustrate how they can make it worth paying the $550 annual fee. By the end of this article, you’ll likely see why the Chase Sapphire Reserve is considered one of the top travel credit cards.

Tip: Use WalletFlo for all your credit card needs. It’s free and will help you optimize your rewards and savings!

Perks to consider when justifying the annual fee

Below are different perks of the Chase Sapphire Reserve that you want to consider when trying to justify the annual fee. In some cases, the value of these perks is objectively clear but in other cases the perk may have more subjective value.

50,000 points sign-up bonus

When considering the annual fee, I don’t usually factor in the sign-up bonus since the annual fee analysis is usually needed to determine if a card is worth holding on to for the long-term.

Although the Reserve once came with a 100K bonus (which probably won’t come back), the 50,000 point sign-up bonus is worth at least $750 in travel so after earning that bonus, you obviously come out on top in the first year.

But when you start asking about year two, three, etc., the sign-up bonus earned in the first year becomes less relevant and you’re more concerned with the long-term value of the benefits, which is what I focus on in this article.

$300 travel credit

The first factor I would consider is the $300 travel credit. This travel credit can be used on a wide variety of travel-related expenses like:

airlines, hotels, motels, timeshares, car rental agencies, cruise lines, travel agencies, discount travel sites, campgrounds and operators of passenger trains, buses, taxis, limousines, ferries, toll bridges and highways, and parking lots and garages

Many travel credits from other premium cards offer very restrictive terms for their travel credits. For example, the airline credit for some American Express cards is limited to incidental purchases. Those take much more strategy and planning to use and often times they are not even usable for many people.

It’s very easy to spend $300 a year on many of these broad travel categories even in everyday spend. I know some people who use the travel credit to cover parking expenses for work throughout the year.

For that reason, the effective annual fee of the Sapphire Reserve is brought down to $250 by this perk alone.

Cover train rides and many other purchases with the $300 travel credit.

$60 DoorDash credit

The Chase Sapphire Reserve now offers a $60 annual statement credit for 2020 and 2021 ($60 for each calendar year) that can be used on DoorDash purchases (the food delivery service).

This means that the Chase Sapphire Reserve will now offer a total of $360 worth of credits ($300 travel credit plus the $60 DoorDash credit) to help offset the $550 annual fee to $190.

When factoring in the value of the DoorDash credit, you have to consider the additional expenses involved like food delivery service fees, tips, potential mark ups and prices. So the value of this perk depends a lot on whether or not you were already a user of food delivery services.

If you were, then you can probably value this at $60 but if you were not, you may have to discounted value of this by $10-$20.

Just keep in mind that the Sapphire Reserve also comes with complimentary DoorDash DashPass membership for up to two years and this membership can get you free deliveries and reduced service fees on orders of $12 or more at eligible restaurants.

3X on dining and travel

Earning 3X on dining and travel is great. Using a WalletFlo valuation of 1.73 cents, 3X comes out to 5.18% back.

So if you are trying to offset the $190 effective annual fee, all you have to do is spend $3,667 on travel and dining. That’s very easy to do for many people and that’s why the annual fee is worth it for so many who spend a decent amount on travel and dining each year.

I should also point out that it’s possible to get much more value than 1.73 cents per point. That’s because Ultimate Rewards can be redeemed on a number of solid travel partners, including for some of the top business class and first class cabins in the world like the new Singapore Suites.

In some cases, you could be looking at closer to $.05-$.10 per point which calls for a different analysis.

Lyft benefits

You can also earn 10X on Lyft with the Reserve and take advantage of a Lyft Pink membership for one year when a cardmember activates by 03/31/2022.

Lyft Pink is a special membership program that offers “an elevated Lyft experience” and would normally cost $19.99/month (plus tax where required). So you’re getting a $200 benefit for free.Read more about these benefits here.

Sapphire Reserve vs Sapphire Preferred?

One of the major considerations you need to make with respect to the 3X on dining and travel is your annual level of spending in these categories.

For example, if you value Ultimate Rewards at 1.73 cents per point, then you just need to spend $5,491 on dining and travel a year to make it worth paying the Reserve’s $190 effective annual fee over the Sapphire Preferred’s $95 annual fee.

This is calculated by dividing the difference in annual fees ($95) by the point values (.0173).

Singapore Suites first class.

Priority Pass Select airport lounges

Priority Pass Select is a program that offers access to over 1,200 airport lounges all across the globe. With your membership, you’ll be able to bring along a maximum of two guests and you also get access to the credits that can be used at Priority Pass restaurants.

Normally, this membership (without guest privileges) would cost $399 and being able to bring in two guests could be worth $52 each visit at the right lounges. So you also have to factor in the value of airport lounge access when justifying the annual fee.

If you don’t really visit airports very often then this perk’s value is obviously less relevant but even if you were only going to visit an airport lounge a couple of times a year, there’s potential for $100+ worth of value here.

And when you think about how much value you’re receiving from the $300 travel credit and the 3X on dining and travel, then you start to realize that the lounge access is essentially a free benefit in some instances.

The lounge membership is worth at least $400 based on the price.

Primary rental car coverage

The Chase Sapphire Reserve provides primary rental car insurance (collision damage waiver) which is a huge perk because it means that you may not have to file a claim with your auto insurance company if you wreck a rental car.

That’s significant because it means that your monthly premium wont spike after your incident. Also, collision damage waiver will often run you $10-$15 per day when renting a vehicle so you can save on those costs.

So this perk can save you money with your insurance payments but also can save you at the rental car location. I once was quoted at over $100 for rental car insurance for only a few days so once again, the value potential is very high here.

Collision damage waiver may save you $10-$15 per day on rental cars.

Chase Travel Portal

When you have the Sapphire reserve, you can redeem your points through the Chase Travel Portal at a rate of 1.5 cents per point, which is one of the highest rates offered by a travel portal.

If you used your points toward travel, it’d be like earning 4.5% cash back on dining and travel which is phenomenal.

(Read more about the Chase Travel Portal here.)

Chase Shopping portal

The Sapphire Reserve gets you access to the Chase Shopping Portal which can allow you to earn bonus rewards on many different purchases. For example, you could receive an additional 3% to 5% back at many popular retailers. (The Chase Sapphire Preferred also gets the same access to the portal so that’s something to consider.)

You can read more about this valuable shopping portal here

Travel and purchase protections

The Chase Sapphire Reserve offers some of the strongest travel and purchase protections out of any credit card. These benefits have hidden value because you don’t realize how valuable they are until you actually need to use them.

But something like trip interruption or cancellation could easily save you thousands of dollars by allowing you to get reimbursed for non-refundable travel expenses such as airfare, hotels, or even tours. So be sure to be mindful about these perks and how they could provide you with value.

These include:

  • Lost or damaged Luggage –-For checked or carry-on bags are damaged or lost by the carrier, you’re covered up to $3,000.00
  • Trip Cancellation/Interruption — If your trip is canceled or cut short by covered situations, you can be reimbursed up to $10,000 per trip for your pre-paid, non-refundable travel expenses.
  • Trip Delay Reimbursement — If delayed more than 6 hours you are covered for expenses, such as meals and lodging, up to $500 per ticket
  • Baggage Delay Reimbursement — If delayed more than 6 hours, you are covered for essential expenses, such as toiletries and clothes for up to $100
  • Purchase protections — Covers your new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account (read more)
  • Extended Warranty Protection — Extends the time period of the original manufacturer’s written U.S. repair warranty by 1 additional year on eligible warranties of 3 years or less, up to a maximum of $10,000.00
  • Return Protection — You can be reimbursed for eligible items that the store won’t take back within 90 days of purchase, up to $500 per item, $1,000 per year.
  • Travel accident insurance — Travel Accident Insurance consists of two benefit types, Common Carrier Travel Accident Insurance and 24-Hour Travel Accident Insurance, which provide coverage for accidental death or dismemberment, or a combined loss of speech, sight or hearing, experienced on a covered trip.
  • Roadside assistance — Free for up to $50 and up to 4 times per year

When you think about how much these perks can save you or how much value they can offer (not to mention convenience and sanity), it’s possible that these perks alone could make the Chase Sapphire Reserve annual fee worth it at times.

For example I recently had to wait over 24 hours for my baggage to arrive while visiting Auckland, New Zealand. However, I was able to head over to the mall six hours after I didn’t receive my luggage and purchase some new clothes to “hold me over” until my luggage arrived.

Having this type of protection takes a lot of the stress out of travel.

Authorized user fees ($75)

The Sapphire Reserve authorized user fee is $75.

So whether or not it’s worth it to pay $75 in addition to the $550 Chase Sapphire Reserve annual fee will depend on how much you value the authorized user perks of Priority Pass and earning the additional points. For a look at all of the authorized user benefits you can click here

Retention offers

Chase has been pretty stingy when it comes to offering retention offers for its own credit cards. However, there have have been some reports of others receiving credits (sometimes called “membership fee” credits). So I would not count on getting the annual fee waived or reduced via a retention offer but it could happen and you odds might be better if you are a Chase Private Client member.

Chase Sapphire Reserve annual fee FAQs

How much is the Chase Sapphire Reserve annual fee?

The annual fee is now $550.

Is the Chase Sapphire Reserve annual fee waived?

No, the annual fee is not waived.

Does the Chase Sapphire Reserve come with credits?

The Chase Sapphire Reserve comes with a $300 annual travel credit and a $60 annual DoorDash credit.

What can the $300 travel credit be used on?

The $300 travel credit can be used on a wide variety of travel-related expenses like:

airlines, hotels, motels, timeshares, car rental agencies, cruise lines, travel agencies, discount travel sites, campgrounds and operators of passenger trains, buses, taxis, limousines, ferries, toll bridges and highways, and parking lots and garages

How much is the Chase Sapphire Reserve Priority Pass benefit worth?

The Priority Pass benefit allows for unlimited visits and would therefore be worth at least $399 based on its cost. However, the value to the cardholder depends on how often he or she will visit airport lounges or Priority Pass partner restaurants.

Does the Chase Sapphire Reserve have a foreign transaction fee?

The Chase Sapphire Reserve has no foreign transaction fees but neither do many other credit cards including the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

Does the Chase Sapphire Reserve come with rental car insurance?

Yes, the Chase Sapphire Reserve provides primary rental car coverage (collision damage waiver).

Final word

The Chase Sapphire Reserve annual fee is going to be worth it in many cases. When you total up the value from the $300 travel credit, $60 DoorDash credit, 3X on dining and travel, Priority Pass, and all of the protections built into the credit card, it should become clear whether or not it’s worth it to pay the annual fee. So if your credit score is high enough, I’d recommend to consider applying.

Chase Refer A Friend: Get Bonuses for Credit Cards & Bank Accounts [2020]

The Chase “refer a friend” program is something that any Chase cardholder or even potential Chase cardholder should be aware of. That’s because it offers you the chance to earn lucrative bonus rewards while also setting your friends and family up to get in on the fun, too.

Here’s everything you need to know about how the Chase refer a friend program works, including a list bonuses you can get for credit cards and bank accounts (checking and savings). 

Update: Some offers are no longer available — click here for the latest deals!

What is Chase “refer a friend?”

Chase refer a friend is a program that allows you to earn points when other people get approved for a credit card using your personalized referral link. This is a fantastic way to supplement your points earnings. You can visit Chase’s main referral web page here.

Tip: Use WalletFlo for all your credit card needs. It’s free and will help you optimize your rewards and savings!

How does Chase refer a friend work?

The Chase refer a friend process is very simple.

You simply generate a referral link (through one of various methods below) and then you send that link to a potential applicant. And once they apply and are approved, you’ll be eligible for a referral bonus.

You can generate these referral links in different ways.

Chase refer a friend online

The most popular way is to go online at the this website (also linked above). Simply enter in your last name, the last four digits of your credit card, and your zip code and hit “Continue.”

If you’re eligible for a referral then you’ll see the offer show up and it will look something like this.

Chase Refer a Friend

I recommend just copying the personalized link and sending that to whomever you need to.

You can input email addresses and have the link sent directly to your friends and family but that method can take up to a week for them to receive it.You may submit up to 25 email addresses in a 24 hour period.

You can also share your link on Facebook or Twitter which is quicker.

Chase Refer a friend

Chase refer a friend on mobile

In September of 2017, Chase began allowing referrals to be pulled up on the Chase mobile app.

To do this, simply log-in to the Chase app and then click on the three dots near the “pay card” option and you should see “Refer Friends” pull up. You’ll then be able to send the referral link to anyone via email or text message.

Will I find out who is approved or who applies using my referral link?

Chase states that “[d]ue to the confidential nature of the credit approval process, we cannot disclose information on who has applied, nor will you be notified whether we approve or decline any application(s) from the individual(s) you refer.”

So the answer is no, you just have to inquire with those people individually to see if they applied and got approved.

This is not unique to Chase as other referral programs like the Amex refer a friend work the same way.

How long does it take to receive Chase refer a friend points?

After they get approved, you should see your referral points within a couple of billing cycles (or about 8 weeks) on your statement.

What to do if Chase refer a friend not working?

It’s possible that you might get a message that a specific refer a friend offer is not active. The message would like the below image and that simply means that the promotion it no longer ongoing.

You might also not be able to get the referral link to work when trying to generate a referral link. That could be because you’re no longer eligible or because Chase is doing some technical work on their end. You can always call the number on the back of your card to check if it’s a technical glitch.

What to know about Chase refer a friend

  • Not every Chase credit card allows you to earn points via referrals. Also, sometimes the referral links go inactive or don’t work for certain cards as shown above.
  • The amount of the referral bonus is subject to change. For example, one month you might get 5,000 points for a referral and sixth months later you might get 10,000 (or 0).
  • The amount of the sign-up bonus on the referral might not be the best sign-up bonus available for that card or it might be better than public offers. Also, there could be better in-branch offers for some cards.

So when it comes to referrals it’s very important to constantly monitor what cards are active and what their bonus offers are for both the referral bonus and the sign-up bonus. You don’t want to send your friends and family referral links for sub-par offers for your own personal gain. You can read here on how to find the best credit card offers.

What cards work for Chase refer a friend?

Below is a list of Chase credit cards that at any given moment might be offering referrals. As already mentioned, these offers come and go so be sure to check back every now and again if you’re not able to pull them up.

  • Chase Sapphire Reserve
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred
  • Chase Freedom Flex
  • Chase Freedom Unlimited
  • Chase Ink Preferred
  • Chase Ink Cash
  • Chase United
  • Chase Southwest Plus and Premier
  • Chase Disney Rewards Visa credit card 
  • Chase Hyatt 
  • Chase Marriott Bonvoy Boundless

Some of these cards are subject to Chase’s notorious 5/24 Rule while others aren’t but there are other rules to be aware of. Click here to find out more about these Chase application rules.

Chase Sapphire Reserve referral

The Chase Sapphire Reserve referral allows you to earn 10,000 Ultimate Rewards per approval up to a maximum of 50,000 points per calendar year. This referral is currently not available.

The Sapphire Reserve currently comes with a 50,000 bonus although it initially came with a whopping 100K bonus (which likely won’t return anytime soon). The Reserve still is a fantastic card with 3X on dining and travel, a $300 travel credit, and redemption in the Chase Travel Portal at 1.5 cents per point!

Chase Sapphire Preferred referral

The Chase Sapphire Preferred referral allows you to earn 15,000 Ultimate Rewards per approval up to a maximum of 75,000 points per calendar year.

It’s a solid alternative to the Chase Sapphire Reserve but with a lower annual fee and only 2X on dining and travel. If you need help deciding between the Reserve and Preferred you can read more about them here.

Chase Freedom Flex referral

The Chase Freedom Flex referrals allow you to earn 10,000 points per approval up to a maximum of 50,000 points per calendar year. This equates to at least $100 per referral which is fantastic.

Chase Freedom Unlimited referral

The Chase Freedom Unlimited referral also allows you to earn 10,000 points per approval up to a maximum of 50,000 points per calendar year.

Note that there are two Chase Freedom cards: The Chase Freedom Unlimited and the Chase Freedom Classic (you can read here about which version is better for you).

You can only referral the specific type of Chase Freedom card that you have. So if you only have the Chase Freedom Unlimited, you can only send out referrals for that card. However, if you have both Chase Freedom cards you can send out referrals for both and they will be counted separately. This means you could earn a total of 100,000 Ultimate Rewards if you maxed our your credit card referrals!

Chase Ink Preferred referral

The Chase Ink Preferred referral allows you to earn 20,000 Ultimate Rewards per approval up to a maximum of 100,000 points per calendar year. This is one of the best referral bonuses out there.

Note that if you have the Chase Ink Plus (which is no longer allowed for new applicants), you should be able to generate a referral link for the Chase Ink Preferred. The Chase Ink Preferred is one of the best cards for entrepreneurs and start ups with a high sign-up bonus of 80,000 and 3X on advertising, so it’s usually worth the referral. If you’re new to business credit cards then read here on tips for getting approved.

Tip: Use the free app WalletFlo to help you travel the world for free by finding the best travel credit cards and promotions!

Chase Ink Cash referral

The Chase Ink Cash is known for offering referrals although currently you might not be able to pull them up. But typically, the Chase Ink Cash referral allows you to earn 10,000 Ultimate Rewards per approval up to a maximum of 50,000 points per calendar year. This is a great no-annual fee business credit card though it might be going away soon.

Chase United referral

The Chase United MileagePlus Explorer referrals allow you to earn 10,000 United miles per approval up to a maximum of 50,000 miles per calendar year.

The sign-up bonus on the United credit card can fluctuate a lot so you definitely want to make sure that you’re not referring a low offer. Sign-up bonuses usually range from 30,000 to 60,000 (or even 70,000) so make sure you’re going after an offer that makes sense to refer.

Chase Southwest Plus and Premier referral

The Southwest Premier Card.

The Chase Southwest referrals allow you to earn 10,000 Rapid Rewards per approval up to a maximum of 50,000 points per calendar year. Just like the Freedom cards, these are counted separate from another.

With the Southwest credit cards you really need to be mindful about what sign-up bonus is being offered. Southwest often has 50K offers and 60K offers out so you want to be sure that you’re not causing someone to miss out on a lot of Rapid Rewards, especially since those sign-up bonuses can be used to obtain the Companion Pass

Note that the Chase Southwest business referrals are not currently offered.

Chase Disney Rewards Visa credit card referral

The Chase Disney Rewards Visa credit card referral allows you to earn $100 Disney Rewards per approval up to a maximum of $500 Disney Rewards per calendar year. I’m not a big fan of the Disney credit card but $100 is a pretty good referral amount. Keep an eye out on this referral because it’s often dips down to $50 per referral.

IHG Rewards Club Premier/Traveler 

IHG Rewards Club Premier/Traveler referrals allow you to earn 10,000 IHG points per approval up to a maximum of 50,000 points per calendar year.

Chase World of Hyatt Visa

The Chase World of Hyatt Visa referrals allow you to earn 5,000 Hyatt points per approval up to a maximum of 25,000 points per calendar year.

Chase Marriott Bonvoy Boundless referral

Chase Marriott referrals allowed you to earn up to 20,000 Marriott points per approval up to a maximum of 100,000 miles per calendar year.

Note that you can also refer people to the Marriott program and earn a few extra points that way.

Chase refer a friend checking and savings account

In addition to all of the credit cards, you can also get referrals for Chase referrals for checking accounts and savings accounts.

It’s common for Chase to offer a checking account referral bonus of $50 when you refer a friend who does not currently have a Chase checking account open. That friend will then receive a nice bonus, too.

Depending on the type of bank account opened and the terms of the offer, they could receive a $150 to $300 bonus per checking or savings account opened, which means they can receive up to $500 total sometimes! 

Sometimes these referrals are open to people who don’t even live near Chase branches, too. Keep in mind that these offers can come with specific requirements like direct deposit, minimum deposits (usually higher for savings accounts), and minimum account termination periods, monthly fees, etc.

The referral bonuses generally hit pretty quick, too at around 10 business days. Keep in mind that bank bonuses can be considered MISC income and could mean that you need to report them if you receive a 1099-MISC.

Where can you share your referral links?

Some blogs allow you to post referral links on their site. I don’t typically allow it on my comments because it fosters a lot of spam-like activity and attracts visitors who aren’t interested in engaging with the content.

Instead, I recommend checking out the recurring threads on Reddit that you can find for individual credit cards.

Final word

If you have any Chase credit cards you definitely need to monitor them for referral bonuses. Brad and I have easily earned over 150,000 points over the past couple of years via referral bonuses alone, so these can be great ways to supplement your earnings. Just make sure that you’re referring the best sign-up offers to your friend and that you try to catch the referral bonuses when they are at their highest.

Amex Refer A Friend: How to Get Links (Offers, Bonuses) [2020]

Offers contained within this article maybe expired.

Over the past few years, I have earned tens of thousands of points with the Amex Refer a Friend program and it is one of the best kept secrets of American Express.

This article will show you where (and how) to get American Express referral offer links for different credit cards and will show you what kind of referral bonuses you can expect to earn.

I’ll also show you some must-know things to avoid to make sure you don’t get kicked out of the referral program! 

What is Amex “Refer a Friend?”

Amex Refer a Friend is a program that allows you to earn bonus points when others use your referral link to apply for an Amex card and get approved.

Tip: Use WalletFlo for all your credit card needs. It’s free and will help you optimize your rewards and savings!

How does Amex Refer a Friend work?

Amex Refer a Friend is very simple and easy to use.

All you have to do is generate a special referral link and send that link to a friend or family member. If that person is approved then you’ll be entitled to special bonus points.

But there are some things you should consider before jumping on this referral program.


There are sometimes specific timeframes that the referral offers are good for. So you really need to pay attention to the deadlines so that you’re always offering a non-expired referral link.

Always double check that the link works before you send it out. If it is not currently valid, you will likely see a message saying something like “this offer is no longer available.”

Welcome offers

Another thing that you should always check on is what the welcome bonus is for that person you’re sending your referral link to.

You don’t want to send them a sub-par offer and sometimes the referral offers aren’t as good as the best available public offers. For example, you might send a friend an offer for 30,000 points but there might be a better offer for 40,000 points available to that friend. So try to verify that you are sending your friend the best offer available to them.

You can check on how to find the best welcome offers here.

Amex Refer a Friend

There are a few ways to get your referral links.

First, you can go to the Amex referral page here

You either log-in with your Amex account information or you can input the number of your card.

I recommend just logging in to your Amex account because then you can just easily scroll through all of your referral offers.

Once you login you should see a page with all of the different cards that you can generate referral links for. The screen will show you how many points you can get for the referral and how many points the person you are referring can get from the welcome bonus.

You can then scroll down and choose the way you would like to share the referral link.

The simplest way to get your referral link is to just output a link. To do this scroll down and click on referral link. You can then text or share that link with your friends allowing them to easily apply.

Amex Refer a Friend link generator.
Amex Refer a Friend link generator.

Amex Refer a Friend via Social media

You can also refer others via social media on Facebook or Twitter.

If you click on one of the social media icons and you’re logged in, they will generate a pre-written post containing your referral link that will look like the image below. You can edit the post and it won’t go out until you confirm your message by hitting the post/tweet button.

Amex Refer a Friend social media post generator.

Amex Refer a Friend via Email

You can also generate referral links via email but Amex has some strict conditions for using email to send Refer a Friend links.

If you want to send the card offer to your friends by email, you must only use the email tool that Amex provides.

Emailing your friends the card offer outside of the provided email tool is prohibited and will make you ineligible for the referral bonus. Why is this the case?

I’m not sure but it likely has something to do with financial regulations or compliance rules.

You’ll see the email tool on the main Refer a Friend log-in page, where you can add multiple email addresses.

In the email, they may disclose your name, email address and status as an American Express Card Member, and the fact that you will receive a bonus if they take advantage of the offer.

You should note that some of the individuals you refer may not receive a referral e-mail if they have previously “opted out” of receiving e-mail marketing communications from American Express. That is why I recommend simply generating a link and sharing that link via text message.

List of Amex Refer a Friend credit cards

Below is a list of most of the cards that offer Refer a Friend bonuses and examples of what they may offer. For a full list of every card that currently offers a referral check here.

You should know that these referral offers are subject to change and could disappear. Also, they all have annual limits on the points you can earn per year. For example, you might be limited to a total of 55,000 Membership Rewards per year or 80,000 Hilton Honors points. Always check the terms of the offer to be sure of the limits.

Platinum Card from American Express

Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express

  • 10,000 Membership Rewards

Blue Business Plus Credit Card

  • 10,000 Membership Rewards

Blue Cash Preferred from American Express

  • 75 Reward Dollars

Blue Cash Everyday from American Express

  • 75 Reward Dollars

Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card

  • 5,000 to 10,000 bonus miles

Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card

  • 5,000 to 10,000 bonus miles

Hilton Honors American Express Card

  • 15,000 points

Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card

  • 20,000 points

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

  • 25,000 points

Amex EveryDay Card

  • 10,000 Membership Rewards

Amex EveryDay Preferred Card

  • 10,000 Membership Rewards

The Business Gold Rewards Card

  •  10,000 Membership Rewards

The Plum Card

  • $100 statement credit

Gold Delta Skymiles Business Credit Card

  • 5,000 to 10,000 bonus miles

Platinum Delta Skymiles Business Credit Card

  • 5,000 to 10,000 bonus miles

The Business Platinum Card

  •  25,000 Membership Rewards

No, this information is kept under wraps due to “the confidential nature of the credit approval process.” American Express states that “you will not be notified of whether we approve or decline any application(s) from individual(s) you refer.”

So the best route to take is to simply check back with your friend after a week or two to see if they were approved.

How long does it take to receive my points?

Amex states to “please allow 8-12 weeks for the referral bonus to post to your account after each referred individual is approved for the Card.”

You don’t have to always wait so long for your referral points. For example, I’ve received referral points for Amex cards in a matter of days before so sometimes the timeline is much shorter than you’d expect. If your card is brand new or if you are a new member to American Express then it likely will take extra long for your referral bonus to post to your account.

Generally, if you have not seen the points deposited in a couple of months, I would call in and inquire about the points especially if you know that the person you referred was approved.

What to do if Amex Refer a Friend is not working?

The Amex referrals are not always processed properly.

In fact, on a couple of occasions I’ve received emails from American Express apologizing for not processing referrals properly and then all of a sudden tens of thousands of points appear in my account.

This happened most recently with my Hilton card and I received the following message:

 What happened

Due to a technical error, when you referred your friend using the American Express® Card listed above, we mistakenly disqualified your account from receiving an eligible referral bonus. We apologize for not issuing your referral bonus when we should have, and for any inconvenience this error may have caused you.

We’re issuing points to your account

To make things right, we are crediting your account with the bonus points that you earned, but did not receive. You will see these points reflected on an upcoming billing statement. Please know you do not need to take any further action.

It’s difficult to trace though since you don’t receive confirmation of approvals. So if you’re sending out referral links to friends and family then it’s a good idea to follow up with them and check if they were approved.

Then you can wait a couple of months and if you don’t see any points in your account, then you can give American Express a phone call.

What to know about Amex Refer a Friend

There are a few bits of information found in the terms and conditions that you should be aware of.

For the most part, they just want to make sure that you’re not misrepresenting the offers or how any component of the referral system works. It’s mostly common sense but when posting your referral links in places like forums or on Reddit you need to be mindful about some of the specific restrictions for third-parties.

Might be taxable

Amex notes that the value of the referral bonus may be taxable income to you and that you are responsible for any federal or state taxes resulting from the referral bonus.

Banks are now often sending out tax forms for referrals so if you take advantage of several credit card referrals, you should expect to receive some type of tax form in the mail. If you had a handful of successful referrals this will likely amount to a few hundred dollars worth of income.

If you have any questions about this Amex will refer you to contact a tax advisor.

Let others you know you’re getting rewarded

When you invite a friend to participate in this program for purposes of earning yourself a Welcome or Referral Bonus, Amex states that “you must make sure your friend knows you could receive a reward from American Express if they are approved for a new Card.”

Basically, just be open about the fact that you might be benefiting and you’ll be in the clear.

You should not publish or distribute your referral links in locations where the audience is likely to include individuals you do not know or who may not be interested in the Card Offer.

What I really take this to mean is that they don’t want you spamming people with referral links.

To the extent you decide to post your referral link on any third party website or platform, such as a social media website, you must:

  • Also comply with that third party’s terms of use and
  • Make it clear to those who view your post that you will also receive a reward if they are approved for a new Card.

Amex also notes that:

by engaging in any such activity on a third party site (1) you will be, at your own risk, subjecting yourself to those third party sites’ privacy, security and consumer practices and policies which American Express does not endorse or control, and (2) that those third party sites may be able to tell, based on your activity, that you are an American Express Card Member.

You also acknowledge and accept that the friends you refer will be able to tell that you are an American Express Card Member.

Current cardholders

You cannot earn a referral bonus for those who already currently have the card you recommended or for individuals who have been referred by someone else.

Multiple referrals

You might be wondering what happens when two or more referrals are sent to a single person by multiple people.

If two or more card members invite the same individual to join on the same card offer, Amex will credit the reward to the person whose referral link was used to complete the sign up process.

Friends, family and known acquaintances

Amex states that the referral “program intends for you to invite only your interested personal friends, family and known acquaintances.”

Again, this goes back to trying to prevent people from spamming.

No misrepresentations

Amex wants to make sure that you’re not muddling up their marketing when you send out your referral links.

So whenever you refer your Card to a friend, “any additional statements you make, of which are not provided by American Express, about our Card products or the Referral Offer, must be

  • consistent with the content and materials we provide you and/or your friends,
  • truthful, accurate, factually supported, not misleading, and
  • reflect your honest beliefs, opinions, or experiences with your Card.”

Don’t be shady

“Any modification or efforts to bypass, manipulate, obscure or otherwise modify the delivery and accurate presentation of the referral link, sharing tools, content, disclosures or other materials and instructions we provide will be considered a violation of these terms.”

So don’t try to cloak links and misrepresent the welcome bonuses or any other aspect of the credit card offers. Make sure they understand how many points they can expect to earn and that they understand how the spending requirements work.

Just be upfront about the referral offers and you won’t have any issues.

Update to the Amex refer a friend policy

Amex updated their refer a friend policy so that you can refer for different types of Amex cards from the card that you hold. For example, if you only have the Amex Gold Card you can now use referral links for other cards like the Amex Platinum and even non-Amex branded cards like the Delta and Hilton cards.

To do this, copy and paste your referral link into the browser bar and then click on “All Personal Cards” at the top and then you should see all of the eligible referral offers.

You should earn points in the currency for the card that you generated the link from (the card you actually hold) and not with the type of card you referred. So if you generated a link from your Amex Gold Card for the Hilton Ascend, then you should earn Membership Rewards and not Hilton points.

Can I refer myself?

Some people have used referral links to refer themselves to another American Express card. This has allowed them to earn additional points and is very tempting to many people. However some people who have done this have had their accounts closed, so I would recommend against doing this.

Do other banks offer referrals?

American Express is not the only issuer to offer credit card referrals.

For example, Chase has a referral program where they offer referrals for the following cards:

  • Chase Sapphire Reserve
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred
  • Chase Freedom
  • Chase Ink Preferred
  • Chase Ink Cash
  • Chase United
  • Chase Southwest Plus and Premier
  • Chase Disney Rewards Visa credit card 
  • Chase Hyatt 
  • Chase Marriott Rewards Premier Plus card referral 

Other issuers like Barclays, Discover, and US Bank offer referrals for select products.

Final word

Amex Refer a Friend is a great program that helps take your reward earnings to the next level if used right.

It’s simple to generate link offers and the terms and conditions are easy enough to comply with so long as you refrain from spamming people and are upfront about the offers.

I recommend any Amex cardholder to check on referrals on a continual basis to make sure they aren’t leaving any points behind.

How Long Do Citi Cards Take to Arrive? [2020]

A common question is “how long will my credit card take to arrive?”

Every issuer can be different and in this article, I’ll focus on how long it takes for Citi cards to arrive. I’ll discuss new approvals, lost and stolen cards, expedited deliveries, and how long you can expect to wait to receive product changes.

Interested in finding out the top travel credit cards for this month? Click here to check them out!

How long do Citi cards take to arrive?

Citi states:

Once your application is approved, you will receive your card within 14 days.

You might also receive an email stating that your card will arrive in 7 to 10 days.

The actual delivery time from Citi can vary, however. A lot of people have received their cards within 7 days (four to five business days). So I would generally expect Citi take about 10 days to issue my credit card.

By the way, if you’re looking to maximize rewards while waiting for your cards to arrive, consider getting a card like the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card.

Tip: Use WalletFlo for all your credit card needs. It’s free and will help you optimize your rewards and savings!

Will Citi expedite my credit card delivery?

If you’ve just been approved for a new credit card, Citi will likely NOT allow you to expedite your card for delivery. Some people have had success in the past when requesting expedited delivery but generally Citi appears to decline those requests.

You might have some luck if you explain why you need that card expedited. For example, if you have a large and important purchase on the horizon, you might be able to persuade Citi to expedite your card for that purchase. I just wouldn’t go in expecting Citi to do so, however.

With the launch of the new Citi Prestige in January 2019, we might see Citi implement a new delivery system for its premium cards (but I wouldn’t count on it).

Lost or stolen cards?

If your card has been lost or stolen, Citi will usually send you a replacement card on an expedited basis. Citi actually has a way for you to track your replacement cards via mobile.

Upgrades and product changes

If you’ve upgraded, downgraded, or done a product change with Citi, there’s a good chance that you could be waiting a very long time for your new card to arrive. I’ve had to wait 6+ weeks for cards to arrive after a product change before. I’m not sure what takes so long but product changes seem to be on the bottom of the totem pole when it comes to delivery times.

Here are some cards I’ve had to wait a long time to receive when dealing with product changes and upgrades/downgrades:

  • Citi DoubleCash
  • Citi Diamond Preferred
  • Citi Simplicity
  • Citi Platinum Select
  • Citi ThankYou Premier

What can you do if forced to wait?

If Citi takes longer than two weeks to issue your new card or they keep dragging things out with a product change delivery, then I suggest that you call in to check on the status of the delivery. You might have to do this on a continual basis but it might be necessary. You might be able to request an expedited delivery at some point if you’ve waited longer than what Citi stated you should expect to wait.

Also, you could try to request some form of compensation for your waiting time. I once was given 1,000 AA miles since my Citi Platinum Select card didn’t arrive before the stated time.

Final word

Citi has a bad reputation when it comes to their IT department and so credit card delivery times can be an issue you face when dealing with Citi. For new cards you should expect to receive them within 7 to 10 days but keep an eye out for how long it takes to receive your card. If it takes longer than what Citi stated it would, definitely call in and inquire about expediting and/or receiving compensation in the form of miles or points.

Chase Business Reconsideration Line (Tips if Denied, Phone Number) [2020]

If you’re denied or not instantly approved for a Chase business credit card, theres a good chance you’ll need to call the Chase business reconsideration line.

Chase recon calls for business credit cards can be much tougher than calls for personal cards. 

But don’t sweat it, this article will show you tips on exactly how to get through a Chase Business reconsideration line phone call and give you the phone number to call.

Update: Some offers are no longer available — click here for the latest deals!

What is the Chase business reconsideration line?

The Chase Business reconsideration line is your chance to get your business credit card application approved by showing Chase why you need or want the card and verifying facts about your business.

Chase business reconsideration line phone number

The Chase business reconsideration line phone number is: 1-800-453-9719.

The business hours are 8am to 5pm EST, M-F. EST. (Note: this is accurate as of March 22, 2016.)

You should be able to call this number for the following cards:

  • Chase Ink Preferred
  • Chase Ink Cash
  • Chase Ink Unlimited
  • United MileagePlus Club Business Card
  • United MileagePlus Explorer Business Card
  • Marriott Rewards Premier Business Credit Card
  • Southwest business credit card 

Tip: Check out the free app WalletFlo so that you can optimize your credit card spend by seeing the best card to use! You can also track credits, annual fees, and get notifications when you’re eligible for the best cards!

Should you call?

The general consensus is to not call for the business reconsideration line until you have been denied. There are a few reasons for not calling in….

The thinking is that you’re removing your application from a pool of applications that could be auto approved and potentially allowing the discretion of a banker to determine your credit card fate.

Bank discretion can become a big problem if you have a lot of accounts recently opened, hard inquiries, or any other potentially damaging factors on your credit report, so many like to avoid recon until they’re forced to face it.

Another reason is that a lot of people just aren’t good with answering questions on the fly and might screw up their chances by saying something stupid or something that the bank rep (whether rightly or wrongly) finds suspect.

And finally, the numbers just seem to be against you. I’ve done a fair amount of research (although not exactly scientific in nature) and from what I’ve gathered, calling in appears to not do you any favors in getting approved.

All of the above are legitimate reasons to avoid calling and that’s why my recommendation is to not call reconsideration until you have been denied. At that point, you have nothing to lose and there’s no harm in calling.

What to expect when you call

Every time I’ve called business recon I’ve been greeted almost instantly by a live representative. I give them my social security number and then they look up my file and ask what they can do for me.

I always remain as friendly as possible and just tell them that I want to “inquire into the status of my recent credit card application.”

After some verification questions, they’ll usually put you on hold for a while and then come back, ready to look over your app.

At this point, they may only ask you a few quick questions about your business or they might go into extreme specifics — I’ve encountered both ends of the spectrum with my prior dealings with Chase. Because you don’t know how they are going to come out for you, it’s important to make sure that you’re ready for them.

So here are some things you really need to know.

Know your business

This should be easy for you assuming you’re not trying to game the system with a “business.”

In my first recon call, I was only asked about the name and age of my business but in the second recon call they went in depth about the nature of my business and what in particular I do, sell, etc. It was much more difficult than the first recon call but still not entirely daunting.

They asked such questions as:

  • What is your business? (name, legal name, type of organization, etc.)
  • Can you describe your industry?
  • What products do you sale, how much, etc.?
  • How old is your business?
  • How long have you been in the trade?
  • What is your job title?
  • Number of employees?
  • Why does your business need this credit card?

I had a memorized one sentence description of my business that I spit out and then just starting to go into detail about what it is I do. All of the business reps I’ve dealt with have been nice but I’ve heard reports of some reps being a bit aggressive and approaching the call like an interrogation.

Know your business figures

This is the portion of the call that most people stumble on because if you’re not prepared for it, then it’s easy to say something contradictory or something that doesn’t sound right.

Remember, these bankers deal with applications all day long and it wouldn’t surprise me if some of them have developed an intuition for identifying applicants who are trying to game the system with their “eMerchandise business” (aka “I sold a watch on eBay two years ago”).

Have figures/charts ready to answer the following questions:

  • What is your annual revenue, expenses, and profits?
  • Did you pay taxes on that revenue?
  • What were your annual revenue, expenses, and profits for the previous year? Year before that?
  • Are you currently operating at a profit or loss?
  • What is your expected revenue, expenses, profits for the next year? The year after?
  • Why do you suspect they will increase or decrease?

Sound like you know what you’re talking about

I think one key to the reconsideration calls is that you need to sound confident.

A true business owner should know his or her business like the back of his or her hand and shouldn’t be stumbling around with basic questions. It really helps to have a cheat sheet on hand when you make the call so you can just spit out the answers needed.

In my experience, the above questions were all that were covered. However, don’t be surprised if they start getting into your recent account history. Chase seems to be doing this more and more with both personal and business cards. So be prepared for some potentially intrusive questioning about why you have so many new accounts.

Verifying identity

Verifying your ID for a business card typically involves standard procedures like faxing in a copy of your license or submitting some form of notarized document from a financial institution.

However, in some (I believe rare cases), you might have to submit tax forms and/or business filing documents relating to your business. Hopefully that won’t happen to you but if you’ve done nothing but told the truth you should have nothing to worry about.

If you’re denied

It’s always a good idea to call back and try at least once or twice with a different representative.

Keep in mind that they notate your account when you call back so the reps will likely know that you’ve called once, twice, or more than that, which may affect their attitude towards you. If calling back doesn’t work then you may just have to try again 3 to 6 months down the road.

That’s it for Chase business recon. Just be prepared with a cheat sheet for the above questions and you should be just fine. Oh, and if you’re interested in the Chase Ink+ check out my tips on how to get approved

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