Queue Seinfeld’s “What’s the deal with…” and funny as it may seem it actually isn’t good news. It seems about a year ago, starting with American Express, credit card companies have started smartening up to churners1 and eliminating possibilities for people to signing up for credit cards over and over again and reaping the sign-up bonuses.
It now seems that Chase is trying to do something similar
The “5-24” Rule
Chase’s approach to curbing this practice is the 5-24 rule: Limit approval of their credit cards to applicants that have less than 5 new credit cards within the past 24 month, from any bank. Another bad point was that Chase is expanding this rule from their own credit cards to credit cards that they co-sign, such as the SouthWest Airlines card that I wrote about yesterday.
The timeline for this implementation is said to be March or April, of 2016, either way it doesn’t give much room for pondering
Considering how much traffic this “rumor” got in the travel blogosphere and forums there has to be a certain truth to it and I’m on the side of believing that it will happen, since beginning of 2016 I’ve seen and wrote about a lot of lock-down type activities happening with regards to award travel and I don’t think things will be getting any better in the near future.
So, my suggestion would be that if you’re thinking about getting a card, specifically the SouthWest Airlines card to get their companion pass, do so now!
No one knows what the future holds, but the last two years, and even more aggressively starting in 2016, it seems like things aren’t getting easier with racking up miles/points through credit card spend/churn. One has to be optimistic and think that eventually the environment will change or that new opportunities will become available, until then, my suggestion would be to accelerate your Sign-Up portfolio to mitigate some of these opportunities going away in the short term.
Churner is a person that churns their cards — sign up for credit card A to get the bonus, cancel it 6 months later, re-sign up and get the bonus and do that over and over again. Yes, it was and in some cases still is possible to do that. ↩