Speculation – Chase Possibly Taking More Anti-Churning Measures

On 10/19/2017, we got recieved very bad Chase related news:

  1. Ink Plus (and Cash) is no longer generating 5x on PayPal Digital Gifts (PPDG), Gyft, Cardcash, and GiftCardMart.
  2. Chase is more or less beta testing 1/24 family rule on their  California residents exclusive offer of Southwest credit cards.

In this post, I’ll talk about above two points, what I think they mean, and  I the future of churning Chase cards. I will also talk about the likelihood of 5/24 bypassing Ink paper/fax app going away.

On the Death of 5x Giftcards

When the news 1st surfaced everyone thought it was Paypal who killed this glitch but as the story unrevealed itself I think we now know better. Rumor has it that Ink Bold and Mastercard Ink products (reddit, runningwithmiles) still earn 5x. It seems likely that Chase didn’t want to hand out 5x anymore and shut it down on the popular versions of Ink products.

On Beta Testing 1/24 Southwest Rule

First let me remind you of the recent 1/24 Sapphire rule

The product is not available to either (i) current cardmembers of any Sapphire credit card, or (ii) previous cardmembers of any Sapphire credit card who received a new cardmember bonus within the last 24 months.

then let’s look at the beta tested 1/24 Southwest rule included in California exclusive offer

This product is not available to either (i) current cardmembers of any Rapid Rewards Credit Card, or (ii) previous cardmembers of any Rapid Rewards Credit Card who received a new cardmember bonus for a Rapid Rewards Credit Card within the last 24 months

Now before I sell you on my thought process let me give you the timeline:

  • mid-2015: 5/24 was implemented on personal Chase branded cards (aka not Ink and co-branded cards)
  • may, 2016: 5/24 expands to Ink and various co-branded cards (reddit, DoC)
  • august, 2017: 1/24 Sapphire rule (DoC)
  • october, 2017: 1/24 Southwest rule is beta tested on California exclusive offer (DoC)

Chase has a history of trying out a rule on their product and then going “it’s working great for me, now you try it!” to their partners. It is clear that not all Chase partners were sold on Chase’s 5/24 pitch (ex IHG and Hyatt) while some were only partially sold on it (Marriott).

Southwest, unlike Marriott, fully embraced 5/24 and let it be applied to all 3 Southwest cards. It makes perfect sense that they would be the first Chase partner to beta test 1/24 family rule as well. Maybe 1/24 family rule won’t expand to co-branded cards right away but I don’t think it is unreasonable to expect it.

I personally see this as Southwest taking this opportunity to offer a great offer (free companion pass) while also testing out 1/24 family rule in their product and thus weeding out churners from taking advantage of their generosity. It remains to be seen if they’re willing to fully embrace a 1/24 family rule. I’m not sure if Marriott will embrace 1/24 family rule when they haven’t even fully embraced 5/24 rule.

I think two things to look for in the future are:

  • will 1/24 family rule be introduced to the Ink products?
  • will southwest, marriott, and united embrace 1/24 family rule of their own?

On Ink Paper/Fax App

I recall reading a DP on reddit of a BRM claiming that Chase is looking to close down paper/fax route soon. It isn’t surprising to me that Chase, as always, is looking to close over-abused 5/24 bypassing loopholes. At the moment literally anyone can get 100k Ink offer, regardless of being under 5/24 or above 5/24. It does not help that some BRMs are willing to take shortcuts and fill applications through e-mail.

Remember that paper/fax app goes to a different underwriting team. Eventually this team is going to get sick of getting flooded with application of low-revenue businesses and individuals.

Takeaways

This game is continuously changing and not only do you need adapt but also you need to be able to anticipate the worst of what is coming.

Oh and if you still don’t have an Ink Preferred card then you’re doing something wrong. If you already have it then churn it while you can.

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