How Can You Request a Better Bonus Offer After Applying for a Credit Card?
TPG reader Brad tweeted:
This is one of the most vexing questions in the points world. Credit card offers change all the time - bonuses go up, bonuses go down; annual fees are waived the first year then they're not; statement credits appear then disappear from offers - it's enough to drive you crazy making sure you get in on the best offers.
Unfortunately, most credit card companies will not let you cancel your current card and apply for the same product and get a new offer, at least not after just one year, so don't hastily re-apply for the same card.
What I would recommend is to ask the credit card company to match you to the new offer. You can tell them you just applied and that there is a better public offer that you found and ask if they will match it. The more recently you applied, the better your chances.
Some credit card companies are more lenient than others when it comes to this - it really just depends. American Express used to be very lenient and as long as you gave them the new offer code they would match it. However, more recently they have really cracked down and will no longer match new offers, so I would just caution you that whenever you apply for an American Express offer, that generally will be the best offer you'll get.
When it comes to Chase, usually they will bump you up to the higher bonus as long as it is within 90 days, but again there is no written policy on this. Generally if you're a good customer, the credit card companies want to keep you happy.
When it comes to getting the best offer possible at a certain time, check out the CreditCards.com Card Match tool which allows you to see if you have any special offers targeted towards you. Often the bonuses that are available through the Card Match Tool are 50-100% higher than the best current offers out there, so it’s always worth checking before you apply for a new credit card. Also, I always post the best public offers on my site, so you can be sure you'll be getting the best offer available here.
I would say, the best way to start is to send a short secure message online and ask for the better bonus. If that doesn't work, then pick up the phone and give the credit card companies a call. But, don't get too angry, because you didn't apply for the better offer, so you shouldn't assume you would get it.
With that, I do know a lot of people have had success getting matched to a better offer, and even if you don't get the full bonus differential, sometimes they'll drop some courtesy points in your account. Once again, it never hurts to ask!
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