Tip: Consider a Retention Offer Before Canceling Your Credit Card

Feb 17, 2017

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If you’re thinking about canceling your credit card for any reason, you should consider the possible retention offers that issuers may offer when trying to dissuade you from closing your account. Banks pay a lot to acquire customers, so it can be worth it for them to offer a bonus for staying. These incentives are usually enough to negate the cost of the annual fee, or they can sometimes be worth even more.

I had been thinking about closing my Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard, as the annual fee for the card was coming up. I’ve been putting most of my spend on my Chase Sapphire Reserve, I rarely fly American and don’t take advantage of the card’s benefits as often as I’d like to.The information for the Citi AAdvantage Platinum card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.   

I called Citi and told the representative that I wanted to close my account because the annual fee was too high, and the rep transferred me to an account specialist who offered me a special deal. If I were to spend $95 dollars on my card during the next month, Citi would waive the $95 annual fee for the upcoming year. I decided to accept the offer, seeing the value in the deal. A simple phone call saved me $95.

Although I don’t use the AAdvantage card that often, it still has some pretty great benefits. It offers free checked bags for you and up to four companions on the same reservation when you fly AA. Another great benefit is that you’ll get 10% of your miles back, up to 10,000 a year, when redeeming for award flights. That’s not bad, as 10,000 American miles are worth $150 according to TPG’s latest valuations. Cardholders also have access to reduced mileage awards, which can lead to even more bang for your miles.

Not every card issuer will offer a deal like this, so don’t expect to get rewarded for trying to cancel your card. Keep in mind that not all retention bonuses will be worth it, so make sure you weigh the pros and cons before accepting an offer — but it never hurts to listen!

Featured image courtesy of Getty Images.

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More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles after spending $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months and a $200 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Limited Time Offer: Plus, get a 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable 15.74%-24.74%. Offer expires 7/28/2021.
  • Accelerate your path to Medallion Status, with Status Boost®. Plus, in 2021 you can earn even more bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) to help you reach Medallion Status.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
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  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
0% on purchases for 12 months
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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