Reader question: Can I product-change from a Chase Sapphire to a Chase Freedom, Freedom Unlimited or Slate?

Apr 13, 2020

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Editor’s note: This article is part of a new column to answer your credit card questions. If you would like to ask us a question, tweet us at @thepointsguy, message us on Facebook or email us at info@thepointsguy.com. 

Chase has a number of rules for credit card applications. There’s the infamous 5/24 rule, under which cardholders who have opened five or more credit card accounts across issuers in the past 24 months will be denied for a new Chase card. There are also rules about how frequently you can earn sign-up bonuses and which cards you can product-change to and from.

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I downgraded my CSP to a Chase Sapphire in September 2019. Now, with the one-Sapphire-only rule, do you know if it’s possible to do a product change from the Chase Sapphire (not CSP) to Chase Freedom, Freedom Unlimited or Slate?

I’m mostly curious because if I’m able to product change my Chase Sapphire, I should then be re-eligible for another CSP welcome bonus in 48 months.

Bailey

Some people don’t know that there are actually three Sapphire credit cards, though only two are currently open for applications. The two that are open are the Chase Sapphire Reserve, Chase’s premium travel credit card that charges a $550 annual fee, and the mid-tier Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, which charges a $95 annual fee. There is also the Chase Sapphire, a no-annual-fee credit card that is not open for applications. Although you can only directly apply for the Chase Sapphire Reserve and Chase Sapphire Preferred, you can request a product change to the plain Chase Sapphire.

The card offers 2x on dining and on travel booked through the Chase portal (as opposed to all travel with the Preferred). The card doesn’t allow redemptions through transfer partners and doesn’t offer a bonus when you redeem through the portal. It also has watered-down travel protections. All in all, it’s not a stellar credit card compared to the other Chase options, but it is a decent card to downgrade to if you can’t justify an annual fee and still want to earn rewards on dining and travel.

Related: Maximize the Chase Trifecta 

Can you product-change from the Chase Sapphire to another Chase card?

Yes. Chase allows product changes from the classic Sapphire to its other no-annual-fee credit cards and its Sapphire siblings. This means Bailey could request a product change from the classic Sapphire to the Chase Freedom (No longer open to new applicants), Chase Freedom Unlimited or Chase Slate before applying for a Chase Sapphire Preferred once the 48-month waiting period is over.

Chase doesn’t allow product changes from cobranded to branded cards and vice versa. So Bailey wouldn’t be able to product-change from the Chase Sapphire to a United credit card, for example. However, switches between the Sapphire cards, Freedom cards and Slate are allowed.

The information for the Chase Freedom has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Related: Your ultimate guide to credit card upgrades

Bottom line

It’s a smart move for Bailey to product-change to a different Chase card in order to get another Chase Sapphire Preferred bonus eventually. Chase requires a 48-month waiting period between earning Sapphire bonuses. So, depending on when Bailey originally applied for the Chase Sapphire Preferred and received that bonus, the wait could be significantly less than four years before being eligible for another bonus. Considering the CSP is currently offering a 1000,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 in the first three months from account opening.(worth $2,000 according to TPG valuations), it’s definitely worth trying to product-change in order to be eligible.

During Q2 of 2020, the Chase Freedom is offering some fantastic bonus categories for 5% back— grocery stores (including delivery services like Instacart and Shipt), fitness clubs, gym memberships and streaming services. All of these categories are easily maximized while we’re all cooking more, streaming and potentially figuring out new ways to work out in the confines of our living rooms. Of the current no-annual-fee credit card options from Chase, that would be my top recommendation for a card to request a switch to right now.

Featured image by The Points Guy.

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