False alarm: Rumors of Amex closing all Zync card accounts not true

Jan 29, 2020

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Recently, rumors circulated that American Express was officially closing all Amex Zync Card accounts at the end of March 2020 based on an email a group of cardholders received. I reached out to Amex to confirm, and a representative clarified that Amex had no plans to unilaterally close all existing Zync accounts. The emails that were cited in recent reports were actually part of a regular review process. Amex only sent out a small batch of emails to affected cardholders.

So if you did not get an email warning about your account closing, you have nothing to worry about. Those who did receive an email have until March 29, 2020 to use their card. Afterwards, their accounts will be closed. These cardmembers will not be auto-transferred to another card product. If you are an affected cardmember who still has rewards in your account (and no other linked Membership Rewards card), you will be able to redeem them online though March 20, 2020. Amex is also giving a 30-day grace period after accounts are closed where you can redeem your points via phone by calling 800-297-3276.

Want more credit card news delivered to your inbox? Sign up for our daily newsletter!

While the card has been discontinued since 2012, some still have Zync accounts. I was a freshman in high school when the American Express Zync Cards first made waves in the credit card market. By the time I was old enough to apply for and appreciate rewards credit cards, the Zync had long been closed for applications. But from the sound of it, the Zync was a very interesting product. It came with a distinct blue and white design and an interesting set of card details.

For those of you (like me) who aren’t familiar with the original card details, Amex allowed cardholders to choose from one of 10 “Packs,” each offering its own set of benefits targeted towards a specific type of consumer. Annual fees tied to the card ranged from $0 to $25 based on the benefits pack chosen.

There was a Give Back option that awarded 1,000 Membership Rewards points for each logged hour of volunteer service and 1x on all charity donations made with the Amex. There were two travel-centric options: Family Travel gave you access to a specialist to help book vacation with savings and travel benefits, and Go gave you 2x on airfare, lost wallet protection and travel discounts. Other packs included a Restaurant, Style, Connect (for phone, cable and internet benefits), Eco, Music, Personal Finance and even a Food & Wine option.

Related reading: Choosing the best American Express card for you

Compared to the top credit cards of today, none of the Zync card options stand up to the competition. But it is certainly an interesting product to look back at, especially as we head into a new decade.

Bottom line

It’s not uncommon for credit card issuers to review accounts, and there are a multitude of reasons why they may choose to close certain cardholder accounts. The most common reason is inactivity (which I am assuming is the reason for the vast majority of this batch of account closings), but payment history, your credit score or a breach of your cardmember agreement can also lead to your account being shut down by an issuer.

This is why it’s important for you to use your credit cards at least once every few months, even if it’s just for one purchase that you immediately pay off. That way your account is staying active, and you’re less likely to have your account closed during a review process such as this.

Featured image by by filadendron/Getty Images.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points


CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 3X points on dining and 2x points on travel, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
Regular APR
16.24% - 23.24% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit

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.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.