Chase follows Amex by extending sign-up bonus deadlines for select cardholders

Apr 14, 2020

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Chase is reportedly extending sign-up bonus spending period deadlines for three months — but only for select cardholders who opened accounts earlier this year. Originally reported by Miles to Memories, Chase is only giving this extension to cardholders who opened accounts between Jan. 1, 2020, and Mar. 31, 2020. I was able to confirm the extension with Chase.

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What to do if you qualify for an extension

Affected cardholders should start receiving communication from Chase about the extension starting tomorrow.  This news comes on the tail of American Express announcing a three-month welcome bonus period extension for all cardholders who apply between Dec. 1, 2019 and May 31, 2020. Compared to this new policy from Chase, it’s certainly the more substantial of the two. Unfortunately, Chase’s policy won’t help new cardholders that have or will apply after Mar. 31 — only those who applied through the end of March.

Of course, this could all change in the coming weeks and months as we start to see a clearer picture of the timeline associated with flattening the COVID-19 curve and the recovery aftermath. This policy may extend to include newer cardholders, or benefits could potentially be added to the roster of extensions. But there has been no confirmation from Chase on whether either scenario is in the works.

For more information on how the coronavirus pandemic is affecting cardholders and travelers, check out our dedicated hub for news and updates 

What cards qualify for an extension?

According to the Chase spokesperson I talked with, this extension is for all “points-based” credit card sign-up bonuses, including cobranded cards such as the United Club Infinite Card, cash back cards such as the Chase Freedom (No longer open to new applicants) and business cards such as the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card.

How to keep track of your spending progress

In 2019, Chase began rolling out a spending progress tracker for sign-up bonuses on its Ultimate Rewards credit cards (the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve and Ink Business Preferred Credit Card). If you’re eligible, you should theoretically see the timeline extension show up there too.

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.

If you are a new cardholder who falls into the timeline and you haven’t received an email from Chase by the end of the week, I would recommend reaching out via secure message and inquiring for confirmation. You don’t want to assume you get the extension, only to be told by Chase after the fact that you weren’t eligible and therefore didn’t earn your sign-up bonus.

Related reading: The ultimate guide to tracking your progress toward a credit card sign-up bonus

Bottom line

This has been a trying time for many cardholders. Even for those not directly affected by the coronavirus, staying home and social distancing has meant potential financial stress for those with jobs deemed “non-essential.” For most Americans, it has also meant less spending and little-to-no traveling. That has made high annual fees hard to justify for those coming up on renewal dates and sign-up bonuses harder to hit for those who applied right before lockdowns and layoffs began in the U.S.

It’s nice to see some card issuers take steps to help cardholders with waived fees, statement credits and deadline extensions. As we continue down this path, I imagine we’ll see even more rewards card issuers join in on offering cardholders bonus and benefits extensions.

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