Bump the Bonus
Previously, in Don’t be LaZy, pick up the PHONE, I told you there were a few questions you should learn to ask in the travel hacking game. The first was the reconsideration question, which we covered. Today let’s chit chat about the next one…trying to bump the bonus.
That sounds good, doesn’t it? “Bump the bonus.” And it’s totally achievable by logging into your account and sending a private message to your credit card company.
Here is how it will play out. Let’s say you just applied for a Chase credit card with a sign-up bonus of 35k (pretty weak) and NOW a week later Chase has changed the bonus for the same card to 50k! That’s 15k miles that you could’ve earned. Deep depression has set in at this point, maybe even rage. But don’t despair, there is hope. After seeing the bonus change, just sign into your Chase home page and send them a message explaining your dilemna. Chase has a 90 day window policy on receiving rewards that have gone up since you applied. Swiiinnnng. Now this only applies to credit card offers that are PUBLIC. Targeted offers will not be applied your account, unless YOU were targeted. You can still ask (I do) but don’t cross your fingers. About 5 months ago, there was one weekend where Chase granted non-targeted people an additional 50k bump bonus that was tied to a targeted Chase Sapphire. This only lasted one weekend and I happened to be a day late. Major bummer. Chase is the most gracious when granting bonus bumps (also in the reconsideration dept.).
American Express and their Membership Rewards program in the past has been very loose when people have asked for certain promo codes to be applied to their current cards. They have however tightened up a bit, but you can still ask. All they can do is say no.
Deals are changing everyday, but you can rest assured if you apply for a Chase card and the bonus goes up, you have a good chance to receive the bonus difference.
The secure message is a great way to communicate with banks and rewards programs regarding miles and other general inquiries. Learn to love it.