Obtaining Larger Credit Card Sign-up Bonuses

If you've been in the game for some time, you've probably experienced signing up for a credit card with a lucrative bonus, only to see that shortly after, the bank bumped up the bonus on a "limited time" special sign-up period. Recently, this happened to me when applying for the Chase Ink Plus card: Initially, I signed up for the 50,000 point sign-up bonus, had my application approved and was a bit disheartened to see that three days later, Chase had increased the bonus to 60,000 points.


Obtaining Larger Signup Bonuses

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Still, I wasn't disheartened for very long. I've encountered this before and I have a great strategy of getting switched over to these bonuses when they are sporadically increased. The strategy I have is very similar to calling reconsideration lines when my applications aren't approved immediately. Here are some tips on how to secure these increases in bonuses.

1. Send a Secure Message instead of calling in: I've found that online support is much more robust than calling in to request increases in bonuses. Several years ago, the AMEX SPG card's sign-up bonus suddenly increased from 25,000 to 30,000 SPG points. I called the number on the back of the card to ask for the difference in points but was stonewalled by the representative. Thinking "what the hell", I got off the call and immediately shot over a short secure message on americanexpress.com. I had the 5,000 additional points in my account later that day.

2. State that you want the higher bonus and include a link: It's always a good idea to show proof that there is a higher or better available deal than the one for which you applied. Including a link in the secure message gives them this evidence and is another advantage of doing this online via text. Imagine having to read the entire URL to a representative over the phone!

3. Remind them how much you like their products: To help grease the wheels a little bit, be sure to drop into conversation how long you've been a customer with them. Conversely, if you're a newbie, make sure you describe how much you like their products or anything that you think would help you get on the rep's good side.


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Image from switcheroom.com

Using these techniques, I've been able to get increased sign-up bonuses a half dozen times that resulted in tens of thousands of extra points and miles.

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