I receive compensation for content and many links on this blog. You don’t have to use these links, but I am grateful to you if you do. American Express, Citibank, Chase, Capital One and other banks are advertising partners of this site. Any opinions expressed in this post are my own, and have not been reviewed, approved, or endorsed by my advertising partners. I do not write about all credit cards that are available -- instead focusing on miles, points, and cash back (and currencies that can be converted into the same).
American Express will only give you the initial bonus on a card once in your lifetime per product. However lifetime means as long as American Express shows you as having had the card in the past. There’s a good chance, for instance, that the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card I had around 2003 isn’t on my list anymore so it may be possible for me to get the initial offer of 60,000 miles after $3,000 spend within the first 4 months of cardmembership that expires September 19. If you aren’t sure whether you’ve had an American Express card before, ask via online chat.
Citibank says you cannot have opened or closed a card in the last 24 months in order to get its bonus again. And they’ve treated some cards in the same ‘family’ (the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard® and Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®, the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card and Prestige) for this purpose, too.
Chase has both 5/24 for some cards — that you probably won’t be approved if you’ve had 5 or more new cards approved by any issuer in the last 24 months — as well as a limitation of one bonus per card in the past 24 months.
In order to be eligible for a new cardmember bonus you cannot,
- currently have the card
- have received a bonus for the card in the past 24 months
Chase treats some products as a ‘family’ for this purpose. You cannot have received a bonus for any Sapphire card under this rule, not just the one you’re applying for. And for Sapphire cards they’ve expanded it from 24 months to 48 months.
You have to wait four years between bonuses for Sapphire cards — whether a Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or one of its sibings.
I do get the balancing act they’re trying for here.
- On the one hand they want to offer a past cardmember an initial bonus again if they were a valuable cardmember and perhaps gave up a United card after the David Dao incident. Someone that has been a valuable cardmember before is more likely than average to be one again.
- On the other hand they don’t want to keep investing large sums in acquisition bonuses for customers who won’t become profitable by keeping the product and continuing to put spending on it. In the case of the Reserve they expected it to take 6-7 years for a customer to break even, they can’t make money investing in acquisition bonuses for the same customer every two years.