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Chase is Expanding 5/24 Rule to Cover all Products
It is spreading like an epidemic. The nasty virus known as Chase 5/24 will soon infect everything it touches. Nothing will be safe…not even the lowly $100 Disney sign up bonus will survive. Well that is as long as Chase follows through with what they said to Gary Leff at View from the Wing, that Chase is expanding 5/24 to all cards.
This is not surprising but it is a blow to the thing we call “the hobby”. To be honest it makes perfect sense for Chase to do it, because it is all about the $$$$.
Rumors are a Swirling
I guess rumors is a little bit of a harsh word since it came directly from the lips of a Chase executive. But until it is fully implemented there is always the chance things can change. Remember the whole Ultimate Rewards transfer panic of 2018. Of course you do, it was like last month!
This all came out during the recent World of Hyatt credit card launch. Chase was asked a direct question about whether or not it would be a 5/24 card. And they surprisingly answered it directly. They have never formally acknowledged the rule in the past, at least to my knowledge. Essentially what was said was that the World of Hyatt card will be immune from the rule in the beginning but it will be added at some point, as will all Chase products.
Big news there, but we don’t know when it will happen or how quickly the disease will spread. It could come one card at a time or all in one fell swoop. I would guess it will be rolled out slowly.
The Doctor came out to the waiting room and told you that your friend, Chase, may be a dead duck. They gave it a 5% chance of surviving. After you get through your 5 stages of grief, and get past your anger, you will realize this was inevitable and it makes total sense. That realization comes when you finally accept that it is all about the $$$$.
Stop Saying it is all about the $$$, Now that song is stuck in my head!
Let’s face facts this is big business. Big business is about the bottom line, the shareholders, and making the almighty dollar. The ads from banks may say they want a relationship. You may even make decisions thinking that is true (that’s cute) but you are a means to an end. You are a way to extract value. Those retention offers you get are not because banks value your relationship, it is because it is cheaper to retain you than it is to find a new you.
Ok we got past that now, this is a business relationship. When we stop being worthwhile to them it is time to move on. The same can be said for us. When a bank doesn’t provide value, we move on.
We are a group of people that tries to extract value out of everything we touch. If the card offers a weak return we are not going to use it, besides for the bonus of course. Think about the current non 5/24 cards. Which card out there gets any spend at all? Well, besides the new World of Hyatt card that is.
The IHG card, British Airways, Ritz Carlton etc. none of them offer us daily value. Outside of maybe chasing status via spend they end up in our sock drawers. We may cycle through them every 24 months to get a new shiny bonus but that isn’t being a profitable customer.
Chase wants people who will put every dollar of spend they have on one card. They already locked the gate on the cards where getting extreme value is possible, Ultimate Rewards products. All that was left were mostly cast offs.
It Is Not All Our Fault
They finally took a look at the cast offs and noticed some people are using these cards for the bonus and perks and almost no spend. The natural decision is to leave these people behind and go after the die hard brand loyalists (I see you IHG nuts out there 😉 )
Is it our fault the co-branded products don’t offer a lot of everyday value? If they want more loyalty then it should be earned with better offerings, like the new Hyatt card. Why is there only one Chase card with a grocery bonus? That is the largest area of cost for the majority of their customers.
American Express got it right with the Everyday Preferred card. It hits the two largest areas of spend for most, gas and groceries. It also offers everyday spend opportunity at 1.5x earning. They don’t force you to have a premium product to unlock the points either. And they were forward thinking enough to cap the areas where the most value can be had.
The Freedom Unlimited is as close to perfect as Chase has got as an everyday card. They still gate it by requiring a premium card to unlock the potential. It is already abuse proof since there are no bonus areas. So why 5/24 this card? Everyone would get it and use it. Eliminate the bonus and people would still get it and use it. That is a missed opportunity to get the $$$$ in my opinion.
The ease of racking up points with Chase will come to an end at some point in the future with this rule change. But that is business and that is how you need to treat these relationships. If more loyalty is desired then more benefits need to be offered. And sometimes cards like the Freedom Unlimited, cards that could benefit both sides equally, get caught in the crossfire because of it.
I for one won’t play the wait game. I will continue to value the products that I currently have with Chase and move on from adding more. Because it is all about the $$$ for me too, as it should be for you.
Miles to Memories has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Miles to Memories and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers.