Credit Card Issuers Will Waive Annual And Late Fees Most of the Time If You Just Ask


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credit card fees

Credit Card Issuers Will Waive Annual And Late Fees. Just Ask!

What are the chances that you’ll receive a retention offer when you credit card annual fee is due? A new survey from asked that same question and the answer is, “a pretty good chance”.

A report released Monday that surveyed around 950 card users says that there’s an 80% chance of success. Most people will have the fee waived entirely, while a smaller portion receive a fee reduction. Several large credit-card lenders also revealed to The Wall Street Journal that they often give in to such requests. But companies try not to publicize it too much, because if it becomes public knowledge, then more people will take advantage of it.

Threatening to stop using the card or to close it if the fee isn’t waived, apparently does work. You also have a better chance if you’re good customer; pay on time and use your card often. Banks are fighting for more market share in the credit-card market, and they spend large sums to get customers. So they’re willing to waive fees to keep your business.

In some instances, a card holder can get their annual fee waived if they agree to spend a certain amount of money on the card within a set period of time, according to one card-issuing bank that didn’t want to be identified. This is known a retention bonus, and they usually vary from one customer to another, or one customer service rep to another. Most likely you won’t be successful in waiving a $550 fee on the Amex Platinum card, but lots of cards with annual fees less than $100 will have a good chance.

But, that’s not the only fees that card issuers will waive. 87% of card users who asked their lender to waive their late fee were successful, according to the survey. The same survey shows that nearly 70% who asked for a lower interest rate got it. You can also waive cash advance fees or bank monthly fees just by asking


You should always do retention calls on credit card that you wish to keep past the annual fee. You should usually have an idea in mind for how much you willing to pay for the annual fee, so you can easily decide whether a retention offer is worth it.

For fees such as late fees, cash advance fees, bank monthly fees etc, you can also use secure messages and I’ve personally found that banks will accommodate you as long as you don’t overdo it.

Let us know you experience when asking for these refunds.

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  1. Not to be picky, but your article title is misleading: “Credit Card Issuers Will Waive Annual And Late Fees If You Just Ask” . It should be “may” or “will often”.
    I ask all the time and get them waived often, but not 100% of the time.
    The word “will” means it will definitely happen, not it may happen.
    Please correct the title.

  2. Horse pucky in my experience. Have yet to get a retention offer on a card and I have tried all sorts of ways to ask, etc. It’s always, well, tough noogies, buddy!

  3. I always ask for something to sweeten the pot when an annual fee comes due. Sometimes it’s a statement credit equal to the AF. Other times, I’m offered bonus points. On one card I got 7x for airline and hotel spend for 6 months.

  4. Yea right!!!!

    I’ve got an 800+ “real” FICO score, have never paid a bill late in my life…and I have real world experience of about a 33% chance at getting waived annual fees in a dozen + requests in requesting an annual fee waiver.

    Forget about even asking with Chase, Citi, Barclay’s, or AMEX.

    Wait, I did once forget to pay a cable bill on time and requested & rcvd a $5 late fee waived but they sternly warned me that it was a one-time deal!! So, my percentage is about 34%!!

    Just close the card &reopen it again for another bonus!! Oops, I forgot Chase has that snarky 5/24 rule, AMEX has that one time lifetime bonus rule (reminds me of my cable co), Citi has their once every 24 months rule, etc, etc, etc…

    It would be nice to see the travel/card churning blogosphere write about “real” issues such as those above!!

  5. I agree completely. I always call my credit card companies before the annual fee hits to see if I can get it waived. At the very least, I’ll attempt to get a bonus if I agree to keep the card open.

  6. this post should really be rebranded and beefed up with info about retention calls. thats essentially what this is. i wouldnt say AF can be waived if you just ask. thats a little misleading. more often you get credited or compensated to offset. not AF waived.


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