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Want to upgrade your airline mile credit card? — Don’t call the credit card company first

by on Tue January 3, 2012 • No Comment

More and more we are seeing multiple tiers of airline mile credit cards from the same company. Examples include…

  • Gold Delta Sky Miles American Express (first tier), Platinum Delta Sky Miles American Express (second tier), Delta Reserve (third tier)
  • Chase Sapphire (first tier), Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (second tier)
  • Green American Express (first tier), Gold American Express (second tier), Platinum American Express (third tier)

So let’s say you get one of the entry level cards and decide a few months later you like the benefits of the higher level cards and are willing to pay the higher annual fee.

Well, you might not have luck calling your credit card company and asking to upgrade your existing account to the new higher tier. And it has nothing to do with your quality as a customer or credit risk.

It has everything to do with recent federal regulation, the ‘CARD’ Act specifically.

See…the CARD Act forbids annual fee increases before your first renewal. And some of the banks are playing the rule of that law very safe by not letting you upgrade an existing new account to one with a higher fee within one year.

So how can you get around it?

Just apply for the new card you want separately, keeping your old account open. Then it’s only your credit risk that matters, as it normally is.

Once that new account is open, it’s up to you whether you want to keep the old one active. You may want to cancel it just before its annual fee is due, or downgrade it to a card with no annual fee and keep the history and credit line active.


The following two tabs change content below.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Miles dont expireas long as card is open
Learn more

Partner Offer

50,000 bonus points

Intro Offer

$0 introductory annual fee the first year, then $95

Annual Fee


Foreign Transaction Fee Waived

Yes - transfer to United MileagePlus, Southwest Rapid Rewards, Marriott Rewards, and more

Points Can Transfer to Airline Miles ?

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"These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered."

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