There are always so many rules to keep track of when it comes to sign up bonuses, it gets even more difficult because it changes based on the credit card company. It’s about to get a lot more weird, because I didn’t even consider how other countries have different rules of their own. In the United Kingdom, American Express has made some changes to their sign up bonuses that are pretty interesting coming from the rules we have here in the United States.
While in the United States, we are used to having “once in a lifetime” sign up bonuses on American Express cards, things used to work a little bit differently in many other parts of the world. Before the latest change, the way it used to work in the United Kingdom was you could be eligible for another sign up bonus if you canceled an American Express card and wait for 6 months before reapplying for the card.
Effective immediately, in order to receive another bonus, you will have to wait 24 months from the date when you cancel the card before you are eligible for the sign up bonus again. Fortunately, you do not have to wait that long if you wanted to apply, the 24 months rule just applies only to the sign up bonus itself.
Maybe I’m just salty, with our lifetime rule, but this isn’t even all that bad. 2 years is still a long time, don’t get me wrong, but with a 6 month period previously, it feels like a churner paradise!
Granted, you have to remember that credit is treated differently in many other places in the world. In the United States, people apply for many more credit cards on average and much more frequently than other people around the world. I think this 6 month rule was probably put into place and was fine for a while, because not too many people would take advantage of churning them. But I think nowadays churning is becoming more and more common with how easy it is for people to earn the bonus.
The 24 month rule time frame is pretty similar to the way most issuers will handle this sort of thing. Can’t say that I’m happy that churning isn’t as easy as it used to be for people in the United Kingdom, but at the end of the day, it still isn’t too terrible. Just a lot more planning will have to go into future credit card applications.
How are the credit card rules in the place you live? Let us know below!