Hit Chase if you are 0/24 to 5/24:
If you haven’t figured out the 5/24 rule yet, go back and read step one. BLUF: Chase will deny you outright if you have 5 cards opened at ANY BANK in 24 months. This includes being added as an Authorized User (AU) on anybody’s account. Please do not make yourself an AU to anybody’s card and vice versa! You are making yourself ineligible for Chase cards without even knowing it! Just borrow their card or have them borrow yours to make spend!
If you are right at 5 cards in 2 years, then wait until the first day of the 25th month after your fifth account was opened before attempting to apply for a new Chase Card. You should always hit Chase first, because you will not be able to again after taking this MLA Vacation Club Journey. If you are LOL/24 then go for step three and forget about Chase altogether.
2/30, 24 and 48 Month Rules:
Keep in mind the 2/30 rule which is two applications every 30 days. Also keep in mind the 24 month bonus rule. You can only get the sign up bonus once per 24 months. There is another rule of a 48 month cooling off period for any Sapphire product. If you got a bonus on the Chase Sapphire, Reserve, or Preferred, you must wait 4 freaking years to get the bonus on the card again!
In this article I will present the 5 Chase cards that have the highest return on value. You must make a plan to make sure your organic spedining matches the thresholds without inflating your lifestyle. I tend to wait for my yearly professional dues to be due or other large purchases. You can even prepay taxes if you are willing to do a 2% fee. I use Plastiq (use Referral Code: 674873 to help me out) to make spend on child care, lawn care, and rent. These payments via plastiq would count towards that minimum spend.
The current bonus for Chase Sapphire Reserve is 50k Ultimate Rewards (UR)
after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Make sure you hit this spend in a 90 day period. If you open the Chase Freedom you need to now hit another $500 in 30 days to get the 15,000 UR bonus. On top of that if you are up for it the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant, this requires another $3,000 on purchases in your first 3 months to get three 35k point nights. If you want to be super bold and hit The United Club Card for the 50,000 United MileagePlus miles, you need spend another $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
The Freedom Unlimited is just 3% on everything for the first year, then drops down to 1.5%. This is a great anything card, but for the purposes of this game, we have the card to turn into another CSR in one year, but more on that later!
You will need to spend $10,500 to hit the bonus on all 4 cards. Think about pacing yourself to hit this spend. Make a plan, ask yourself if you can open all 5 of these cards at the same time and hit the spend. If you want to open all five cards then do two in the same day to save yourself a credit pull, then wait 30 days and hit two more cards. Then 30 days from there you would need to hit the last card 60 days from first card. This would mean you would need to spend $7,500 in 120 days. If that’s too much then plan out your spends so that you don’t go past 90 days each card without hitting the bonus!
5/24 Example Given:
Chase will count these new Chase cards opened in step two against its own 5/24 rules. How hard you hit Chase depends on your status with other banks. Your current cards opened will determine when and what cards you can get.
Let’s look at this O-5’s current situation as of June 2019:
|Date Open||Product||Drop Off Date||New Card|
|25-May-17||TJ Maxx AU||1-Jun-19||Not Under 5/24|
|28-Jun-17||Chase World of Hyatt||1-Jul-19||United Club|
|10-Jul-17||Chase AU on Ink||1-Aug-19||CSR|
|24-Sep-17||Chase BA||1-Oct-19||Freedom Unlimited|
|21-Nov-17||Chase Ritz Card||1-Dec-19||Marriott Boundless|
Looking at the example, this Navy CDR should wait till 01 July 2019 to Hit her first Chase Card. This is the exact day that her Chase Word of Hyatt card (Opened 28 June 2017) will fall off her 24 month window. When Chase Pulls her credit they will only see 4 cards being opened in 24 months and will grant her a chance at any Chase card she has applies to. If she had done this one day before on 30 June 2019, Chase would automatically deny her and not even see her stellar 824 credit score!
Chase United Club Card
This newly minted 4/24 churner can select any card in the Chase Portfolio, but the ones listed on my referral links would be the most optimal due to their annual perks, and huge annual fee waivers. This CDR wants to do the Chase United Club Card first because she has a bunch of United Mileage Plus Miles to use on discount 12,500 point flights:
This card will also give her access to all Star Alliance Lounges when flying with these carriers overseas:
One particular lounge I liked using is the ANA Lounge in Naha Japan with its Orion beer pouring robot. You can get access to any of these lounges when flying ANA and showing your United Club Card. Domestically you can gain access to the United club on departures and arrivals even when not flying with United.
Chase Sapphire Reserve and Freedoms
I personally would have gone for Chase Sapphire Reserve first, for the $300 a year travel credit. This is good for hotels, airlines, tolls, even some tour bookings. Just charge $300 on the card and it is covered by the credit. The $300 resets every year at the one year anniversary of opening the card. We then open a Chase Freedom and a Chase Freedom Unlimited only to turn into CSR #2 and #3 in a one year time period, but more on that in later in the article.
Chase Bonvoy Boundless and Ritz-Carlton
The final card I recommend is the Chase Bonvoy Brilliant just to upgrade to a Ritz-Carlton Card when the 35k night cert hits in one year. The Ritz card gives you $300 for airline incidentals as well as give you a 50k night cert every year. The best deal is the $100 for flights when booking a pair of round trip domestic flights:
Getting The MLA Fee Waiver
Active Duty & Spousal Waivers of Fees Per MLA (any account opened post Oct 2017) will get MLA coverage and a annual fee waiver. This has been confirmed with several reader data points. Submit the request via Secure Chat when logged in to your Chase account:
The waiver takes about a month to take place. Make sure that you apply it to free products such as Freedom and Freedom Unlimited before upgrading to the higher product.
Product change must stay each brand family so Freedom, Slate, can become Sapphire, and Marriott Bonvoy can Become a Ritz, but you can’t turn a Ritz to a Freedom. You can move cards up and down this way, even to the products that you can’t apply to directly like the Chase Ritz or even the Sapphire Vanilla. However due to the credit CARD act, you can’t change terms of a card until the one year mark.
You also want to get the bonus of the higher product before upgrading an existing product to the same product. For example if you had a Chase Freedom before you joined, then first verify SCRA coverage on that Freedom, then get a Sapphire Reserve with MLA waiver. Spend and get the bonus, and then afterwards upgrade that old freedom to a CSR.
Using the Benefits
At the conclusion of this step you should have the following:
- At least 50,000 Ultimate Rewards (UR) Points From CSR
- Transfer to United or Hyatt to book vacations as needed
- Book flights with the Ultimate Rewards Portal @ 1.5 Cents per UR
- 15,000 UR with Chase Freedom
- Transfer to CSR and cash out with above methods
- Do not take the cash back as you only get 1 cent per point
- $300 a year per CSR
- Charge airlines, hotels, motels, timeshares, car rental agencies, cruise lines, travel agencies, discount travel sites, campgrounds and operators of passenger trains, buses, taxis, limousines, ferries, toll bridges and highways, and parking lots and garages until depleted
- Repeat with the Freedom and Freedom Unlimited when you upgrade to another CSR
- Wait for the benefit to reset at the one year mark, and then do it all over again
- 3 Free nights at any Marriott,
- Another 35k night arrives at the one year mark
- Book a 35k hotel using this site to find an eligible hotel.
- Upgrade Bonvoy Boundless to Ritz at one year mark
- 50K night per year
- $300 flight incidental reimbursement
- Use for in flight dining
- Luggage fees
- Lounge Access
- Seat upgrade fees