Credit Cards Guides

4 things that feel illegal to know about credit cards

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4 things that feel illegal to know about credit cards

We would never lead you down the road of high crimes and misdemeanors, so even though these four things may feel illegal to know about credit cards, they’re actually essential pieces of knowledge that will help you get the best deal, lower your fees, keep your credit as high as possible, and get you flying like this:

the inside of an airplane with many seats

#1 Credit Card websites and Bloggers gate-keep the best offers

I’m going to let you in on a little secret. We aren’t naming names, but most credit card websites and bloggers aren’t giving you the best credit cards offers that are available!

Why?

It’s simple…because they make more money advertising offers that make an affiliate commission vs the offers that are actually the best for their readers.

But that’s just not our style. So….

We do our absolute best to keep an up to date list of the best credit card offers currently available whether we make a commission off them or not, but we also do our best to keep an ongoing list of the all time best offers those cards have ever had. Here’s a few examples of what we mean:

Let’s look at Amex Gold. 60k is the commissionable link, but Resy has a 75k link and reader referrals populate up to 90k!

We keep an ongoing spreadsheet with the best current offers as well as the best ever – found here

If you see one that is better – shoot us an email at miles@monkeymiles.com and we will update.

a screenshot of a credit card

#2 If you apply for a credit card and are denied, you can request reconsideration

You’ve applied for a credit card and then received that dreaded denial letter. Game over, right? Wrong. You can ask for reconsideration.

Reconsideration is one of the most powerful tools we have when acquiring a new credit card, and often times a bank’s algorithm has rejected you without a single set of human eyes taking a look at your application. Reconsideration is putting you in front of humanity and asking them to take another look at your application.

How do you go about making a reconsideration call?

Depending on a the bank there are special numbers to call. Here are a few that have been compiled. Numbers change…please let me know if any of these aren’t working.

  • American Express

    • 877-399-3083
  • Bank of America

    • Personal
      • 1-800-354-0401
      • 1-866-505-7481
    • Business
      • 888-782-7717
      • 888-569-4436
  • Barclay

    • Personal:
      • 866-408-4064
    • Business:
      • 866-408-4064
  • Capital One

    • 1-800-625-7866 ( application services – this will lead you to a rep )
  • Chase

    • Personal
      • 1-888-609-7805
        • old number – 1-888-270-2127
    • Business
      • 800-453-9719
  • Citi

    • Personal
      • 800-695-5171
    • Business
      • 800-763-9795
  • U.S. Bank

    • 800-947-1444
    • 800-685-7680
  • Wells Fargo

    • 1-866-412-5956
    • 1-800-967-9521

Ok, I have my number. Now what?

You’d better get your charm offensive prepped because you’re going to have to rock this call. Be the nicest, sweetest, funniest version of your point grubbing self 😉 Why do you think Miles has that perma-smile? He’s made so many retention calls it’s there permanently. Here’s few tips

  1. Talk to them like a person. There are a lot of jerks out there. Be nice!
  2. Never bring up the sign up bonus.
  3. Know all the perks of the card
  4. Know all of the cards you have with the bank
    • An easy way to do this is to log in to your online account and keep it open during the call.
  5. Ask why you were rejected.

#3 Oops, You paid your bill late? You can get credit card late fees and interest reversed

No way Brosé you can just private message the bank or call the customer service number on the back of your card. Make sure you make a payment, preferably the full statement balance prior to calling. This way the bank sees that you’ve paid it off and you aren’t a credit risk.

You’d then say something like this:

“I’m so sorry, I completely forgot to pay my card by the due date. I’ve gone ahead and paid off the balance and I’d really appreciate it if you could consider waiving my late fees and interest charges as a show of good will. Thank you for the consideration.”

Usually, this is something the bank will extend to you once or twice a year. This is a screenshot of when I made this mistake the last time and they reversed the charges.

a screenshot of a phone

#4 Don’t cancel your credit cards, downgrade them to no fee or lower fee versions

We’ve all been there. You get hit with an annual fee and you’re like, “Holy crap I ain’t paying this no more!”

My internal voice is similar to that of an old miner prospector in case you’re wondering. Instead of knee jerk canceling your card…you should heavily consider downgrading it.

One of the most important factors of your credit score is credit utilization = the amount of credit that you use / the total amount of credit extended to you. When you cancel your credit cards you lose the entire line of credit associated with that card.

Instead of canceling you can often downgrade the card to one with a lower annual fee, or even one without any annual fee. You’ll keep that credit line open, and the account will continue to age which helps your credit score as well!

The Chase Sapphire Reserve is a great example. You could downgrade it to a Chase Sapphire Preferred which has a $95 annual fee, or even to a Chase Freedom Flex or Chase Freedom Unlimited which have $0 annual fees. Just remember that you need at least one card that earns Chase premium Ultimate Rewards in order to transfer to partners ( but that could be a Chase Ink Business Preferred as well ).

a man with his finger in his mouth

Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities.

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Learn More

Affiliate LInk

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card


4.8
4.8/5
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® is a great starter card that earns Premium Ultimate Rewards that can be transferred into over a dozen partners many of which are US based including Hyatt, Southwest, United, IHG, and Marriott.

Welcome Offer

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. 

Annual Fee

$95

Points Earned

Transferrable Chase Ultimate Rewards

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
    • That’s $750 when you redeem through Chase Travel℠
  • 5x on all travel purchased through Chase Travel℠
  • 3x on dining, including eligible delivery services for takeout & dining out
  • 3x on select streaming services
  • 3x on online grocery purchases
    • (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs)
  • $50 Annual Chase Travel Hotel Credit via Chase Travel℠
    • The begins immediately for new cardmembers and after your account anniversary for existing cardmembers
  • 2x on all other travel
  • 10% Anniversary Bonus
    • Every year you keep the card, your total spend will yield a 10% points bonus. If you spend $10k in a year, you’ll get 1k bonus points
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred continues to redeem at 1.25c in the Chase Travel℠ and the slew of other benefits remain in tact including Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver ( primary ), purchase protections, etc.
  • Points are transferrable to 14 Ultimate Rewards partners
  • Redeem in Chase Travel℠ for 1.25 cents per point
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Suite of Travel and Purchase Coverage
    • Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver is my favorite
  • Get complimentary access to DashPass which unlocks $0 delivery fees and lower service fees for a minimum of one year when you activate by December 31, 2024
  • $95 Annual Fee

We keep an up to date spreadsheet that lists the best ever offers: You can find that spreadsheet here.

Historically 80k is a very, very good offer and hit in both 2022 and 2023. In 2021, we saw the offer hit an all time high of 100k. Who knows if that will ever come back.

Main Cast: 

Cards that earn flexible points and should be used on the bulk of your purchases.

Supporting Cast:

Cards that earn fixed points in the currency of the airline/hotel and can not be transferred at attractive rates. These cards yield benefits that make it worth keeping, but not necessarily worth putting a lot of your everyday spend on. 

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® is exceptional starter card and offers transferrable Ultimate Rewards, and pairs well with other Chase cards.

If you carry this card alongside Chase’s cashback cards like the Chase Freedom Flex®  and Chase Freedom Unlimited® or the business versions: Ink Business Cash® , Ink Business Unlimited® you can combine the points into Preferred account and transfer into hotel and airline partners

Annual fee is quite low at $95 a year + you get a 10% anniversary bonus on points + $50 hotel credit in Chase travel.

The responses below 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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