November 29th, 2011
Update, 11/30: The old Ink Bold link is now dead, and with it the Chase Exclusives program for business cards is now dead for anyone that doesn’t already have the old Ink Bold card.
The Chase Exclusives program lives on for the Freedom card as well as for those who have the old Ink Bold card.
I blogged earlier this month about the Exclusives benefits that Chase provides to people who have a Chase checking account and the Freedom card or Ink Bold card. Until now Freedom cardholders and Ink Bold cardholders were automatically upgraded to the Exclusives program within a couple months of receiving the card.
The Exclusives program for the Freedom card, which gives 10 points per transaction and 10% bonus points on top of rotating 5% categories and 1% elsewhere isn’t going anywhere.
However my contact at Chase informs me that with the release of the new Ink Bold card, the Ink Bold Exclusives program will be going away. The reason given for this is that small business focus groups told Chase that getting 5 or 2 points per dollar on business expenditures along with no foreign exchange fees was more valuable for them than getting 20% bonus points across the board along with threshold bonuses.
For me, I get the 5/2/1 benefits on my Ink Classic card and I get 2.14/3.21 points along with no foreign exchange fees and the ability to transfer to airlines/hotel programs on my Sapphire Preferred card, so the main draw on Ink Bold was the 20% bonus points and threshold bonuses on everyday spending. But I can see how if you did not have these other cards why the Ink Bold card may be best served with the new benefits.
In summary here are the 3 Ink Bold cards currently on offer. The old cards are going away very soon.
Old Ink Bold card: 1 point per dollar spent, spend $25K and get a 7,500 point bonus (1.3 points per dollar spent on average), spend $50K and get another 15K point bonus (1.45 points per dollar spent on average), spend $100K and get another 25K points bonus (1.475 points per dollar spent on average). 3% foreign transaction fee. Signup bonus is 25K points for spending $1.
Old Ink Bold card with Chase Exclusives: 1.2 points per dollar spent, spend $25K and get a 7,500 point bonus (1.5 points per dollar spent on average), spend $50K and get another 15K point bonus (1.65 points per dollar spent on average), spend $100K and get another 25K points bonus (1.675 points per dollar spent on average). 3% foreign transaction fee. Signup bonus is 25K points for spending $1.
New Ink Bold card: 5 points per dollar spent on telecom (landline and wireless phone+internet), cable, and office supplies, 2 points per dollar and gas and lodging, and 1 point per dollar elsewhere. No foreign transaction fee. Signup bonus is 50K points for spending $5,000 in 3 months.
All 3 cards comes with 2 free annual airport lounge uses and have no fee for one year and a $95 fee thereafter. All can also transfer any Ultimate Rewards points you have into airline/hotel programs. If you spend $1,000 in a month on Ink cards your your checking account fees will be waived even if you do not have the minimum account balance to normally waive those fees.
For a very limited time only, you can still apply for the old Ink Bold card (which gives 25K bonus points for spending $1) and if you also have a checking account you should be automatically upgraded to the Exclusives program.
You can’t be upgraded from the new Ink Bold card to the Exclusives program.
For now, those who have the Ink Bold with Chase exclusives will be grandfathered into that program. If you enjoy that program be sure to provide feedback to Chase (call them or write to them!) that you don’t want to see it go away!