I’ve been blogging since November of 2004 and it has been fascinating to see the evolution of mileage hobby over the past 14 years. I got into blogging after reselling beanie babies for ridiculous profits on eBay as a 13 year old, arranging group flight discounts and renting out cell phone plans from my own corporate account as a 17 year old in yeshiva, and manufacturing over a million Cathay Pacific Asia Miles for free through the now defunct eBay Anything Points program.
In the good old days I went from figuring out how to 2BM which became 3BM and eventually got as high as a 24BM. I typically kept the specifics limited to the 15 seminars that I ran from 2012-2015. Over the years I’ve been able to travel the world with my family in first class countless times while burning over 20 million miles and banking tens of millions more along with lifetime elite statuses and other perks. It’s hard to think of a better hobby than that.
But the days of opening 24 cards in one shot or buying hundreds of thousands of dollar coins are gone, like all the good things that ain’t never coming back.
- In March of 2014 I broke the news that AMEX consumer card signup bonuses would be limited to once per lifetime. It’s worth noting that the exact length of “lifetime” in this case is a matter of debate, but is probably somewhere around 6 years.
- Citibank started their own crackdowns in October of 2014. In August 2016 they implemented their current rules of not allowing a bonus if you opened a card or closed a card from the same family of cards within the past 24 months.
- On about 5/24/15, Chase made it difficult to get approved for a Chase Sapphire or Freedom card if you have been approved for 5 cards from any bank within the past 24 months.
- Also in May 2015, a blogger who attended a DansDeals seminar in June of 2014 took the BOFA Alaska 12BM/24BM information that I talked about at the seminar and then he wrote about it as his own with big yellow circles and arrows on his blog. And sure enough, BOFA cracked down on multiple applications after that. The blogger then deleted the post, but the web archive never forgets…
- In February 2016 I wrote about how AMEX business card signup bonuses would also be limited to once per lifetime.
- On about 5/24/16, Chase expanded 5/24 guidelines to include most of their credit cards. Later Chase also started limiting new applicants to one Sapphire family and one Freedom family card.
And today AMEX has added the following language to their card applications:
This effectively is AMEX giving themselves the legal right to do anything they want after you apply for a card. If you have closed any AMEX cards in the past you’ll be playing the AMEX lottery to see if you’ll get a signup bonus.
AMEX has been at the forefront of limiting repeat signup bonuses over the past 4 years, but this takes things to a new level. Do you think that other banks will follow their lead?