The Joys Of HUCA.

DDMS IconNever Miss Another Deal - Follow DansDeals on Facebook

Over at the simply awesome DansDeals Forums we have our own acronym language along with a thread for airline/travel acronyms and regular acronyms. PUTPAC means to “pick up the phone and call” for example, the universal YMMV means that “your mileage may vary” and that there is no definite answer, and HUCA means to Hang up, call again.

For example I had to call United over a dozen times to get a bassinet seat when we went to Hawaii last December and had even more fun playing HUCA with United last month trying to navigate through their nightmare process of automatically splitting elite and upgrading travelers onto separate reservations. (Hey, at least United’s miles are still the most valuable in the business!)

And at other times HUCA isn’t the way to go, for example with Chase offer matching you’ll want to SM (secure message via instead of talking to a human being to get matched to great offers like 55,000 United miles plus $50 cash for spending just $1 on the United Explorer card.

The past few days I’ve been playing HUCA with American Express (800-AXP-EARN).  I recently did a 3bm for the Platinum charge card, the Premier Gold card, and the Delta card.  All cards were approved automatically and I did the requisite spending ($2K on Plat/Gold and $500 on Delta).  I’ve had all 3 cards before but I left the Delta FFN blank (a strategy that has also worked on Starwood consumer and Starwood business cards for me) and got the 25K signup bonus for the cards 30K on the Delta.

Unfortunately for the cards those signup points go into pending status until the 1st statement closes, which wouldn’t be until June 7th.  As I wanted to transfer the points over to British Airways by today’s 50% bonus deadline I tried calling a couple of times to either get the pending points posted or to borrow points but had no luck.  Even when I spoke with a manager I was shot down as the first statement hadn’t closed and officially you need to wait 6 months from opening a card until you can borrow points.  I’m not one to just give up though so I tried one last time today and the rep said that there was no way to post the pending points but that since I have been a longterm AMEX customer I would be able to borrow 60,000 points on the Platinum card and 15,000 points on the Premier Gold card (which can be paid back with future card openings or spending over the next year or else they charge 2.5 cents per poin/1.67 cents per Avios).  I heard the same thing from previous reps but after giving them my BA info they reneged on the offer.  However while I was on the phone with her the point advance transfers along with the 50% bonus posted to my BA account:

-And the next time the airlines want $1,500 for a last minute short-haul ticket I’ll be able to laugh and use 9,000 Avios plus $5 for a round-trip, netting a value of a whopping 25 cents for each AMEX point!
-Or the next time an airline wants to charge me 10% of the full $5,000-$20,000 fare for the privilege of holding an infant in my lap? BA only charges 10% of the miles instead of 10% of the full fare when booked together on, which is definitely worthwhile on flights to South America where BA also doesn’t charge any fuel surcharges. (On domestic flights be sure to add the infant at the airport counter and not at the time of booking as then it will be free).
-And when I want to fly to Europe, Israel, Asia, or Australia in business or first class without paying hefty fuel surcharges? There’s always American, United, USAirways, Chase, or Starwood for that!

Moral of the story? HUCA!
Have you had a HUCA success story? Share it with us in the comments!

Leave a Reply

79 Comments On "The Joys Of HUCA."

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.


I have 250,000 mr points that I don’t plan on using anytime soon and the only flights I generally take are coast to coast or overseas. Should I be transferring to ba?


@Mendy: I’d transfer 2/3 of them if it was me.


Depends on exactly which routes you want to fly.


@Dan: sfo-jfk sfo-tlv sfo-hkg


What is the best program for transferring MR points to travel to Asia?


JFK-SFO is great with Avios.
SFO-HKG is good with Avios, fuel surcharges when flying on Cathay Pacific are much lower than on British Airways and that is a nonstop flight.
SFO-TLV on other other hand is terrible with Avios, transfer from AMEX to Air Canada instead and avoid travel airlines like Lufthansa and Air Canada in order to not have to pay fuel surcharges. (Or better yet transfer points from Starwood to AA or USAirways or from Chase to United for the TLV ticket)

Depends where in Asia, see above for Hong Kong.



How do you use AA miles to got to Israel?


You can fly El Al nonstop for 90K in coach or 135K in business with no fuel surcharges.
Or fly AA to Europe and El Al from Europe for 80K in coach (between October and May).
Or any of their other partners, like Air Berlin, Iberia, etc. Or BA with fuel surcharges.

Don’t forget to book a free trip to Hawaii as well for a year into the future after your return flight!

mikel v

Don’t forget to book a free trip to Hawaii as well for a year into the future after your return flight!
how does that part work?


@mikel v:
Explained in these posts:

You can cancel and reapply. Of if you have a WMC you can apply for the Visa or vice versa, and then either have both or have recon close one so that you can get the other one which works at different stores (MC at Sam’s, Visa at Dollar stores and Al Galope in Buenos Aires, etc.) and get the bonus again either way.


Dan! I just applied for a sapphire cc from your link (on top) they didn’t give a response, rather they said we have to look into and will notify you in 14 days. Does that look promising or usually a sign of denial. (I did a 2 browser application, for amex spy and chase master card!)
Thank You


A 2bm or a 3bm generally refers to applying to 2 or 3 different cards from the same bank in different browsers with only 1 hard pull.
By getting an AMEX and a Chase you will get 2 hard pulls, though additional apps made on the same day from those banks probably won’t cost any more hard pulls.

At this point you can call Chase Recon or wait for the decision and then call if needed.



Just got married and starting full-time job at the end of the summer. Want to do a 2bm for Amex cards-which would be the best to start out with, and is there any reason to find out my credit score before I apply?



Starwood, Delta, Premier Rewards Gold, Platinum, can’t really go wrong!


1) Should I try to go all out with a 3bm? If my income isn’t too substantial now would I be denied?
2) if I’m not sure if I’ll reap all of the benefits with e Platinum, is it worth the $450 fee?


You’ll never know if you don’t try.

Consider what you get for the $450 with the plat card:
-The signup bonus miles.
-$400 of airline gift cards ($200 in 2012 and $200 in 2013) that you can use or sell.
-Platinum card lounge access.
-Priority Pass Membership lounge access.
-Waived Global Entry fee.
-No forex fees.
-Starwood Gold status.
-Lost item insurance.


Dan, aren’t you worried about AA’s future? Is it worth banking on a half a million miles (as seen in the screen shot above) just for AA use domestically?


Do you pay the fee upfront or at the end of the year? Any way of haggling over it?


I’ve got 7 figures parked in AA, UA, HH, SPG, and HGP as well.
I don’t lose too much sleep over it. Even if USAir does take over AA they will stay in OneWorld.

Upfront but it’s refundable within 60 days and can be refunded on a pro-rated basis after 60 days.

mikel v

7 figures????!!!!!!!!
Dan You are the MAN!!!!!!


@mikel v:
It’s a fun game to play 😀


What do you think about the Amex Mercedes Benz card
50000 bonus points?


Still not clear about avios. Rarely find tickets available on website for aa, especially last minute as I understand it had to be a milessaver, which is limiting. What am I not getting? Thanks!

deal lurker

Wow these comments are way OT. (-Another ddf term 😉 )

amex 532

I have 532 amex points what do I do with them ?



Regarding the “free” trip domestically, At what point do I notify the airline that I am not flying the last leg? Also, do i get my luggage? If I dont end up using it, is there a penalty?

amex points rock

how soon can you open the same amex card that you just cancelled to get the signup bonus again?

deal lurker

I’m mot a pro but I’ve booked BA on AA before. It needs to be sAAver awards availability. If it doesn’t show up, select “show 7 days ahead” and then after finding availability work your way backwards.

This has been discussed extensively on the forums.


I got an extra 25k miles plus 50$ from chase by writing them a 2 line message. Thank you.


Dan: What is your experience with a possible retention bonus when it comes to the one year anniversary of the Sapphire? My is due today. I have tried several times to get Chase to at least give me a retention bonus but they have not wavered after several calls. Is it worth paying the $95 fee?


Had a HUCA success yesterday! Did a 3BM to apply for Sapphire Pref. WMC, British Airways, and United Explorer. Was approved for Sapphire with 6,000 CL and denied the other two because “too many requests”. Called the recon. number from Dan’s post and the rep said they can only process 1 application per 30 days. I offered to move CL from the Sapphire but he said you need 5,000 to open the British and also 5,000 to keep the Sapphire open (!) so I can only have one or the other and that until they see some action on my new Sapphire basically there is nothing else to do about it. Yesterday I called again and got a really nice rep named Stephan. I told him why I need both cards, that I’m a great Chase customer, that I’m willing to move CL around, etc. He reviewed it and asked me to confirm some financial details from my application and then he got me approved for 10,000! W/o moving CL from my new Sapphire! I offered to speak to his supervisor to tell her what a great rep he is, and I did.


Forgot to mention that I was approved for the British. As soon as it shows up on my Chase online account, I’ll try again for United.


How often can you cancel a Chase Sapphire and reapply?

dan aka mr. " kamtzan "

get a job dan….. hang up the phone and dont call back….. just be a reg person and pay for something….just remember dan u get what u pay for…u have absolutely no life in doing what u do how u do it….. dan maybe u should be a stuard u get to fly everywhere for free and free hotel stays or be an usher in quick n loans arena u get to see all the cavs games for free…remember dan “time is moneyL so if u get a real job u can be earning real money instead of thirsting and feeding off of other peoples and companies money and innocence….


“be sure to add the infant at the airport counter and not at the time of booking as then it will be free”

You can add the infant on the booking (not at the airport) and it’s still free (domestically)


I’ve never had a problem booking last minute tickets.

@amex 532:
Wait to get up to 1,000 and transfer to an airline.

The free trip can be 6 months later, you get your luggage back in NYC 😀
You can call to let them know you won’t make the flight whenever you want as a courtesy but nothing will happen if you don’t. Don’t forget you can also change the dates on the free leg as well though!

@amex points rock:
If you want 30 days you should be totally safe, but even within 30 days it is possible to do, though it may take a phone call to get it pushed through as a new app.


Apply for a Visa/WMC (the one you don’t have) and have them close the old one to approve the new one and get the bonus points and another year free.

Nicely done and good luck with the United!

There isn’t a defined time limit.

@dan aka mr. ” kamtzan:
Instead of worrying about what others do for a living and being a hater perhaps try to be the best person you can be?

If you do it on they will charge you, even domestically.
You may be able to add over the phone, but typically domestically you still need to do it at the airport again even if you added over the phone so that’s just a waste of time.


@dan aka mr kamtzan,
I never understood people like you and Howard the letter writer that Dan posted about recently. Aparantly you guys all have real jobs and are doing very well for yourselves, but yet you still come to this website aparantly in search of a good deal. You guys also seem to have plenty of time to read all the posts and even comment on some of them. All that is fine, my point just is that if your coming here unless you are REALLY bored you are coming to gain from the deals that Dan posts.But yet the common denominater is you all curse Dan out for what he’s doing……. The question then begs to be asked what the heck are u doing on this sight? I personally come here in search of good deals. I am very thankful for Dan bringing those to my attention instead of having to search for hours. The deals that I don’t feel are ethical right ect… I just won’t do those! Dan what are your thoughts?


@dan aka mr. ”kamtzan”: I’d say that Dan has a great life, as he travels the beautiful world that G-d created in ways which most ppl will never get to do. It’s quite logical that your statement is based purely on jealousy. And if you actually used some intelligence for a split second you’d realize that maintaining a website like this along with all its ancillary operations is indeed a full time job and it’s probably more lucrative than whatever it is that you do.


@dan aka mr. ” kamtzan ”
We know you’re jealous, but that’s life. How about you hang up your comments and don’t call back. BTW we all prety much do the same things he does!!


how does this work leaving “Delta FFN blank”. Also I booked a JFK – TLV TLV – JFK – miami and they told me I only have a month after I land to fly. Based on your 1 year mention I should have 3 months. How do I get around that.


Just leave the mileage number blank.

You have a year to fly that JFK-MIA leg, just call back.



When using BA points to book an AA flight if I am traveling with an infant (under 2) you can avoid the 10% miles fee?

Is that only for economy or any class?

Does this work for any international travel or only within US?


Is it a HUCA to get them to change it for a year.
How much more do you get for leaving FFN blank


I am quite frustrated by the ba website trying to book international (ba)and domestic flights (aa). there is never anything available. i have been dabling in my searches for months. does anyone else experience these frustrations? is this typical of using avios? thanks


I want to take my wife to fl from ny next Feb using points, whats the cheapest option, meaning the least point. Pleae help me out


15K BA Avios.


Both ways


@mark that is for both ways


if there is a sAAver award available domestically on aa but it has a stop over will ba consider that one flight or 2?


With BA every leg is charged separately.


Is the starwood consumer 10k plus 15k with 5kspending still activ?


I only see 10k, plus the delta30k doesnt work, I had to switch browsers? help!


How much before Feb can i get tickes with points? Do i need to get these tickets way in advance or a fews before i can still get tickets. Another thing the ba points is for ba airline only or aa to



You may need to browse incognito or clear your cookies to see those offers.

There is no science to getting award seats.
BA Avios are good for travel on many partner airlines, including AA.


first card i ever got was the continental one pass less then a year ago . since then every cc i applied i got denied ( united , sapphire visa , sapphire mc (converted from visa),freedom )but got approved thanks to HUCA to all off them !!!! (no luck with amex 🙁 ) united i transfered credit line from continental. sapphire closed my united and transferd my credit line and freedom (reason for declining : you have reached the limit of cc ) i explained after 2 HUCAps the benefit of all cc sapphire :travel a lot no forein ex , continental : 2 bags ,freedom 5 points etc. THANKS! here is my q should i apply for more cc from chase? if yes which ones ?


of curse with 3bm which 3 chase cc?



I know this isn’t the exact place for this and it has been discussed before, I’m just a little lazy right now to look for it.

I just opened a Chase sapphire CC and which offered 40K bonus. How can I get more than that? Which offers could i tell them about?



For the life of me, i can’t figure out how to book using BA avios. i’m looking to fly fron NY to DEN beginning of august, but on BA it is showing no availability at all, even though AA has avialabilty. HELP!!


@Cannotfigureout: Call BA



@Ryan from MA:
Yes, yes, sometimes.

There are none currently.

How can I HELP!! if you don’t post dates?


Thanks for all the advice. I currently have 4 starwood preferred cards: 2 in my name and 2 in my wife’s name. I have received all the bonuses for them as i have reached the spending levels of 5k per card and have accumulated a total of 100k points. ( which i will transfer to aa to get the 25% bonus)
would my next step be to cancel all these starwood cards and reapply in 30 days?

On the site it says the following – so my question is how do you get around this?

† Welcome bonus offer not available to applicants who have had this product within the last 12 months.


Thanks Dan. the dates are leaving NYC prefferably JFK or LGA august 1 returning from DEN august 6 using Avios. I wouldn’t mind looking it up myself if i could just figure out how to use the avios system. Every date I put in it says not available.


Terms are not always meaningful…

Those dates aren’t available for sAAver awards on, thus aren’t offered by BA.


i got the 60k bonus for the the ink bold is there any other chase business card i can move the line of credit to to get a new promo bonus?


ok, so do I now cancel all the starwood cards and reapply in 30 days? what is the best strategy?


Can i HUCA with a secure message to chase as well?
Will the second person getting the message see that the first person declined my request for additional signup points?


Hey Dan,
Can you start recording your HUCA calls? I bet many people would be interested in hearing how you operate…


If you keep on doing the HUCA process, aren’t you just looking for someone who will violate the company policy for you? Seems dishonest and unethical, as does making up some reason why you need so many cards when you know this is not true. I’m all for taking advantage of offers but not consistently exploiting loophooles. Eventually we all pay for this as there is a cost to the companies which they pass along to the rest of us.


Ink Cash and Ink Classic are great no-fee business cards.

There is no best strategy, it’s all trial and error. That said I wouldn’t close them all in one fell swoop.

Sure, try sending to another department (general, rewards, etc)

I disagree.
I had to call United dozens of times until I found a rep that would honor company policy.
Typically I know the policy better than the phone reps do, but most phone reps are not properly taught the rules, want to get you off the line ASAP to improve their numbers, or are just incompetent.
As far as AMEX, I have no idea if the policy is 6 months of waiting from getting the card or 6 months as a customer, but the fact that a rep did it doesn’t mean she violated policy.


wat did u write?


Dan, I try to be a fan of HUCA, but in the past when I did that with Reconsideration, they said every time “you called on xx/xx or you called earlier” etc..

I feel like a fool!

Don’t they many times write down on memo the whole conversation??

What do u say?


Dan, I secured messaged chase, for $50 and 55,000 miles unite explore, and it seems I got it, at least the $50 part, and I didn’t even know what I was asking for, I just did what you said.
Thanks a bunch.
I signed up for chase British airways. I would like to go to Peru for July; however, my avios are not due for another 4 weeks.
Is there a way I can get my avios earlier? any other options I have?

Thanks, M&M


I applied for 2 cards from Citi last week, i got denied for both. I called recon. they said that i don’t meet the necessary qualifications to recieve a card from them……
I HUCA’ed about 10 times….and sure enough eventually i got a nice rep who approved me!!


Oh i thought hukkah ;p


Dan, I got many different chase cc recently. (Freedom, United Mileage Plus, Sapphire, Ink Bold.) I recently applied for the ink Plus and they rejected me “Because I opened To many CC’s in the last couple of months”. I tried HUCA a few times, but each time the rep said “We already told you before why you can’t get another card. How do you get around this? Thanks for responding!


Dan, It seems that I”m having the same issues as Yidel. (#75)Heexplained it better than me.I”m sure that others have this same problem as well. Maybe you can explain in more detail how do get around it? Thanks!


HUCA WORKED!!!!! HUCA WORKED!!!! (Get ready for a long story.)

After getting the Southwest personal card in July (my first Chase card), I tried a 2BM last week for the Sapphire, British Airways. Sapphire got approved, BA rejected. I called, and they lowered my limits on the Southwest and Sapphire and then approved the BA.

Now, a week later I tried a 4BM for the Southwest business, United, Hyatt, and Marriott. Rejected for all 4. Started calling recon for the Southwest because I want that the most for the free Companion Flyer for 2 years. Rejected because I had too many accounts opened recently, and I’m too new to Chase credit cards. [Aside: I’ve also never had a business card, and my “Sole Proprietorship” (that I actually am working on) doesn’t have any revenue yet.]


Rejected. Same reasons.

HUCA to personal card recon in an attempt to get one of the personal cards approved.

Rejected. “Too many applications in short time period.”

HUCA for personal cards.

Rejected. “Chase only approves max 2 cards within a 30 days’ span.”

Got inspiration from Dan and “AJ” on Twitter and HUCAed Chase business again.

Rejected, but this time I asked for a supervisor. Supervisor read over the notes from the calls and rejected. Then I explained to him I have a Chase checking account, Chase business checking account (from a past business that my name is still associated with for another week or so) and that when I signed up for BA, they lowered my credit limit on my first 2 cards but that technically Chase at one point trusted me with more credit than I have right now. He looked into it, came back on the phone, asked me about the business associated with the checking account (which I admitted I was leaving), my new startup business that I ADMITTED TO HIM HAS NO REVENUE YET, but that I hope picks up soon, and… APPROVED!!!

Turns out, it really all comes down to how well you can shmooze and how much time you have on your hands. And, of course (if you believe), some help from G-d.


Would a huca work for removing the annual fee? After having a vard for a year?


Which card?