I love credit cards so much! v2.0 (see first page for add'l details)

Hoosier John

DIS Veteran
DVC Premium
Joined
Oct 2, 2010
Can you get WDW tickets with multiple disney gift cards? Site only has place for one. Maybe have to call? ...
My wife has combined gift cards onto one (well, a few because I think there's a limit to how much or how many can be combined). But we've also paid at the window for APs with multiple Disney GCs

Drinking from the CIPpy cup...what could go wrong?

I've been pondering something today, and I feel it's worth sharing. I want to preface this by saying, I personally am ok with the risk of CIPpy and will continue to drink until the cup spills over.

That said, it's worth pointing out that Chase is not afraid to shutdown accounts if they feel abuse has taken place. Earlier this year, a loophole was shared on r/churning that you could generate support links to any Chase card by manipulating the link. This essentially unlocked a backdoor self-support method. Shortly thereafter, it was discovered that these support bonuses had to be posted manually by Chase and could draw unwanted attention to your account. We subsequently decided here, that we would not support this backdoor "self-support" method and we removed all mention of it.

After this occurred, Chase sent letters out to some of r/churning's support link "super users" (more like super receivers) who had used the ability to PC their card multiple times to max out support points two and three times on the same card within one year. Some of these users also had participated in the link manipulation shared above.

The text in that letter said:
We reviewed your credit card account and it appears as though certain transactions represent a misuse of the rewards program...If this activity continues or if there is any other misuse or misrepresentation by you, we may close this and any other accounts you have with Chase.

A picture of that letter can be seen here:
The users who received these warning letters all were clear that they felt it tied to support links and I believe a couple may have called in to confirm that. Then, in a somewhat shocking move, one of those folks who received a letter actually had some of their cards shutdown by Chase (presumably for the same activity as there was no other logical reason for the shutdown). It's worth noting though, that in all instances, they did not clawback any rewards.

How does this tie to CIPpy you may ask? Well it seems that Chase can decide in their sole discretion what they deem to be abuse of their rewards program. Could they decide that repeatedly getting the same card to earn the signup bonus while simultaneously "self-supporting" was an abuse? I certainly think so. It is almost a certainty that this loophole will cease to exist at some point in the future. Nobody can tell you how far away that is, and nobody can tell you what (if any) consequences may occur when it gets shutdown. I will reiterate, that I am not going to stop drinking from CIPpy... But, I am going to try my best to follow some rules to cip safely:
  • I will always do P1=>P2 or P2=>P1 clicks. I know that might not be possible for all (especially those in 1 player mode) but if this is an option, embrace it! Avoiding a true "self-support" click is much more defensible. In the recent Amex clawback debacle, nobody who was supporting via this method experienced any clawback,.
  • Follow your pacing guidelines, don't try to accelerate the timeline and do 1 a month. It's just not worth the risk of getting yourself shutdown on your own.
  • If you want to be paranoid, you may also consider trying to mix up your business type with each application. Perhaps you own multiple successful "businesses" and you purely were pursuing the best small business card on the market for each business...
Please don't stop drinking from CIPpy because of this comment...just make sure you've weighed all the options and are doing it in the most safe way possible for your situation.

Additionally, as we are advising new folks on this option, I think it's important that we make sure they understand that this is not without risk. I don't want to spook them, but it's irresponsible as a "DISchurner" adviser to not at least make sure they understand that this is a loophole and (a) could be shutdown and (b) could come with some level of consequence at some point in the future.


I'm interested to hear anybody else's thoughts on this - even if you're opposed or feel I'm being overly paranoid here...
I appreciate the thoughts! For me, I think I will apply for CIP2 from DW referral (at my 95 day mark). I don't really have any other Chase cards that I care about (2 CFs), so if I were to get banned from Chase, not a big deal.

One CF has a balance at 3.99% that I may just pay slowly (to prove to Chase I a worthy customer?).

As one other person said, what about spreading applications among various Chase Biz cards? I know CIP is the best SUB, but this could potentially reduce more than one of the same card in hand every year. Thoughts?

I'm a workaholic tho. So is DH. We are aggressively pursing FIRE but who knows when we will actually hang it up. Having said that, I do go through periods of burnout where I fantasize about never working another day in my life.
F_____ Income, Retire Early? Just guessing, here.

And I've been in and out of this area since 1977. But they keep building new stuff which sometimes changes my landmarks.

When we were here as military we used to shop at Fort Belvoir all the time because they had a decent commissary and a package store (wine and liquors). That was before Total Wine. I used to always go to Springfield Mall when it was new and still nice with all occupied stores and it was a thing to get lunch at Bennigans (probably gone). Never go there any more. Things change.
I’ve been to the Springfield mall! lol
I'm in the Springfield area too! Are there only 3 of us (that we know of)?

Here's a dress to go with that food icon Magic Band. These dresses keep popping up between my messages!View attachment 418782
As if I don't have enough trouble NOT snacking between meals. :D
 

elgerber

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 17, 2000
It's a given that the hobby has two constants and those are change and YMMV. Common sense dictates that any loophole will come with risk.

I will echo previous sentiments. @Lain and @SouthFayetteFan - the time, patience and generosity each of you devote to this thread is beyond amazing. I don't imagine there is one person on this thread that has not learned something that provided current or future value to the hobby and the way they churn. So, I'd like to say thank you for everything you share here with all of us. :flower3:
Ditto!!!

For those using Great Southern Bank, how long did it take for your cc funding to show up in the account. It’s showing on my cc but not in the bank account yet. I want to get it linked to my other bank account. You’d link it to a non primary account, right? Then to primary account?
Mine took a couple of days after the credit card. I could NOT however link it to another bank. The only way I could get my money to myself was by using Bill Pay to myself, with a $1700 per day limit. They have a very unfriendly website/interface.
 

Albort

ODV Crew
Joined
Oct 9, 2006
:offtopic: I did that Amazon App prime day deal the other day where you could earn up to $60. I only purchased a $100 grocery GC because I wasn't sure if it would work on GCs, but it did. I got $10 today. :)
good to know! i did $500 in BBy gc. i did see on the T&C saying it doesnt work on Gift cards.
@speedyfishy ^^
just noticed your dis name is speedyfishy, some reason my mind was thinking speedyfish lol.
 
  • Alexle2007

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 15, 2013
    One CF has a balance at 3.99% that I may just pay slowly (to prove to Chase I a worthy customer?).
    If you have the ability to pay off that CF, you are still a worthy customer to Chase so please pay off that card. Although if you pay them interest, you are just the type of customer Chase is looking for since they are business to make money off of the people who don’t pay off their balances monthly (unless you have 0% interest rate).

    If you need to float money, you should look for a 0% offer.
     

    disneymagicgirl

    Been there, Done that, Going back!
    Joined
    Dec 13, 2005
    @Lain and @SouthFayetteFan I want you both to know that never once has it crossed my mind to be upset with you because something did or did not work, whether you suggested it or not.
    Like others said, your help here is invaluable and we all weigh our risk tolerance ourselves when we decide on a next step in this game.
    Besides that, we like chatting with ya even when it isn’t about churning so don’t ever feel the need to avoid the thread!!!:grouphug:
     

    liloca

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Dec 26, 2013
    Haha! I’m a Target gal myself. Did you load at customer service or a register? Do you mind telling me which one in MA it is?

    La Jolla on the way up or back from DL. I’ve never seen anything like it!!!! And MaxPass for DL
    I am not sure where you are located but I loaded at the WM in North Reading in a regular cashier with no problem.
     

    DisneyMandC

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 18, 2015
    I believe the free night posts up to 8 weeks after meeting the spend. The voucher expires exactly 1 year from issuance so make sure your timing is right.
    Yeah that’ll be fine since we’re going next June. Maybe August 1 I’ll go for it.
    I think two of the cards have weekend nights, the Aspire and Surpass. The Aspire has 150k SUB and $450 AF but $250 Resort Credit, $250 airline credit, GE & Diamond status. So if those are useful, you might consider the Aspire.
    Does the weekend night post immediately after MSR, or is it an anniversary night? I’ve looked at this card so many times before but couldn’t make it worth my while. But I do need GE now and I thought maybe someone had mentioned purchasing Tokyo Disney tickets and charging it to their room to use the credit? Can anyone here chime in on that? Between that and GE that could change my mind.
     
  • brownhaired_girl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 8, 2004
    My wife has combined gift cards onto one (well, a few because I think there's a limit to how much or how many can be combined). But we've also paid at the window for APs with multiple Disney GCs



    I appreciate the thoughts! For me, I think I will apply for CIP2 from DW referral (at my 95 day mark). I don't really have any other Chase cards that I care about (2 CFs), so if I were to get banned from Chase, not a big deal.

    One CF has a balance at 3.99% that I may just pay slowly (to prove to Chase I a worthy customer?).

    As one other person said, what about spreading applications among various Chase Biz cards? I know CIP is the best SUB, but this could potentially reduce more than one of the same card in hand every year. Thoughts?



    F_____ Income, Retire Early? Just guessing, here.
    :rotfl2::rotfl2:financial independence retire early
     

    Limes96

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2014
    I decided to see if I could pull up a decent offer on the Amex plat but could only get 60k for a SUB. Not sure that’s going to be worth it for me. I’m 3/24 right now and my next card won’t drop off until 10/20. I’d like to go ahead and get another Amex card, and it will likely be the last personal card I get for a while so that I can keep my options open with Chase. So I’m trying to decide between the Gold (got a 50k MR offer via email), or the limited time HH Surpass offer, or the Aspire. We have our flights already for Europe May/June 2020 but not all the hotels. Not sure if we’ll stay at a Hilton while there, but I would like to stay at a Hilton resort this winter with my daughter, so I’d definitely get the value out of either HH card. Both P2 and I already have the HHBiz card. The Gold and Surpass offers won’t last so it would be good to take advantage of that. But I’ve also had my eye on the Aspire for a while though. P2 is only 3/24 also so there’s that too. Help me decide!
     
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    marsh0013

    i want to drive the zamboni
    Joined
    Apr 21, 2003
    The snack magic band is in stock but none of the bands SO wanted. He wanted any haunted mansion one or the spaceship earth one. I did see they had the DVC member ones so I got us both those to celebrate becoming members. Idk if SO really wanted that one but I like them lol I hope to get the snack one another time.
    There are so many I want (including the snack one!) but my husband only wants spaceship earth or the black toy story one. We also already grabbed the dvc ones for each of us on a different reservation. I still am kicking myself that I chose our AP plain colored ones very shortly before the announcement came about the upgraded ones.
     
  • hayesdvc

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 23, 2015
    I need to book a room for two days at a Marriott. I do not have a Marriott branded card. Any need to get one for this stay?
     

    chattadisser

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 15, 2010
    I’m on mobile so the search isn’t working well for me and I know we’ve discussed this before but are there any referrals for the CSR right now? What I can find, it looks like the CSR referrals come and go and are a no go right now but I wanted to double check. I have a friend applying for a CSR and I’d love to send her a referral if possible.
     

    Alexle2007

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 15, 2013
    I need to book a room for two days at a Marriott. I do not have a Marriott branded card. Any need to get one for this stay?
    Not really since unless you get to Platinum status (50 nights or more), there wren’t Many perks. I think there might be a slight increase % in the points awarded for the stay for the stay. I only use my Former SPG Biz since I already have it. If not, it would go on my CSR .
     

    Alexle2007

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 15, 2013
    I’m on mobile so the search isn’t working well for me and I know we’ve discussed this before but are there any referrals for the CSR right now? What I can find, it looks like the CSR referrals come and go and are a no go right now but I wanted to double check. I have a friend applying for a CSR and I’d love to send her a referral if possible.
    No referrals for the CSR.
     

    kmc8826

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 7, 2017
    @Lain no need to apologize. I self referred twice because P2 did not have a MR earning card and thereby lost 45,000 MR’s. I wanted the BBP but the Biz Green was pure greed for MR’s. It backfired on me. As DH says “play stupid games win stupid prizes.” BUT if I hadn’t learned about it from you I probably would have seen it on Doctor of Credit. I hate to say it but I am not clever enough to figure it out or think of it myself so I would not have done it if I hadn’t read about it. In that sense the Amex RAT’s are completely right. I was gaming the system and got caught. I take responsibility for it.

    If anything from my viewpoint I do think the Amex clawbacks are a bit of a wake up call. Yes there is a loophole to get on and see if you can pull up a incognito offer for the Plat. But just know that Amex will do what it wants and there is not much you can say or do about it when they do. Yes you can use gift cards for credits...but just know they can come back and want their money. Personally I would be upset but not surprised if Amex reverses credits on my $50 Delta gift cards I have gotten this last year. Seriously, with them nothing surprises me. I want at least one Amex for Delta so when it comes down to it that’s where I am at. I will probably concentrate on getting all the miles I can from them and then slowly start minimizing the relationship with them.

    I realize we are only a small section but I think the shoe is going to drop on the CIP’s and Citi cards. Even on here it has been going on with people getting the multiple cards at a pretty alarming rate. As long as people realize it and take the consequences then so be it. Just realize your own tolerance level and don’t extend beyond that. It might not be as fun as always getting a new card but it is the reality. I do what I am comfortable with (I won’t MS and won’t do bank account bonuses); any money I put into it or points I have I really think you have to be prepared to lose at any time. The banks are the ones in control. Ultimately that is the reality.
     
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    StephPlum

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 1, 2011
    Sitting in Midway with a 2.5 hour delay. And no lounge!! >:( I think there are weather issues east of here.

    We did make it to the PP lounge at Seattle and I’ll write up more once I get settled back home. All in all - great trip to the PNW. Mt Rainier was out in full glory this morning as we drove to the airport. Beautiful sight to send us on our way.
     

    mmmears

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 30, 2005
    After a year of DH thinking we should use all those discounts to get grocery store GCs he did a 180 today and we picked up $200 worth of Disney GCs from a combined BB&B and Staples run. Guess that means there is some Disney travel in my future after all. :goodvibes

    Any last minute advice or recommendations for DL or San Diego? We leave today! Have ressies for BB Fantasmic dining package, WoC dessert party, and lunch at River Bell Terrace.
    Nothing particular. Mint juleps and beignets as someone else posted already. Enjoy the longer version of Pirates!

    I have much deeper thoughts and feelings about this and the recent Amex clawbacks than what I'm going to type. I’ll try to get the gist of this down. I just haven't had much time to write up very many meaningful posts, analyses, or replies, while still keeping up with the conversation and providing at least cursory answers to people's questions. And to be honest, the Amex developments have left me incredibly shaken.

    First and foremost, I want to apologize to everyone who had any MR points clawed back as a result of self-referral. I was the one who brought over the news from r/churning that this was possible last July, and I did it myself and I feel like I set an example for others to follow. While everyone has to consider the risks of whatever they do in this hobby, and assess their own tolerance for that risk, I know we all look to DPs and strategies from both strangers and people we trust to help make our decisions. And if any of you feel like I've steered you wrong, I am truly and deeply sorry.

    I shared the self-referral and cross-referral methods with the intention that this could help folks here earn a lot more points themselves and within their household once they already had one or two Amex cards, instead of settling for public offers or having their clicks go to someone else. I think this succeeded for a time as I, and I'm sure many others, saw a significant drop in their support clicks on Amex cards coming from other DISchurners. Self-referral or cross-referral became the de facto advice on r/churning and here, because if someone wasn't recommending you do it, then they weren't watching out for your interests and likely fishing for your support click. And so everyone was doing it. (I think the fact that MRs cannot be transferred or pooled among spouses or within a household also affected calculations to self-refer rather than refer from P1>P2 or P2>P1.) I’m devastated that this method, in the end, cost some people real money if you paid taxes on points that Amex ultimately took away with no indication how they’re going to fix this mess.

    I can't recall anyone raising any flags that Amex would claw back these support bonuses. Just as I try to relay useful information to this thread, I’m always on the lookout for negative DPs. In late April, we shared a DP from a r/churning claiming that Amex clawed back a self-referral bonus. We advised caution and to wait and see if there were any further DPs of such clawbacks. I waited until June to self-refer to a BBP. There were no more negative DPs, and that report in April appeared to be a one off, perhaps prompted by eyes drawn to the OP's account for other reasons, or maybe the OP was just mistaken. Nothing suggested Amex would go back a year and claw back literally millions of MRs. We should have done better, kept our tinfoil hats on, and always remember Amex's modus operandi. Amex froze accounts and clawed back millions of MR from those who it believed abused the leaked Thanksgiving 2016 100k MR Platinum link. More recently, Amex clawed back the Saks credits from people who returned their purchases – even on closed card accounts, and charged people's cards hundreds of dollars for using multiples of the Staples Amex Offers.

    What Amex giveth, Amex can taketh. It’s a real love/hate relationship with Amex. Amex has some of the biggest and best bonuses, solid co-brand and transfer partners and thus a lot of value to their programs, some cards that are actually worth keeping and putting ongoing category spend on, generous and useful Amex Offers (I’m looking at you Chase and your max $4 back at Rite-Aid), and hands out cards like candy. But Amex is also incredibly high maintenance, sensitive to perceived abuse, and downright schizophrenic. I’m sure all of us could come up with a list of 10 Things I Hate About Amex (h/t @SouthFayetteFan). If Amex thinks you’re not spending enough on them – pop up! Gaming their Amex Offers or credits? Don’t be surprised if Amex charges your statement for returns or refunds on which you got that credit, even if it’s months or more than a year later. The RAT has a long memory. MS their SUB? Bonus denial or clawback. But don’t do enough organic spend so you MS to keep Amex happy? That’s perfectly fine, have some more cards! Glitch holding up your bonus or credits? It’s not our fault, it’s yours! Just keep spending until you hit the bonus! And now the self-referrals…

    You all might not know this from my irreverent chatter on the thread in the past week, but I haven’t felt this low since probably Plastiq 3x died on the CIP. I was a major cheerleader for the CIP, aside from its SUB, and Plastiq because of the ability to actually make money paying your bills. And when Plastiq stopped coding 3x the first time, and then a second time, I know several of you had just paid your bills before the DPs caught up but would only get 1x on the payment and you folks had to eat the fee. Then Chase kept killing all the other things that I happily told you coded 3x on the CIP…

    And now we come to the CIPpy cup. I feel some amount of joy, but also responsibility for bringing news about the CIPpy cup here. I had been monitoring chatter and DPs on r/churning about multiple CIP approvals using only a SSN, but did not share the news until there was confirmation the bonuses were posting. I realized this is a way for us to turbocharge our UR balances, which is probably the favorite currency for most of you, at a time when Chase had killed the DD and imposed 48-month restrictions on the Sapphire cards. Come to think of it, I also shared the MDD.

    All this, as with anything in this hobby, is not without risk. @SouthFayetteFan highlighted many of the risks in his original post. I will add that the Chase could stop refilling the CIPpy cup at any time. Although it’s a general rule that Chase will not approve a card without the bonus attached, Chase could conceivably deny the bonus. I’ve yet to see that on a UR-earning card, but I remember there was chatter about going for the Chase Marriott Biz card before it was discontinued just to hold it for the anniversary FNs, even if you weren’t eligible for the bonus under the fine print restrictions. Chase could, as they did when they were shutting down the Sapphire DD loophole, unilaterally close cards without notice. Personally, I think the risk of this is minimal because you’re not doing a DD with the CIPpy cup, and actual businesses have legitimate reasons for multiples of the same card. I remember seeing an open browser of Tesla Guy’s Chase account with all his cards and spotted several CIPs. But for someone like TPG, who is all about bonus category spend nowadays and spends millions on advertising, it would make sense to have multiple CIPs and BGR/Biz Golds since their bonus categories are capped at $150k/yr. If Chase were to target all their customers with multiples of the same product, they would upset a lot of non-churning clients and businesses. But what if they just targeted those who received SUBs on multiples of the same product within, say, a two-year span. That would also sweep in non-churning clients and businesses with legitimate reasons to hold multiple Ink cards and received bonuses on them. Again, what’s Chase’s modus operandi? Chase isn’t known for clawbacks. I can’t recall ever seeing a DP about a Chase clawback. As I posted recently, Chase’s weapon of choice is a shutdown, whether it be to close specific cards or shut down all card accounts. This is something we typically see in a bust-out situation (due to velocity and balances), the DD purge, or for whatever reason Chase or its affiliates decides to end their relationship with you. I want to be clear, as @SouthFayetteFan already pointed out, in all of these cases Chase never clawed back any points and allowed the customer 30 days to either cash out, redeem it, or transfer the points to a travel partner. (It’s not recommended to transfer points from a shut down account to P2 and risk P2 getting shut down.)

    I’ve discussed Amex and Chase, but there’s also Citi. Many of us are riding the GrAAvy train, but there’s a risk with every application that the bonus won’t post, especially if you’ve used a public link. I can only imagine how terrible @SouthFayetteFan and @speedyfishy must have felt when we discovered public links to the GrAAvy train were a lot more YMMV, without apparent rhyme or reason, after sharing information that they were a way to bypass mailers and possibly save some money.

    @SouthFayetteFan and I, and I’m sure many of the active contributors to this thread share information we come across with only the intention to benefit other members of this community. Personally, I try to vet the information I post, consider the risks and be thorough about explaining it, and I continue to be on the lookout for DPs that say a method has changed, ended, or something else adverse has happened so that I can share that too. But please note that there’s a built-in delay to all DPs, and a DP reported today might have come too late to change something you did yesterday and may not be an accurate predictor of how something works tomorrow. This hobby, its rules, and how the issuers apply those rules are constantly changing. We do our best to keep up and keep you all informed, but we’re not omniscient or infallible. I know we can all be cheerleaders and enablers sometimes, but I have to trust that you consider the benefits and risks as it relates to your own situation, assess your own tolerances, and come to the right decision for you. But please, don't be scared off from this hobby because, I think for almost everyone here, you've notched a lot more wins than losses.

    I know several of you have asked if anyone’s gotten CIP4. I think what they’re looking for is a green light and an all-safe to go ahead and apply for CIP4. I can’t give you that. I don’t think anyone here has gone for CIP4 all with only their SSN, but I also don’t doubt there are folks on r/churning pushing that envelope and beyond. I’ll say under the current way things work, if you go for CIP4, provided you’ve watched your velocity and managed your credit lines, you’ll probably get approved and you’ll likely get your SUB. I can’t make any predictions or assurances what Chase will do with that in the future (maybe nothing!) other than muse about the risks as I did above.

    What does my own strategy look like for the rest of 2019? DW’s CIP3 SUB and the support bonus from my CIP2 just posted this week. DW has two open CIPs from March and June, a CIU from last September, and a CIC from last December. I recently closed my 1+ year old CIC, got approved for CIP3 this week, have an open CIP2 from April, and a sockdrawered Marriott Biz. (Interestingly, I did apply for DW’s and my CIP3 with our FN MI LN and SSN but, as @SouthFayetteFan suggested, with a different business category to at least make a plausible case for different businesses between different CIPs.) With 2 open CIPs each, I’m thinking we’ll both cool off with our CIP apps for the next few months.

    DW is 1/24 and I’m seriously considering referring her from my Biz Plat (20k MR>20k Hilton) to the Hilton Surpass before we cancel her Hilton Biz next month to avoid the AF. That will probably push DW out with Chase, if not for a velocity issue (because, historically, Amex doesn’t report a new personal card until the close of the second statement), then because of juggling the MSRs on several new cards. I was just approved for CIP3, so that’s a $5k MSR in the next 3 months; and I’ve barely made a dent in the Biz Plat upgrade offer for $10k spend in the remaining 4½ months. The Surpass would come with another $4k MSR in 4 months. Then, when DW goes back to Chase, I’m looking at the Hyatt card. At 2/24, another personal card for DW is not a problem. We’ve been meaning to earn some Hyatt points towards a possible Japan redemption so that we don’t have to transfer out of our UR stash, but the CIPpy cup has sidelined those plans. Meanwhile, I’m 4/24 until next spring so I need to stick with biz cards to keep playing in Chase’s playground. I think I’ll have DW refer me from her CIC/CIU to my own CIU, probably in October. That’s a 50k UR SUB and a 15k UR support bonus. Not CIPpy cup money, but also not another open CIP. Afterwards, we’ll probably close DW’s CIU since it will have passed a year. Around the end of the year, I’ll probably refer DW from my CIU to back to CIU2. We’ll see where I am at the end of the year, but I am also eyeing a Hyatt card and that’ll be the card that takes me to 5/24 for a while.
    @Lain, I remember when all of this self-referral stuff started it was stated pretty clearly that there was a risk and to not use it unless we couldn't refer any other way. I'm really sad that you're feeling down about all of this. Everyone here knows that nothing is certain in this game and that there are risks when doing certain things. Some of us are more risk averse than others, but we are taking a chance when we step into this arena. I certainly hope I haven't said anything to make you or @SouthFayetteFan to regret posting here. I wouldn't have my tickets to Norway if it hadn't been for the patience, time, and effort you both gave me when I joined. I also think that we all have to decide what's the right level of risk for ourselves. I really appreciate all of the support and help everyone on this thread gives each day and while, yes, there have been some setbacks, the overall outcome has been extremely positive for me and for others. :grouphug:

    @Lain - I truly appreciate your thoughts and I hope that you know how appreciated you are.

    This is a very supportive group and we all encourage others in their journey with the belief that we are all adults with the capacity to make informed decisions for ourselves. In the end, everything with this game is truly a YMMV game. Unless you are an Amex RAT mole or the Tesla guy please don't feel guilty for anything!
    Totally agree!

    Thanks for your input. Dh and I both prefer the nonstop UA flight, even though EWR is farther away from us. I don't know what the others will want to do. We're going to have a conference call this evening so hopefully everything will be decided.
    Late to the party. I do like the A380s - really smooth flight and I didn't feel all cooped up in a long, thin tube for my 11 hour flight on one, so I might pick #2. Also I think those crazy long flights are tough without a stop. Then again, direct is really nice as long as the seat is comfy and you can lie flat - then you don't have to worry about connections.




    ETA - I'm so grateful when all of you share ideas, DPs, stuff you read about on reddit, etc. since I'm not so good at finding them on my own (esp. on Reddit because it's scary over there). Please know that it's not your fault if something great ends up back-firing like the AMEX clawback.
     
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    AmyAnne

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 20, 2012
    I have much deeper thoughts and feelings about this and the recent Amex clawbacks than what I'm going to type. I’ll try to get the gist of this down. I just haven't had much time to write up very many meaningful posts, analyses, or replies, while still keeping up with the conversation and providing at least cursory answers to people's questions. And to be honest, the Amex developments have left me incredibly shaken.

    First and foremost, I want to apologize to everyone who had any MR points clawed back as a result of self-referral. I was the one who brought over the news from r/churning that this was possible last July, and I did it myself and I feel like I set an example for others to follow. While everyone has to consider the risks of whatever they do in this hobby, and assess their own tolerance for that risk, I know we all look to DPs and strategies from both strangers and people we trust to help make our decisions. And if any of you feel like I've steered you wrong, I am truly and deeply sorry.

    I shared the self-referral and cross-referral methods with the intention that this could help folks here earn a lot more points themselves and within their household once they already had one or two Amex cards, instead of settling for public offers or having their clicks go to someone else. I think this succeeded for a time as I, and I'm sure many others, saw a significant drop in their support clicks on Amex cards coming from other DISchurners. Self-referral or cross-referral became the de facto advice on r/churning and here, because if someone wasn't recommending you do it, then they weren't watching out for your interests and likely fishing for your support click. And so everyone was doing it. (I think the fact that MRs cannot be transferred or pooled among spouses or within a household also affected calculations to self-refer rather than refer from P1>P2 or P2>P1.) I’m devastated that this method, in the end, cost some people real money if you paid taxes on points that Amex ultimately took away with no indication how they’re going to fix this mess.

    I can't recall anyone raising any flags that Amex would claw back these support bonuses. Just as I try to relay useful information to this thread, I’m always on the lookout for negative DPs. In late April, we shared a DP from a r/churning claiming that Amex clawed back a self-referral bonus. We advised caution and to wait and see if there were any further DPs of such clawbacks. I waited until June to self-refer to a BBP. There were no more negative DPs, and that report in April appeared to be a one off, perhaps prompted by eyes drawn to the OP's account for other reasons, or maybe the OP was just mistaken. Nothing suggested Amex would go back a year and claw back literally millions of MRs. We should have done better, kept our tinfoil hats on, and always remember Amex's modus operandi. Amex froze accounts and clawed back millions of MR from those who it believed abused the leaked Thanksgiving 2016 100k MR Platinum link. More recently, Amex clawed back the Saks credits from people who returned their purchases – even on closed card accounts, and charged people's cards hundreds of dollars for using multiples of the Staples Amex Offers.

    What Amex giveth, Amex can taketh. It’s a real love/hate relationship with Amex. Amex has some of the biggest and best bonuses, solid co-brand and transfer partners and thus a lot of value to their programs, some cards that are actually worth keeping and putting ongoing category spend on, generous and useful Amex Offers (I’m looking at you Chase and your max $4 back at Rite-Aid), and hands out cards like candy. But Amex is also incredibly high maintenance, sensitive to perceived abuse, and downright schizophrenic. I’m sure all of us could come up with a list of 10 Things I Hate About Amex (h/t @SouthFayetteFan). If Amex thinks you’re not spending enough on them – pop up! Gaming their Amex Offers or credits? Don’t be surprised if Amex charges your statement for returns or refunds on which you got that credit, even if it’s months or more than a year later. The RAT has a long memory. MS their SUB? Bonus denial or clawback. But don’t do enough organic spend so you MS to keep Amex happy? That’s perfectly fine, have some more cards! Glitch holding up your bonus or credits? It’s not our fault, it’s yours! Just keep spending until you hit the bonus! And now the self-referrals…

    You all might not know this from my irreverent chatter on the thread in the past week, but I haven’t felt this low since probably Plastiq 3x died on the CIP. I was a major cheerleader for the CIP, aside from its SUB, and Plastiq because of the ability to actually make money paying your bills. And when Plastiq stopped coding 3x the first time, and then a second time, I know several of you had just paid your bills before the DPs caught up but would only get 1x on the payment and you folks had to eat the fee. Then Chase kept killing all the other things that I happily told you coded 3x on the CIP…

    And now we come to the CIPpy cup. I feel some amount of joy, but also responsibility for bringing news about the CIPpy cup here. I had been monitoring chatter and DPs on r/churning about multiple CIP approvals using only a SSN, but did not share the news until there was confirmation the bonuses were posting. I realized this is a way for us to turbocharge our UR balances, which is probably the favorite currency for most of you, at a time when Chase had killed the DD and imposed 48-month restrictions on the Sapphire cards. Come to think of it, I also shared the MDD.

    All this, as with anything in this hobby, is not without risk. @SouthFayetteFan highlighted many of the risks in his original post. I will add that the Chase could stop refilling the CIPpy cup at any time. Although it’s a general rule that Chase will not approve a card without the bonus attached, Chase could conceivably deny the bonus. I’ve yet to see that on a UR-earning card, but I remember there was chatter about going for the Chase Marriott Biz card before it was discontinued just to hold it for the anniversary FNs, even if you weren’t eligible for the bonus under the fine print restrictions. Chase could, as they did when they were shutting down the Sapphire DD loophole, unilaterally close cards without notice. Personally, I think the risk of this is minimal because you’re not doing a DD with the CIPpy cup, and actual businesses have legitimate reasons for multiples of the same card. I remember seeing an open browser of Tesla Guy’s Chase account with all his cards and spotted several CIPs. But for someone like TPG, who is all about bonus category spend nowadays and spends millions on advertising, it would make sense to have multiple CIPs and BGR/Biz Golds since their bonus categories are capped at $150k/yr. If Chase were to target all their customers with multiples of the same product, they would upset a lot of non-churning clients and businesses. But what if they just targeted those who received SUBs on multiples of the same product within, say, a two-year span. That would also sweep in non-churning clients and businesses with legitimate reasons to hold multiple Ink cards and received bonuses on them. Again, what’s Chase’s modus operandi? Chase isn’t known for clawbacks. I can’t recall ever seeing a DP about a Chase clawback. As I posted recently, Chase’s weapon of choice is a shutdown, whether it be to close specific cards or shut down all card accounts. This is something we typically see in a bust-out situation (due to velocity and balances), the DD purge, or for whatever reason Chase or its affiliates decides to end their relationship with you. I want to be clear, as @SouthFayetteFan already pointed out, in all of these cases Chase never clawed back any points and allowed the customer 30 days to either cash out, redeem it, or transfer the points to a travel partner. (It’s not recommended to transfer points from a shut down account to P2 and risk P2 getting shut down.)

    I’ve discussed Amex and Chase, but there’s also Citi. Many of us are riding the GrAAvy train, but there’s a risk with every application that the bonus won’t post, especially if you’ve used a public link. I can only imagine how terrible @SouthFayetteFan and @speedyfishy must have felt when we discovered public links to the GrAAvy train were a lot more YMMV, without apparent rhyme or reason, after sharing information that they were a way to bypass mailers and possibly save some money.

    @SouthFayetteFan and I, and I’m sure many of the active contributors to this thread share information we come across with only the intention to benefit other members of this community. Personally, I try to vet the information I post, consider the risks and be thorough about explaining it, and I continue to be on the lookout for DPs that say a method has changed, ended, or something else adverse has happened so that I can share that too. But please note that there’s a built-in delay to all DPs, and a DP reported today might have come too late to change something you did yesterday and may not be an accurate predictor of how something works tomorrow. This hobby, its rules, and how the issuers apply those rules are constantly changing. We do our best to keep up and keep you all informed, but we’re not omniscient or infallible. I know we can all be cheerleaders and enablers sometimes, but I have to trust that you consider the benefits and risks as it relates to your own situation, assess your own tolerances, and come to the right decision for you. But please, don't be scared off from this hobby because, I think for almost everyone here, you've notched a lot more wins than losses.

    I know several of you have asked if anyone’s gotten CIP4. I think what they’re looking for is a green light and an all-safe to go ahead and apply for CIP4. I can’t give you that. I don’t think anyone here has gone for CIP4 all with only their SSN, but I also don’t doubt there are folks on r/churning pushing that envelope and beyond. I’ll say under the current way things work, if you go for CIP4, provided you’ve watched your velocity and managed your credit lines, you’ll probably get approved and you’ll likely get your SUB. I can’t make any predictions or assurances what Chase will do with that in the future (maybe nothing!) other than muse about the risks as I did above.

    What does my own strategy look like for the rest of 2019? DW’s CIP3 SUB and the support bonus from my CIP2 just posted this week. DW has two open CIPs from March and June, a CIU from last September, and a CIC from last December. I recently closed my 1+ year old CIC, got approved for CIP3 this week, have an open CIP2 from April, and a sockdrawered Marriott Biz. (Interestingly, I did apply for DW’s and my CIP3 with our FN MI LN and SSN but, as @SouthFayetteFan suggested, with a different business category to at least make a plausible case for different businesses between different CIPs.) With 2 open CIPs each, I’m thinking we’ll both cool off with our CIP apps for the next few months.

    DW is 1/24 and I’m seriously considering referring her from my Biz Plat (20k MR>20k Hilton) to the Hilton Surpass before we cancel her Hilton Biz next month to avoid the AF. That will probably push DW out with Chase, if not for a velocity issue (because, historically, Amex doesn’t report a new personal card until the close of the second statement), then because of juggling the MSRs on several new cards. I was just approved for CIP3, so that’s a $5k MSR in the next 3 months; and I’ve barely made a dent in the Biz Plat upgrade offer for $10k spend in the remaining 4½ months. The Surpass would come with another $4k MSR in 4 months. Then, when DW goes back to Chase, I’m looking at the Hyatt card. At 2/24, another personal card for DW is not a problem. We’ve been meaning to earn some Hyatt points towards a possible Japan redemption so that we don’t have to transfer out of our UR stash, but the CIPpy cup has sidelined those plans. Meanwhile, I’m 4/24 until next spring so I need to stick with biz cards to keep playing in Chase’s playground. I think I’ll have DW refer me from her CIC/CIU to my own CIU, probably in October. That’s a 50k UR SUB and a 15k UR support bonus. Not CIPpy cup money, but also not another open CIP. Afterwards, we’ll probably close DW’s CIU since it will have passed a year. Around the end of the year, I’ll probably refer DW from my CIU to back to CIU2. We’ll see where I am at the end of the year, but I am also eyeing a Hyatt card and that’ll be the card that takes me to 5/24 for a while.
    I haven't read the replies yet but I feel compelled to say first, that I appreciate that you and others inform us here of noteworthy developments that you hear about on reddit (the non-chronological postings there confuse me, plus I like the atmosphere here better), and second, everyone here understands that we are all just trying to help each other out with our hobby. There have been enough reports of AmEx's behavior (and Chase's to a lesser extent) that everyone should understand that things can and will go wrong on occasion. I have a few self-referrals that could get clawed back. If that happens I will be displeased but I certainly would never blame you or anyone else here.
     

    tink1970

    DCL Platinum
    Joined
    Dec 29, 2012
    Does the weekend night post immediately after MSR, or is it an anniversary night? I’ve looked at this card so many times before but couldn’t make it worth my while. But I do need GE now and I thought maybe someone had mentioned purchasing Tokyo Disney tickets and charging it to their room to use the credit? Can anyone here chime in on that? Between that and GE that could change my mind.
    LOL, me too! I've almost convinced myself to get it in Dec after I apply for the CiP which would put me back to 5/24 until March ...but that would work anyway with Chase's pace.

    That said, no idea about some of your questions but @calypso726 is the Holder of All Aspire Knowledge so maybe she'll chime in!
     

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