Update: One or more card offers in this post are no longer available. Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers.
Via Reddit, the rumor mill is blowing unsourced news that American Express will be scrapping its current policy to disallow you from earning the sign-up bonus on a card if you’ve ever had the card before.
I’m selective about the unsubstantiated buzz I post because it sometimes turns out to be incorrect!
In this case I’m writing about it because it makes sense that AMEX would relax their strict policy based on what else has been happening with them.
Also, I want it to be true so very, very badly! 🙂
Whispers About the Demise of the “Once-in-a-Lifetime Rule”
But a Reddit contributor says that as of now, you can actually get the bonus if you canceled your personal card 7+ years ago. Or if you canceled your small business card over a year ago.
And that on an undetermined date in May 2016, you’ll be able to earn the bonus on personal and small business AMEX cards that you have not held for at least 4 years.
Why It Makes Sense
Sign-up bonuses are designed to attract new cardholders. And American Express might be looking to add after:
- Saying goodbye to all those Costco cardholders when they lost the co-branded account to Citi
- Jettisoning the JetBlue cards to Barclaycard
- Watching the Fidelity card move to Visa
- Realizing the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express might be going away in 2017 or 2018 because of the merger with Marriott, which has its credit cards with Chase
That said, as of yet, there is NO confirmation of this policy change. I’ll let you know as soon as there’s more news.
How to Think About AMEX Applications Now
The current rules for earning American Express welcome bonuses are in writing on their sign-up pages:
Welcome bonus offer not available to applicants who have or have had this product.
So if you’ve had a particular AMEX card in the past, you can try to qualify for the bonus at your own risk!
If the 4-year rumor becomes a reality, that’d be very helpful for those of y’all who’ve had their longstanding cards in the past and would like to own those cards again.
In the Very Short-Term
Could there be a temporary policy until May to allow folks to pick up the welcome bonus on a small business card they closed over a year ago? That sounds more suspect, but anything is possible.
If you apply and are able to earn a bonus again on an AMEX card you’ve had in the past, please share your good news in the comments!