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Insider Secret: The best Chase credit cards are subject to what’s known as the “5-24 rule.” This can shut you out of fantastic Chase credit cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (our #1 credit card pick for beginners to travel rewards cards.)
Bloomberg and other outlets are reporting that JPMorgan Chase & Co. is considering selling off its AARP credit card portfolio. This has been a nearly three-decade partnership.
An unnamed source leaked that Alliance Data Systems Corp. is among those interested in the AARP Chase credit cards.
Alliance Data typically issues credit cards through its Comenity Bank subsidiary. Comenity issues a lot of store-brand credit cards. And that’s what is fueling this rumor/news. Bloomberg notes that Alliance Data’s stock has dropped by about 50% since the beginning of last year because investors fear its fate is closely tied to mall retailers that are struggling as people abandon malls to shift more of their shopping online.
How the Sale of These Chase Credit Cards May Be Good News for Travelers
It’s no secret that Chase has a firm grip on many of the best travel credit cards. The problem is the Chase 5/24 rule. In short, Chase won’t approve you for most of their credit cards if you’ve opened 5 or more credit cards from ANY bank within the past 24 months. (Important exception: business credit cards from American Express, Bank of America, Chase, Citi and Wells Fargo do NOT count towards your 5 credit card total.)
So if indeed Chase sells off the AARP portfolio, those of you who have opened 5+ credit cards in the past 24 months yet still want the AARP card, would be in the clear if the AARP card is issued by a different bank. You’d be playing by Comenity’s rules, not Chase’s.
Chase has yet to comment on this but if there’s any truth to this rumor, let’s step back and look at what else Alliance Data/Comenity or another bank might want to buy from Chase. Perhaps the Chase Amazon credit cards would be for sale? Or maybe the Disney or Starbucks portfolios could be appealing to another bank?
So if you’re locked out of the Chase credit cards because of the 5-24 rule yet really wanted those Amazon perks, it wouldn’t be a problem to apply for the Amazon credit cards if they were issued by a different bank.
I have a hard time seeing Chase selling off any of their travel card portfolios like say, their Southwest cards like the terrific Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card. If they did that, it’d be a game-changer for many. But you never know. If I recall correctly, Chase used to issue the Amtrak travel card but now it’s run by Bank of America.
The information for the Southwest Premier Business card has been collected independently by Million Mile Secrets. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
Bottom Line on Chase Credit Cards
I love competition among the banks. Because this makes them compete for OUR business. It’d be great to be able to pick up more credit cards without worrying about the Chase 5/24 rule. I don’t like being shut out from getting new credit cards I’d use often! So I’m hoping this rumor turns into a trend and we can spread the best credit cards around to being issued by more banks.
Here are our favorite travel credit cards by the various banks:
- Chase Sapphire Preferred Card: Best Travel Credit Card
- Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card: Best Credit Card for Simple Travel Rewards
- The Platinum Card® from American Express: Best Premium Travel Credit Card
- Alaska Airlines Visa® Business credit card: Best Credit Card for Traveling Domestically and Internationally
- CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®: Best Credit Card for Frequent American Airlines Flyers