Why the Chase Ink Bold offer may NOT end, 30,000 to 45,000 Delta Miles, and new fees with BankDirect

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Why the Chase Ink Bold offer may NOT end, 30,000 to 45,000 Delta Miles, and new fees with BankDirect

Million Mile SecretsWhy the Chase Ink Bold offer may NOT end, 30,000 to 45,000 Delta Miles, and new fees with BankDirectMillion Mile Secrets Team

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Update: One or more card offers in this post are no longer available. Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers.

Welcome back everyone! Hope you had a great Thanksgiving.  I didn’t post this weekend because I was spending time with Emily’s family in Ohio and the blog was moving over to a new server to keep pace with the increased traffic.

1.   Why The Chase Ink Bold Offer May Not Change

I’ve been amused by the certitude with which others have written about how the Chase Ink Bold will be “pulled” or how the “50,000 point offer is ending” today.

I’m very skeptical of such claims, and even posted a brief message on MilePoint over the Thanksgiving holidays on that topic.

Chase is aggressively competing with American Express and is adding new benefits to its cards to be more competitive with American Express.  Reducing the sign-on bonus will make the Chase  Ink Bold card less competitive compared to the American Express Business Gold Rewards card.

And being less competitive is clearly NOT the path which Chase appears to be going down towards.  Heck, they just poached a top executive from American Express and Chase’s credit card division reported better performance as a result.  Chase’s strategy is pretty clear  – give consumers a better option to American Express Membership Rewards.

Removing foreign exchange fees (as Kroozer tipped me off about) and adding category bonuses gives consumers a better option to American Express Membership Rewards.

Reducing the sign-on bonus does not.

Even if the sign-on bonus is reduced, I wouldn’t expect it to last very long, and would expect the 50,000 sign-on bonus to return.

Chase is the best run US bank (no thanks to CEO Jamie Dimon) and has the best internal controls to prevent folks (that’s us!) from getting multiple bonuses and applying for cards just for the sign-on bonus.

As a new entrant, Chase wants to gain market share from American Express and  is unlikely to give up one of their main weapons to get folks to apply for the Chase Ink Bold card – the 50,000 point sign up bonus.

2.   Delta 30,000 to 45,000 Mile Credit Card

I’ve written previously how the Delta 30,000 mile credit card is a terrible card to get just for the sign-on bonus because you can do much better than that with many, many other credit card offers.  30,000 Delta miles also won’t get you much since Delta has pretty bad award flight availability at the low level within the US.

But the Delta card may be worthwhile if you frequently travel on Delta (you get 1 free checked bag on Delta with the credit card) and pay checked bag fees.

However, you may be able to get up to 45,000 miles for the Delta card by checking to see what your targeted offer is (you need a Delta SkyMiles number).  Emily and I were both offered 30,000 miles, but folks in this thread on FlyerTalk have been getting up to 45,000 miles!

45,000 miles is certainly better than the current offer of 30,000 miles which has been available for a long time!

I’m curious to see what type of offers everyone is receiving in the comments, because that could suggest what the next publicly available offer is.

If you do decide to apply using this link, be sure to take screenshots.  Hopefully, you won’t need them!

3.   BankDirect

I’ve been earning American Airline miles from BankDirect for years.  However, Ben wrote that a BankDirect user received a letter informing him of a $12 fee per checking account from next year.

I still haven’t received a letter from BankDirect, but will post more if I do.  Paying a $12 monthly fee makes earning AAdvantage miles through BankDirect much more expensive for accounts with small balances.

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Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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I just got my letter from Bankdirect and wrote them an online message letting them know that I’d be closing my account if they continue with their plan to charge $12/month. Has anyone else done the same?

Hello. I have also received bank direct ltr about impending fees starting Jan 2012. I am waiting for my miles to post , i’ll be closing my acct.

I’m DL Silver and the offer that shows for me is 25K after first spend + 15K after $1000 in 3 months.

Million Mile Secrets

@LBtrav & @remy stern – Thanks for the update. The fee will make BankDirect less attractive, but there is a tipping point which could make it worthwhile.

– Thanks for sharing. I wonder if having Delta elite status increases the offer you get?

I received the same email response today from BankDirect. I wrote back saying I am likely going to be closing my account. I am really disappointed by their decision to impose the fee—I just opened my account a few months ago and was looking forward to getting the miles. I hate the idea of paying a bank a monthly fee to hold my money when I’m not getting any interest.

Are others thinking of canceling their accounts? Is there a minimum number of miles per month that you think would justify the fee?

BankDirect change confirmed by email support:

Thank you for your email. Beginning January of 2012, BankDirect will charge a fee of $12.00 per month to all Mileage Checking accounts regardless of account balance or activity. This fee will not be waived nor will there be any qualifications that would exclude a customer from being assessed this fee.

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