Upgrade/downgrade = new card... worth it?

Old Mar 12, 13, 12:54 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 21
Upgrade/downgrade = new card... worth it?

Wife and I currently have personal Plat (1 each) and Blue (1 each), a biz Gold Rewards (1 each) for one business (call it CPH), and a Gold Rewards (1) and Green Rewards (1) for a different business (call it CRL; with an infinitely smaller spend).

We do about 3-5K/month on the personal (combined, 99.9% on Plat), and an average of 30K/month (and probably going up for the next couple years as we grow) on the CPH cards. The CRL does so little I'm considering downgrading it to something with little/no fee.

We've been getting hounded with the "upgrade to biz plat" ads/mailers from Amex, and, now that they stopped the 20% bonus for Travel booking on personal cards, I'm thinking about taking them up on the upgrade offer, then switching the personal Plat to PRG.

I guess this is a two part question, then: 1) Will upgrading/downgrading count as closing/opening new cards? If so, I'm hesitant to do this as these are our oldest cards, at about 10yrs for personal and 6 for biz. If not, are they any tips I should be aware of, getting fees comped or points to make up for it (stupidly I never even knew it was an option until recently - I'm new the points game)?

And 2) Is this even a good idea? We've been essentially exclusive Amex users (aside from a shite TD Bank Rewards Visa) for that entire time. But we did just get the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Ink Plus (and about to apply for Ink Bold). And probably going to try to each Ink for each biz. So the monthly spend will drop, maybe by up to half, but not go away.

And thus ends my first novel: "Rambling Thoughts of the North American Noob"

Thanks.
tritofly is offline  
Old Mar 13, 13, 6:25 am
  #2  
gum
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
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Originally Posted by tritofly View Post
1) Will upgrading/downgrading count as closing/opening new cards? If so, I'm hesitant to do this as these are our oldest cards, at about 10yrs for personal and 6 for biz. If not, are they any tips I should be aware of, getting fees comped or points to make up for it (stupidly I never even knew it was an option until recently - I'm new the points game)?

Thanks.
Just would like to answer question Nr. 1: Upgrading or downgrading a card is normally a seamless process of just issuing the new card with the new colour and then delivering the additional services attached. Your Membership reward account Nr. should stay the same likewise your "member since" date. So no until now accumulated MR points should be lost.

Therefore I would *NOT* close my account first and *THEN* apply for a new card including the process of issuing a new card. I just would *CHANGECOLOUR* the card. Your invitation/mailing should state something like you are "pre-approved" for the card of the new colour or something like that (don#t know the exact term used in English). As far as bonuses are concerned: It never hurts to call Amex and ask if there is any incentive in terms of a points bonus or something like that.

What the colour of the Card is concerned: Sorry that I couldn't give you any hint or tip which card is the best: Just compare yourself.

By the way: One of the best advantages of MR is that the accumulated points can be piled up for a long period of time - they have no expiration date.

Hope this helps a bit.
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Old Mar 13, 13, 11:01 am
  #3  
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 21
Originally Posted by gum View Post
Just would like to answer question Nr. 1: Upgrading or downgrading a card is normally a seamless process of just issuing the new card with the new colour and then delivering the additional services attached. Your Membership reward account Nr. should stay the same likewise your "member since" date. So no until now accumulated MR points should be lost.

Therefore I would *NOT* close my account first and *THEN* apply for a new card including the process of issuing a new card. I just would *CHANGECOLOUR* the card. Your invitation/mailing should state something like you are "pre-approved" for the card of the new colour or something like that (don#t know the exact term used in English). As far as bonuses are concerned: It never hurts to call Amex and ask if there is any incentive in terms of a points bonus or something like that.

What the colour of the Card is concerned: Sorry that I couldn't give you any hint or tip which card is the best: Just compare yourself.

By the way: One of the best advantages of MR is that the accumulated points can be piled up for a long period of time - they have no expiration date.

Hope this helps a bit.
This was actually immensely helpful! My biggest concern was potentially losing our longest active card and the credit hit that would accompany that.

I do love that my points don't expire; we just paid for roundtrip flights (1st class) to Alaska and all of the hotel stays for a week with my father-in-law. Only thing I'll have to pay for is food and a rental car!
tritofly is offline  
Old Mar 13, 13, 6:10 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: BOS;NYC;YVR;YYZ;DEL;BOM
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Posts: 529
Originally Posted by tritofly View Post
Wife and I currently have personal Plat (1 each) and Blue (1 each), a biz Gold Rewards (1 each) for one business (call it CPH), and a Gold Rewards (1) and Green Rewards (1) for a different business (call it CRL; with an infinitely smaller spend).

We do about 3-5K/month on the personal (combined, 99.9% on Plat), and an average of 30K/month (and probably going up for the next couple years as we grow) on the CPH cards. The CRL does so little I'm considering downgrading it to something with little/no fee.

We've been getting hounded with the "upgrade to biz plat" ads/mailers from Amex, and, now that they stopped the 20% bonus for Travel booking on personal cards, I'm thinking about taking them up on the upgrade offer, then switching the personal Plat to PRG.

I guess this is a two part question, then: 1) Will upgrading/downgrading count as closing/opening new cards? If so, I'm hesitant to do this as these are our oldest cards, at about 10yrs for personal and 6 for biz. If not, are they any tips I should be aware of, getting fees comped or points to make up for it (stupidly I never even knew it was an option until recently - I'm new the points game)?

And 2) Is this even a good idea? We've been essentially exclusive Amex users (aside from a shite TD Bank Rewards Visa) for that entire time. But we did just get the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Ink Plus (and about to apply for Ink Bold). And probably going to try to each Ink for each biz. So the monthly spend will drop, maybe by up to half, but not go away.

And thus ends my first novel: "Rambling Thoughts of the North American Noob"

Thanks.
As the other poster said, don't cancel and apply for new ones. Amex shows you your relationship start date and never changes it till atleast 1 card is active.

My wife and I just upgraded our Gold biz rewards to Biz Plat to get the 25k points & $200 airline credit for this year, and next year. Before the annual fee posts again next year, we plan to downgrade to something else.

Pros & Cons of doing so for EACH of us
+ avoided the Biz Reward renewal fee that was coming up
+ 25k points
+ $200 airline credit x 2 (we just buy gift cards)
- $450

You can keep going up and down within the cards to avoid annual fees.

As long as you hold 1 MR earning card, your MR account stays the same. We plan to keep holding our Platinum personal cards.

BTW: upgrading to a preapproved Amex card does not touch your credit report. No credit pull at all.
sahiljain22 is offline  

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