I had heard from different bloggers and others that there was a new American Express policy when it came to the amount of cards that you can have. The rumor was that it was 4 credit cards max – that is personal AND business! Well, I found that out for myself today. In the past, I had as many as 6 personal cards at once and a couple of business cards. Now, it is a total of 4 combined. Now, that does only apply to credit cards –charge cards (cards with no credit limit) are excluded from that. This makes things a little difficult for the card user who wants to maximize points.
For example, the cards I currently have are:
- Hilton HHonors American Express
- American Express Business Platinum
- American Express Delta Reserve
- American Express Starwood Preferred Guest Business
- American Express Starwood Preferred Guest Personal
The SPG personal card was the one that I had recently applied for and which I was called about today. The Amex Business Platinum does not count in the 4, but I had an older small business card that I had not used in years, so I told them to close that.
Now, the cards I have are all for different purposes. For instance, I have always had a Delta Amex card and I plan on using my Reserve card this year to get the bonus MQMs for the different spending thresholds. So, I need that one.
The Hilton American Express is the card I use for all of my Vanilla Reload cards to fill my Bluebird account when I am not trying to hit minimum spending (because I get 6x points for using it at a pharmacy – CVS). So, I need that one.
The two Starwood cards are good because I get stay credits with each towards elite status. Since I can now only have 4, I will probably have to begin to alternate closing those cards to get in on the other good offers. For right now, I need both of those.
Now, what will this do for card history on your credit report? I always try to leave my oldest card open with an issuer so as to help my relationship with the issuer as well as give my average credit length a good number. With this new policy, I may have to start being careful with how often I close these cards.
This is a shame – it used to be that there was some internal number of how many cards you could have from a particular issuer for each individual and Chase use to be the one that was the most strict (although my wife has 6 personal cards and 2 business cards with them!). Now, it is 4 Amex cards for everyone. So, choose wisely and just be aware as to what card(s) you may be willing to give up when you apply for a new one.
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