How Does the Chase 5/24 Policy Work?

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Update: In addition to the 5/24 policy, Chase has introduced new terms for the availability of Sapphire-family credit cards.

One rule we're asked to clarify on a regular basis is the Chase 5/24 policy. Although not an officially published rule, 5/24 is a set of guidelines restricting the approval of new Chase credit card products to applicants with less than 5 new credit card accounts (across any credit issuer) opened over the past 24 months. It doesn’t apply to all Chase credit cards, but does cover the most popular, and is applied to all Ultimate Rewards earning cards. Again, to be clear, everything shared here is based on information and evidence provided by the community and is not an officially published statement/policy/rule provided by Chase.

Back in mid-2015, rumors surfaced of Chase credit card applications being denied because of 5 or more new credit card accounts opened in the previous 24 months. At the time, the reports were isolated to Ultimate Rewards earning cards. However, the new requirements expanded to include Chase co-branded cards in May 2016.

Chase doesn’t publish details of the policy (except for briefly on the Chase Sapphire Reserve® application page which was pulled not long after it surfaced), but there is lots of data showing which cards are affected by the tighter rules, and which cards are seemingly exempt.

Being over 5/24 is not a guarantee you'll be denied. There are plenty of reports on Reddit of applicants getting approved for cards when they are well over 5/24. However, it is highly likely you won’t be approved if you are sitting on 5 cards or above.

What Does Chase Consider a New Credit Card Account?

At this point, it’s worth clarifying the difference between cards that count towards 5/24, and cards that are subject to 5/24, as this seems to cause some confusion.

  • Cards that count towards 5/24 – This is the number of accounts opened in the previous 24 months. It includes all personal credit cards, from any credit card provider, including co-branded and store-specific cards (typically store cards will show up if they have a Visa/MasterCard logo) that show up on your credit report, along with authorized user accounts, and business cards from Discover and Capital One. Business cards have been specifically called out here as most business credit/charge cards do not show up on your personal credit report under normal circumstances, Discover and Capital One do.
  • Cards subject to 5/24 – Cards subject to Chase’s 5/24 policy, based on our research, are those listed below, and include most of Chase’s personal credit cards and the Ink Business cards.

The confusion surrounding this aspect of 5/24 is compounded by cards like the Ink Business Preferred℠‎ Credit Card, which is subject to 5/24, but doesn’t count towards your 5 accounts opened in 24 months because it's a business credit card.

Another important aspect to note is that 5/24 has nothing to do with hard credit pulls on your credit file, only opened accounts. Hard pulls will always be considered as part of your application, and also count towards your credit score, but they do not form any part of 5/24.

Authorized user accounts on your credit report count towards 5/24 by default, although some applicants have noted getting approved after clarifying they don’t use the card, or, are not liable for any outstanding balance.

Which Cards Are Subject to 5/24?

Chase doesn’t release a list covering the cards subject to 5/24, but from data provided by the points and miles community and threads like this one on Reddit, the cards listed below are affected by 5/24:

Chase Credit Cards Not Subject to 5/24

As above, this is not a hard list as Chase doesn’t release the details, but, from the data we have, these cards are not currently subject to 5/24:

If we've missed any, please let us know in the comments and add your data points, and we’ll update the post as new information comes to light.

Credit Cards That Won't Count Towards 5/24?

The bad news? If you've opened five or more personal credit cards over the past 24 months, there is very little you can do other than wait for a card to drop off the back of the list (24 months after application), or try one of the strategies towards the bottom of this post.

The good news? The majority of business credit cards do not show up on your personal credit report. Doctor of Credit has a fantastic post listing how each credit card provider reports business credit cards which we’ve summarized below.

Credit providers that don't report new business accounts to your personal credit bureau:

  • American Express
  • Bank of America
  • Barclaycard
  • Chase
  • Citi
  • U.S. Bank
  • Wells Fargo

Credit providers that report new business accounts to your personal credit bureau:

  • Capital One
  • Discover

Is the 5/24 Policy Always in Effect?

Up until December 2016, applicant’s with a Chase Private Client account reported success when over 5/24, but this path has since tightened significantly, and approved applicants are now few and far between.

There are a few scenarios that we've read about where people were successful while being over 5/24, although these also appear to no longer be working from recent reports. Past methods of bypassing 5/24 include:

  • The ‘Your Offers’ tab on your Ultimate Rewards account page. There are multiple reports of applicants getting approved for these ‘Selected for You’ offers when over 5/24
  • Targeted invites via mail that contain invitation codes to apply for a card
  • In-branch pre-approvals. We’ve also seen lots of people approved over 5/24 for cards when checking for ‘pre-approved’ products in person at a Chase bank.

Final Thoughts

Chase’s 5/24 rule has changed the game for many in the points and miles community. It's now much harder to plan and execute an effective points and miles strategy if your focus is on Ultimate Rewards earning cards, or Chase products in general. That said, there are still lots of opportunities to maximize your points and miles if you plan your travel goals well in advance, and devise a strategy using a diverse range of rewards cards and loyalty programs.

The introduction of 5/24 makes it essential to keep track of new credit card applications and approvals to ensure you know when each card was applied for, when accounts were opened, and when they will fall off the 24-month count. It may also require a change in strategies to account for less new personal credit card accounts, instead focusing some of your attention on business cards which don’t count towards 5/24.

While we can only speculate at the reason for this policy, protecting themselves from signup bonus abuse is likely at the top of the list. While signup bonuses are fantastic, it is unfortunate that even if you want a card, regardless of its signup bonus, you might not be able to get it. Maybe we'll see this policy change.

If you have any questions regarding 5/24, let us know in the comments and we’ll do our best to help!

How Does the Chase 5/24 Policy Work?
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Comments

  • I really don’t understand why credit card companies need to be so cloak and dagger about everything. Thanks for putting some light on this.

  • Excellent list, what about AADvantage through citi?

  • Wow, I’ve always overlooked the “Your Offers” tab on the UR page. Thx for the great tip!

  • So I have had the Hyatt card for a couple of years and I use the one free anniversary night regularly. But the terms and conditions say “This product is not available to either (i) current cardmembers of this credit card, or (ii) previous cardmembers of this credit card who received a new cardmember bonus for this credit card within the last 24 months.”

    So if I were to cancel my Hyatt card and then reapply would I get the two free night again because it has been more than 24 months since I got the sign-up bonus?

    Has there been any people reporting success with this?

  • If you have a spouse that you travel hack with, the 5/24 rule can be a *little* less restrictive, but this is definitely creating headaches. It’s almost like it locks you into Chase cards, which they can get away with because they’ve got the best ones generally. Great tip on the business cards, though.

  • how long does it take to get the AU removed from your credit?

  • FYI the “Your offers” tab will only show offers if it has been at least 6mos from the date you last opened a chase card

  • It’s unfortunate but we gotta know these rules.

  • This is definitely the definitive exploration of all of the many, many facets of the Chase 5/24 rule. Thank you ever so much for bringing it together!

  • I opened a card in early 2015 and added spouse as an AU in early 2016. I cancelled card in late 2016. Would this still count as one of his 5/24?

    • Yes, it would. If you’ve closed the card account you might have your spouse ask to have it removed from their credit report as they were technically never liable for the card.

  • I have been turned down twice in the past year by Chase because of the 5/24 rule. I even appealed to the reconsideration line without success and I have a very good FICO score.

  • Air Flyer says:

    5 new credit cards in 24 months – wouldn’t that affect the credit score quite a bit?

  • Cathy Krasnianski says:

    There are far too many examples of people with well over the 5/24 count that have applied for and received cards, such as the CSR, so the 5/24 Rule is really a moot point…IF you know how to work the system.

  • Alice Chen says:

    Interesting. I imagine you can still ask for reconsideration on applications if you really want a particular card.

  • Considering Marriott Business card but heard Chase was pretty restrictive on business cards. My husband had to provide a tax return for the Southwest Business card. True for Marriot card?!

  • Great article. Just have to plan out your card cycling. Know your goals. Yes, chase has a majority of the good travel cards.

  • Great list! Thanks for the info.

  • luckily i got preapproval

  • ADAM PARSONS says:

    Thanks for bringing to our attention these rules, could catch many out.

  • Say I want to downgrade from a fee card to a no-fee card like the Chase Freedom. Would this conversion be prevented by the 5/24 rule?

  • Karen Klein says:

    This is awesome information, especially since I’m looking into another card to get soon! I just got rid of my American AIrlines card, since I have really been focusing on Disney points. It was horrible getting Citi to cancel my card! What are other ideas on best ways to cancel cards, too?

    • Cancelling a card really should be as simple as a phone call. What was so challenging?

      • I had called to cancel and was told it was all done. Then I get an overdue notice a couple of months later. I was confused since I hadn’t been charging on it. Then Citi told me that I was responsilble for all charges when i had canceled the magazine and they shouldn’t have been charging me either. However, it took me two weeks worth of calls and managers to finally cancel and reverse any charges. Even though agents were documenting, they somehow couldn’t get the account to close and then they wanted me to stay and well, not at that point :o(

      • Howie! I have a question and apparently I’m really bad at asking Chase this. So I thought that I will pick your brain cuz you seem to have access to so much info :o)

        I just got the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, once I have UR points can I transfer them to my husbands United account? Do you get what I’m asking? Chase didn’t and now I’m wondering if my grasp of the English language has fled me. lol!

        • Yes, but he must be an authorized user on your card account per the terms: “You may only transfer points to yourself, or one additional household member who is listed as an authorized user on your card account.”

          • See?! See?! I should have asked you first. I’ve been asking and searching around for this answer for the last 3hrs! lol! Really ya’ll here at AwardWallet are just awesome and worth every penny and some dimes ;o) Thank you SO much!

  • I didn’t know about this. This is great info! Thanks for sharing!

  • Jason Logan says:

    I was just rejected for a Chase Sapphire reserve. What is the best way to check my last 24 months? I guess a credit report? What is the best free service to do this? Thanks

    • Jason, I’d look at CreditKarma.com. The interface they have is clean and you can look on both your Equifax and TransUnion reports. You could also pull free credit reports from AnnualCreditReport.com (mandated free by the govt.)

  • Does the 5 credit cards include all banks? how about closing several chase cards for another one? This is really a bad news.

  • Jason Logan says:

    I just looked at my Equifax credit report on Credit Karma. (thank you)
    Looks like there were 5 “hard enquiries” on my credit report but my chase sapphire application was the 5th one. So will I need to wait until there are only 3 listed? (they disappear after 2 years) or do I just need to wait until 1 of them expires?

    Also- it looks like one of them is a Bank when I opened a checking account. (not a credit card account) that one shouldn’t count should it?

    For business credit cards- if I am a sole proprietor and using my SS number for the application, that will count too, right? I would think it wouldn’t count if I was using an EIN.

    thanks
    Jason

    • Jason, an important thing to note is that 5/24 does not have anything to do with the number of hard inquiries on your credit report. 5/24 is specifically related to new accounts opened that have been reported to your credit report. You want to look at all of the accounts listed on your credit report, sort them by date opened and look at the past 24 months. Any credit card accounts listed in that time range, whether open or closed at this point will count against your 5/24 count.

      As for business cards, it will only count against 5/24 if the card shows up on your credit report. Many business credit cards do not report to your personal credit report (even when you supply an SSN on the application — that SSN is used to verify your identity and perform a credit check on your personal credit report), so they would not count against your 5/24 count.

  • SARAH ROBINSON says:

    Silly question but where is the “Your Offers” tab, I don’t see it on my page but it has been over a year since I applied for a Chase card as I am trying to get under 5/24.

    • You should see it on the left side of your screen after you expand the menu from the top left corner. You may not see any of this if you have a business credit card in your Chase.com account.

  • I’ve been holding off on CC applications to get myself past the 5/24 restriction. If cards were opened in 8/2015, am I now safe to consider them out of the time frame of approvals or do I need to wait until 09/2017. I thought I had read once you hit the month the card was approved you are safe to exclude it, but I don’t recall where I saw that and don’t want to apply now if waiting another couple weeks is all it’s going to take to make the difference.

  • Kathleen Kime says:

    I am new to this and my husband just applied and got excepted for the Chase Preferred for 50k miles. I was wondering if it was better for me to become an AU on his account for the extra 5000 points or should I just open my own for 50k after his card comes. It seems obvious with more points for us, but do I assume that we can not share the points and would have to make travel plans separately? in which case it would not be best. Sorry if this is a silly question but I haven’t really seen it addressed in any blog I have been reading.

  • Howie,
    I’ve just decided to apply for the “CSR”, & was told by a Chase-representative (for our United ‘MP’ Select & Explorer cards) that ‘notification’ (approval or otherwise) can take up to “30-days” (or can be “immediate”). And since we’re scheduled to leave on an extended international trip (to Asia) on ‘Nov 1st’, we’d sure like to receive this card beforehand… to use on this trip.
    So what do you think the chances are (of receiving this card in time)… with a ‘798’ credit score, a rock-solid history of ‘monthly-payoffs’ (on my Chase United MP Select card balance), & ZERO “5/24” related issues???
    Thank You.

    • Chris, just call them up. Get them to process the application over the phone.

      • Howie,

        Chase has TWICE told me that they will NOT accept a “CSR” application over the phone… & that the “CSR” can ONLY be applied for ‘ONLINE’. Do you know something to the contrary… such as a “back-door” alternative to apply for this particular card???

        • Chris, I’ve never looked into it. Why not just apply online and then if you’re not instantly approved give them a call to see if they can process/expedite the application while you’re on the phone given your upcoming travels.

          • Morning Howie… & thanks for your reply.

            FYI… I received “application-approval” in ‘less-than a minute’ following my ‘online-application’ submission. I had talked with a senior Chase-rep beforehand… & ran thru ‘our numbers’… & she confirmed that I had to apply ‘Online’. HOWEVER, she did say… based-on our existing Chase accts… to anticipate “immediate approval”.
            Guess this just goes to show that the “age-old adage” does indeed work: “Ask… & you shall receive”.
            As for Chase-feedback… there’s apparently ‘no tel#’ to contact a “CSR-specific” rep… UNLESS/UNTIL you’ve been approved (for same).

            So thanks again… for all your help & advice.

  • Thank you… as I feel like I’ve just finished “studying for Finals”. So now I just have to figure-out WHICH COMBINATION (of ‘Chase cards’) will allow us the greatest-number of “major-carrier/airline” options… the “Chase Freedom” and/or the “Chase Freedom Unlimited”. Likewise, we must also decide whether-or-not our CURRENT “United MP Select” and/or “United MP Explorer” cards fit-into this equation… though initially, I think I ‘lean towards’ keeping the “Explorer”, what with its ANNUAL “lounge-passes”, ‘priority-boarding’, & ‘checked-baggage’ allowance.
    So should you have any ideas/suggestions… please let me know.

  • WOW! so much information here… i have no idea one could cancel a card after 2? years and then reapply quite soon after and get the bonuses again. I realize here you are talking about the chase cards but I shall have to check into some of my older cards that maybe are not quite as useful? but I have them anyways… hummm thanks!!

  • If you have a Delta Am/Ex card and you upgrade to platinum card, higher fee plus bonus miles does that count as part of Chase’s 5/24 rule??

    • If you complete a product change it *should not* impact your 5/24 status. That said, YMMV depending on how the account conversion is done. Keep in mind, All Amex issued Delta co-branded cards are credit cards and the Platinum card is a charge card so you likely cannot convert/upgrade that card.

      If you’re talking about upgrading a Delta Gold to a Delta Platinum, that likely will not have any impact on your 5/24 status — but again, YMMV.

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