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Hey there, you’re reading an outdated post! The updated series from April 2015 can be found here.

This is the seventh post in a monthlong series. Each post will take about two minutes to read and may include an action item that takes the reader another two minutes to complete. I am writing this for an audience of people who know nothing about frequent flier miles, and my goal is that by the end, you know enough to fly for free anywhere you want to go.

Yesterday when you applied for credit cards, your application(s) may have been rejected. Don’t worry; it happens all the time to serious bonus clearers, and it’s often only a temporary rejection.

This post is going to explain how to turn those temporary rejections into approvals today. The process is very simple, and usually goes like this if you have good credit: You call up the issuing bank’s reconsideration line, you ask for a reconsideration of their decision, they ask you a few questions, and they approve the application.

This is a crucial skill to have because sometimes the only way you can get in on a huge bonus is by calling the reconsideration line. And I don’t know about you, but I’m still at the point where making a short phone call is worth the $1,000+ bonus it will net me!

Let’s break the call down step-by-step:

1) You call the issuing bank. Here is a list of the phone numbers (scroll down) to reach the reconsideration analysts at major issuing banks. I call as soon as I receive a rejection. I also call, if by two days after applying, I haven’t heard anything.

2) You tell them you’re calling because your application for ________ card was rejected, and you are calling to be reconsidered.

3) Usually at this point, the reconsideration specialist says, “We just wanted to verify a few things,” and proceeds to ask you questions that were already on the application. If this happens, politely answer them the same way you already did. He will probably leave the line a minute, come back on, and say, “You’re approved.”

If for any reason, he gives you special trouble and has questions not on the application or questions why you’ve made so many recent applications, give truthful answers that don’t mention the huge sign up bonus.

Example Question: I see you’ve opened several cards recently. Why do you want this one?

Answer: I like to separate my spending by cards, and with this card, I like benefit X (2x points on dining, free checked bag, the ability to earn miles with my preferred airline, etc).

4) If the representative hasn’t approved you yet, indicate a willingness to close other cards and not to increase your credit line. Say something like, “I really want this Chase Sapphire Preferred because of its 2x points on dining and ability to transfer to United and Southwest. I don’t need an increase in my credit line from Chase; I’m willing to move credit from one of my existing lines or even close another card.” This should usually do the trick if the trick can be done.

I recently used this line (in combination with the line that I needed the second card to track different categories of spending) to get approved for my second US Airways MasterCard in six months, while the first was still open. The representative moved half my credit line from the first card to the second card. My credit line at Barclay’s stayed the same.

That’s all there is to know about getting a temporary rejection turned into an approval. If the bank is willing to approve the card at all, the above steps will secure that approval.

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Just getting started in the world of points and miles? The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best card for you to start with.

With a bonus of 60,000 points after $4,000 spend in the first 3 months, 5x points on travel booked through the Chase Travel Portal and 3x points on restaurants, streaming services, and online groceries (excluding Target, Walmart, and wholesale clubs), this card truly cannot be beat for getting started!


Editorial Disclaimer: The editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuers.

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