AOR 3 made a grand appearance this earlier this month. This is my first AOR this year and my 3rd so far. The last AOR was 6 months earlier. I started with a quick check of my credit score on CreditKarma (both Transunion and Vantage Score), CreditSesame and my FICO score from my Discover card and was happy to see that all of them were higher than when I started out last year. So, now that I was in the green, it was time to get cracking.
I finalized 11 cards that I wanted. But this was too high for my taste, so I finally came down to 6 card and decided to play the other 5 based on the success on the first 6. These were my choices:
6 Must apply cards (Green = approved):
1. Barclays US Airways
2. Chase UA Business
3. Citi AA Business
4. Amex SPG Business
5. Chase Sapphire Preferred
6. Amex Everyday Card
And the 5 “may be apply” card:
A. Barclays Arrival Card
B. US Bank FlexPerk – Travel Card
C. Chase IHG
D. US Bank Aviana Airlines
E. Capital One Venture
Here’s how it ended.
I started with the Barclays US Airways card. I am expecting this card to vanish in near future and I din mind 30,000 US Airways points for absolutely no spend requirement. If I can use this, great. If not, and they get converted to AA miles, that’s cool too. I was pretty sure I am going to get a pending status and then I will have to call the reco line and I will get rejected. It’s Barclays after all. I was ready for that, but I did not want to not try it. I tried and contrary to expectation – I got approved IMMEDIATELY! I was on cloud 9. That was a great start.
Now that this was done, I got greedy and decided to go for the Barclays Arrival Card. I thought maybe I will get really lucky. It didn’t happen. I got a pending review and the call to the reco line, did not do anything to change it. So I was on 1/6 and 0/5.
Moving on, I decided to first go for the Business cards on my list. There was the Amex SPG Business, Citi AA Business and the United Explorer Business. I had no doubt in my mind I will get approved for all 3 of them; though I was sure Citi will ask for additional documents. All 3 applications gave me a pending status. I called Citi first and just as expected, they asked for an address proof, which I promptly emailed them. A phone call 24 hours later ended in a request for another document and another 24 hours later, I was approved for the card. Next I called Chase and after I lengthy discussion I was denied. I was fairly surprised and disappointed to say the least. This card was on the top of my list and I was sure I will get it. Chase has never denied any of my application. 50,000 UA points would have really helped my currently meagre balance. But a denial was a denial and I moved on. I was unhappy with Chase, but it’s ok. Last was Amex SPG Business Card. Before I called reco, I decided to check my status online once and voila – I was approved. Score 3/6 and 0/5.
Next up was the Chase Sapphire Preferred card and the Amex Everyday card. I knew for a fact that my Chase profile had me pre-approved for the CSP (my Chase Banker told me that). Funnily enough I got a pending status and a call to recon told me I need to walk in to the nearest branch and provide an address proof. I was fairly surprised considering I have 3 credit cards and 3 bank accounts with them. All the same, I did as told. And later in the day I was approved for the card. For Amex Everyday card I had to call in again. The agent informed me that for security reason, they do not approve more than one CC in one day on the same social and I can expect this card to be approved 5 days later. 5 days later, I was declined. No reasons given. Was asked to wait for the letter in the mail and if I disagree, I could ask for reconsideration, but that would mean another credit pull. I wanted this card for 2 reasons- 1) I am going to soon cancel my Amex PRG card and I needed to transfer my MR points somewhere and, 2) I try and apply for one no fee card every time I do an AoR, thus ensuring that I can keep them forever and add to my account age. I can’t describe how disappointed I was at this. Score 4/6 and 0/5.
At this point I had to decide to what to do with my other 4 applications. I was already rejected for 2 cards and so far only 2 cards were approved and 3 were technically still pending (remember – at that point I did not know the decision about my Amex Everyday, Citi AA and Chase SP). I decided to play them one at a time.
I started with US Bank FlexPerk Travel Reward card. I got a pending msg and a call to recon did not yield any result. They simply asked me to wait for a few days for the decision. 48 hours later a status check revealed I was approved for the card. But unfortunately when I received the card, it turned out to be the Flex Perk Select Card and not the Travel Reward card I had applied for. Was quite bummed. The only good thing was this is a no fee card, so it takes the sting out of not getting the Amex Everyday card, for improving the age of my credit account. Score 4/6 and 1/5.
I was still quite bummed about the overall scene. But having learnt my lessons from my First AOR and Second AOR, I decided to move along. I applied for the CHASE IHG Card and after a quick call to the recon line I was approved for this card. Score 4/6 and 2/5. At this point I decided that it’s enough for one AOR. Considering the recent debacle in the MS world, I am not sure how I would meet the hefty spend requirements and so I was not going to apply for a card that I wouldn’t be able to meet the spend requirement on. The two cards I let go were the US Bank Avianca Airlines card and the Capital One Venture Travel rewards card. Final Score was 4/6 for the primary cards and 2/3 for the optional cards.
Overall, I was not very satisfied with my day. If I meet all the spend requirements on these 6 cards, I would be richer by 252,500 points/miles. But somehow, missing on 50,000 UA points, not getting a fee free Amex card plus 10,000 MR and being stuck with a 10,000 Bonus Flex Perk card was not what I had envisioned at the start of the day.
How are your points and miles balance shaping up? Did you do your AOR for this year yet ? Tell us in the comments.