Wednesday, April 25, 2012

I Missed Out On $50 but I Also Learned Something Valuable (I still want the $50)

I signed up for an Amex Blue Cash Credit Card because it comes with a $100 sign up bonus if you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months.

This is a good credit card (3% back on groceries, 2% back on gas/department stores and 1% everywhere else) with no annual fee, but for most families the Amex Blue Cash Preferred Credit Card is better because it gives you 6% back on groceries, 3% back on gas/department stores and 1% everywhere else.  If you spend $50 a week or more on groceries, you have now covered the $75 annual fee.

Either way, I signed up and I forgot about it until the end of the 3 months so I only had a few days to spend $1,000.  I decided that I would buy $1,000 worth of Amazon Gift cards at the grocery store.   I would get $1,000 of gift cards that can be used over time while getting $100 back and another 3% back for buying them at the groceries.  This basically would mean that I would be getting 13% back on my amazon purchases.  Also, once you buy an Amazon gift card you can immediately put the code into your account and you don't have to keep the physical cards around.

I checked my account a few months later and I had been given $30 (3% of $1,000) but I hadn't gotten my $100.

I sent a secure email to Amex asking why I never received my bonus and they emailed me back within a few hours that apparently I had miscalculated.  I bought the gift cards two days after the 3 months had passed so they said I wasn't eligible for the $100 bonus.

I was pretty bummed.  I had lost out on $100 because of two days.  I decided to send another email.  I told them that I am an Amex customer for the last few years and I always pay on time.  Is there any way they can make an exception for me because it was just two days.  The worst they can say was no.  I got another email back that they had spoken to a manager and they decided to award me $50 as a goodwill gesture.  It was my own fault for losing out on the other $50, but at least I was able to get something.  In the end, I will only be getting 8% on my amazon purchases, but that isn't bad either.

It never hurts to ask.  The worst they can say is no.