Taking advantage of a credit card cancellation

WalletI just called yesterday to cancel the American Express Gold Card I got back in June when they were running the $250 signup promotion and the officer on the phone who spoke with a nice British accent offered $25 credit to my account if I don’t close the card right away.

I don’t think I am going to keep it for much longer though. The annual fee they start to charge after the introductory year is just ridiculously high.

Another time I was canceling a credit card the agency (Citibank) offered me to move my credit line to another card I had with them. Not that I need any more credit than I already have but still it could come handy one day. It doesn’t cost anything so why not. Also I heard that large credit limits positively affect your credit history (provided you don’t carry big balances).

Sometimes when I call to cancel a credit card the clerks offer low interest balance transfers. If balance transfer is what you are looking for then it is always worth to ask for 0% and no balance transfer fee. Pressured by your intention to cancel the card the officer may be more willing to look for opportunities to offer you a nice promotion. I got 0% a couple of times when canceling a card and used it to finance the remainder of my car loan.

Unfortunately I have never been successful to improve my cash back rate or extend the cash back promotion on my cards, which is what I would like to do the most.

Tell me your story. What perks were you able to bargain for when canceling those credit cards?

The photo is courtesy of Sanja Gjenero @ stock.xchng

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7 Responses to “Taking advantage of a credit card cancellation”

  1. 1 js Dec 12th, 2007 at 8:13 pm

    Large credit limits Do Not positively affect your credit rating. Rather, your credit score is, in part, based on the amount of credit extended to you versus your income i.e. ability to pay off that debt.

  2. 2 Yan Dec 13th, 2007 at 2:25 am

    Isn’t your credit score is the common standard used to measure your credibility?

    My understanding is that since the amount of credit extended to you does play in your favor when your credit score is calculated then more credit is a good thing for your credit rating.

    That said, I realize that your credit limit is just one factor out of many that are taken into account by the credit agencies when calculating your score.

  3. 3 X Dec 13th, 2007 at 5:11 am

    This is an interesting point. How do we find the right answer? Does a high credit limit help your score?

  4. 4 Credit Help Dec 13th, 2007 at 5:07 pm

    The total amount of credit available is an important aspect of credit scoring. So if you close a credit card account, you’ll lose that portion of your total available credit, which could adversely affect your credit score.

    Another important aspect is the length of time an account has been open. So if you have certain accounts that have been open for a long period of time, it would be prudent to keep those open, and close the newer ones if need be.

  5. 5 js Dec 15th, 2007 at 9:00 pm

    “Lenders view all open credit lines as potential debt. Too much unused credit may affect your ability to qualify for a home or a car loan.”


  6. 6 Eric Jan 1st, 2008 at 8:52 pm

    I try not to have too many credit cards and i’ve had the same cards for the past 5 years.

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