No Major Changes To Chase Ink Cards

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The Ink Plus® Business Card and Ink Bold® Business Card are probably my two favorite business cards. Not only do they offer very generous sign-up bonuses, but they’re also rewarding for everyday spend.

The Ink cards offer 5x points on office supply stores, and on cellular phone, landline, internet, and cable TV services. Add to that the reasonable $95 annual fee (which is waived the first year) and no foreign transaction fees, and the Ink Plus and Ink Bold become really solid business credit cards.

Chase has been tweaking the benefits of some of their cards recently, so it wasn’t surprising to see an email this morning announcing changes to the Ink Business cards.

Several weeks ago Chase announced changes to the benefits of the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, which were both positive and negative. Most notably they eliminated the 7% annual points dividend for new cardmembers, though for existing cardmembers are keeping the benefit around through 2015.

While that’s of course a negative change, it doesn’t fundamentally change the value proposition of the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, in my opinion. In terms of positive changes, primary auto rental collision damage waiver coverage was added, which makes this even more of a “super card,” in my opinion.

Then last week Chase announced changes to the benefits of the Chase Freedom®. Most notably, they eliminated the 10% bonus for Chase Checking Customers after 2015.

Chase has now sent out an email to cardmembers of the Ink Plus® Business Card and Ink Bold® Business Card. Best I can tell, it really isn’t a big deal.

Ink-Changes

The changes are in many cases similar to the other Ultimate Rewards points changes that have been made, so many aren’t even specific to these cards. The Chase Ink changes include the following:

You can continue to redeem your points for cash through a statement credit or direct deposit into an eligible checking or savings account. However, Pay Yourself Back will no longer be available after 10/25/2014, and paper checks will no longer be available after 11/15/2014.

That’s no big deal, in my opinion. This isn’t how you should redeem your points anyway.

You will continue to earn an extra point for each $1 of airfare and hotel accommodations booked through chase.com/UltimateRewards until 12/31/2015. After that, you will no longer earn an extra point. We may periodically offer you ways to earn bonus points through the program.

This is a change to the Ultimate Rewards program that was announced previously with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, so of course that carries over to this card as well.

Keep in mind that the Ink Plus® Business Card and Ink Bold® Business Card offer double points on hotel spend. That should continue to be the case — the above change simply applies if making a booking through the Chase Ultimate Rewards website.

Park-Hyatt-New-York-61
Chase Ink cards earn 2x points at hotels, which can be redeemed for Hyatt hotels, among others

In terms of the other “changes” mentioned in the email:

We’ve modified existing features:

  • Merchandise may be offered directly through Chase or third-party merchants
  • The Ultimate Rewards Mall will be referred to as Shop through Chase℠

We’re discontinuing underutilized features:

  • Auctions
  • Purchasing Ultimate Rewards points

Nothing new here!

Bottom line

There are no big changes here, in my opinion, though the email did seem to cause a bit of confusion. I received a couple of emails from people asking if I could explain the changes, and someone Tweeted me to say that they were eliminating the double points on hotels, though none of that seems to be the case.

For those of you maximizing points, it’s “business as usual” with these cards.

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Comments

  1. My big worry is what is going to happen to the Ink Classic/Cash no-fee cards since they weren’t included in this email.

  2. Would you recommend booking air travel through Chase UR for the extra point? Or is there a better option?

  3. Lucky, if one were NOT to max out office supply spend($25K) it seems to be wise to downgrade(or cancel) the Biz card to fee-free Chase card(Chase Ink?). Then simply keep the $95 CSP(for transfers) and be done with it.
    Might even be able to get sign up bonus again in a year or two on fee paid cards(Ink Bold and Plus).
    As I missing something?

  4. @ Jason — It depends what you value most, but for straightforward bookings I do think it’s a good option. I sometimes end up not booking travel through there either because I’m using vouchers, the routing is complicated, I wanted to place it on hold before booking, etc. But for straightforward bookings I think it’s a great option.

  5. @ Bryce — No inside knowledge here, but I doubt we’ll see any/many changes. These changes were to the Ultimate Rewards program as such, and they don’t technically accrue Ultimate Rewards points (though can be converted into them in conjunction with a card which accrues “premium” Ultimate Rewards points).

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