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The major credit card issuers have been cracking down on those who apply for credit cards exclusively for the welcome bonuses. While credit card issuers sometimes offer big welcome bonuses to get customers to apply, they do so with the hope of people holding onto a credit card long term. While it’s understandable that sometimes a card might not work out for someone, those who constantly open and close cards may find themselves more restricted than in the past.
In the case of American Express, they’ve had a restriction for years that limits you to earning the welcome bonus on a particular card “once in a lifetime.” Anecdotally a “lifetime” in this context typically refers to a period of around seven years, though that policy isn’t published. So if you’ve had a card before, you won’t generally be eligible for the welcome bonus on the card again.
Then last week, American Express added a further restriction to credit card applications. Here’s the language American Express has added (the bolded part is what’s new):
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