Friday, December 29, 2006

Amazon Chase Credit Card - BEWARE!

It's always unpleasant around the holidays to have to deal with credit card companies. This holiday season I had a particularly frustrating experience.

If you are a frequent shopper at Amazon.com, no doubt you have been tempted at one time or another to apply for the Amazon Chase credit card. You are offered an instant $30 coupon to go towards an Amazon purchase, plus with every purchase, you earn points to go towards another gift certificate. Sounds tempting? It certainly did to me.

Word of advice, this is one card you can do without. After the six month the APR skyrockets up, and while this has not affected me because I do pay off the card completely every month, trying to claim the rewards is another story.

Companies love gift cards and gift certificates because many people forget to use them or a portion of them. Additionally most people end up spending more then their gift card or gift certificate. All in all this means greater revenue for the company when it comes to these things. There is nothing ethically wrong about this.

However when a company promises a gift certificate and then manages to 'lose' it in the mail everytime, one begins to question their business practices.

I have earned two $25 gift certificates since signing up in May, 2006. While my bill for that particular month always seems to get here just fine, the gift certificate (sent out seperately and 14 days later...hmm I wonder why) always gets 'lost' in the mail. Additionally, Chase offers a paperless service, but they DO NOT and WILL NOT (I've asked) send this portion to you by email or online in your account center (again, I wonder why?).

The 'business rationale' behind this is that most people will forget, and/or get confused about how many rewards they are entitled to and therefore leave their rewards unclaimed. And since Chase doesn't make it easy for you to track it down--- they have the most apathetic, snide and confused customer service reps that I have ever had to deal with---they discourage you from tracking your rewards.

The last reward certificate I earned should have come to me in the middle of November. To this date, I have yet to receive it.

Between now and then, I have made three or four calls. I have been told that my address was changed (not by me), that I should not be receiving any rewards because I didnt have enough points (not true, customer service rep was very confused), had my call dropped twice, and on the last time promised a solution within days(this was in early December---I still don't have it, although they did manage to mail me a duplicate bill.)

If it had been just once, I would've understood, but this has happened to me each and everytime I have earned rewards and each time it gets harder and more humiliating to track it down. It doesn't take much brainpower to see a pattern.

Anyways this card is not worth the pain and anguish, as I hope I have demonstrated. Please let anyone who is thinking about this card know. As a booklover, I hate to see people with the same passion that I have tricked and humiliated in this way. Alright, sorry for the long rant, check back tommorow for postings of the lovely presents that David and I received this season.

20 comments:

kimbofo said...

Sounds like a complete scam. Thanks for the warning. Have often been tempted by the Amazon credit card, but sounds like I need to steer well clear.

WJE said...

If somebody finds a virtuous credit card company I hope they'll share the info. I have that card, they try to hook you on cash advances which can be Very costly, but they're far from the worst. There's also a guilt by association factor; Amazon itself seems increasingly aloof to consumer interests these days. I spend a lot of loot there but am considering alternatives like ABE or Alibris.

CChen said...

WJE: I wanted to clarify that I am not making a claim that this card is the worst. How bad one credit card company is in comparison with another is relative.

I am only warning those who's incentive, as mine was, for applying for this particular card, is to receive rewards points to be used on Amazon. As stated, I wanted to make sure that those people knew that the process can be difficult and annoying.

Thanks for the comment!

rauten said...

I have this credit card and I have received all my rewards from Amazon. I think I have had it about 2 years now and haven't had any problems. Sorry it isn't working out for you. I absolutely love it.

CreditUser said...

I have been using a Chase credit card for guite a long time. Never had any problems. May be you are not so lucky as I am :)

Reagan said...

I have had this card for 5 months and have yet to see a single gift certificate. I have called customer service once and emailed them twice. They claim the certs were sent, of course.

Anonymous said...

I wanted to get the $30 "instant" rebate for using/opening the Amazon credit card but little did I know that "instant" would take three weeks to process. They lure you into thinking that you can use it right away and that is not the case. I ordered some books off of amazon on the 9th of June and after 6 weeks got my bill. My $30 rebate was included but after calling two weeks ago asking where my bill was, I got fed up with their service. I called today July 14th and told them I was sending my payment in full and to cancel my account. To punish me, they are reporting to the credit companies that I canceled an account that had an open balance even after I told them I was sending a payment in full. It's a good thing that I have excellent credit. I will never deal with this kind of tactic again by any company.

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