Is there a simple way to check if you have ever had an AMEX personal card before?

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Most of us should know by now you can currently only ever get an Amex new card bonus once in your lifetime. Personally I really dislike this and think other banks’ once every 18-24 month type policy to be much better. After all, if you say canceled an AMEX SPG card many, many years ago because you started staying at IHG hotels, and now want to go back to SPG again, why not reward you for moving back to SPG and AMEX.

Anyway, more bits to know and especially related to Delta AMEX cards. It would seem, despite what I have been told, that AMEX is in fact viewing ALL 3 of the Delta AMEX co-branded cards, both personal and business, as unique products. This is good news. So, if you have EVER had the personal Delta AMEX Gold card, you can not get the bonus for that card but you can for the Delta Platinum card or the Reserve personal card(s). But there is one big fat warning to think about – upgrades!

If you, say, had the Delta Gold card, upgraded to the Platinum card (or downgraded the other way around) then you have HAD the card so you are NOT eligible for the new card bonus. This is a real problem and not much talked about in the blogosphere. So, in most cases, you are better off canceling a card and then applying for one of the other cards to get the new card bonus rather than upgrading, or downgrading, your existing card.

Now since we are on this topic and this post can be a good reference post, with the business cards and AMEX you have to cancel, with 365+ days, then you can get the bonus again for ANY of the business cards (unless a targeted offer and the T&C exclude this standard time requirement).

step one for amex chat online

All good information but what about the question of the day, that is, whether there is a simple way to check if you have ever had a AMEX personal card before? There are two. One way is to call but, even though calls are recorded at AMEX, I like to have something in print. So, the better choice is to log on to AMEX (if you have any AMEX cards that is) and simply request a list of all the cards you have ever had.

chat with amex about what cards you have ever had

As you can see the list below, this is what AMEX is “saying” I have had including the cards I right now currently hold. Very helpful and useful as I now have something I can do a screen shot of and if I do apply for whatever card promotion AMEX is running I can be confident I will get the new card bonus being offered.

my list of cards

Other bits. The chat rep, while happy to give me this list, was not allowed to give more info over chat. So if you want firm dates as to when you canceled these cards or if any of them were upgrade cards or downgrade cards from another card you will have to call. Also, and I have been told this by more than one travel enthusiast and seen for myself, after enough time goes by some cards can drop off this list so the “once in a lifetime” may not always apply, so it’s good to check what their records say you have had in your lifetime.

Did you know you could request this or have any other questions? Fire away!- René



Editorial Note: This content is not provided by American Express. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express.


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  1. So when it listed Delta Reserve twice for you does that mean you have a Personal and a Business version of the card or does that mean you have had the personal version twice? If it is not denoting Business versions of the Delta cards then that might not fully answer your question.

  2. If I cancelled the SPG business card a few years ago can I apply again and receive the bonus ? I’m assuming by what I’ve read business cards have different rules than personal . Thank you

  3. Rene : Is it different for business cards ? If I cancelled an SPG business card a few years ago can I reapply and get bonus ?

  4. I just cancelled my business Delta platinum, keeping my personal Delta platinum. Could I now sign up for the business Reserve and get the bonus or do I have to wait a year?

  5. @Donn – As mentioned it post, with AMEX business cards it is cancel, wait 365+ days, you can get the new card bonus again.

  6. What if Delta sends in the USPS mail, an offer for 60,000 miles for a Delta Platinum Amex Card? I had that card 5 years ago. One would think they know I can’t receive the bonus miles again or is this not true?

  7. @JohnB – One would think. Most times NO DICE. Even if you call and ask they may say yes then once you meet the spend they come back and say no since you had the card before.

  8. yes, you cannot trust Amex to give you bonus even if they say they will. My advice is don’t bother applying for a personal card you have ever had. I applied for an SPG card. It turns out I’d had one about 10 years ago–no bonus at all. But, even after meeting min. spend, they said “no dice” this time around. Not happy with Amex.

  9. If you’ve had the Delta Gold business card but never received the bonus due to not completing qualifying spend, can you still get the bonus if you get another Delta Gold Business card and meet the qualifying spend the second time around?

  10. @Jordan – Nope! If you have ever HELD the card you can not get the bonus EVER in your lifetime again. That is also why and upgrade or downgrade is such a bad idea. Sorry.

  11. Hi, I have a stupid question. Currently have a Hilton Honors AMEX card. If I get the Gold Delta SkyMiles AMEX, would I get the 50k miles or is the Hilton Honors considered having an AMEX. Or is the AMEX rule only apply to the exact same card and loyalty program? Hopefully my question makes sense. Thanks in advance

  12. If I have two separate businesses, can I apply for a Delta Reserve Business card for each of them at the same time and get the bonuses for each?

  13. @Amy – Officially no as tied to your SSN for both. You can try with another EIN but YMMV. Another idea is have your +1 apply and then send all the spend bonus MQMs to you.

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