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Adding an authorized user is a good way to add a friend or family member to your points earning strategy. Before you do so, please make sure that the person who opens an account as an authorized user is someone you really trust. That’s because you will be liable for any charges they make to the account.

Authorized User bonuses

Banks have a business incentive towards having you add authorized users to your existing account. Firstly, additional users mean more spending on the cards. That way, banks can pocket some extra transaction fees. In certain cases, adding someone means that the bank can also get an additional fee. A simple example of such a fee would be the Chase Sapphire Reserve card, which charges a $75 fee for adding an authorized user.

Targeted Bonuses

Many blogs in the BoardingArea network have reported about Amex targeting users with bonuses after they log into their accounts. They range around the 2,500 – 5,000 Membership Rewards points mark for most of the Membership Rewards points earning cards. In certain cases, users have also reported getting higher bonuses.

Customer Service Call

I recently called American Express to inquire about resolving a customer service issue. As the call was about to get over, the rep offered me a couple of bonuses.

  • 5,000 Membership Rewards points for adding an authorized user on the Amex Gold Card, up to 20,000 points for 4 users
  • 2,500 Membership Rewards points for adding an authorized user on the Amex Everyday Card, up to 10,000 points for 4 users

For both these offers, the authorized user has to spend $500 in the first 3 months.

5/24 Status

If you play the miles and points game in two player mode, then these bonuses might actually hurt you. If you’re waiting to drop under 5/24 to apply for a Chase card, then it would make sense to pass on some of these offers. That’s because once you add someone, the new account shows up on that person’s credit report.

While dealing with 5/24, readers have had mixed reports while trying to convince Chase when it comes to not counting an authorized user card as part of the 5/24 count.

The Pundit’s Mantra

It’s the first time that a rep has offered these bonuses while calling in for a customer service issue. If you’re looking to add an authorized user, then it may help if you just call in and ask if there are any such bonuses attached to your account. You never know, you may be targeted for a higher bonus if you’re lucky!

In my case, I’m passing on these authorized user bonuses. I’m waiting for P2 to drop under 5/24 so that she can get the World of Hyatt Credit Card from Chase. The World of Hyatt credit card is currently offering a sign-up bonus of 50,000 World of Hyatt points.

Have you received a higher bonus for adding an authorized user when you called in? Let us know in the comments section.

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