On Saturday morning I published “Freedom Unlimited plan thwarted.” Since I now have the top-end Sapphire Reserve card, I wanted to downgrade my Sapphire Preferred to Freedom Unlimited. This way, I could continue to earn 3X travel & dining with my Sapphire Reserve card, 5X office supplies, cable, internet & phone, and 2X gas, with my Ink Plus card, 5X on rotating categories with my two Freedom cards, and 1.5X everywhere else with the Freedom Unlimited card.
My plan was temporarily thwarted.
When I had originally called, I had been told that my Sapphire Preferred card was too new to change to the Freedom Unlimited. So, I waited until the card was a year old and tried again. I then learned that Chase’s computers had not made the Freedom Unlimited a valid product change option for me. They seem to have a magical formula that decides who can change to what and when, so you may have different results.
I went ahead with the only option I was given: I product changed from the $95 per year Sapphire Preferred card to the no-fee Sapphire card. I didn’t want the Sapphire card, but I figured that it might be possible to product change later from that card to the Freedom Unlimited. And I published my experience: Freedom Unlimited plan thwarted.
In reaction to the post, people commented, Tweeted, Facebooked, and emailed to let me know the following:
- There was no need to wait for my Sapphire Preferred to be a year old. You can product change from the Sapphire Preferred to the no-fee Sapphire card, any time.
- Immediately after product changing to the Sapphire card, you can product change to the Freedom Unlimited.
So, at 9:45am Saturday, I sent a secure message to Chase to ask to product change from my new Sapphire card (which hadn’t yet been delivered to me) to the Freedom Unlimited card. At 10:57 they responded, roughly with: “yep, we can do that. Here are the terms. Reply with acknowledgement that you want to continue.” I replied, and by 12:50 in the afternoon it was done. I am now the proud owner of a Freedom Unlimited card!
Thank you to everyone who tipped me off to this quick and easy trick!
What happens to my UR points when I downgrade the CSP? Does it limit the available ways to redeem them?
You keep the points associated with the card, but yes, it does limit them. You keep your points, but you can not transfer them from a Freedom / Freedom Flex / Freedom Unlimited to airline and hotel partners and they are no longer worth 1.25c per point toward travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards – they will just be redeemable for 1c per point in most situations (now and then they have promos to make them worth a bit more toward gift cards or Apple products).
If you have another Chase premium card (or a household member does), you can move points from that Freedom-family card (or the no-fee Sapphire card) to that other Chase premium card (Ink Business Preferred, Sapphire Reserve, or Sapphire Preferred) and then transfer them to partners. You could also always upgrade back to a CSP or CSR when you want to transfer to partners again.
Thanks Nick! What about if I downgrade to the Sapphire no-fee? What benefits do I keep and lose? Thanks for your time. If this is already covered in an earlier post, you can include the link instead of getting into all the details here.
Same thing as Freedom minus Freedom bonus categories. Can’t transfer, points only worth 1c each, no bonus categories.
[…] be required to wait one year to product change the Sapphire Preferred to a Freedom Card. (You can get around this by first downgrading your Sapphire Preferred to the no annual fee version and then product changing […]
I know this is an old post Greg but I hope you read my Q
What are the benefits/cons to downgrade say from csp to freedom to just closing it and opening a new freedom and getting the sign up ? Obviously I know 5/24 and it will affect average account age…. but besides that?
Why close the CSP before opening the a Freedom? I’d probably suggest opening a Freedom (new application) and then downgrading the CSP to a second Freedom card. That will double your 5x categories and you don’t miss out on the sign up bonus.
Is it possible to have 2 of the same cards at chase? Also was wondering (prob a simple rule to the Churners but I’m a novice ) is it possible to have a premium and regular version of the same card? Say Amex blue cash and blue cash preferred?
Yes you can have 2 of the same cards as long as the second (or third, or…) comes from a product change as opposed to a new application.
Yes: with every bank I can think of, including Amex, you can have both a premium and regular version of the same card.
[…] product changes after you’ve held a card for at least one year. However, I’ve read conflicting information regarding that point, so it seems that there is not a hard fast rule about how long you must have held a card to product […]
Does this method still work?
I expect so
[…] I believe that it is possible to product change from any consumer Ultimate Rewards card to any other, but it may require multiple steps. For example, to product change from the Sapphire Preferred to the Freedom Unlimited, I changed first to the no-fee Sapphire, and then to Freedom Unlimited. See: From Sapphire Preferred to Freedom Unlimited, No Waiting. […]
I just downgraded CSP to reg sapphire yesterday. Then today sent a secure message to change that to FU, received a response that said change was possible and to confirm request. I confirmed request and then an hour later got a response that I had to wait for next billing cycle. Is this perhaps based on the particular CSR that receives the request?
As a test I just resent my product change request and the different CSR approved it. So I guess just keep sending secure messages til you get the answer you want.
I got unlucky…Went from CSP to CS no problem and then waited for CS to arrive. When it did (ugh) I tried to change it to FU and they told me I had to wait until the cycle reset. Hoping for better luck after my statement cycles.
FYI, I tired this and they said it’s fine, but apparently you can only do 1 product change per billing cycle. So after I changed fun CSP to just sapphire, I have to wait until after my new (and unwanted) sapphire ships (since my billing ends in 2 weeks) to change to FU after. Just be aware of that in your timing of your request.
Same thing for me. No issue doing PC from CSP to Sapphire, but not approved for the Sapphire to FU yet.
I replied to the denial messages asking why i was not approved to PC from the Sapphire to FU. Their response was an apology stating that this option actually was available.
So I have successfully downgraded from the CSP to FU in the past 2 days. For reference, I’ve only had the CSP since May.
Thanks to this thread, I now have the Chase trifecta of CSR, Freedom, and FU!
That’s very strange. Many people have reported being able to do both on the same day, let alone within the same billing cycle. Have they changed the rules in just the past few days? Anyone else have recent data points?
[…] thwarting of his Freedom Unlimited plans, he was able to find the magic formula to product change From Sapphire Preferred to Freedom Unlimited, No Waiting. Read about how he did it so you can follow the […]
It seems like chase doesn’t offer the free sapphire anymore so it’s interesting that this was allowed. I have all of my UR stuck in an account with only freedoms so I’m going to see if I can convert one to the Sapphire for a no fee way of transferring them to airlines. Does anyone have experience with this?
No, the no-fee sapphire doesn’t allow point transfers to Airlines/hotels
I have asked for my SP to be downgraded to a FU. I only have 906 UR points left in the account. Once it’s a FU I figure I’ll play the mental game that converting those points into cash back will be comparable to getting a 1.5 return on a travel charge.
When you downgraded, was there any impact on your credit limit or did you make a change to that in this process? That card has one of my highest Chase card CUs which I won’t need on the downgraded card but I don’t want to loose the credit amt. Thanks!
Speaking for me, card number and credit limit were exactly the same. The only thing that happened was my benefits and my actual plastic changed.
You can request a credit limit transfer from one chase to another via secure message as well.
As Daniel says there was no change to the credit limit. Now I know, I wouldn’t downgrade but cancel SP first and then apply anew for FU to get the signup bonus. Also as Greg has said before make sure you use or transfer your SP points to SR before doing anything.
As others said, your credit limit won’t change. Even your account number stays the same.
A couple of months ago I called Chase and told them I wanted to cancel my Sapphire Preferred (which I had for over a year) and get Freedom Unlimited. They said no problem. And about a week later the FU card arrived. It had exactly the same numbers as my SP card. While I didn’t ask for this it was convenient as I didn’t have to redo the auto payments I had on SP. So I did the minimum spend on FU -BUT- I never got the signup bonus for getting FU as I guess it was treated as a transfer not a new card. In retrospect I should of just cancelled the SR, waited a couple of months and then applied for FU.
Yeah unfortunately product changes aren’t eligible for sign up bonuses. That’s why if I decided to drop my reserve and go back to preferred I will have to cancel and reapply for the preferred to get whatever sign up again, assuming it has been 2 years.
If you’re under 5/24, you can still get the signup bonus on the FU. Product change it to something else, wait a few weeks, then sign up for the FU new. Or simply sign up for the Freedom which has the same bonus.
Doesn’t hurt to secure message them and ask them for an annual fee refund as well. They did it for me (prorated).
Would this same method work to convert a CSP to the regular Freedom? So, CSP –> Sapphire –> Freedom?
I expect so. Keep in mind that you may be able to product change directly to the card you want (if you’ve had the CSP for a year or more). Different people are offered different product change options.
I just recently tried this.
(Old Fairmont ->) CSP -> CS. Then I wanted to PC to Freedom but was denied. The only option was FU. Of course, it hasn’t been a year since they converted all Fairmont cards to CSP.
I don’t have the FU and would like to get the bonus one day (if I ever go below 5/24). So my question is if I converted my CS to FU, could I possibly get the bonus on FU in the future?
Yes, with Chase it doesn’t matter if you’ve had a card before. You can still get the signup bonus as long as:
1. You don’t currently have the card; and
2. It’s been 24 months since you last got a signup bonus for the same card.
I haven’t signed up for the chase sapphire reserve or the chase sapphire. I plan on signing up for the reserve this week. If I were to downgrade to the standard sapphire would i receive the sign up bonus?
If you downgrade after receiving the bonus, yes. But, I’d recommend waiting until you’ve earned $300 in travel credits twice (2017 and 2018) before downgrading.
Just to clarify, Greg means you would receive the bonus on your Reserve, but NOT the Preferred signup bonus if you downgrade.