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Ritz Upgrades and Citi MLA Inquiries

Upgrading to the Ritz Carlton Card

I know, I can’t even keep the second weekly recap post on time. Maybe if you all get the word out on TDWise to bump viewership up to levels that qualify us for affiliate links and that viewership uses those affiliate links, I can work this site full time.

Why Did We Upgrade?

An interesting week of credit card excellence took place. I finally took my own advice and upgraded my wife’s Chase Bonvoy Boundless card to the Ritz Carlton card for the better free anniversary night (50k point night at the Ritz vs. 35k point night at Marriott/SPG) and a $300 airline incidental fund for back and leg appreciating seat upgrades.  That gives us 3 Ritz cards now, totaling 3 free Ritz nights per year and $900 in airline incidental reimbursements.

How Did We Upgrade?

The upgrade was just a phone call to the chase number on the back of the card being upgraded, which is usually easy, but Chase threw us a curveball by mandating that Ritz accounts have a minimum $10k credit limit.  They said she could apply for a limit increase on her existing $7k limit but that would surely get denied since she already has a stupid amount of revolving credit across her 5 Chase cards AND waste a hard pull on the credit report.  Instead, we had them shift existing credit from one card to another.  Stupid here, being caught off guard, raced through her accounts while she was on the phone to find a card with more than $10k available and landed on… her existing Ritz card.  Nothing like drawing direct attention to the game.

Using The Upgrade

Seeing as we took a trip this past weekend I was able to put those incidental credits to good use with AA Main Cabin Extra seat upgrades on our longest legs (legroom and alcohol included).  Our total for the trip came to $102.81 for 4 upgrades on two 3-hour legs and will be promptly reimbursed by the Ritz card this week. $797.19 to go until next year…

In less fortunate news, I was going to write this recap on my flight last night only to find out that my 12 free GoGo inflight wifi passes, acquired yearly from the Altitude Reserve card, don’t work on American Airlines anymore due to them now using Viasat for their ISP onboard. Lame.

Calling the Citi Military Line

Also of note, I put in a call to the Citi military helpline to get the wife’s Prestige under sweet sweet MLA coverage and had an odd experience. MLA is typically automatic for the service member but they now seem to have a similar system to AMEX where you give them the info needed to look you up in the SCRA or new MLA eligibility lookup system and online data points suggest this auto applies to new cards you get. The odd part was the required submission of proof over email.  I found LES to be the easiest option.  Maybe this is just a leftover requirement from the old Citi ways.


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