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Reader Success Story: iPhone Replacement

Ritz Carlton Card Purchase Protection Saves A $1,177 iPhone Purchase

Reader and best of friends Christopher guest writes the following:

The Incident

On August 17th, I dropped my iPhone in the ocean while kayaking with my wife. The phone dropped about 20 feet to the ocean floor and I was unable to retrieve it. Since the iPhone XS Max is only waterproof to a depth of two meters of water for 30 minutes, I’m sure that it is no longer functional. For this reason, I would consider the phone both lost and damaged beyond repair.

Despite knowing that the phone was probably gone, I dove into the water and swam down as far as I could. To my disappointment, without dive fins, I was unable to reach the bottom. I returned to my kayak wet and disappointed. I knew I had backed up my phone to the iCloud the night before, so I wasn’t worried about losing any of my data. I was only bothered by the loss of the $1,176.96 that I spent on the phone just three weeks earlier, or at least the $269 deductible for me to file a claim with AppleCare+ (with Theft and Loss).

The Card Bennies

After spending a few moments rowing my kayak and planning my trip to the Apple Store, I remembered that I purchased the phone using my Chase Ritz-Carlton Credit Card. I knew that the card offered Purchase Protection, but I couldn’t remember the terms of the benefit. I was a couple of miles row from my car, so I had quite a bit of time to think about the situation. Once I was back at the 4Runner, I logged into the Chase app on my wife’s phone and saw:

PROTECTION BENEFITS… keep you secure when using your Ritz-Carlton Credit Card

Shop Securely: When you use your card, your purchases are covered with the following protections.

Purchase Protection: Covers your new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per year.

I contemplated the guidelines as I looked at them, “Less than 120 days: Check”… “Damage up to $10,000: Check.” I wondered for a moment of they would give me a hard time about proving the “damage” since I was unable to recover the phone.

The Claim Process

As soon as I got home, I called the number on the back of my card to inquire about the claims process. Within seconds, I was transferred to the claims department where a very helpful lady walked me through the claims process. The whole process took about fifteen minutes. For my claim justification, I simply typed in the first paragraph above. Then I crossed my fingers and hoped that they would approve my claim for my damaged phone. I even offered to take my SCUBA gear out to the location where I dropped the phone to retrieve it if the lady thought it would help my claim. She laughed and told me that it would be unnecessary, but she would make note of the offer on my account.

A couple of days later, I received an email asking me to upload a few reasonable documents: Purchase Receipt, Ritz-Carlton Credit Card statement from the month of purchase, and an email from my home insurance company stating that I had not filed a duplicate claim with them. Three days after uploading the requested documents, my claim was approved and two days after that, $1,176.96 was deposited into my bank account.


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