If you are not a credit card owner yet, then this is something that you have to be aware of. Credit card companies do charge an annual fee for you to be able to use their credit card services. The annual fee varies depending on the type of credit card. In my observation, the higher the rewards program, the higher the cost of the annual fee. I’m here to share with you some tips on how to waive credit card annual fees.
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Call and Request to Waive the Annual Fee
The simplest and easiest way to waive the annual fee is by simply calling the customer service hotline and politely asking them to waive the annual fee.
My most recent request for an annual fee waiver was just last year. My Citi PremierMiles Credit Card was due for renewal late last year and I simply gave them a call to waive the annual fee.
The annual fee for Citi PremierMiles is quite hefty compared to other similar travel credit cards in the market.
With the decreasing volume of my business’s monthly sales due to the pandemic, I could not justify to myself the P5,000 annual fee on my credit card.
I called the customer service hotline and requested them to waive the annual fee and when asked why I simply told them my current financial situation and mentioned that I won’t be able to enjoy the travel perks of my card since travel is not allowed.
The P5,000 annual fee was reversed just a few minutes after the call.
Now, to be honest, I do not get a 100% success rate in making calls for annual fee reversals.
I’ve requested annual fee reversals in the previous years and some requests were granted and some weren’t. So in cases when the annual fee reversal was not granted, I just paid it in full before my due date came.
Talk to the Retention Team
If your request gets denied by the first-level customer service that you talked to, then consider telling them that you’re going to cancel your card so you’ll be connected to the retention team.
Personally, I only do this when I don’t really intend to keep the card. For the cards that I intend to keep, I just pay the annual fee if my annual fee reversal request is not granted.
I have a couple of credit cards in the past that I called in for cancellation, plainly because I don’t use them and I don’t find it practical to pay for a service that I don’t use.
I did get annual fee reversals for some of those cards and for those who got denied, I just canceled the card during the call.
In some of my calls, the annual fees were just reversed without any conditions at all. However, I had very few instances wherein the retention team asked me to meet a certain spend requirement for a particular period of time.
Use Your Points or Miles to Pay the Annual Fee
If you have tons of points and miles left unused and are due to expire, then you might as well use it to pay for your annual fee.
I do suggest that before you do this, study this option very carefully as there might be a more cost-efficient use for your points or miles.
Request to Downgrade the Card
If your request for annual fee reversal is declined, you may opt to downgrade to a credit card that has a lower or no annual fee at all.
Now, before you do this, check if your bank or credit card company has a credit card that doesn’t have an annual fee because they might not have this option.
Get a Credit Card that Waives the Annual Fee
There are certain credit cards that waive the annual fee when you meet the annual spend requirement. A lot of BDO credit cards have this feature so be sure to check this out before you sign up.
This is the best option if you prefer keeping feature-packed credit cards and if you really use your credit cards frequently.
For me, this is not an option since I don’t regularly use my credit cards and I only use them for purchases that I can pay in full when the due date comes.
Get a Credit Card With No Annual Fee
As the years go by, credit card companies are slowly introducing no annual fee credit cards to the market.
Most of these credit cards with no annual fees also don’t have that many features compared to the credit cards with annual fees.
This is expected since you not paying for any membership fees anyway.
However, watch out for promotions of their new credit cards as these are often offered with no annual fee for life if you sign up and get approved during the promotional period.
I got my BPI Amore Visa Credit Card when it was first introduced in the market and until now I do enjoy having no annual fee. Please be aware though that all promotions are subject to change without prior notice.
Also, please read the fine print of the promotion because not following the terms and conditions will void the free annual fee for life.
Personally, I don’t mind paying the annual fee especially if I get to maximize the benefits of my credit card.
However, I also don’t mind saving money by having the annual fee waived. Regardless of how much, it is, in my mind, money saved is still money earned.How to Waive Credit Card Annual Fees Click To Tweet
How about you? Do you have additional inputs to share on how to waive credit card annual fees? Feel free to share them in the comment section below. Thanks!