Freedom Unlimited plan thwarted

Ever since signing up for the Chase Sapphire Reserve card, I’ve planned to downgrade my Sapphire Preferred to a Freedom Unlimited card.  The former gives 3X for dining and travel, whereas the FU (Freedom Unlimited) offers 1.5X everywhere. And points can be transferred to the Sapphire Reserve to make them more valuable.  See: FU Sapphire Reserve: Better combos exist.

FU Sapphire Reserve
I first called Chase to downgrade my Sapphire Preferred immediately after signing up for the Sapphire Reserve, but I was told that I had to have the Sapphire Preferred open for at least a year before I could do so.  Now the year was up and I called again.  I was told no.  I could only product change to the no-fee Sapphire card.  Doh!  I spoke with a supervisor — same answer.

I went ahead and product changed to the Sapphire.  My hope is that if I call again in a month or two, they’ll let me change the Sapphire to the FU.

About Greg The Frequent Miler

Greg is the owner, founder, and primary author of the Frequent Miler. He earns millions of points and miles each year, mostly without flying, and dedicates this blog to teaching others how to do the same.

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  1. I was able to exchange my csp for the unlimited. However, I had mine for 2 years and I also don’t have the reserve. I’ve started cutting back my apps because I’m expecting to get a new mortgage in another year or so. Hoping the bonus comes back while I’m under 5/24.

    • Many inquiries doesn’t have any effect on a mortgage application. They’re going to look at how you use your credit which is more important than the number of inquiries. This has been debunked for quite some time now.

      • @Ken
        Trevor is referring to opened accounts, not inquiries. 5/24 doesnt care about inquiries. Banks do indeed look at opened accounts and will certainly question why you have so much available credit relative to your income.

  2. Just last week I was allowed to change my CSP to the Freedom with the rotating categories when I called to cancel the CSP. I’d had the Preferred for just at 12 months (the annual fee had not posted yet).

  3. I also recently was able to change my CSP to Chase Freedom with rotating categories (my 2nd). Chase even offered me the choice of the old Freedom or the new Freedom unlimited. I’ve held the Chase Reserve for only a few months.
    Not sure if it is a factor or not, but I have been a Chase customer for about 30 years…

  4. I had my Preferred card for less than two years and was able to transfer it to a unlimited card. This only a week after getting the Reserve card. But I got my Reserve card back when it first came out so maybe they changed the rules.

  5. Another data point, my wife and I both did this (CSP to FU) – hers immediately when the CSR came out and mine in December (I needed to age out of 5/24). We had our CSPs open for over a year. We also both have the ‘Classic’ Freedom card, which was my worry initially.

    We did both of our PCs via secure messaging and not calling. Sent the request, they sent back product info for the FU and asked for confirmation. We sent confirmation and it was done.

  6. I downgraded my wife’s CSP to a Feedom Unlimited middle of last month when her year anniversary was up. Did it via SM and didn’t have any push back.

  7. More DPs. My wife and I just changed out CSPs to FUs when the first annual fee hit. We do t have reserves. Maybe that is the key?

  8. This is a well known strategy if you haven’t had a year on the CSP. You can downgrade from CSP -> CS, and then ask to product change the CS to the CFU. I waited until I received the Chase Sapphire in hand (cause I wanted an extra card for the sock drawer!)

    • Greg, what you’ve written here is correct. I encountered the same issue due to being a Private Client with Chase. For some silly reason, your “Private Client Sapphire Preferred” can only be downgraded to a Sapphire. Your Sapphire can then be immediately product changed to a Freedom etc.

  9. I just changed CSP to FU last week via Secure Message with no problem. Had CSP for two years at time of conversion. So it is possible to do a direct conversion.

  10. I’ve found secure message to be the best way to deal with everything. I applied for the reserve in branch and the branch banker told me I couldn’t downgrade my preferred I would have to close it and apply for the freedom, I said no. Went home and secure messaged chase they downgraded my preferred to the freedom without issue (I wanted the 5X categories). After that I used secure message to ask for an annual fee refund since I paid it in October. They agreed and a few days later I had a $71 credit.

  11. Thank you everyone for sharing your irrelevant experiences of downgrading 1 Year+ after having a CSP. Nobody ever questioned whether that might be an issue and youngster been unbelievably unhelpful.

    Now that I got that out of the way, they’ll let you PC from the sapphire to the CFU immediately. There’s no need to wait a month or whatever.

    • Wow. Before making a total fool of yourself by being a jerk and then being wrong, you should have read the post more carefully. Greg waited the year anniversary+ and was still told he could not PC the CSP->FU. So, yes, that was raised as an issue. And, no, you don’t need to go CSP->CS->FU at 1yr+…or at least not according to many data points posted by the helpful folks here.

  12. I had my Sapphire Preferred for about six months. I converted it to a Sapphire Regular (they’ll let you do that even before a year), via secure message, and then once I had that, I was able to convert it to my second Freedom Unlimited (also via secure message) with no difficulty.

  13. And.. it’s done. I’m now the proud owner of a Freedom Unlimited card! Thanks to many for the advice. Here’s the timeline:

    1/15/16: Opened CSP: Sapphire Preferred Private Client (65K offer)
    9/3/16: Opened CSR: Sapphire Reserve (100K offer)
    10/?/16: Called to downgrade CSP to FU. Was told to wait until it was open 1 year
    2/2/16: Called to downgrade CSP to FU. Told CS only option. Did that.
    2/4/16: Private messaged Chase to convert CS to FU. Done!

  14. After I got the Reserve in December, I was able to change my CSP (~2 yrs) to the original Freedom with rotating categories (I have an existing one as well). They did give me the option to change to the FU but I didn’t take it.

  15. I can’t remember where I read this from, but supposedly someone made 3 phone calls and completed the following product changes back-to-back, all in one day: CSP->CS->FU->F

  16. Wait a day and SM chase, they will let you product change from the old Sapphire card to Freedom unlimited. I was just able to do this yesterday, only had the CSP for about 2 months total

  17. Greg, I used my CSP to purchase an iPhone in Oct 2014 and the AppleCare+, in Dec 2016, I product changed the CSP to CFU. Today the home botton on my iPhone is not working and I suspect it’s hardware issue. Since CSP gives 1 more year of extended warranty on top of the 2-year warranty offerred by the purchased AppleCare+, is it possible that I still receive this coverage given I did this product change? DP please.

    • That’s a great question, but I don’t know the answer. If you can’t find the answer elsewhere you’ll have to contact Chase to ask. If they say no, there’s still a bit of hope that you could upgrade back to the CSP to file for the coverage, but they might argue that if the damage occurred while the card was a Freedom Unlimited, then it’s not covered. So… another option is to upgrade before contacting Chase to ask if it’s covered.

  18. Does anyone know whether PCing between a Freedom and Freedom Unlimited multiple times per year is an issue or could lead to shutdowns?

    My wife and I both have a Freedom and Freedom Unlimited each. Usually at least once or twice a year we could max out the bonus category in a given quarter 4x. It would be nice if during those quarters we could PC the FU to the regular Freedom, wait for the points to post, then PC back to FU. I just don’t know who happy Chase would be about this since they have to mail you new plastic each time you do this.

  19. @FM

    Are you still Private Client? If so, why? If Chase is unwilling to allow private client to bypass 5/24, what’s the point? So, you can earn 0.01% interest on your deposits?

  20. I had my CSP only a few months but was able to convert to Unlimited in two phone calls. First you have to call and switch to basic Sapphire and then a day later they’ll let you convert that to he Unlimited. There’s a reddit thread on this somewhere.

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