If you’re thinking about canceling one of your credit cards it never hurts to call into the bank and inquire about possible retention offers to keep you as a customer.

Banks know that it may only take a few thousand additional bonus miles to change your mind and keep your account open.


Credit Card Retention Offers

Banks make retention offers in attempt to keep you as a customer and even have specialized retention departments. The offer you are given can vary by card, change over time, and can even vary from person to person or the representative you get on the phone.

Retention offers can be a quick an easy way to score extra miles and points—even if you are not actually going to cancel your card. The bottom line is, it never hurts to call in and inquire about canceling your card or what retention offers are available on your account.

My Retention Offer Call

On my last round of credit card applications I was approved for both the personal and business version of the Alaska Airlines Visa. The sign-up bonus at the time was 25,000 miles on each card, plus an extra $100 statement credit on the personal card.

Just last week the offer on the personal card increased to 30,000 miles + $100 statement credit, which makes it one of best offers on this card that is not limited-time.

My annual fee was not set to post until February 2017, but I figured I would call in to cancel now in case I plan to apply for the card again before the end of the year.

Alaska Airlines Visa Retention Offers

I decided to call in today to cancel my cards, however I also inquired about possible retention offers before committing to cancel my account.


The Alaska Airlines Visa retention offers that were available to me:

Alaska Airlines Visa

  • 2,500 bonus miles with no spending requirement

Alaska Airlines Business Visa

  • 5,000 bonus miles with no spending requirement
  • Waived $75 annual fee

I decided to take both retention offers awarding bonus miles. Given that there was no additional effort needed on my part to meet a spending requirement I was happy to accept 7,500 bonus miles in total for both cards.

I’ve hear reports of people not receiving any retention offer on the Alaska Airlines Visa card, so it appears that Bank of America may be offering more generous retention offers at this point in time.

This may also be partly due to the fact that Bank of America also recently increased the sign-up bonus to 30,000 miles + $100 statement credit on the card, which indicates they are increasing their efforts to attract and/or keep customers.


As always, retention offers are completely a “your mileage may vary” situation, but it never hurts to call and inquire about possible retention offers on your account. This can be said across all banks although some tend to be more generous with handing out bonus miles/points in order to keep you as a customer.

Give that I rarely put spend on my Alaska Airlines Visa cards I was more than happy to get 2,500 extra miles on the personal card and 5,000 bonus miles on the business card.

The annual fees do not hit my account until February, which means I still have time to decide whether or not to keep the card and potentially receive another retention offer before the fee posts.

Chase Freedom Unlimited
Chase freedom

Chase freedom unlimited
Bonus: $150 (15,000 points) after spending $500 in the first 3 months. Earn an additional $25 (2,500 points) after adding an authorized user.

-- Unlimited 1.5X on every purchase
-- Ultimate Rewards points can be transferred to valuable travel partners (United, Hyatt, etc) when you also have a Chase Ink Plus or Sapphire Preferred Card.

Annual fee: $0

Quick review: The 1.5X points earning of the Chase Freedom Unlimited card makes it a powerful way to earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points. This card can be a valuable choice for big spenders in non-bonus categories who want to earn transferable points.

Note: you will need to have a Ink Plus or Sapphire Preferred Card in order to transfer points to Chase's Ultimate Rewards travel partners such as United and Hyatt.

About the author

Rand Shoaf

Introduced to traveling at a young age, Rand has since traveled to over 45 countries. Learning how to maximize credit card sign-up bonuses in college has allowed him to earn millions of travel miles and points. Using the same tips and tricks he writes about here has ultimately allowed him to explore the word for pennies on the dollar.