Breaking down the Chase 5/24 rule — and what it means for you

I’ve referred to the Chase 5/24 rule quite a bit, but I realized that I haven’t taken the time to write about the rule exclusively yet. I’d consider Chase to be the hottest credit card issuer on the market right now — whether it be the Chase Sapphire Reserve, Chase Sapphire Preferred, or one of their many other credit cards, Chase offers some of the best, most lucrative cards on the market. This is also the reason why the 5/24 rule is such a polarizing topic.

View of the Space Needle from the Hyatt Place Seattle-Downtown
By transferring Chase Ultimate Rewards Points to my World of Hyatt account I was able to book 4 nights at the Hyatt Place Downtown Seattle-Space Needle for free!

There is no written documentation from Chase explicitly drawing out the 5/24 rule, rather the internet and its many trusted followers have drawn together the guidelines under which credit cards are accepted and declined from Chase. The two basic rules, in the most simple terms are:

1. 5/24 Rule – if you have applied for 5 or more Chase cards in the past 24 months, you will not be approved for a new Chase card.

2. 30 Day Sign-up Rule: You may only sign up for one Chase card every 30 days.

While the 30-day rule seems to be pretty cut and dry, there are a lot of caveats to the 5/24 rule. As noted, the rule is not explicitly written out by Chase, so any time I say you won’t be approved, you may, and any time I say you will be approved you may not. Unfortunately, that is part of this game that we all play. Even with a great credit score and long credit history there is no guarantee of getting approved for any card.

5/24 Quick Hits

So now that you know the basic concept of the rule, I want to go through some of the more frequently asked questions and highlights in regards to this rule:

The ‘5’ cards in 24 months are any personal credit cards, not just Chase cards.

I put this first for a reason. In first reading and learning about credit cards this was something I severely overlooked. Chase looks at any any personal credit card that you’ve signed up for in the past two years. So don’t make the same mistake I did and choose your cards wisely!

Business cards take 5/24 into consideration but do not count towards it.

This is something that doesn’t seem to be totally consistent. As mentioned, since this isn’t a written rule no one knows for sure how Chase keeps track of your credit card count. People have come to find, however, that when applying for a Chase business credit card you must be under 5/24 — but if you are approved for that card it would not add to your 5/24 count. There is plenty of information and anecdotes out there about applying and getting approved for Chase business cards on both sides of the 5/24 count.

Authorized User cards are included in your count.

Chase pulls information from the credit bureaus, and any authorized user cards under your name will be counted against your credit card number. However, you are able to remove any authorized users from your credit report with a call to the issuing bank. So in the event you are an authorized user on a card and looking to sign up for a Chase card, check Credit Karma first!

5/24 counts any card that you have signed up and received a bonus for — it does not count a card you switched or downgraded to.

While this may already be assumed, I wanted to point it out anyways. The 5/24 count is cards that you have signed up and received a bonus for(if there is a bonus). For example, if you signed up for the Chase Sapphire Preferred and downgraded it to the Chase Freedom Unlimited, that would only count as 1 card against your limit.

There are quite a bit of Chase cards that you can get that will not deny you based on 5/24.

Just because you are over 5/24, does not necessarily mean you cannot apply to any Chase credit cards. While most cards issued through Chase will take into account the 5/24 rule, there are quite a few that you can get approved for even if you are over  ‘5.’ Most cards that are “exempt” from the rule are Chase’s co-branded cards, like the British Airways Visa Signature Card, or the Hyatt Credit Card.

Always call before accepting a denial.

I’ve probably said it enough already, but this is not a written Chase rule. It is simply well tested. If you get denied for a card because you have “opened too many accounts in the past two years,” call the reconsideration line (1-800-270-2127) and see what a representative can do for you. Never hurts, but do your research first so you are prepared for any questions.

Bottom Line

The 5/24 rule is somewhat of a phenomena, as there are no written guidelines to the rule (have I mentioned that yet?). So as much as anyone can say, it could be the total opposite for you. Luckily, crowd sourcing from the internet has allowed us to develop a pretty good understanding of how Chase handles the rule. With Chase being the hottest credit card issuer on the market, I would recommend fully understanding the rule before you apply to any credit card.



Tucker is an avid points and miles enthusiast. Being fully involved in the world of credit cards and frequent flying for only a few years now, he brings a very fresh and unique perspective to the world of travel.

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