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08 April 2009 @ 02:26 pm
Is infinity really around $800? Yes, says Amex.  
So get this, I get a notice from American Express they have halted my card because of excessive spending. The total that I reached was not very high, and I paid it off every month anyway ('tis the rules with American Express), and I wasn't late (payment due next week). This was part of a plan to shift spending around so I could pay off other cards. But American Express just informed me that despite my account being listed as "no set spending limit," the actual limit was $800.

When I asked why, I was put on hold for nearly 35 minutes before I gave up. I was at work, and had stuff to do. When I called back, I finally got someone about 10 minutes after who told me that my $800 limit was a sliding scale, that changed monthly, based on my credit (which is listed as "Good" in the high 600s), and how much money I owed other credit cards (for which I don't have very many), information they got from Experion. They started asking me about my monthly income, how long I had been working where I worked, did I still own my house, and so on. Nothing had changed, they had the correct info.

They concurred. $800. And it wasn't always this low, I know, I have had it in the multiples of thousands, even recently. They assured me that it wasn't because I ever had late payments with them, and my accounts were fine, but they put a limit on my spending because of my credit rating. So I asked, directly, "you're telling me that the 'no set spending limit' is actually based on a sliding scale of several factors, which change month to month, no matter how good I am at paying you on time for the amounts listed? Infinity to you is $800."

"Yes sir, that's correct."

Holy. Shit.

I'll never be able to buy one plane ticket to Sweden with that limit (which I planned to do next year, and had done in the past), let me tell you. I asked to speak to a supervisor, and was told that I wasn't able to because "their call queue was too high." I had to call back at 8-9pm tonight.

I mean, this doesn't really screw me that bad, but it does make "No set spending limit" a HUGE lie. A card with a $800 limit that costs me $90 a year for "membership" is not a bargain.

Yeah, yeah, economy is bad. And I always knew that at some point, if I ran up a $1,000,000 they would call me (or at least, I hoped they would, they never did when it was $3100 in 2006). No excuse to lie.
Ian Mcianmcin on April 8th, 2009 06:34 pm (UTC)
I asked to speak to a supervisor, and was told that I wasn't able to because "their call queue was too high."

Response #1: I'll just bet it was, given how widespread this problem probably is.

Response #2: They have a queue limit of 3 calls, no doubt.
punkwalruspunkwalrus on April 8th, 2009 06:40 pm (UTC)
She actually told me 5 calls were waiting, and the wait was over an hour.
vlynnvlynn on April 8th, 2009 06:37 pm (UTC)
Yeah they damned well need to refund your annual fee then. That is not what you agreed to.
Xale D'Man: Setitexale_d on April 8th, 2009 06:59 pm (UTC)
Just to play Devil's Advocate, the line is "No pre-set spending limit" in the commercials.

Wow, that's all I have for an argument at the moment. I guess it really is a shitty thing.
bouncygryphonbouncygryphon on April 9th, 2009 01:58 pm (UTC)
Which is true - there isn't a "pre-set" spending limit until they've had a chance to review your spending habits. I'm betting that's the logic they're using to stave off the inevitable complaints/lawsuits/counterregulations.
rtredrtred on April 8th, 2009 09:46 pm (UTC)
Sounds like they weren't making enough money off of you.