Ranking bank bans that would hurt the most


Seeing as how I’ve been banned by 3 banks now – USBank, Barclays, and Chase, I figure I have enough data points to make a ranking of bank bans that would hurt the most TO ME.  Let’s rank these in order of pain.



#1 – American Express – “My puppy just died kind of pain”

Benefits – This one would hurt the most.  The Amex Offers are so rich that you could easily earn hundreds per year per card if you know what you’re doing.  While we’re not sure what’ll happen in the post-SPG world, if they keep doing AMEX Offers, I don’t really care if I put that spend on an SPG, Delta, MR, or 1% cashback card.

Ban impact – AMEX is pretty nice in that if they shut you down, they may shut down only one card (see OBC) vs axing every card and everyone in your house.  Plus, they’ll usually give you a Financial Review first before giving you the axe.  I haven’t read of any AMEX axes in a while, even with people doing multiples of their CL.  And even if they do shut down one of your cards, you’ll still be able to get your rewards out (see OBC.)


#2 – Citi – “Your girlfriend breaks up with you and you are never ever getting back together”

Advantages – Pretty lenient on churning and has some great cards like the AA cards,  TYP cards, and Hilton card

Ban impact – Citi will wipe out all your cards, and you won’t be able to get your points out.  They DGAF even if you CFPB them.  It’d be like handing an escaped convict a jaywalking ticket.  “What is this stupid piece of paper?”  TRASH!  It also takes YEARS (I read 7?) to get back in with their good graces.


#3 – Bank of America – “You find out your girlfriend is cheating on you”

Advantages – Alaska cards, even with the gutted EK chart!  Great Virgin Atlantic / Hilton card.  Also has a wonderful gem of a card when the shit hits the fan on everything else.  Can do things over the phone.

Ban impact – Also not getting back in for YEARS.  How else are you gonna rack up AS miles, especially if you don’t fly often or resell?


#4 – Barclays – “Your house was robbed”

Advantages – Arrival, JetBlue, Hawaiian, Lufthansa, Wyndham.

Ban impact – Man, not only do they get you, but they get your spouse, your kids, your dog, and even your uncle who doesn’t live with you but is an AU on your card.  Just plain NASTY.  Not sure when/if you’ll get back in.


#5 – Chase – “Your car got broken into”

Advantages – The reason I put them this low is due to the ban impact.  Great if you love Ultimate Rewards, United, Southwest, Hyatt, or Marriott.  Five/24 seems extremely YMMV since I know someone who got a card in-branch with 24/24.  Haha.

Ban impact – Mixed reviews.  Some get personal cards axed but not business.  Some get a total wipe.  Some have been able to get back in after a year or so.  They also give you time to transfer out UR before totally shutting you down.


 #6 Capital One – “You realized you lost a $500 VGC”

Advantages – Really good signup bonuses, namely Spark.  Also can do things over phone.

Ban impact – When writing this post, I couldn’t find anyone who was banned and what the impact was.   If you got banned though, you’re potentially losing out on $500-$1K per year of signup bonuses.



#7 – Discover – “You stubbed your toe on a table”

Advantages – The 5% quarterly bonuses are nice, and they seem to give solid existing customer usage bonuses.

Ban impact – While there are data points of shutdowns, and I found this while writing this up, I don’t know if you’ll get back in or not.


#8 – US Bank – “Finding out Santa isn’t real”

Advantages – Flexperks card, the cash back card, and the Club Carlson cards.

Ban impact – Apparently you’re not getting back in.  Now that I’m going on 3+ years being banned from them, I honestly DGAF.  Maybe others who have the Flexperks card would rank this higher though.


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  • Mountain Man

    Hey Vinh, kinda of topic. You have any ideas what’s going on at DOC?

    • Paul

      Vacation, I think. He tweeted something about sorry for the lack of posts, having too much fun

      • Miles per Day

        Yeah both he and Chuck are on vacation/busy this week. Not sure when they’ll be back.

  • Paul

    Be an interesting follow up to discuss what is likely to get you shut down with the various banks. People seem to think that it is using CFBP that leads to Citi and Barclays shut downs. I have seen very little about Bofa shutdowns. Is anonymous payments to them an issue that you’ve seen? If not, what would get you banned? Likewise, USBank?

    • Miles per Day

      Paul that’s a good topic. I’ll see what I can whip up.

  • Ken

    Almost lost my coffee after that stubbed toe pic.

    • Miles per Day

      haha my bad Ken. I knew it’d have a lasting impression. 😉

  • Mark Ostermann

    Have you done the virgin atlantic sign up to get hilton points yet? You think it is worth it or would transferring them to IHG be better in your opinion? Any idea how long the transfers take…I think I read hilton can take a month? Was thinking of going for this card next.

    • Miles per Day

      No but a reader commented said he was able to do it all in the first month to avoid the AF.

      • Mark Ostermann

        I think that is a good way to get on BOA’s blacklist. I know they started getting pissed about people doing it with the Alaska cards.

        How did you get banned from USBank if you don’t mind me asking?

        • Miles per Day

          I’ll write about it down the road.

          • Mark Ostermann

            sounds good

  • Mark Ostermann

    For me I would say Chase would be the worst since the ink is the best way to rack up points imo. Citi would be second since it is the best way to rack up AA miles. Then Amex. Barclays would be towards the bottom for me…their lineup blows and they suck as a bank imo. I guess it would be chase, citi, amex, boa, cap one, us bank, barclay, discover for me.

    • Jordan

      I would agree with your order. I haven’t maximized Amex offers unless it’s easy cash back (like staples) or something I’ll already be using (like Airbnb).

      • Mark Ostermann

        I have not either. I usually clear 100-150 per year per card but it is the easier stuff (although the last 12 months have been tougher with lackluster offers). Most of them are really obscure things I couldn’t really use. I am sure it is bigger for re-sellers though.