Amex's "Will My Charges Be Approved?" feature, does it really work?

Discussion in 'American Express | Membership Rewards' started by SuperKirby, May 24, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. SuperKirby

    SuperKirby Gold Member

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    A few data points here, seeing if anyone else had this happen to them.

    I don't put spend on my Amex Plat much at all (hardly ever) but had to start using it because needed some HHonors points quickly. Anyways, after spending a certain amount through regular spend and probably passed my "limit", my card got declined while trying to buy something online for about $400. I also got the good ol' email from Amex stating "unusual spending noticed, please call, blah, etc." (ending up having to use a different card for the $400 purchase).

    So I went on to use the Will My Charges Be Approved? feature and put in $500. As I guessed, NOT approved. Tried $300, not approved. Tried $100 & then $50, all not approved. Oh well, just used up my so called "limit" I guess, no biggie. FWIW, in the past i've used the website feature and had many purchase approvals.

    A day later while at the store, I had to buy a few items worth about $10 and decided to test out the Plat; charge approved. I guess I still had a small "limit" left. Later on the day spent $90 at Target, approved. Hmmh, getting funny now. Got gas for $60, approved.

    The next day I then spent $200 at Lowe's, approved. Another $70 purchase on the internet, approved.
    Of course now I went to check on the Amex website feature again, typed in all different numbers, $300, $100, $50, all NOT approved. Just bought a $189 ticket to LAS yesterday, approved. Checked the Amex website feature again, nothing approved.

    Today: Sushi $30, Panera Bread $14, USPS $10, Wally World $50, all approved. Website: nothing approved.
    I'm starting to get the feeling "No pre-set spending limit" is truly NO SPENDING LIMIT! =:):(:confused::eek::cool:
     
  2. MX

    MX Gold Member

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    I received fraud alerts a few times, when I started using previously inactive accounts, or even changed spending categories or patterns. The only way to clear those alerts is to call the bank as they ask, and verify the charges as legit. So you might as well get that phone call over with. ;)
     
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  3. Counsellor
    Original Member

    Counsellor Gold Member

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    A couple data points in return:

    1. At tax time, I had an unusually large amount due, more than 10K over my limit on the SPG AMEX that I wanted to charge the amount to (for various reasons). I'm usually nowhere near my limit on that card (I try to stay at 10% utilization or less), so this would be truly "unusual" activity. I certainly didn't want to bounce a charge with the IRS :))), so I used the "Will My Charges Be Approved?" feature, and received a positive response (which I immediately printed a screen shot of). Sure enough, the charge went through when I put it in later that same day.

    2. Of course, now my account showed "$0" as available credit. I have some utility bills charged automatically to that card, and didn't want those charges to be rejected, so I called AMEX. The lady said that even though I was a bit more than 10K over my credit limit, incoming charges would not automatically be rejected, but rather would be dealt with on a case-by-case basis, and she saw no reason why occasional small (under $100) charges wouldn't be accepted even though I was already way over the limit. And indeed they were.

    Now, these are individual data points, and may not be typical. I have a history with AMEX going back some 4 decades, and have had (and routinely used) the SPG AMEX for over 10 years. Also have a credit score over 750. And I used the "Will My Charges Be Approved?" feature before busting my limit. YMMV.
     
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  4. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    I have heard that using this feature gives you a guesstimate of what CL Amex is willing to extend to you.

    Example. I had a 8k Limit on my SPG and i wanted an CLI. So with a balance of ~2000 on the card currently, I put in $13,000 and got denied. Then I put in 10,000 and was approved. I then called up Amex and requested a CLI. When it asked me how much, I put in $12,000 (8k Current - 2k blance = 4k CLI). Got the Green Light :)
     
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  5. maksim

    maksim Silver Member

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    Interesting. My wife and I have the Delta Gold Amex, and only have a $1,500 limit on there, however we regularly charge $3k a month to it, and all gets approved.
     
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  6. SuperKirby

    SuperKirby Gold Member

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    The pattern is so strange. Got an email from Amex again saying "higher than usual spending, please call, account will be suspended until then, etc". Anyway I didn't call cause I'm gonna pay it all off soon. Today tried buying a VR at CVS: declined, bought $70 at grocery store: accepted, $5 purchase on eBay: declined, $20 at restaurant: accepted. It's like it has a mind of it's own.
     
  7. rockyrock

    rockyrock Silver Member

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    Be careful, even if they let you go over your limit you don't want that to reflect on your credit report. Balance higher than your limit looks bad. If you have other cards with a bunch of availability you're probably okay, otherwise you may want to consider making multiple payments a month if possible.

    My experiences, YMMV.
     
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  8. SuperKirby

    SuperKirby Gold Member

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    Even for a charge card? thanks for the info...

    Update: after tons of more purchases my card finally came to an ultimate purchase suspension. The email once again said please call. I didn't call but just paid in full and everything is gravy again.
     
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  9. maksim

    maksim Silver Member

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    Correct, it does show over the balance, however we have a ton of other cards avail that the avail credit equation is quite fine. =)

    The other thing we started doing was paying it off in full before the due date/statement date.
     
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  10. websteth

    websteth Silver Member

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    The link does give you a good idea but, I've also heard that clicking it a lot to find out that limit might trigger a dreaded financial review where you need to send if copies of your taxes to prove you have the income. Using it once in a while should be an issue.
     

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