Recently, I had one of those “the devil’s in the details” experiences I want to share with you because as we all know, details are important, especially with credit card benefits! I’ve had the JPMorgan Chase Ritz Carlton Credit Card for quite a few years already, and for the first time this past year, I just couldn’t use the full $300 worth of travel reimbursement credit. The benefits I receive from other credit cards mean I don’t pay for checked bags. I had no flights where I could pay for a seat upgrade, and how many fruit and cheese plates can one eat? So I only spent about $100 of the $300 travel credit. This made me wonder if maybe it was time to let go of this credit card.
Similar to Grant, I inquired and asked Chase which credit cards I could get to replace my JPMorgan Chase Ritz Carlton Credit Card. I was still in decision-making mode when I read a comment on Grant’s post. This reader is a huge fan of the JPMorgan Chase Ritz Carlton Credit Card. He laid out his formula for how he gets so much benefit from the credit card. He feels people are short sighted when it comes to the benefits of the card, and cancel it in haste. Hmm, was I missing something?
Here’s what the reader wrote that most intrigued me:
For example, travel medical/dental insurance if you have to seek medical or dental attention when more than 100 miles away from your house and you bought at least part of the air/train/bus/taxi fare to get to site of duress with the Ritz Card, then if your primary medical insurance doesn’t cover the 100% of the costs, the Chase insurance administrator will pay you the difference up to $3000.
Yet both the examples this reader used to illustrate how this worked said he BOUGHT the plane tickets with his JPMorgan Chase Ritz Carlton Credit Card. Not part of the ticket, not the fees on an award ticket, not bus or taxi fare, but the whole plane ticket. Now I was really curious. He seemed like a guy who knew the ins and outs of this program and was using it himself, and had 8 authorized users on the credit card as well. If what he wrote, even given that his examples didn’t match his first point, was correct, this could indeed be a reason to keep the credit card.
I wasn’t sure if anyone else had caught his claim pertaining to the medical/dental coverage, but if clarifying this benefit interested me, I figured it would interest others as well. So I called Chase and spoke with their insurance division. I actually called the insurance department twice because I wanted to ask about this benefit in different ways and see if I got the same answer from different service people.
Turns out the WHOLE airfare or cruise has to be purchased with the JPMorgan Chase Ritz Carlton Credit Card. If you use miles/points and pay for the fees with the credit card, that would NOT qualify you for the coverage. This holds true for authorized users as well. I had an interesting talk with the insurance representative and asked about the other benefits/coverages as well. He told me the most popular benefits on this credit card are the trip cancellation and rental car damage. And yes, to get those benefits, only a portion of the cost has to be put on the JPMorgan Chase Ritz Carlton Credit Card.
Keeping track of all the benefits that come with the many credit cards we all use is no small task! I was disappointed, though not surprised, that what our reader posted was not the way the medical/dental benefits worked. And as I suggested at the beginning of this post, the devil’s in the details, and when I’m confused or things don’t quite make sense, I like to dig deeper to find the answers. I hope this helps in some small way as a reminder that if you’re not sure about keeping, canceling, or product-switching a credit card, there may or MAY NOT be something in the card benefits that will influence your decision. Just make sure you’re sure about the details!