First some churning news:

  1. Kroger’s online gift card store seems to have changed its gift card supplier to Pathward. Up until a couple of weeks ago you could buy both physical and virtual Mastercards and Visas issued by US Bank at Kroger’s online store, and as of at least yesterday, they sell only Pathward virtual Visas. The fee is $5.95 per card and they still earn fuel points.

    I didn’t expect May to end with a #bonvoyed from Kroger, but here we are.
  2. Holding Chase deposit accounts has a complex relationship with churning:

    They help unlock cards when you’re brand new
    They can lead to credit card bans quickly and unexpectedly

    Given the first bullet point, new churners may be interested in a $750 business checking bonus with Chase that requires funding $30,000 within 30 days, holding for another 60, and completing five transactions (five back-to-back Amazon debit card loads will do). The $30,000 deposit will help with card approvals too, just be sure to close the account before you dive in too deep.
  3. Kroger has a 4x fuel points promotion on third party gift cards other than Amazon on Friday only. The third party gift card resale market is still soft from Pepper Rewards, but it’s already starting to recover and we expect Pepper to send the gravy train crashing into a mountain next week.

And some airline news:

  1. AA tried to eliminate mileage earning and Loyalty Points earning on tickets booked through non-preferred travel agencies, and that was most recently supposed to start with tickets booked in July. CEO Robert Isom, fresh from bingeing to the Tortured Poets Department, said “So Long London” to that plan and to the Vasu Raja, the executive that spearheaded many recent AA changes that haven’t, uhh, paid off.

    They’ve also lowered 2024 revenue guidance due to weakened domestic demand, (cough I wonder why).
  2. Southwest quietly raised the price of EarlyBird check-in to between $15 and $99, and the price of at-airport upgraded boarding to between $30 and $149. This begs the question, why ever fly Southwest without elite status when there’s another option? (Thanks to DDG)
  3. Breeze Airways expanded its route network with flights from seven Eastern US destinations to San Diego, CA. Apparently this launched a week ago but I missed it, so when news is late to me, I guess it’s late to you too. Sorry not sorry.

Happy Thursday friends!

Kroger also silently replaced their ground pork. Does this count as #bonvoyed too?