22 MAY 2017 Update: Chase appears to have modified their secure message system today, killing the method I outlined in this post.
A reader by the name of Alex L. indicated he’s had success stopping by a Chase branch to get his account number while awaiting the arrival of the card in the mail. If a branch is located conveniently nearby that may be worth the effort.
It usually takes a week or so for a newly approved credit card to arrive to your mailbox or front door. In most cases that’s not a problem – you can simply use a card you already have while you wait for the new card.
There are some cases though where that’s not optimal. One common situation – you’re looking to meet a minimum spending requirement and you have a time-sensitive purchase.
Consider this example: You get approved for a new card on Monday and you’re looking to buy Bose noise-cancelling headphones from Amazon.com before you leave for a trip on Saturday. If you order the item on Wednesday with Prime shipping it will likely arrive before you depart. But your new card hasn’t arrived yet. If only you had your new card account number now so that the significant purchase could count toward your minimum spending requirement…
Well, if your new card is issued by Chase there’s a trick to get the account number while the card is in transit to you.
Now, you may be thinking, “Who needs a trick for this….just call Chase and ask for the account number.” That’s logical. The problem is that Chase reps won’t give you the account number over the phone.
Here’s the three-step trick to getting your Chase account number while the physical card is in transit to you. It’s easy as pie!
1. Get the Last Four Digits of Card from Chase Site
Log onto the Chase credit card site at Chase.com.
Scroll through the list of your accounts until you find the new one (likely at bottom of list).
Note or jot down the last four digits of that account.
2. Send A Note or Question Through the Secure Message Center
Scroll all the way back up to the top of the page. On the upper right part of the screen you should see a link for Secure Message Center. Click that link.
That will bring up a two-item list. Click the second item: Send new message
Under My Personal Accounts (or My Business Accounts if you’re dealing with a business credit card), click the Select Topic drop-down menu next to Credit Card.
You can choose any inquiry type you’d like. I selected Other/Inquiry Not Listed. Once you’ve made your selection, click the Go button.
That will bring you to the screen on which you enter your message.
Click the drop-down menu for Account Number and select the line with the last four digits that match those of your new card (noted in step 1 of this post).
Type your note or question in the text box labeled Message: and then click Send.
Once you’ve sent your message off, simply click the Sent Messages link on the left side of the Secure Message Center screen. Then click the line for the message you just sent.
That will bring up a copy of the sent message. The key point here is that your full account number will be displayed on this screen also, toward the bottom of the list of fields!
You Can Make $1 Purchase to Confirm Card is Active
Once I followed this 3-step process and got my new account number (while my Sapphire Reserve card was in transit to me) I verified it works.
I went to Amazon.com and added this card to the list of (a couple dozen) cards. Then I reloaded my gift card balance with $1. That’s why you see my available credit is one dollar less than my credit line in the image shown in step one.
For the expiration date for the card I simply added four years to the month of approval. Since my card was approved in August 2016 I used an expiration date of August 2020. That worked! Update: I received my card and it actually has 2019 as the expiration year. Update 12 January 2017: Wallet Boy commented below that Chase is sending cards out with expiration date 5 years in the future (i.e. a card obtained in January 2017 will have expiration date of January 2022).
Note that I didn’t make a larger reload purchase with my Sapphire Reserve because I’m getting 5% cash back at Amazon.com with my Discover It card for the rest of 2016! You can apply for that card, and get that deal, here.
The One Hold-up In Some Cases: CVV
If you’re looking to use the card on a site or a phone ordering system that requires the card verification value (CVV) – the three or four digit code on the card – unfortunately you’re out of luck until the physical card arrives.
Note that there are some instances in which you can change payment type after an order is placed. That could be a “last resort” approach if the CVV is required and you must place your order before the physical card is in hand.
Will this trick come in handy for you? Share your thoughts, and any similar tricks, in the comments below!
To get the latest tips and guidance and my custom credit card tracking spreadsheet for free, sign up for my email list!