Posted by Chuck on May 1, 2015
Credit Cards

Published on May 1st, 2015 | by Chuck

93

More on AT&T Access Card, Existing AT&T Customers, and Hard Pulls

We wrote about the potential downside of applying for the new AT&T Access More card since it requires signing up for service with AT&T. While you only need to remain a customer for 15 days, this would still seemingly result in a hard inquiry on your credit when processing your AT&T service agreement.

We still  haven’t heard back from AT&T, but we did manage to clarify a few things.

Hard Inquiry

With regard to whether one receives a hard inquiry when signing a service agreement with AT&T, the consensus definitely seems to be that generally a hard inquiry is done on your credit report. This is based on the comments to our original post and on what we’ve seen elsewhere.

Equifax is the credit bureau that’s mentioned often and that’s a good thing since Equifax is the least used report for many. (Recently, I’ve been hearing more and more people say that their Transunion is used more than the Equifax.)

One comment, in particular, addressed our scenario of signing up for a service agreement without any contract at all. Reader Ivan reported that he brought his own phone when signing up for service and it still resulted in a hard inquiry.

We also got a comment from reader Estelle who works for AT&T and confirmed that a hard inquiry is done. I followed up with Estelle via email and he confirmed that even when you bring your own phone there is an inquiry done. And that there’s no difference whether the sign up with AT&T is done in-store or online.

Bonus for Existing Customers

A few readers wondered how exactly the $650 signup bonus will play out for existing AT&T customers. Since they’re already customers, would they need to do any additional agreement with AT&T in order to get the signup bonus? Or would they not be eligible for the bonus at all?

Via my contact at Citi I was able to confirm that current AT&T customers will be eligible for the bonus without any additional agreements necessary. (They would, however, need to remain an AT&T customer for 15 days.)

Here’s the exact quote:

Yes, existing AT&T customers would be eligible for the new phone benefit immediately after becoming a AT&T Access More cardmember. They could purchase a phone right away, and would receive a statement credit (up to $650 excluding taxes, fees and service) after they meet the $2,000 spend in first 3 months requirement. Note that the phone purchase is counted as part of the $2,000 spend.

This is great news for AT&T customers since they could get the $650 toward a phone without any additional requirements aside from the $2000 in spend. Or actually ~$1350 in spend, as the $650 counts toward the minimum spend. And they won’t have to worry about a second hard pull done on their credit.

Conclusion

Just to recap in brief:

  • There will probably be a hard inquiry (likely Equifax) done for new AT&T customers.
  • Existing AT&T customer can buy the new phone immediately with no additional requirements besides for the minimum spend.



93
Leave a Reply

avatar
 

  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Anna
Anna

Hi,

Just wondering if the existing AT&T prepaid customer can receive the bonus, since there is no contract, can Citi detect and honor prepaid customer?

Thank you.

Mark
Mark

Thanks for doing the legwork on this, Chuck! A load off my mind, since I got the card for my parents who are AT&T customers.

Ken
Ken

Does it matter where we purchase the phone? Like if we buy the phone from ebay to avoid the sales tax, will it also be reimbursed?

prem
prem

you have to purchase it through a link in the Citi card site which actually redirects to att.com/wireless page.

Sandy
Sandy

Chuck, Do you know if Apple Iphone 6 will work with this promotion ? Many promotions exclude Iphone.

Paul
Paul

I called Citi prior to applying for the card, and they stated that the promotion was good for any phone on the AT&T website. As stated in the promotion, the phone must be purchased through the link (not via ebay or craigslist) that will be provided to the user.

I asked the CSR if only certain phones would be shown via the link, and after a couple brief holds, I was told the link would consist of AT&T’s full selection of phones. We will see soon. My card should be arriving any day now, and as soon as I get it I am purchasing the phone. It’s sweet that the total spending requirement includes the phone.

TJ
TJ

I’m currently an existing At&t customer, but my husband is the primary. He’s got the Access More card and hopefully will get the new phone without any issue. Now, would I need to signup for a new plan for myself, or I could also get this Card and as a signup bonus, can get a new phone using my husband’s family plan?

Christine
Christine

Did you find out the answer? I have the same question too. Surely husband and wife can apply for the ATT Access More card separately. But is the offer eligible for two phone offers in the same ATT account?

HoKo
HoKo

Thx for the additional info regarding existing AT&T customers. So I’m trying to think how this would play out – my current 2 year contract expires in Jan’16 so I’d be eligible at that point in time for a phone upgrade (assuming I signed a new contract)…but I wouldn’t need a new phone at that point since I would’ve just gotten one within the past ~6 months. So do you think that upgrade would just remain on the account and I could use it whenever I was ready for another new phone?

Paul
Paul

If AT&T is anything like Verizon then the upgrade offer just sits on your account in wait. I get updates from Verizon constantly telling me I can take advantage of the offer. AT&T will probably start lowering your bill once you come out of contract in order to stay competitive.

prem
prem

if you are not gonna upgrade at that point , you can choose to reduce ur bill .. it wil go down by 15/25 per month which will save you around $360 minimum for next two years …

William Charles

Should remain on account, some people also mentioned that you can use it to discount your bill as well.

Anna
Anna

Hi,

Just wondering if AT&T prepaid customer eligible?

If so, then it will be very easy to activate as a prepaid user, refill as little as $10 ($10 will be effective for 1 month, which is enough)

Any thought on prepaid activation?

Thank you.

William Charles

Has to be a postpaid account unfortunately.

Paul
Paul

Got my card today and purchased my phone. It appears that all phones are available, but clearly all Apple phones are, as I purchased an iPhone 6.

You also must provide them consent for a credit check, due to the post-paid plan that is needed to complete the offer. Not a concern to me, but this may be an issue for others.

On a plus side, a 1GB data plan, with unlimited talk and text is $50/month. That is pretty competitive for my area and amongst the top 4 carriers.

csdx
csdx

I’ve had the same experience and just wanted to add that looks like they waive the $40 activation fee as well.

Terry
Terry

I am an existing at&t family plan customer. I am on at&t next plan, which requires me to pay monthly installment payment until 2017. I am thinking to use this card to replace my existing plan. Is that possible?

Todd
Todd

You won’t replace the existing plan. You are responsible for those fees on the next plan no matter what. You can either pay off the phone or continue to pay those fees monthly. With this deal you are simply buying the phone outright and not affecting your current plan.

MarkD
MarkD

Anyone purchase a phone with a grandfathered AT&T unlimited data plan? I’m assuming you get to keep your existing unlimited plan. Do they make you convert to AT&T Next when purchasing the phone? I’m on a family plan with 4 other lines and it would be more expensive for us to convert to AT&T Next than remain on our 2-year contract terms.

Todd
Todd

Phone ordered via the special link and received already. The phone didn’t activate online so my wife has to call to get it to work. We met the spend so we are just waiting for the statement to post and see how this credit works.

Todd
Todd

Adding some extra data:

My wife’s statement closed a few days ago with the spend met and the annual fee charged. The statement credit for the phone did not post with this statement so I assume it will post at the second statement after having paid the annual fee. The purchase of the phone from AT&T did also count as a 3x category.

Both of my parents ordered using their links and activated their phones as well. Their statements have not close nor have they met the spend yet.

sam
sam

@Todd ,
Were you able to get credit posted for your wife account.?

Both of your parents Credit posted?
Data point will be helpful
Thanks
Sam

Todd
Todd

Unfortunately, not yet. On Flyertalk one person has received their bonus and they bought a few days after me so it should have posted when my last statement posted on the 15th. This morning Citi is telling me that I didn’t meet the spend requirement yet, which is incorrect. I spent over 2k the first day including the purchase of the phone, which is specifically mentioned in the terms as being part of the 2k. Citi was not counting the phone as part of the 2k in their response to me. I sent another message back to them stating they are incorrect and sent them the text from the application page stating that the phone purchase is included. I’m now waiting for the response. My parents purchased their phones a couple weeks after mine so I’m sure it hasn’t been long enough yet to see theirs post.

I’ll post more when I hear back from Citi.

Bonnie
Bonnie

This question is for Todd, after “upgrade” to iPhone, does that means you renew the contract, cause my contract will end this thanksgiving.

Todd
Todd

No, you don’t renew your contract. You simply pay full price for the phone and don’t even mess with any plan details. That’s actually written in the terms of this deal that you don’t renew the contract otherwise you don’t qualify.

MarkD
MarkD

Another question for Todd…

How long did the phone take to arrive after ordering? Wondering if I should order before leaving on vacation for 5 days on Wednesday. Also, is there a gap in service availability? I thought I read somewhere that there was a time where you were without service while waiting for your new phone, but that might have been for someone porting their number to AT&T.

Todd
Todd

It takes about 5 days to get the phone. There is no gap where you are without service. When you get the phone you simply call a number and they activate the new phone and turn off the old one. Not much to it.

Mike
Mike

Just signed up for the card; but to confirm, do I need a special link or simply to buy the phone from ATT.com with my new Citi ATT Access card once it arrives?

William Charles

I’d use the special link just so that it tracks properly.

Todd
Todd

I agree with William. The link has the feel of a shopping portal tracking and within the ATT site it specifically mentions the deal you are getting on one of the pages while ordering.

MarkD
MarkD

Just want to say thanks to Todd for answering all of these questions.

William Charles

Agreed, Todd is a hero! Todd, I’ll be in touch to give you a little reward to say thanks.

Todd
Todd

Ha! Thanks guys

Back to Top ↑