CarfulBuilder14 wrote:The Zync also had (and still has) a cult following, although I think that's more out of novelty than any great value it offered.
Vermonster wrote:Zync was great for people with no chance of getting any other card. It started an account with amex so you could backdate later. Absolutely no value now.
Can anyone explain just what all the appeal from the Zync was? I've heard quite a bit about it for a product that was discontinued before I even started paying attention to credit cards, but didn't know anything about it so I just thought I'd look into it a little. Am I correct it summarizing it as a charge card one tier below Green (lower AF but also lower rewards) with slightly looser underwriting criteria?
I wouldn't think Amex would really need a way to let people in the "club" that couldn't otherwise get a Green card (any charge card, for that matter, or the credit card that's rumored to be easiest to get - I think the Delta). Despite all the "exclusivity" marketing, it really isn't that hard to get in with Amex credit-wise. Loosen the criteria too much and you're getting into secured territory.
Is it just MF-types excited about "getting in" with Amex to start "building a relationship" when they should be focusing on bigger priorities?
The Zync was targeted towards the 18-34 crowd that would normally not be interested in an AMEX charge card. Zync gave the look and feel of a typical charge card with a lower annual fee ($25) and the ability to add "packs" that earned extra Membership Rewards Express points-some were free and others added cost to the $25 annual fee. The idea was to get young adults into an AMEX charge card that could later be upgraded or the cardholder would apply on their own for a more rewarding card.
As you might imagine, the product flopped, kind of how Scion was supposed to bring younger people into Toyota. The main people going for the Zync were people who were rebuilding their credit and wanted an "in" with AMEX with the hopes of future backdating once their credit was worthy.
I opened a Zync in January 2012; I was 32 at the time so I was in their market; however, my reasoning for opening Zync was purely for the backdating as my Member Since year is 1999; my Zync reports as opened 1/99. I figured for $25 it was worth it. I did not go for a revolver at the time because I also already had a Blue that I opened in 2008 (reports opened 9/99) and since AMEX was acting a little strange with AA and such at the time, I decided that a charge card would be less of a risk.
Within a year and a half of having the card they took away all the optional Zync Packs, leaving the card to earn 1 point per dollar spent. They no longer refer to the points as Membership Reward Express points, but regular MR points. I have no idea really as the points do not matter to me. I had considered closing my Zync but I like how it looks and since AMEX ceased backdating I figure when I have a need for PRG or Platinum I can see if they will allow me to upgrade my lowly Zync so I can retain the opening date.