American Express Customer Service
Me: 20 days? My other Amex cards arrive in 24 hours when replaced. (The American Express tag line is "the only card you'll ever need".)
Amex: The Blue card has a special chip inside that takes longer to produce.
Me: What purpose does the chip serve?
Amex: It provides you with greater security for online transactions, sir.
Me: But when I order online, I type my credit card number into a form, so how does a chip, which the computer never comes in contact with..
Amex: It's for online security. Is there anything else I can help you with today, sir?
Me: Yes. You can help me understand how a chip embedded in a credit card, a card that is not inserted into anything, makes any difference?
Amex: Sir, I've already explained that the chip is for enhanced security purposes when making purchases online. Is there anything else I can assist you with today?
Me: Is there any way to get a replacement card sooner?
Amex: We can send you a temporary card tomorrow morning.
Me: What is temporary about it?
Amex: It doesn't have the chip.
Me: Can I use it to make purchases on the Internet?
Amex: That's up to you sir.
Intrigued, I called the application line for Amex Blue. The very nice woman asked me if i had any questions about the card before applying..
Me: What's the chip for?
Amex: It's for enhanced security online.
Me: How so?
Amex: (giggling) They don't tell us that.