What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

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Barefootgirl
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Barefootgirl » Sun Mar 19, 2017 1:21 pm

Does anyone here have experience with the Capital One Spark Business cards? choice of $500 cash or 50,000 points/miles for $4.5K spend.

I see the points/miles are valued at a penny each, so the cash or points appear to be equivalent except in the case they devalue in the near future?

Anyone have experience with this card? tips?

Also, as a business card, Chase doesn't include in their 5/24 policy?

Thank you.
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.

Bfwolf
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Bfwolf » Sun Mar 19, 2017 11:10 pm

Barefootgirl wrote:Does anyone here have experience with the Capital One Spark Business cards? choice of $500 cash or 50,000 points/miles for $4.5K spend.

I see the points/miles are valued at a penny each, so the cash or points appear to be equivalent except in the case they devalue in the near future?

Anyone have experience with this card? tips?

Also, as a business card, Chase doesn't include in their 5/24 policy?

Thank you.


I got this card. It was as easy as it sounds to get $500 back, and then I canceled it before the annual fee came up.

Some bloggers don't like this card because Capital One pulls your credit report from all 3 major bureaus. I don't really care about that (and am not exactly sure why they do) so it didn't deter me.

Drew777
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Drew777 » Mon Mar 20, 2017 5:39 am

Barefootgirl wrote:Does anyone here have experience with the Capital One Spark Business cards? choice of $500 cash or 50,000 points/miles for $4.5K spend.

I see the points/miles are valued at a penny each, so the cash or points appear to be equivalent except in the case they devalue in the near future?

Anyone have experience with this card? tips?

Also, as a business card, Chase doesn't include in their 5/24 policy?

Thank you.


Most business cards don't count towards 5/24, but Capital One business cards do because they report them on your personal credit report.

Barefootgirl
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Barefootgirl » Mon Mar 20, 2017 1:24 pm

Most business cards don't count towards 5/24, but Capital One business cards do because they report them on your personal credit report.

Thank you Drew, seems like every general rule in this hobby, has an exception.....have a great day.
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.

HoosierJim
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by HoosierJim » Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:47 pm

Just noticed that Bank of America card entitles free admission to many museums on the first full weekend of the month

Bank of America - Museums on Us 2017 participant roster
Free general admission is limited to the cardholder at participating institution. Museum hours and participation varies. Excludes special exhibitions, ticketed shows and fundraising events. Not to be combined with other offers.


Chicago:
Art Institute of Chicago
Chicago History Museum
Museum of Contemporary Art
National Veterans Art Museum
Shedd Aquarium
The DuSable Museum of African American History
The National Hellenic Museum

New York:
American Museum of Natural History
Brooklyn Historical Society
Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
Museum of Arts and Design
Museum of the Moving Image
Staten Island Zoological Society
The Metropolitan Museum of Art - the Met Breuer
The Metropolitan Museum of Art - the Met Cloisters
The Metropolitan Museum of Art - the Met Fifth Avenue

[over-large images of museum listings removed and replaced with text - moderator prudent]

Drew777
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Drew777 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:54 am

Barefootgirl wrote:Most business cards don't count towards 5/24, but Capital One business cards do because they report them on your personal credit report.

Thank you Drew, seems like every general rule in this hobby, has an exception.....have a great day.


Yep! The only thing set in stone is nothing is set in stone.

guitarguy
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by guitarguy » Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:28 am

Drew777 wrote:
Barefootgirl wrote:Most business cards don't count towards 5/24, but Capital One business cards do because they report them on your personal credit report.

Thank you Drew, seems like every general rule in this hobby, has an exception.....have a great day.


Yep! The only thing set in stone is nothing is set in stone.


First of all it's great to see this thread I started so long ago appearing to be one of the most popular on BH's! Crazy!

Anyhow I have rocked out the Amex delta gold and platinum business cards this year to avoid 5/24. I have exactly 5 that Chase will recognize for 5/24.

Question for something I'm currently wondering is, say I was approved and opened up a card on month/day/2015. On month/day/2017, will that card *immediately* open me up another slot with Chase, or does it take time to "fall off"? Wait a couple weeks? Is it based on when the card was activated? :confused

Very curious how this works. I will have a big expense (wife's tuition bill) coming up on month/day/2015 plus 2 years and about 1 month. So I'd like to snap up a new card right away when that one falls off so that I can pay this bill to meet minimum spend.

Barefootgirl
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Barefootgirl » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:01 am

Anyhow I have rocked out the Amex delta gold and platinum business cards this year to avoid 5/24.


Hi guitarguy - yes, great thread.

Are you saying that you know for certain that these two don't count?

I am keeping a list of ones to apply for that don't count (currently) - some of the references i have found online are out of date.

Thanks
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.

guitarguy
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by guitarguy » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:11 am

Barefootgirl wrote:
Anyhow I have rocked out the Amex delta gold and platinum business cards this year to avoid 5/24.


Hi guitarguy - yes, great thread.

Are you saying that you know for certain that these two don't count?

I am keeping a list of ones to apply for that don't count (currently) - some of the references i have found online are out of date.

Thanks


Everything I've found/read (which has been a fair amount) says that Amex business cards don't post to your personal credit report. I'm due to run my annual reports in May so I'll know for sure then.

giesen5
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by giesen5 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:33 am

Reached a milestone today: One Million miles. Took a little over a year, wife and I have opened 25 cards in 14 months. Have used about 500,000 of them, holding the rest for a trip next year.

We are going to take it easier this year, recently our applications have not been immediately approved, I feel we are close to running up on too much action in a short period of time.

However, I have moved my credit card addiction to bank bonuses. In line to make $1200 so far this year.
Last edited by giesen5 on Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

ChiefIlliniwek
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by ChiefIlliniwek » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:35 am

guitarguy wrote:
Barefootgirl wrote:
Anyhow I have rocked out the Amex delta gold and platinum business cards this year to avoid 5/24.


Hi guitarguy - yes, great thread.

Are you saying that you know for certain that these two don't count?

I am keeping a list of ones to apply for that don't count (currently) - some of the references i have found online are out of date.

Thanks


Everything I've found/read (which has been a fair amount) says that Amex business cards don't post to your personal credit report. I'm due to run my annual reports in May so I'll know for sure then.


I have the SPG business AMEX and it never reported to my report, so it won't count against 5/24

guitarguy
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by guitarguy » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:51 am

giesen5 wrote:Reached a milestone today: One Million miles. Took a little over a year, wife and I have opened 25 cards in 14 months. Have used about 500,000 of them, holding the rest for a trip next year.

We are going to take it easier this year, recently our applications have not been immediately approved, I feel we are close to running up on too much action in a short period of time.

However, I have moved my credit card addiction to bank bonuses. In line to make $1200 so far this year.


How are you keeping up with meeting all those minimum spends? Did you just find a way to MS like crazy?

Feel free to PM me if you don't want to share.

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VictoriaF
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by VictoriaF » Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:42 am

The latest ban on carrying electronics into planes originating from several Middle Eastern airports may have interesting consequences for miles-and-points strategies. Flyers used to carrying their laptops into Business and First cabins will be choosing more expensive airlines and seeking to accumulate more reward miles. Flyers not using electronics on board will enjoy new bargains from low-cost Middle Eastern carriers and thus see less value in accumulating rewards.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

giesen5
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by giesen5 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:47 pm

This may be too much information, but below is what we have done, strategy-wise, since January 2016. (Anyone know how to make the formatting work? It looks great before I submit....)

I have done very little MSing. Our spend on credit cards, as a family, is usually around $3-5K/mo. I tried to spread the apps around so that I could make the spend, a couple of times it was close. Recently I have paid a few bills through Plastiq which charges a 2.5% fee. Not the best way to pay bills, but it has been our mortgage which cannot be paid via credit card. I am taking a hit on that one, charging it on my Blue for Business which will pay out 2% at the end of the year - so losing .5%. I am working on the SPG business account right now which is 5k/3mo and then another 3k/3mo to get the 35,000 points.


Me: 14 cards
Chase Sapphire Jan 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase Freedom March 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Chase United April 16 2k/3mo 50,000
AmEx Hilton May 16 1k/3mo 75,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Capital One June 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Barclay Arrival July 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska business Oct 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Citi Hilton Oct 16 2k/3mo 75,000
AmEx ED Preferred Oct 16 1k/3mo 15,000
Amex SPG Oct 16 3k/3mo 25,000
Alaska business Jan 17 1k/3mo 30,000
Avianca Feb 17 none 60,000
Amex SPG Biz March 17 5k/3mo 35,000


Wife: 11 cards
Chase Sapphire March 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase United May 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,250
Barclay Arrival May 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Chase IHG July 16 1k/3mo 60,000
Chase British Air July 16 3k/3mo 50,000
Capital One Sept 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska Dec 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Amex SPG business Jan 17 5k/3mo 25,000
Amex Blue for Biz Feb 17 none 10,000
Alaska business March 17 1k/3mo 30,000

Mudpuppy
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Mudpuppy » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:19 pm

VictoriaF wrote:The latest ban on carrying electronics into planes originating from several Middle Eastern airports may have interesting consequences for miles-and-points strategies. Flyers used to carrying their laptops into Business and First cabins will be choosing more expensive airlines and seeking to accumulate more reward miles. Flyers not using electronics on board will enjoy new bargains from low-cost Middle Eastern carriers and thus see less value in accumulating rewards.

I have to say that's a pretty perplexing ban from a technological or security perspective. From a travel perspective, it affects only a portion of the world's travel, so I'm not sure it will sway reward mile habits so dramatically.

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VictoriaF
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by VictoriaF » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:33 pm

Mudpuppy wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:The latest ban on carrying electronics into planes originating from several Middle Eastern airports may have interesting consequences for miles-and-points strategies. Flyers used to carrying their laptops into Business and First cabins will be choosing more expensive airlines and seeking to accumulate more reward miles. Flyers not using electronics on board will enjoy new bargains from low-cost Middle Eastern carriers and thus see less value in accumulating rewards.

I have to say that's a pretty perplexing ban from a technological or security perspective. From a travel perspective, it affects only a portion of the world's travel, so I'm not sure it will sway reward mile habits so dramatically.


My initial thought was that this ban would disadvantage low-cost Middle Eastern airlines Qatar Airways, UAE’s Etihad Airways, and Emirates, which provide relatively inexpensive connections for flights between the U.S. and Asia. I then checked out several credit card/travel blogs, and they have confirmed my initial reaction and expanded it. The top three U.S. airlines United, American, and Delta do not fly to the listed airports and thus gain an immediate advantage.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

michaeljc70
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by michaeljc70 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:19 pm

I received an email today for 50k miles for an Amex Gold Premier Reward. Annual fee waived first year. It seems like the public reward is 25k. I looked at what you can use the miles for. It seems like airlines I don't typically fly (I prefer American/United). There is also a $100 airline credit per year. Thoughts?

I've never had this card so it is appealing in that I feel I keep doing the same offers over and over and expect they will shut me out soon.

Markr867
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Markr867 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:46 pm

michaeljc70 wrote:I received an email today for 50k miles for an Amex Gold Premier Reward. Annual fee waived first year. It seems like the public reward is 25k. I looked at what you can use the miles for. It seems like airlines I don't typically fly (I prefer American/United). There is also a $100 airline credit per year. Thoughts?

I've never had this card so it is appealing in that I feel I keep doing the same offers over and over and expect they will shut me out soon.


Definitely do it for at least the first year. It is a great card and 50k is a great bonus (I think the highest ever was 75k but it doesn't come around often). The 50k can transfer to airlines, but you can also use it for $500 cash back. The $100 airline credit can be used for American/United and can be used each calendar year. So if you sign up now, you can take advantage of the credit in 2017 and 2018 all for no annual fee. Once the annual fee hits, just call within 30 days to cancel and you'll get the full AF refunded.

I just closed my PRG card in February and I was sad to see it go, but the fee wasn't worth it since I'm putting most of my spend on other cards with better rewards.

michaeljc70
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by michaeljc70 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:48 pm

Markr867 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:I received an email today for 50k miles for an Amex Gold Premier Reward. Annual fee waived first year. It seems like the public reward is 25k. I looked at what you can use the miles for. It seems like airlines I don't typically fly (I prefer American/United). There is also a $100 airline credit per year. Thoughts?

I've never had this card so it is appealing in that I feel I keep doing the same offers over and over and expect they will shut me out soon.


Definitely do it for at least the first year. It is a great card and 50k is a great bonus (I think the highest ever was 75k but it doesn't come around often). The 50k can transfer to airlines, but you can also use it for $500 cash back. The $100 airline credit can be used for American/United and can be used each calendar year. So if you sign up now, you can take advantage of the credit in 2017 and 2018 all for no annual fee. Once the annual fee hits, just call within 30 days to cancel and you'll get the full AF refunded.

I just closed my PRG card in February and I was sad to see it go, but the fee wasn't worth it since I'm putting most of my spend on other cards with better rewards.


What airlines can you transfer points to? I tried to look online, but it wants me to login to see details.

Markr867
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Markr867 » Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:53 pm

michaeljc70 wrote:
Markr867 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:I received an email today for 50k miles for an Amex Gold Premier Reward. Annual fee waived first year. It seems like the public reward is 25k. I looked at what you can use the miles for. It seems like airlines I don't typically fly (I prefer American/United). There is also a $100 airline credit per year. Thoughts?

I've never had this card so it is appealing in that I feel I keep doing the same offers over and over and expect they will shut me out soon.


Definitely do it for at least the first year. It is a great card and 50k is a great bonus (I think the highest ever was 75k but it doesn't come around often). The 50k can transfer to airlines, but you can also use it for $500 cash back. The $100 airline credit can be used for American/United and can be used each calendar year. So if you sign up now, you can take advantage of the credit in 2017 and 2018 all for no annual fee. Once the annual fee hits, just call within 30 days to cancel and you'll get the full AF refunded.

I just closed my PRG card in February and I was sad to see it go, but the fee wasn't worth it since I'm putting most of my spend on other cards with better rewards.


What airlines can you transfer points to? I tried to look online, but it wants me to login to see details.


The card earns Membership Rewards (MRs) so you can transfer them to any AMEX transfer partners. Here's a good article: http://millionmilesecrets.com/2017/01/0 ... -partners/

BeneIRA
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by BeneIRA » Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:57 pm

michaeljc70 wrote:I received an email today for 50k miles for an Amex Gold Premier Reward. Annual fee waived first year. It seems like the public reward is 25k. I looked at what you can use the miles for. It seems like airlines I don't typically fly (I prefer American/United). There is also a $100 airline credit per year. Thoughts?

I've never had this card so it is appealing in that I feel I keep doing the same offers over and over and expect they will shut me out soon.


Worth it, but this offer has been available for a while if you go to American Express in Incognito browser mode. It can be used to top off Delta Skymiles if you need to. You can also use the points to book through Amex Travel. It's worth it. Allegedly, the $100 credit can be used for some airline gift cards even though those are supposed to be excluded. Check out Flyertalk for the latest on data points regarding the credit.

travellight
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by travellight » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:27 pm

Barefootgirl wrote:Most business cards don't count towards 5/24, but Capital One business cards do because they report them on your personal credit report.

Thank you Drew, seems like every general rule in this hobby, has an exception.....have a great day.


Drew is like having our own Points Guy.

Barefootgirl
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Barefootgirl » Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:50 pm

Drew is like having our own Points Guy.


I couldn't have stated it any better myself. Drew is a gem.
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.

Drew777
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Drew777 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 7:44 am

Barefootgirl wrote:
Drew is like having our own Points Guy.


I couldn't have stated it any better myself. Drew is a gem.


I don't know about all that, but thanks lol.

Drew777
Posts: 594
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Drew777 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 7:54 am

michaeljc70 wrote:
Markr867 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:I received an email today for 50k miles for an Amex Gold Premier Reward. Annual fee waived first year. It seems like the public reward is 25k. I looked at what you can use the miles for. It seems like airlines I don't typically fly (I prefer American/United). There is also a $100 airline credit per year. Thoughts?

I've never had this card so it is appealing in that I feel I keep doing the same offers over and over and expect they will shut me out soon.


Definitely do it for at least the first year. It is a great card and 50k is a great bonus (I think the highest ever was 75k but it doesn't come around often). The 50k can transfer to airlines, but you can also use it for $500 cash back. The $100 airline credit can be used for American/United and can be used each calendar year. So if you sign up now, you can take advantage of the credit in 2017 and 2018 all for no annual fee. Once the annual fee hits, just call within 30 days to cancel and you'll get the full AF refunded.

I just closed my PRG card in February and I was sad to see it go, but the fee wasn't worth it since I'm putting most of my spend on other cards with better rewards.


What airlines can you transfer points to? I tried to look online, but it wants me to login to see details.


Aeromexico (1000:1600)
Air Canada
ANA
Alitalia
British Airways (250:200)
Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific)
Delta
El Al (1000:20)
Emirates
Etihad
Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)
Hawaiian
Iberia (250:200)
JetBlue (250:200)
Singapore
Virgin America (200:100)
Virgin Atlantic

You can book United award flights using any Star Alliance partner program (Air Canada, ANA, Singapore) and American flights with any Oneworld partner program (British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Iberia). However, all of the programs are different so you'd need to understand how each works.

michaeljc70
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:54 am

Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Markr867 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:I received an email today for 50k miles for an Amex Gold Premier Reward. Annual fee waived first year. It seems like the public reward is 25k. I looked at what you can use the miles for. It seems like airlines I don't typically fly (I prefer American/United). There is also a $100 airline credit per year. Thoughts?

I've never had this card so it is appealing in that I feel I keep doing the same offers over and over and expect they will shut me out soon.


Definitely do it for at least the first year. It is a great card and 50k is a great bonus (I think the highest ever was 75k but it doesn't come around often). The 50k can transfer to airlines, but you can also use it for $500 cash back. The $100 airline credit can be used for American/United and can be used each calendar year. So if you sign up now, you can take advantage of the credit in 2017 and 2018 all for no annual fee. Once the annual fee hits, just call within 30 days to cancel and you'll get the full AF refunded.

I just closed my PRG card in February and I was sad to see it go, but the fee wasn't worth it since I'm putting most of my spend on other cards with better rewards.


What airlines can you transfer points to? I tried to look online, but it wants me to login to see details.


Aeromexico (1000:1600)
Air Canada
ANA
Alitalia
British Airways (250:200)
Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific)
Delta
El Al (1000:20)
Emirates
Etihad
Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)
Hawaiian
Iberia (250:200)
JetBlue (250:200)
Singapore
Virgin America (200:100)
Virgin Atlantic

You can book United award flights using any Star Alliance partner program (Air Canada, ANA, Singapore) and American flights with any Oneworld partner program (British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Iberia). However, all of the programs are different so you'd need to understand how each works.


Thanks for that information. I think Iwill probably be better off using my last of 24/5 to get the United Mileage Plus card. This way they can be used with my other United miles rather than going through a partner. If they reject me for that maybe I'll go for the Amex. I'm surprised how many times they've given me the AA card. It wouldn't surprise me if they make the 24/5 rule more strict.

Bfwolf
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Bfwolf » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:07 am

giesen5 wrote:Me: 14 cards
Chase Sapphire Jan 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase Freedom March 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Chase United April 16 2k/3mo 50,000
AmEx Hilton May 16 1k/3mo 75,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Capital One June 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Barclay Arrival July 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska business Oct 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Citi Hilton Oct 16 2k/3mo 75,000
AmEx ED Preferred Oct 16 1k/3mo 15,000
Amex SPG Oct 16 3k/3mo 25,000
Alaska business Jan 17 1k/3mo 30,000
Avianca Feb 17 none 60,000
Amex SPG Biz March 17 5k/3mo 35,000


Wife: 11 cards
Chase Sapphire March 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase United May 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,250
Barclay Arrival May 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Chase IHG July 16 1k/3mo 60,000
Chase British Air July 16 3k/3mo 50,000
Capital One Sept 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska Dec 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Amex SPG business Jan 17 5k/3mo 25,000
Amex Blue for Biz Feb 17 none 10,000
Alaska business March 17 1k/3mo 30,000


Nice list, you guys have been hitting it hard. I see no reason for you to slow down....so you're a little slower getting approved or may have to call recon--big deal! I've been outright turned down for a couple of cards. That seems scary in theory but after it's happened once you realize it's not a commentary on your self-worth as a person and you just move on to the next application.

A few thoughts I had reading this:

1) It's curious to me that your wife got the IHG card but you didn't. The killer benefit is the anniversary free night, and that benefit is surely worth way more if you have 2 cards i.e. 2 free nights so you can actually make a trip out of it. Maybe wait until July and then apply for your own so that your anniversary nights sync up?

2) There's a Hyatt card that gives you 2 free nights at any Hyatt and a Hilton card that gives you 2 free weekend nights (Fr, Sa, Su only) at any Hilton. With both of you applying, you can put together an awesome week-long vacation somewhere and stay at high end hotels for free. IMO, there's a lot more value in that Citi Hilton card than the ones you got with the 75K miles bonuses. They do require you to use the free nights within a year though.

3) Barclays Arrival+ is churnable but my understanding is you can't have more than one of them at a time and it helps if you haven't had one super recently. That's a good reminder to me to cancel the one I got 4 or 5 months ago so I can get another one in a few months.

4) You may want to look into the cards that collect Amex points. They're not as good as Chase URs, but you can find good uses for them. I've had good success transferring to Air Canada's Aeroplan program and then using 55K for Star Alliance business class travel to Europe. You just have to avoid certain airlines (Lufthansa is biggest watch out) that will hit you with fuel surcharges through Aeroplan. United, Swiss, Austrian, SAS are all OK though.

giesen5
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:44 pm
Location: Bellingham, WA

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by giesen5 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:16 am

Thanks for the tips, really appreciate it. The other card that I am going to close soon are the Alaska cards. Want to reapply for those. We are close to Seattle, so I am focusing on building that arsenal of points.

1. I can't get IHG, I am way over 5/24. I wish I could go back in time and start again, I really did not know what I was doing when I started.

2. We are not stay in hotel types, never have been. Have two teenagers, we still camp a lot. Also use a lot of airbnb. So hotel cards are not on my radar, at least not for now.

3. Totally agree on the BC Arrival. Just canceled both of ours a month ago, will reapply in 5 months or so. Same with the Capital One.

4. I am looking at more Amex cards, specifically the charge cards. I am at 4 Amex credit cards, conflicting info out there on whether the limit is 4 or 5. I really wanted to get my wife the SPG personal card, but she is within the 2/90 rule and will not be free of that by April 5.

Drew777
Posts: 594
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Drew777 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:24 am

michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Markr867 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:I received an email today for 50k miles for an Amex Gold Premier Reward. Annual fee waived first year. It seems like the public reward is 25k. I looked at what you can use the miles for. It seems like airlines I don't typically fly (I prefer American/United). There is also a $100 airline credit per year. Thoughts?

I've never had this card so it is appealing in that I feel I keep doing the same offers over and over and expect they will shut me out soon.


Definitely do it for at least the first year. It is a great card and 50k is a great bonus (I think the highest ever was 75k but it doesn't come around often). The 50k can transfer to airlines, but you can also use it for $500 cash back. The $100 airline credit can be used for American/United and can be used each calendar year. So if you sign up now, you can take advantage of the credit in 2017 and 2018 all for no annual fee. Once the annual fee hits, just call within 30 days to cancel and you'll get the full AF refunded.

I just closed my PRG card in February and I was sad to see it go, but the fee wasn't worth it since I'm putting most of my spend on other cards with better rewards.


What airlines can you transfer points to? I tried to look online, but it wants me to login to see details.


Aeromexico (1000:1600)
Air Canada
ANA
Alitalia
British Airways (250:200)
Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific)
Delta
El Al (1000:20)
Emirates
Etihad
Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)
Hawaiian
Iberia (250:200)
JetBlue (250:200)
Singapore
Virgin America (200:100)
Virgin Atlantic

You can book United award flights using any Star Alliance partner program (Air Canada, ANA, Singapore) and American flights with any Oneworld partner program (British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Iberia). However, all of the programs are different so you'd need to understand how each works.


Thanks for that information. I think Iwill probably be better off using my last of 24/5 to get the United Mileage Plus card. This way they can be used with my other United miles rather than going through a partner. If they reject me for that maybe I'll go for the Amex. I'm surprised how many times they've given me the AA card. It wouldn't surprise me if they make the 24/5 rule more strict.


I'd agree, I think you're better off getting the United card while you can. FYI there's a targeted offer for 70k + $50 through April 15. It seems that a lot of people are targeted though.

Try this link: https://www.united.com/web/en-US/apps/s ... thatsaplus

Citi gives out AA cards like crazy. Even with their new 24 month rule they keep putting out links without the 24 month language. They also match to the targeted 60k offer if you send them a secure message.

Drew777
Posts: 594
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Drew777 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:28 am

giesen5 wrote:Thanks for the tips, really appreciate it. The other card that I am going to close soon are the Alaska cards. Want to reapply for those. We are close to Seattle, so I am focusing on building that arsenal of points.

1. I can't get IHG, I am way over 5/24. I wish I could go back in time and start again, I really did not know what I was doing when I started.

2. We are not stay in hotel types, never have been. Have two teenagers, we still camp a lot. Also use a lot of airbnb. So hotel cards are not on my radar, at least not for now.

3. Totally agree on the BC Arrival. Just canceled both of ours a month ago, will reapply in 5 months or so. Same with the Capital One.

4. I am looking at more Amex cards, specifically the charge cards. I am at 4 Amex credit cards, conflicting info out there on whether the limit is 4 or 5. I really wanted to get my wife the SPG personal card, but she is within the 2/90 rule and will not be free of that by April 5.


FYI the 5/24 rule doesn't apply to the IHG card. As far as Amex I believe the limit is only 5 IF one of them is a Hilton card for some reason. Although I do know one person who has 6 somehow, so who knows. What is the 2/90 rule? I'm not aware of any such rule.

dots45
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2016 2:21 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by dots45 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:37 am

The 5/24 rule does not apply to the IHG card. Other ones that it doesn't apply to are Hyatt, Disney, AARP, Amazon, British Airways, and a couple others.

As far as AMEX goes, I'm pretty sure the maximum is 4 credit cards. However, this doesn't include charge cards. So if you are looking at applying for a charge card, I think you would be OK.

One thing to note about capital one is that they can be tough to be approved for, and they will pull all three bureaus. I like to spread my credit enquires around and Cap One will hit all three.

giesen5
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:44 pm
Location: Bellingham, WA

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by giesen5 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:40 am

Drew777 wrote:
giesen5 wrote:Thanks for the tips, really appreciate it. The other card that I am going to close soon are the Alaska cards. Want to reapply for those. We are close to Seattle, so I am focusing on building that arsenal of points.

1. I can't get IHG, I am way over 5/24. I wish I could go back in time and start again, I really did not know what I was doing when I started.

2. We are not stay in hotel types, never have been. Have two teenagers, we still camp a lot. Also use a lot of airbnb. So hotel cards are not on my radar, at least not for now.

3. Totally agree on the BC Arrival. Just canceled both of ours a month ago, will reapply in 5 months or so. Same with the Capital One.

4. I am looking at more Amex cards, specifically the charge cards. I am at 4 Amex credit cards, conflicting info out there on whether the limit is 4 or 5. I really wanted to get my wife the SPG personal card, but she is within the 2/90 rule and will not be free of that by April 5.


FYI the 5/24 rule doesn't apply to the IHG card. As far as Amex I believe the limit is only 5 IF one of them is a Hilton card for some reason. Although I do know one person who has 6 somehow, so who knows. What is the 2/90 rule? I'm not aware of any such rule.


Damn, was unaware that IHG did not fall under 5/24, sounds like a good idea to apply in July. The 2/90 rule is you can only apply for 2 amex CREDIT cards in 90 days. I had read about this and then it happened to me a couple of months ago. I applied within the 90 days for a third card. I did not get instantly approved and never received anything in an email. It was like I never even applied. I finally called in and the rep told me it was auto denied, they did not even pull credit because they would not even allow me to apply.

michaeljc70
Posts: 1736
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:41 am

Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Markr867 wrote:
Definitely do it for at least the first year. It is a great card and 50k is a great bonus (I think the highest ever was 75k but it doesn't come around often). The 50k can transfer to airlines, but you can also use it for $500 cash back. The $100 airline credit can be used for American/United and can be used each calendar year. So if you sign up now, you can take advantage of the credit in 2017 and 2018 all for no annual fee. Once the annual fee hits, just call within 30 days to cancel and you'll get the full AF refunded.

I just closed my PRG card in February and I was sad to see it go, but the fee wasn't worth it since I'm putting most of my spend on other cards with better rewards.


What airlines can you transfer points to? I tried to look online, but it wants me to login to see details.


Aeromexico (1000:1600)
Air Canada
ANA
Alitalia
British Airways (250:200)
Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific)
Delta
El Al (1000:20)
Emirates
Etihad
Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)
Hawaiian
Iberia (250:200)
JetBlue (250:200)
Singapore
Virgin America (200:100)
Virgin Atlantic

You can book United award flights using any Star Alliance partner program (Air Canada, ANA, Singapore) and American flights with any Oneworld partner program (British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Iberia). However, all of the programs are different so you'd need to understand how each works.


Thanks for that information. I think Iwill probably be better off using my last of 24/5 to get the United Mileage Plus card. This way they can be used with my other United miles rather than going through a partner. If they reject me for that maybe I'll go for the Amex. I'm surprised how many times they've given me the AA card. It wouldn't surprise me if they make the 24/5 rule more strict.


I'd agree, I think you're better off getting the United card while you can. FYI there's a targeted offer for 70k + $50 through April 15. It seems that a lot of people are targeted though.

Try this link: https://www.united.com/web/en-US/apps/s ... thatsaplus

Citi gives out AA cards like crazy. Even with their new 24 month rule they keep putting out links without the 24 month language. They also match to the targeted 60k offer if you send them a secure message.



Thanks. I see the 70k offer. It does say "This product is available to you if you do not have this card and have not received a new Cardmember bonus for this card in the past 24 months."

I am not sure what that means exactly. I had the card in 2015. I opened it in February. Is it the date the bonus posted or the date you opened the account?

I can wait a month or so (hopefully they will still offer 70k). I am currently doing the $3k spend for the AA card.

Edit: I looked on UAL's site and my 50k bonus posted on 4/6/2015. Looks like I have to wait a few weeks.
Edit 2: It looks like this offer doesn't waive the annual fee for the first year. Not that it is a big deal, but it is $95. $95 for an extra $20k miles is worth it.

Drew777
Posts: 594
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Drew777 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:51 am

michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
What airlines can you transfer points to? I tried to look online, but it wants me to login to see details.


Aeromexico (1000:1600)
Air Canada
ANA
Alitalia
British Airways (250:200)
Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific)
Delta
El Al (1000:20)
Emirates
Etihad
Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)
Hawaiian
Iberia (250:200)
JetBlue (250:200)
Singapore
Virgin America (200:100)
Virgin Atlantic

You can book United award flights using any Star Alliance partner program (Air Canada, ANA, Singapore) and American flights with any Oneworld partner program (British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Iberia). However, all of the programs are different so you'd need to understand how each works.


Thanks for that information. I think Iwill probably be better off using my last of 24/5 to get the United Mileage Plus card. This way they can be used with my other United miles rather than going through a partner. If they reject me for that maybe I'll go for the Amex. I'm surprised how many times they've given me the AA card. It wouldn't surprise me if they make the 24/5 rule more strict.


I'd agree, I think you're better off getting the United card while you can. FYI there's a targeted offer for 70k + $50 through April 15. It seems that a lot of people are targeted though.

Try this link: https://www.united.com/web/en-US/apps/s ... thatsaplus

Citi gives out AA cards like crazy. Even with their new 24 month rule they keep putting out links without the 24 month language. They also match to the targeted 60k offer if you send them a secure message.



Thanks. I see the 70k offer. It does say "This product is available to you if you do not have this card and have not received a new Cardmember bonus for this card in the past 24 months."

I am not sure what that means exactly. I had the card in 2015. I opened it in February. Is it the date the bonus posted or the date you opened the account?

I can wait a month or so (hopefully they will still offer 70k). I am currently doing the $3k spend for the AA card.

Edit: I looked on UAL's site and my 50k bonus posted on 4/6/2015. Looks like I have to wait a few weeks.
Edit 2: It looks like this offer doesn't waive the annual fee for the first year. Not that it is a big deal, but it is $95. $95 for an extra $20k miles is worth it.


Yeah, you need to wait two years from when you received the bonus. You should have time before the offer expires though. You're right, it doesn't waive the annual fee, but personally I think $95 for an extra 20,000 miles is a pretty good deal. There is an offer with a $50 statement credit, but looks like you were targeted for the other offer.

michaeljc70
Posts: 1736
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:05 pm

Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
Aeromexico (1000:1600)
Air Canada
ANA
Alitalia
British Airways (250:200)
Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific)
Delta
El Al (1000:20)
Emirates
Etihad
Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)
Hawaiian
Iberia (250:200)
JetBlue (250:200)
Singapore
Virgin America (200:100)
Virgin Atlantic

You can book United award flights using any Star Alliance partner program (Air Canada, ANA, Singapore) and American flights with any Oneworld partner program (British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Iberia). However, all of the programs are different so you'd need to understand how each works.


Thanks for that information. I think Iwill probably be better off using my last of 24/5 to get the United Mileage Plus card. This way they can be used with my other United miles rather than going through a partner. If they reject me for that maybe I'll go for the Amex. I'm surprised how many times they've given me the AA card. It wouldn't surprise me if they make the 24/5 rule more strict.


I'd agree, I think you're better off getting the United card while you can. FYI there's a targeted offer for 70k + $50 through April 15. It seems that a lot of people are targeted though.

Try this link: https://www.united.com/web/en-US/apps/s ... thatsaplus

Citi gives out AA cards like crazy. Even with their new 24 month rule they keep putting out links without the 24 month language. They also match to the targeted 60k offer if you send them a secure message.



Thanks. I see the 70k offer. It does say "This product is available to you if you do not have this card and have not received a new Cardmember bonus for this card in the past 24 months."

I am not sure what that means exactly. I had the card in 2015. I opened it in February. Is it the date the bonus posted or the date you opened the account?

I can wait a month or so (hopefully they will still offer 70k). I am currently doing the $3k spend for the AA card.

Edit: I looked on UAL's site and my 50k bonus posted on 4/6/2015. Looks like I have to wait a few weeks.
Edit 2: It looks like this offer doesn't waive the annual fee for the first year. Not that it is a big deal, but it is $95. $95 for an extra $20k miles is worth it.


Yeah, you need to wait two years from when you received the bonus. You should have time before the offer expires though. You're right, it doesn't waive the annual fee, but personally I think $95 for an extra 20,000 miles is a pretty good deal. There is an offer with a $50 statement credit, but looks like you were targeted for the other offer.


Any idea if they use day to day or month to month? Should I wait until May just to be safe?

Drew777
Posts: 594
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Drew777 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:20 pm

michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Thanks for that information. I think Iwill probably be better off using my last of 24/5 to get the United Mileage Plus card. This way they can be used with my other United miles rather than going through a partner. If they reject me for that maybe I'll go for the Amex. I'm surprised how many times they've given me the AA card. It wouldn't surprise me if they make the 24/5 rule more strict.


I'd agree, I think you're better off getting the United card while you can. FYI there's a targeted offer for 70k + $50 through April 15. It seems that a lot of people are targeted though.

Try this link: https://www.united.com/web/en-US/apps/s ... thatsaplus

Citi gives out AA cards like crazy. Even with their new 24 month rule they keep putting out links without the 24 month language. They also match to the targeted 60k offer if you send them a secure message.



Thanks. I see the 70k offer. It does say "This product is available to you if you do not have this card and have not received a new Cardmember bonus for this card in the past 24 months."

I am not sure what that means exactly. I had the card in 2015. I opened it in February. Is it the date the bonus posted or the date you opened the account?

I can wait a month or so (hopefully they will still offer 70k). I am currently doing the $3k spend for the AA card.

Edit: I looked on UAL's site and my 50k bonus posted on 4/6/2015. Looks like I have to wait a few weeks.
Edit 2: It looks like this offer doesn't waive the annual fee for the first year. Not that it is a big deal, but it is $95. $95 for an extra $20k miles is worth it.


Yeah, you need to wait two years from when you received the bonus. You should have time before the offer expires though. You're right, it doesn't waive the annual fee, but personally I think $95 for an extra 20,000 miles is a pretty good deal. There is an offer with a $50 statement credit, but looks like you were targeted for the other offer.


Any idea if they use day to day or month to month? Should I wait until May just to be safe?


Should be to the day. The 70k offer expires April 15, so I would apply before then.

michaeljc70
Posts: 1736
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:27 pm

Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:
Drew777 wrote:
I'd agree, I think you're better off getting the United card while you can. FYI there's a targeted offer for 70k + $50 through April 15. It seems that a lot of people are targeted though.

Try this link: https://www.united.com/web/en-US/apps/s ... thatsaplus

Citi gives out AA cards like crazy. Even with their new 24 month rule they keep putting out links without the 24 month language. They also match to the targeted 60k offer if you send them a secure message.



Thanks. I see the 70k offer. It does say "This product is available to you if you do not have this card and have not received a new Cardmember bonus for this card in the past 24 months."

I am not sure what that means exactly. I had the card in 2015. I opened it in February. Is it the date the bonus posted or the date you opened the account?

I can wait a month or so (hopefully they will still offer 70k). I am currently doing the $3k spend for the AA card.

Edit: I looked on UAL's site and my 50k bonus posted on 4/6/2015. Looks like I have to wait a few weeks.
Edit 2: It looks like this offer doesn't waive the annual fee for the first year. Not that it is a big deal, but it is $95. $95 for an extra $20k miles is worth it.


Yeah, you need to wait two years from when you received the bonus. You should have time before the offer expires though. You're right, it doesn't waive the annual fee, but personally I think $95 for an extra 20,000 miles is a pretty good deal. There is an offer with a $50 statement credit, but looks like you were targeted for the other offer.


Any idea if they use day to day or month to month? Should I wait until May just to be safe?


Should be to the day. The 70k offer expires April 15, so I would apply before then.


Okay. Thanks

J_Markov
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Mar 04, 2010 4:46 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by J_Markov » Wed Mar 22, 2017 1:45 pm

giesen5 wrote:This may be too much information, but below is what we have done, strategy-wise, since January 2016. (Anyone know how to make the formatting work? It looks great before I submit....)

I have done very little MSing. Our spend on credit cards, as a family, is usually around $3-5K/mo. I tried to spread the apps around so that I could make the spend, a couple of times it was close. Recently I have paid a few bills through Plastiq which charges a 2.5% fee. Not the best way to pay bills, but it has been our mortgage which cannot be paid via credit card. I am taking a hit on that one, charging it on my Blue for Business which will pay out 2% at the end of the year - so losing .5%. I am working on the SPG business account right now which is 5k/3mo and then another 3k/3mo to get the 35,000 points.


Me: 14 cards
Chase Sapphire Jan 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase Freedom March 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Chase United April 16 2k/3mo 50,000
AmEx Hilton May 16 1k/3mo 75,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Capital One June 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Barclay Arrival July 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska business Oct 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Citi Hilton Oct 16 2k/3mo 75,000
AmEx ED Preferred Oct 16 1k/3mo 15,000
Amex SPG Oct 16 3k/3mo 25,000
Alaska business Jan 17 1k/3mo 30,000
Avianca Feb 17 none 60,000
Amex SPG Biz March 17 5k/3mo 35,000


Wife: 11 cards
Chase Sapphire March 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase United May 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,250
Barclay Arrival May 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Chase IHG July 16 1k/3mo 60,000
Chase British Air July 16 3k/3mo 50,000
Capital One Sept 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska Dec 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Amex SPG business Jan 17 5k/3mo 25,000
Amex Blue for Biz Feb 17 none 10,000
Alaska business March 17 1k/3mo 30,000


With this strategy it seems you're opening a tons of cards. I'm fairly new to this and just opened this month both the preferred and reserve chase saphire (gonnat 150k points in total). My plan is to downgrade the preferred next year to avoid paying the annual fee and keep the reserve.

My question to everyone is, aren't you afraid of hurting your credit score by opening so many credit cards? Also, how are you going to deal with the annual feels? Do you cancel them before the year is finished, and if so, wouldn't your credit score hurt?

I'm asking because I'm now thinking of getting the United card which would give me 50k points. I already have points with United (about 50k), so together with my chase points which I can transfer to united i'd have about 300k in total. This would probably be enough for business class tickets for two to Asia. Any thoughts on this?

giesen5
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:44 pm
Location: Bellingham, WA

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by giesen5 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 1:49 pm

J_Markov wrote:
giesen5 wrote:This may be too much information, but below is what we have done, strategy-wise, since January 2016. (Anyone know how to make the formatting work? It looks great before I submit....)

I have done very little MSing. Our spend on credit cards, as a family, is usually around $3-5K/mo. I tried to spread the apps around so that I could make the spend, a couple of times it was close. Recently I have paid a few bills through Plastiq which charges a 2.5% fee. Not the best way to pay bills, but it has been our mortgage which cannot be paid via credit card. I am taking a hit on that one, charging it on my Blue for Business which will pay out 2% at the end of the year - so losing .5%. I am working on the SPG business account right now which is 5k/3mo and then another 3k/3mo to get the 35,000 points.


Me: 14 cards
Chase Sapphire Jan 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase Freedom March 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Chase United April 16 2k/3mo 50,000
AmEx Hilton May 16 1k/3mo 75,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Capital One June 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Barclay Arrival July 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska business Oct 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Citi Hilton Oct 16 2k/3mo 75,000
AmEx ED Preferred Oct 16 1k/3mo 15,000
Amex SPG Oct 16 3k/3mo 25,000
Alaska business Jan 17 1k/3mo 30,000
Avianca Feb 17 none 60,000
Amex SPG Biz March 17 5k/3mo 35,000


Wife: 11 cards
Chase Sapphire March 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase United May 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,250
Barclay Arrival May 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Chase IHG July 16 1k/3mo 60,000
Chase British Air July 16 3k/3mo 50,000
Capital One Sept 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska Dec 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Amex SPG business Jan 17 5k/3mo 25,000
Amex Blue for Biz Feb 17 none 10,000
Alaska business March 17 1k/3mo 30,000


With this strategy it seems you're opening a tons of cards. I'm fairly new to this and just opened this month both the preferred and reserve chase saphire (gonnat 150k points in total). My plan is to downgrade the preferred next year to avoid paying the annual fee and keep the reserve.

My question to everyone is, aren't you afraid of hurting your credit score by opening so many credit cards? Also, how are you going to deal with the annual feels? Do you cancel them before the year is finished, and if so, wouldn't your credit score hurt?

I'm asking because I'm now thinking of getting the United card which would give me 50k points. I already have points with United (about 50k), so together with my chase points which I can transfer to united i'd have about 300k in total. This would probably be enough for business class tickets for two to Asia. Any thoughts on this?


My credit score has barely changed. I am still in the 790-810 range with all of these cards. Read this: https://thepointsguy.com/2014/07/how-ca ... dit-score/

I do keep some of the cards longer than one year and do pay the fee, but many others I close (or will close). The bolded ones, above, are the ones that I am keeping that charge a fee. Others, like Alaska, charge a fee the first year. I figure I will spend $400-500 in fees this year.

michaeljc70
Posts: 1736
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 1:52 pm

J_Markov wrote:
giesen5 wrote:This may be too much information, but below is what we have done, strategy-wise, since January 2016. (Anyone know how to make the formatting work? It looks great before I submit....)

I have done very little MSing. Our spend on credit cards, as a family, is usually around $3-5K/mo. I tried to spread the apps around so that I could make the spend, a couple of times it was close. Recently I have paid a few bills through Plastiq which charges a 2.5% fee. Not the best way to pay bills, but it has been our mortgage which cannot be paid via credit card. I am taking a hit on that one, charging it on my Blue for Business which will pay out 2% at the end of the year - so losing .5%. I am working on the SPG business account right now which is 5k/3mo and then another 3k/3mo to get the 35,000 points.


Me: 14 cards
Chase Sapphire Jan 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase Freedom March 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Chase United April 16 2k/3mo 50,000
AmEx Hilton May 16 1k/3mo 75,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,500
Capital One June 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Barclay Arrival July 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska business Oct 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Citi Hilton Oct 16 2k/3mo 75,000
AmEx ED Preferred Oct 16 1k/3mo 15,000
Amex SPG Oct 16 3k/3mo 25,000
Alaska business Jan 17 1k/3mo 30,000
Avianca Feb 17 none 60,000
Amex SPG Biz March 17 5k/3mo 35,000


Wife: 11 cards
Chase Sapphire March 16 4k/3mo 55,000
Chase United May 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Chase FU May 16 .5/3mo 17,250
Barclay Arrival May 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Chase IHG July 16 1k/3mo 60,000
Chase British Air July 16 3k/3mo 50,000
Capital One Sept 16 3k/3mo 40,000
Alaska Dec 16 1k/3mo 30,000
Amex SPG business Jan 17 5k/3mo 25,000
Amex Blue for Biz Feb 17 none 10,000
Alaska business March 17 1k/3mo 30,000


With this strategy it seems you're opening a tons of cards. I'm fairly new to this and just opened this month both the preferred and reserve chase saphire (gonnat 150k points in total). My plan is to downgrade the preferred next year to avoid paying the annual fee and keep the reserve.

My question to everyone is, aren't you afraid of hurting your credit score by opening so many credit cards? Also, how are you going to deal with the annual feels? Do you cancel them before the year is finished, and if so, wouldn't your credit score hurt?

I'm asking because I'm now thinking of getting the United card which would give me 50k points. I already have points with United (about 50k), so together with my chase points which I can transfer to united i'd have about 300k in total. This would probably be enough for business class tickets for two to Asia. Any thoughts on this?


I prefer cards that fall under the 5/24 rule, so I am only opening 5 cards in 2 years. That is a small component of your credit score. My score is around 820, so I don't worry about it. It affects the number of inquires component and also number of open accounts/total credit component. I suppose it could affect length of credit of open accounts too if you are closing the old ones.

Mr.BB
Posts: 262
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Mr.BB » Wed Mar 22, 2017 1:57 pm

We get most of our points for hotels. Marriot rewards visa and Hilton cards.
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."

Barefootgirl
Posts: 2145
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Barefootgirl » Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:13 pm

I'm planning a trip to Paris from the east coast of the US.

I have UR, MR and AA points and the could possibly churn new cards (judiciously) for bonuses.

I checked and it seems like many carriers offer routing from here - so it looks wide open for me.

What airline or points/miles program would you target to use for a trip to Paris - *that would represent a good use of points*? thanks
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.

madbrain
Posts: 4490
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:06 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by madbrain » Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:27 pm

Barefootgirl wrote:I'm planning a trip to Paris from the east coast of the US.

I have UR, MR and AA points and the could possibly churn new cards (judiciously) for bonuses.

I checked and it seems like many carriers offer routing from here - so it looks wide open for me.

What airline or points/miles program would you target to use for a trip to Paris - *that would represent a good use of points*? thanks


I was able to fly one way from the west coast (SFO) to Paris (CDG) last year non stop for only 17,000 Flying Blue (Air France) miles with a Promo award. I transferred them from UR. Normal award is 25,000 for one-way, 50,000 for round trip. Might be less for east coast.

I would recommend you subscribe to the Flying blue promo awards that comes out monthly to see if there is one for your desired timeframe.

The awards (promo or not) are particularly advantageous for one way, if you are coming back from another city on another airline for example. One way cash fares are in the $2500+ range ! Whereas round trips are much less. Makes no sense at all ! Definitely a good use of miles if you want to fly one way. The next leg of my trip in my case was to Asia, so that was the case.

madbrain
Posts: 4490
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:06 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by madbrain » Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:31 pm

michaeljc70 wrote:I prefer cards that fall under the 5/24 rule, so I am only opening 5 cards in 2 years.


I think you are missing on tons of signup bonuses by doing that. I realize that Chase has some nice cards - and I have the CSR and my husband has his too. But foregoing all the other juicy bonuses on the other banks (Amex, Citi, Barclay, etc) is not worth limiting yourself to this rule, IMO.

michaeljc70
Posts: 1736
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:59 pm

madbrain wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:I prefer cards that fall under the 5/24 rule, so I am only opening 5 cards in 2 years.


I think you are missing on tons of signup bonuses by doing that. I realize that Chase has some nice cards - and I have the CSR and my husband has his too. But foregoing all the other juicy bonuses on the other banks (Amex, Citi, Barclay, etc) is not worth limiting yourself to this rule, IMO.


Citi uses the 5/24 rule too.

I disagree. I don't really stay in chain hotels. A lot of the other bonuses just aren't as good in my opinion. For example, Amex gives 50k points. They don't transfer at full value to some airlines and the others I don't fly. Sure, I can use it for a $500 travel credit. However, I used 60k United miles to go to S America in Nov which would have cost me $1300 if I bought the ticket. I used 60k United miles to go to Europe with 1 day notice last month. That would have cost me a fortune. I live in Chicago and the big airlines are American and United. Barclay is similar to Amex. So why would I get a $500 bonus that will limit me in the future getting a $1000 bonus? Of course, people use different bonuses different ways and everyone has to value them as they would use them.

My current 4/24 are Citi AA x2, Chase Reserve, and a Citi Double Cash rewards. The Citi Double I didn't get any big bonus, but it is 2% back on everything. I'm not a big fan of those rotating category rewards.

madbrain
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Location: San Jose, California

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by madbrain » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:36 pm

michaeljc70 wrote:Citi uses the 5/24 rule too.


Where did you get that from ? It certainly does not. I'm way over 5/24 and got a card from Citi recently.
Citi has some limit, but it's much less restrictive than 5/24.

I disagree. I don't really stay in chain hotels. A lot of the other bonuses just aren't as good in my opinion. For example, Amex gives 50k points. They don't transfer at full value to some airlines and the others I don't fly. Sure, I can use it for a $500 travel credit. However, I used 60k United miles to go to S America in Nov which would have cost me $1300 if I bought the ticket. I used 60k United miles to go to Europe with 1 day notice last month. That would have cost me a fortune. I live in Chicago and the big airlines are American and United. Barclay is similar to Amex. So why would I get a $500 bonus that will limit me in the future getting a $1000 bonus? Of course, people use different bonuses different ways and everyone has to value them as they would use them.

My current 4/24 are Citi AA x2, Chase Reserve, and a Citi Double Cash rewards. The Citi Double I didn't get any big bonus, but it is 2% back on everything. I'm not a big fan of those rotating category rewards.


I got 100k on my Platinum Amex. My husband got 50k points on his Gold. You may be able to use the MR points to fly United by transferring on some Star Alliance partners.
My husband got 70k Delta miles on his Amex Skymiles Gold and 40k on his Skymiles Platinum.
I got 50k on my Skymiles Platinum and 50k on my Skymiles Gold.

Barclay Arrival bonus was worth $500 and I only applied myself.
I got 50k AA miles on my Citi AA and 50k AA miles on my Barclay AA.

We both got 60k UR on CSP. Both got 100k UR on CSR. Husband got 15k UR for Freedom Unlimited.
I got 60 UR on Ink+.

I got 50k Citi points on Prestige.

I got 50k points on the BOFA/Merill card.

Husband $250 cash back on his Amex Green.

I got 75k Hhonors points with Citi VISA

I got $250 cash back on Amex Blue Cash.

Husband just got approved for a Barclay Hawaiian and will get 50k miles. I may get the same after calling reconsideration line (I got denied as I'm on Barclay's shit list since 2008, but was still able to get the above 2 Barclay cards after calling reconsideration).

All the above are since last June. My credit score is still around 805 and his is 790 . I started with 849 out of 850 on Experian after doing 0/24 for the previous few years. His score was about the same and unchanged.

There are still plenty of cards that I have applied for that my husband has not. For example, he has no Citi card yet. And I'm sure he can get approved for one when there is a good offer. He just got approved for his first Barclay (Hawaiian).

It's true that I can't get a United explorer card that I wish could because of 5/24 . But my UR points transfer directly to United.

We used about 400k points of various kind (mostly UR) on a trip to Asia in November/December.
Right now our combined points/miles balances is over 800k points. We are taking another Asia trip in 2 months.

I hate the rotating categories as well. I just sign up for the cards for the juicy sign up bonuses, mainly. A bunch of cards will get cancelled at renewal time. Or maybe even before that.

giesen5
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:44 pm
Location: Bellingham, WA

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by giesen5 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:50 pm

Love this thread!

While waiting for my Amex SPG and Alaska cards to arrive, I am employing this 5 card strategy, I 'm sure it will drive some of you crazy.

Restaurants: Amex Blue for Business 10x in first 6 months up to $2000 in spend. After six months, all restaurant get Chase Sapphire Preferred for 2x and where Amex is not accepted.

Groceries: Amex Everyday Preferred 4.5x (need 30 transactions per month) up to $6000 spend. Chase Freedom Unlimited for 1.5x where Amex is not accepted. Will use Chase Freedom starting April 1 for 5x up to $1500 in spend.

Gas: Amex Everyday Preferred 3x (need 30 transactions per month). Chase Freedom Unlimited for 1.5x where Amex is not accepted.

All other spend: Amex Blue for Business 2x for this year. Chase Freedom United for 1.5x where Amex is not accepted.

I haven't really jumped on the Citi Thank You points train yet. Can someone sell me on this? I see the Citi Double Cash card mentioned a lot.
Last edited by giesen5 on Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

michaeljc70
Posts: 1736
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:54 pm

madbrain wrote:
michaeljc70 wrote:Citi uses the 5/24 rule too.


Where did you get that from ? It certainly does not. I'm way over 5/24 and got a card from Citi recently.
Citi has some limit, but it's much less restrictive than 5/24.

I disagree. I don't really stay in chain hotels. A lot of the other bonuses just aren't as good in my opinion. For example, Amex gives 50k points. They don't transfer at full value to some airlines and the others I don't fly. Sure, I can use it for a $500 travel credit. However, I used 60k United miles to go to S America in Nov which would have cost me $1300 if I bought the ticket. I used 60k United miles to go to Europe with 1 day notice last month. That would have cost me a fortune. I live in Chicago and the big airlines are American and United. Barclay is similar to Amex. So why would I get a $500 bonus that will limit me in the future getting a $1000 bonus? Of course, people use different bonuses different ways and everyone has to value them as they would use them.

My current 4/24 are Citi AA x2, Chase Reserve, and a Citi Double Cash rewards. The Citi Double I didn't get any big bonus, but it is 2% back on everything. I'm not a big fan of those rotating category rewards.


I got 100k on my Platinum Amex. My husband got 50k points on his Gold. You may be able to use the MR points to fly United by transferring on some Star Alliance partners.
My husband got 70k Delta miles on his Amex Skymiles Gold and 40k on his Skymiles Platinum.
I got 50k on my Skymiles Platinum and 50k on my Skymiles Gold.

Barclay Arrival bonus was worth $500 and I only applied myself.
I got 50k AA miles on my Citi AA and 50k AA miles on my Barclay AA.

We both got 60k UR on CSP. Both got 100k UR on CSR. Husband got 15k UR for Freedom Unlimited.
I got 60 UR on Ink+.

I got 50k Citi points on Prestige.

I got 50k points on the BOFA/Merill card.

Husband $250 cash back on his Amex Green.

I got 75k Hhonors points with Citi VISA

I got $250 cash back on Amex Blue Cash.

Husband just got approved for a Barclay Hawaiian and will get 50k miles. I may get the same after calling reconsideration line (I got denied as I'm on Barclay's shit list since 2008, but was still able to get the above 2 Barclay cards after calling reconsideration).

All the above are since last June. My credit score is still around 805 and his is 790 . I started with 849 out of 850 on Experian after doing 0/24 for the previous few years. His score was about the same and unchanged.

There are still plenty of cards that I have applied for that my husband has not. For example, he has no Citi card yet. And I'm sure he can get approved for one when there is a good offer. He just got approved for his first Barclay (Hawaiian).

It's true that I can't get a United explorer card that I wish could because of 5/24 . But my UR points transfer directly to United.

We used about 400k points of various kind (mostly UR) on a trip to Asia in November/December.
Right now our combined points/miles balances is over 800k points. We are taking another Asia trip in 2 months.

I hate the rotating categories as well. I just sign up for the cards for the juicy sign up bonuses, mainly. A bunch of cards will get cancelled at renewal time. Or maybe even before that.


http://www.doctorofcredit.com/new-citi- ... -citi-typ/

"New Citi Rules Limit You To One Bonus Per 24 Months Per Brand (American Airlines, Expedia, Hilton & Citi TYP)"

Not quite 5/24, but not unlimited either.

Bfwolf
Posts: 1584
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Bfwolf » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:35 pm

Barefootgirl wrote:I'm planning a trip to Paris from the east coast of the US.

I have UR, MR and AA points and the could possibly churn new cards (judiciously) for bonuses.

I checked and it seems like many carriers offer routing from here - so it looks wide open for me.

What airline or points/miles program would you target to use for a trip to Paris - *that would represent a good use of points*? thanks


Which airport would you be flying out of?

madbrain
Posts: 4490
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:06 pm
Location: San Jose, California

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by madbrain » Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:09 am

michaeljc70 wrote:Not quite 5/24, but not unlimited either.


IMO, really not much in common with 5/24 .

5/24 = you can't get a new Chase card period, never mind a Chase bonus, if you had more than 5 new cards from any issuer within the last 24 months.
Citi : you can still get a new card in most cases, but you won't collect the bonus if you had the same card in the past 24 months.

Chase can do what they want, but in the meantime we'll be collecting new signup bonuses from Amex, Barclay, Citi, etc. likely worth thousands of dollars.

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