What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

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

Post by ImmigrantSaver » Tue Dec 26, 2017 12:51 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
Tue Dec 26, 2017 10:38 am
ImmigrantSaver wrote:
Thu Dec 21, 2017 5:48 pm
VictoriaF wrote:
Thu Dec 21, 2017 5:04 pm
Amex-SPG-Business: A story of my mistake.

I wanted to close my Amex SPG-Business card before it becomes subject to annual fees. I remembered that when closing a business card, it's important to close the account, not just the card, because some providers have separate numbers for the account and for the employee cards. And so I searched Google for relevant information and learned that with Amex, it's a single number and a few other tips about retention discussions and bonuses. Armed with this knowledge, I have cancelled the card.

A couple days later, I've checked my SPG account and saw that a large amount of points from my November stay in Marriott has not posted. While the Marriott bill has showed up in my Amex card account a long while ago, and I paid all my Amex bills in full, it turns out that my November stay was a part of the next month cycle. And so I lost the points from my Marriott bill and from the bonus I would have received from SPG. I would not have lost these points if I had waited an extra week.

Moral: When closing a credit card, not only ensure that you don't have any balance left on the card, but also that all your reward points have been credited.

Victoria
Good to know. Thanks for sharing!
The point of my story is that even when we know what to do, sometimes we forget to do it. The more credit cards we handle and the more potential pitfalls each bank and each card feature, the more likely we are to make mistakes. For example, I know that my Chase points remain with Chase and I carefully transfer URs before I close Chase cards. But with Amex-SPG, the points do not stay with Amex. They are being transferred to SPG. My mistake was to forget to check my SPG account before closing the Amex-SPG card.

My reason for posting the story was to alert other Bogleheads to this situation with Amex-SPG and other co-branded cards; to remind about this action even to those who know it in general but may forget. I also felt disappointed about making an elementary mistake and wanted to create a balancing benefit to the community.

Today, I had a nice surprise! I checked my SPG account and saw that my last-month Amex-SPG points, including the November Marriott stay bonus, were posted to my SPG account several days after I have closed the Amex-SPG card. It's hard to say whether it's Amex's policy to submit points after an account has been closed, or the Amex points department has reported my points before they have received notification about the account closing, or during the holiday season people and technology are less vigilant. I am more happy about recovering from a stupid loss than about the amount of the points.

But the main point of my cautionary story still holds: Before closing credit cards, you has to complete a relevant checklist. Here is a checklist from the top of my head:
- all outstanding balances paid
- automatic payments from/to the account cancelled
- possibility of returns of merchandise purchased on the card considered
- reward points, both in the CC account and its partner accounts, cleared or transferred
- re-applying rules reviewed; e.g., if a CC requires a 24-month wait after opening or closing a card, it may be prudent to get a new card before clothing this one
- business card-specific circumstances reviewed; e.g., some banks provision two numbers: an account number and a CC number, and you should cancel the account rather than the business card
- possibility of a retention bonus considered; you may prefer to keep the card if the bank offers a retention bonus, and in such cases call the bank
- possibility of converting the card into another bank's card considered; call the bank
- possibility of lowering credit limit considered; from what I've read, if you close a card with a high credit limit, that limit will be used by Credit Reporting Agencies for several months and may limit credit amount offered by new cards you are applying for.

My checklist above is not complete. But hopefully it would help at least some Bogleheads.

Victoria
Great points! Esp the last one that I was not aware of. My chase reserve limit is huge compared to my other 2 cards. It would definitely affect me if I ever close that card. Good to know, thanks!

mega317
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by mega317 » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm

Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?

Da5id
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Da5id » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:33 pm

mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
Well, that is paying quite some time in advance -- what if you want to change providers? My plan is to use Chase Freedom for gas until March, then see where I'm at and do at least some prepaying of internet/cell phone.

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

Post by IowaFarmWife » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:36 pm

mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
Good idea- I had switched my accounts to this card to pay for the three months of payments, but had not considered prepaying anything. I wonder if they will let me do this....

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

Post by flamesabers » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:38 pm

mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
Do cable companies let you prepay? I thought normally online payment systems won't allow you to submit payments that are greater then your outstanding balance. I don't think this is to prevent bunching up on credit card rewards so much as to limit the damage of credit card fraud.

mega317
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by mega317 » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:41 pm

Da5id wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:33 pm
mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
Well, that is paying quite some time in advance -- what if you want to change providers? My plan is to use Chase Freedom for gas until March, then see where I'm at and do at least some prepaying of internet/cell phone.
I considered that. You should be able to get refunded whatever you're owed if you change providers, but I guess that can be a huge headache. I've actually posted about that before. I suppose it slightly decreases the risk to wait until March. Haha, kind of silly to be talking about 75 bucks like this.

I am using Discover It for gas.
IowaFarmWife wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:36 pm
Good idea- I had switched my accounts to this card to pay for the three months of payments, but had not considered prepaying anything. I wonder if they will let me do this....
Just tested--It looks like AT&T won't let me pay more than $300 at once, and Verizon limits to $500 over the current balance.

Da5id
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Da5id » Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:41 pm

flamesabers wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:38 pm
mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
Do cable companies let you prepay? I thought normally online payment systems won't allow you to submit payments that are greater then your outstanding balance. I don't think this is to prevent bunching up on credit card rewards so much as to limit the damage of credit card fraud.
I prepaid RCN (cable) and Cricket to meet a spend for a bonus last year. At least one of them was rejected, and I needed to call CC company to authorize it. But it worked in the end. The rejection apparently, as you say, was due to this fitting a pattern of fraud.

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

Post by dbr » Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:50 pm

flamesabers wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:38 pm
mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
Do cable companies let you prepay? I thought normally online payment systems won't allow you to submit payments that are greater then your outstanding balance. I don't think this is to prevent bunching up on credit card rewards so much as to limit the damage of credit card fraud.
Lots of companies that you might pay on a monthly basis allow prepayments/overpayments to greater or lesser degrees. Some may not.

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

Post by michaeljc70 » Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:53 pm

Da5id wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:33 pm
mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
Well, that is paying quite some time in advance -- what if you want to change providers? My plan is to use Chase Freedom for gas until March, then see where I'm at and do at least some prepaying of internet/cell phone.
I find most companies will give you a refund if it isn't used in some period of time. My gas company gave me one right away (I couldn't remember the amount of the bill and just paid $200). I suspect it may have to do with when they close out the quarter. They typically don't want to show they owe people money (at least statement credits) on their balance sheets.

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

Post by DrGrnTum » Thu Jan 11, 2018 5:38 pm

For the Freedom, you could go to Staples and use your mobile pay and buy a Visa Gift card.
https://www.doctorofcredit.com/staples- ... esFeed.com

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

Post by protagonist » Thu Jan 11, 2018 6:04 pm

mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
Interesting approach.
That would be a lot of advance payment in my case, but I suppose $500 isn't a bad idea. The problem is I have little faith in Comcast/Xfinity and I would fear that they might suddenly double my rate and then I would have to beg them for a refund.

I buy my gas from Cumberland Farms down the street who gives me 10 cents off/gallon using their proprietary debit card. The return is not quite as good but it is cash, and a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, so I am not profiting much off Freedom this quarter.

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

Post by mikep » Thu Jan 11, 2018 6:06 pm

IowaFarmWife wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:36 pm
mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
Good idea- I had switched my accounts to this card to pay for the three months of payments, but had not considered prepaying anything. I wonder if they will let me do this....
I'm not since i get 5% (5UR) anyway there with Ink Cash. Use the Freedom for gas and mobile pay instead.

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

Post by SrGrumpy » Thu Jan 11, 2018 6:46 pm

mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
That's what I'll do at the end of the quarter. I wish their definition of utilities included water and power.

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

Post by BeneIRA » Thu Jan 11, 2018 9:05 pm

This Chase Freedom quarter is ridiculously easy to maximize. Mobile pay is accepted at most places, including supermarkets and quite a few stores and gas is an easy few hundred dollars this quarter. Just go to the supermarket, buy gift cards at the end of the quarter, use mobile pay. Done.

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

Post by DrivingFun » Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:28 am

BeneIRA wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 9:05 pm
This Chase Freedom quarter is ridiculously easy to maximize. Mobile pay is accepted at most places, including supermarkets and quite a few stores and gas is an easy few hundred dollars this quarter. Just go to the supermarket, buy gift cards at the end of the quarter, use mobile pay. Done.
It's not just any mobile pay, specifically it's Android Pay. I wouldn't say it's accepted at most places either.

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

Post by obafgkm » Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:41 am

ChosenGSR wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:28 am
It's not just any mobile pay, specifically it's Android Pay. I wouldn't say it's accepted at most places either.
Actually, it isn’t specifically Android Pay, but others, including Apple Pay through the end of March 2018:

https://creditcards.chase.com/freedommobile

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

Post by Sandtrap » Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:49 am

Amazon Platinum.
Points for purchases.
Contribution to "Jack Bogle Center. . " for using Amazon.smile.
j :D

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

Post by SocalLiving » Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:16 pm

BeneIRA wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 9:05 pm
This Chase Freedom quarter is ridiculously easy to maximize. Mobile pay is accepted at most places, including supermarkets and quite a few stores and gas is an easy few hundred dollars this quarter. Just go to the supermarket, buy gift cards at the end of the quarter, use mobile pay. Done.
+1
Just Trader Joe's, Petco, and gas will easily get our family to $1500 in 3 months. If anything is left over, we will buy gift cards at Trader Joes.

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

Post by michaeljc70 » Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:23 pm

I'm cheap and work credit card rewards (more for bonuses than cashback), but I don't know if it is worth the trouble to me to buy $1500 in gift cards I don't really need for a $75 reward. I buy restaurant gift cards around the holidays and often get a 20-25% bonus. I also buy them on resale sites and usually get 10-25% off. Besides that, it is 5% when I get 2% anytime with my Citi Double cash back card so it is really only a 3% difference ($45).

I typically don't play the category game unless I am making a big purchase. I don't find it is worth the effort. I buy my gas at Costco always so the gas component is gone. I did take advantage of the Discover 5% at Amazon over the holidays.
Last edited by michaeljc70 on Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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

Post by matthewmon » Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:23 pm

do I get the 5% cashback on gas from Chase Freedom if I buy gas at a Neighborhood Walmart?

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

Post by DrivingFun » Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:58 pm

obafgkm wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:41 am
ChosenGSR wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:28 am
It's not just any mobile pay, specifically it's Android Pay. I wouldn't say it's accepted at most places either.
Actually, it isn’t specifically Android Pay, but others, including Apple Pay through the end of March 2018:

https://creditcards.chase.com/freedommobile
You're right. For whatever reason at the time they sent me the activation email it specifically stated Android Pay, now it has all of them listed. :sharebeer

Da5id
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Da5id » Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:17 am

matthewmon wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:23 pm
do I get the 5% cashback on gas from Chase Freedom if I buy gas at a Neighborhood Walmart?
You need to test it to be sure, it depends on whether the transaction is coded as a gas station or as Walmart (dept store, whatever). Sometimes the wording of Freedom excludes "warehouse stores" for gas for example, but the current doesn't necessarily apply though one might read it to say no as Walmart doesn't specialize in selling automotive gasoline?
2 Does not include merchants that do not specialize in selling automotive gasoline; for example, truck stops, boat marinas, oil and propane distributors, and home heating companies. For more information, please see Chase Freedom Frequently Asked Questions.

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

Post by BeneIRA » Wed Jan 17, 2018 5:46 pm

ChosenGSR wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:58 pm
obafgkm wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:41 am
ChosenGSR wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:28 am
It's not just any mobile pay, specifically it's Android Pay. I wouldn't say it's accepted at most places either.
Actually, it isn’t specifically Android Pay, but others, including Apple Pay through the end of March 2018:

https://creditcards.chase.com/freedommobile
You're right. For whatever reason at the time they sent me the activation email it specifically stated Android Pay, now it has all of them listed. :sharebeer
In my area, it's accepted at quite a few places. One of us has an Android phone and one of us has an iPhone, so we cover the mobile payment spectrum. At the places I would want to use it, specifically grocery stores, it works, which is what I care about.

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

Post by madbrain » Wed Jan 17, 2018 5:53 pm

BeneIRA wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 5:46 pm
ChosenGSR wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:58 pm
obafgkm wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:41 am
ChosenGSR wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:28 am
It's not just any mobile pay, specifically it's Android Pay. I wouldn't say it's accepted at most places either.
Actually, it isn’t specifically Android Pay, but others, including Apple Pay through the end of March 2018:

https://creditcards.chase.com/freedommobile
You're right. For whatever reason at the time they sent me the activation email it specifically stated Android Pay, now it has all of them listed. :sharebeer
In my area, it's accepted at quite a few places. One of us has an Android phone and one of us has an iPhone, so we cover the mobile payment spectrum. At the places I would want to use it, specifically grocery stores, it works, which is what I care about.
If your Android phone is a recent Samsung model, you can also use Samsung pay, which should work at pretty much any payment terminal that can still read magnetic stripes. Haven't had it fail anywhere yet. It doesn't require any support from the merchant, but it does require that your card issuer support Samsung Pay.

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

Post by ImmigrantSaver » Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:21 pm

mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
That's my plan. 500 per month. I also just got the card, so I get a bonus too :)

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

Post by BeneIRA » Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:24 pm

madbrain wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 5:53 pm
BeneIRA wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 5:46 pm
ChosenGSR wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:58 pm
obafgkm wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:41 am
ChosenGSR wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:28 am
It's not just any mobile pay, specifically it's Android Pay. I wouldn't say it's accepted at most places either.
Actually, it isn’t specifically Android Pay, but others, including Apple Pay through the end of March 2018:

https://creditcards.chase.com/freedommobile
You're right. For whatever reason at the time they sent me the activation email it specifically stated Android Pay, now it has all of them listed. :sharebeer
In my area, it's accepted at quite a few places. One of us has an Android phone and one of us has an iPhone, so we cover the mobile payment spectrum. At the places I would want to use it, specifically grocery stores, it works, which is what I care about.
If your Android phone is a recent Samsung model, you can also use Samsung pay, which should work at pretty much any payment terminal that can still read magnetic stripes. Haven't had it fail anywhere yet. It doesn't require any support from the merchant, but it does require that your card issuer support Samsung Pay.
Good call. My wife just told me we actually have been using Samsung Pay the whole time. Go figure. :oops:

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

Post by Voltron » Wed Jan 17, 2018 9:37 pm

Alliant Signature Visa at the 3% cash back rewards for first year. I pay over 25,000 dollars in quarterly estimated income taxes. Doesn’t even include state California estimated quarterly taxes. Anyhow paid by credit card this year and despite the 2% fee, 1% cash back net has been a handsome benefit.

It’s my go to card and edges out Citibank 2% cash back rewards, even if 2.5% rewards after first year with a annual fee. I spend more than 12k a year on credit card purchases.

Otherwise,Costco 4% back on gas is my other card. Next year I’ll keep Costco Visa card for restaurants and travel.

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

Post by CDub » Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:32 am

I have been debating pursuing a simple strategy (Alliant Visa 3%/2.5% Cash Back + Amazon 5%) -> or going full bore after the sign up bonuses/churning.
Have you had a good experience with Alliant? I have the fidelity visa 2%. Considering making the switch for primary spend.

I may do a blend of the two and sign up for 1-2 new cards a year for sign-up bonuses, put the rest on a flat cash back card after meeting the minimum spend.

gvsucavie03
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by gvsucavie03 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:38 pm

CDub wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:32 am
I have been debating pursuing a simple strategy (Alliant Visa 3%/2.5% Cash Back + Amazon 5%) -> or going full bore after the sign up bonuses/churning.
Have you had a good experience with Alliant? I have the fidelity visa 2%. Considering making the switch for primary spend.

I may do a blend of the two and sign up for 1-2 new cards a year for sign-up bonuses, put the rest on a flat cash back card after meeting the minimum spend.
I'd be weary of signing up for cards purely for the bonus... more open accounts, hurts your credit score, identity theft issues, etc. I have a few I did last year that I should probably close, but keep older cards open.

I really like our Citi Double Cash card. Many checking accounts that accept credit card initial deposits accept it and some are up to $2,000 (I'm a checking bonus chaser). I combine this with the old Penfed 5% Cash Rewards gas card (no longer available), and Amex BCP 6% grocery, 3% Department store card. I'll off-set Chase Freedom 5% categories for groceries because we spend way more than $6,000 in groceries per year, so we switch to that card for that quarter.

tesuzuki2002
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by tesuzuki2002 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:48 pm

mickeyd wrote:
Wed May 25, 2016 3:05 pm
I never thought of it as a strategy, but I guess that's what it is. All cash rewards go to reduce my monthly balance. What's left is paid off automatically with zero balance left. Seems about as cost effective as possible as I always have a monthly balance since I charge close to 100%.
Buy stuff. Reap the rewards.. Pay it off!!! That's my strategy.

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

Post by SocalLiving » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:00 pm

Wanted to report that I spoke with a Discover card customer service rep, and they confirmed that all Costco.com purchases qualify for the 5% wholesale club category this quarter. (It gets tagged as Merchandise on the statement, but still qualifies).

I needed to renew my membership and order contacts, so it made sense to try and use my Discover if I could. The rep also confirmed that Costco Cash Cards purchased online with Discover card would qualify for 5% as well.

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

Post by SpaethCo » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:22 pm

SocalLiving wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:00 pm
Wanted to report that I spoke with a Discover card customer service rep, and they confirmed that all Costco.com purchases qualify for the 5% wholesale club category this quarter. (It gets tagged as Merchandise on the statement, but still qualifies).
Wholesale clubs was also a category for Q2 2017, but my purchases at costco.com did NOT qualify for the 5% category cash back. Tried 3 different purchases, none of them counted even though the CSR said they should have.

It might be prudent to test it out again before you commit yourself to the standard purchase 1% cash back.

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willthrill81
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by willthrill81 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:24 pm

BeneIRA wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 9:05 pm
This Chase Freedom quarter is ridiculously easy to maximize. Mobile pay is accepted at most places, including supermarkets and quite a few stores and gas is an easy few hundred dollars this quarter. Just go to the supermarket, buy gift cards at the end of the quarter, use mobile pay. Done.
Good tip. We'll use Chase Pay to buy gift cards for our local grocery store at the end of the quarter to max out the $1,500.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings

2015
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by 2015 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:43 pm

gvsucavie03 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:38 pm
CDub wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:32 am
I have been debating pursuing a simple strategy (Alliant Visa 3%/2.5% Cash Back + Amazon 5%) -> or going full bore after the sign up bonuses/churning.
Have you had a good experience with Alliant? I have the fidelity visa 2%. Considering making the switch for primary spend.

I may do a blend of the two and sign up for 1-2 new cards a year for sign-up bonuses, put the rest on a flat cash back card after meeting the minimum spend.
I'd be weary of signing up for cards purely for the bonus... more open accounts, hurts your credit score, identity theft issues, etc. I have a few I did last year that I should probably close, but keep older cards open.

I really like our Citi Double Cash card. Many checking accounts that accept credit card initial deposits accept it and some are up to $2,000 (I'm a checking bonus chaser). I combine this with the old Penfed 5% Cash Rewards gas card (no longer available), and Amex BCP 6% grocery, 3% Department store card. I'll off-set Chase Freedom 5% categories for groceries because we spend way more than $6,000 in groceries per year, so we switch to that card for that quarter.
Nah. I'm going to get $700 between WFB and BOA cc bonuses. All for two separate one-time somewhat major expenditures I am planning on making anyway. All accounts locked down tighter than Fort Knox so no issues with ID theft here. As to credit score, it's above 800 and I'll never need it besides, having never used credit in over 20 years and having no intention of ever doing so in the future.

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

Post by SocalLiving » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:43 pm

SpaethCo wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:22 pm
Wholesale clubs was also a category for Q2 2017, but my purchases at costco.com did NOT qualify for the 5% category cash back. Tried 3 different purchases, none of them counted even though the CSR said they should have.

It might be prudent to test it out again before you commit yourself to the standard purchase 1% cash back.
Thanks SpaethCo for the tip. I do remember major confusion with Discover and Costco last year. They did end up giving me 5% cashback last year for all my Costco.com purchases, but only after I called them. I will report back in Feb if my small purchase qualifies automatically.

CDub
Posts: 37
Joined: Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:27 am

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by CDub » Thu Jan 18, 2018 4:05 pm

Discover 5% is also possible by purchasing at Costco via Google Express. Google express also has a promotion for 20% off right now. -> so you can actually get 25% off.

It looked like Discover hadn't classified it as a 5% category, but I reached out to them via chat and they adjusted it to reflect it meets the 5% requirement.

spammagnet
Posts: 919
Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2016 9:42 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by spammagnet » Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:11 pm

gvsucavie03 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:38 pm
I'd be weary of signing up for cards purely for the bonus... more open accounts, hurts your credit score, identity theft issues, etc. I have a few I did last year that I should probably close, but keep older cards open.
I expected but my score to drop but it went up, not down. It was in the mid- to high- 700s. It's now in the low 800s. I've opened 3 personal Chase accounts since August.

ZinCO
Posts: 60
Joined: Thu Nov 05, 2015 9:42 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by ZinCO » Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:35 pm

spammagnet wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:11 pm
gvsucavie03 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:38 pm
I'd be weary of signing up for cards purely for the bonus... more open accounts, hurts your credit score, identity theft issues, etc. I have a few I did last year that I should probably close, but keep older cards open.
I expected but my score to drop but it went up, not down. It was in the mid- to high- 700s. It's now in the low 800s. I've opened 3 personal Chase accounts since August.
Common misconception. While your score will temporarily drop due to the credit inquiries required to get credit, in the long run it is more than offset by the long-term benefit of improving your credit utilization ratio ( credit used / credit available ). Churners will all have high credit scores (partly due to having above-average amounts of credit extended to them), but then, high credit scores are required to get new credit, so which came first?

Mudpuppy
Posts: 5889
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2011 2:26 am
Location: Sunny California

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Mudpuppy » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:24 pm

CDub wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 4:05 pm
Discover 5% is also possible by purchasing at Costco via Google Express. Google express also has a promotion for 20% off right now. -> so you can actually get 25% off.
Not quite 25% off.... Let's say you start with $100 of purchases. First, the 20% off promotion from Google Express would drop that down to $80. Then you'd get 5% cash back on the $80, which would be $4. So your actual percentage is 24% off.

This is a little math pet peeve of mine. You can't add percentages to find the overall total when one action affects the results of the other action(s).

CDub
Posts: 37
Joined: Thu Jan 18, 2018 8:27 am

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by CDub » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:44 pm

Mudpuppy wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:24 pm
CDub wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 4:05 pm
Discover 5% is also possible by purchasing at Costco via Google Express. Google express also has a promotion for 20% off right now. -> so you can actually get 25% off.
Not quite 25% off.... Let's say you start with $100 of purchases. First, the 20% off promotion from Google Express would drop that down to $80. Then you'd get 5% cash back on the $80, which would be $4. So your actual percentage is 24% off.

This is a little math pet peeve of mine. You can't add percentages to find the overall total when one action affects the results of the other action(s).
Ha, that's a good point. I normally catch things like that. Surprised I missed it. 24% is still pretty good. :sharebeer

giesen5
Posts: 289
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:44 pm
Location: Bellingham, WA

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by giesen5 » Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:42 am

ZinCO wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:35 pm
spammagnet wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:11 pm
gvsucavie03 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:38 pm
I'd be weary of signing up for cards purely for the bonus... more open accounts, hurts your credit score, identity theft issues, etc. I have a few I did last year that I should probably close, but keep older cards open.
I expected but my score to drop but it went up, not down. It was in the mid- to high- 700s. It's now in the low 800s. I've opened 3 personal Chase accounts since August.
Common misconception. While your score will temporarily drop due to the credit inquiries required to get credit, in the long run it is more than offset by the long-term benefit of improving your credit utilization ratio ( credit used / credit available ). Churners will all have high credit scores (partly due to having above-average amounts of credit extended to them), but then, high credit scores are required to get new credit, so which came first?
Agreed. Have opened over 30 cards in two years and credit score is same or better.

2015
Posts: 1976
Joined: Mon Feb 10, 2014 2:32 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by 2015 » Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:23 pm

giesen5 wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:42 am
ZinCO wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:35 pm
spammagnet wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:11 pm
gvsucavie03 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:38 pm
I'd be weary of signing up for cards purely for the bonus... more open accounts, hurts your credit score, identity theft issues, etc. I have a few I did last year that I should probably close, but keep older cards open.
I expected but my score to drop but it went up, not down. It was in the mid- to high- 700s. It's now in the low 800s. I've opened 3 personal Chase accounts since August.
Common misconception. While your score will temporarily drop due to the credit inquiries required to get credit, in the long run it is more than offset by the long-term benefit of improving your credit utilization ratio ( credit used / credit available ). Churners will all have high credit scores (partly due to having above-average amounts of credit extended to them), but then, high credit scores are required to get new credit, so which came first?
Agreed. Have opened over 30 cards in two years and credit score is same or better.
+2
My credit score increased after I began churning opening/closing bank accounts for bonuses.

giesen5
Posts: 289
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:44 pm
Location: Bellingham, WA

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by giesen5 » Fri Jan 26, 2018 5:21 pm

Just decided to pay my own insurance and taxes for my home - I'm sick of not being in charge of paying my own bills and the bank always seems to ask me for more money every year for escrow.

I can also make a little bit of money putting these funds in a savings account - additional bonus is that I can now make these payments with credit cards for miles/cash!

SocalLiving
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2017 9:56 am
Location: California

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by SocalLiving » Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:23 am

Reporting back on 5% cashback earned on Discover for my purchases on Costco.com for January.

I automatically received 5% back on two Costco cash card purchases, as well as online renewal of membership.

I did not receive 5% on contact lense purchase through Costco.com. I called customer service and they quickly made the adjustment so I earned 5% on that purchase as well. (The rep said it was reported as an Rx purchase by Costco.com, and that is why the adjustment was required).

JBTX
Posts: 4039
Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2017 12:46 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by JBTX » Fri Feb 09, 2018 11:10 am

2015 wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:23 pm
giesen5 wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:42 am
ZinCO wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:35 pm
spammagnet wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:11 pm
gvsucavie03 wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:38 pm
I'd be weary of signing up for cards purely for the bonus... more open accounts, hurts your credit score, identity theft issues, etc. I have a few I did last year that I should probably close, but keep older cards open.
I expected but my score to drop but it went up, not down. It was in the mid- to high- 700s. It's now in the low 800s. I've opened 3 personal Chase accounts since August.
Common misconception. While your score will temporarily drop due to the credit inquiries required to get credit, in the long run it is more than offset by the long-term benefit of improving your credit utilization ratio ( credit used / credit available ). Churners will all have high credit scores (partly due to having above-average amounts of credit extended to them), but then, high credit scores are required to get new credit, so which came first?
Agreed. Have opened over 30 cards in two years and credit score is same or better.
+2
My credit score increased after I began churning opening/closing bank accounts for bonuses.
Started with credit score near highest possible. Between cash out refi and churning a few cards it went down about 50 pts, but now has recovered about 30 of those points back in 7 months and seems to be trending back up.

mariezzz
Posts: 202
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 11:02 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by mariezzz » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:10 pm

JBTX wrote:
Fri Feb 09, 2018 11:10 am
2015 wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:23 pm
giesen5 wrote:
Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:42 am
ZinCO wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:35 pm
spammagnet wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:11 pm

I expected but my score to drop but it went up, not down. It was in the mid- to high- 700s. It's now in the low 800s. I've opened 3 personal Chase accounts since August.
Common misconception. While your score will temporarily drop due to the credit inquiries required to get credit, in the long run it is more than offset by the long-term benefit of improving your credit utilization ratio ( credit used / credit available ). Churners will all have high credit scores (partly due to having above-average amounts of credit extended to them), but then, high credit scores are required to get new credit, so which came first?
Agreed. Have opened over 30 cards in two years and credit score is same or better.
+2
My credit score increased after I began churning opening/closing bank accounts for bonuses.
Started with credit score near highest possible. Between cash out refi and churning a few cards it went down about 50 pts, but now has recovered about 30 of those points back in 7 months and seems to be trending back up.
My credit score has not decreased, despite opening about 7 cards in the last year and closing a few. My total monthly credit usage is rarely about $1500, and statement totals are always paid off in full. Credit score always around 800, for years.

ASpenderInRecovery
Posts: 129
Joined: Sat Jul 29, 2017 9:17 am

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by ASpenderInRecovery » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:25 pm

mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
You also get 5% on Apple Pay and Android Pay this quarter. I started using Apple Pay for my weekly grocery trips and was able to capture the max in 5% rewards quickly that way.

JBTX
Posts: 4039
Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2017 12:46 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by JBTX » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:38 pm

In terms of sign up bonuses, I feel like I've kind of hit a wall. I have arbitrarily set a minimum of $500 signup bonus minimum, and have avoided anything over $100 annual fee.

This year I did

Capital One Venture - $500
Merril Card - $500
BOA Premium - $500
Amegy Business - $1000

I tried one of the chase cards but was rejected because I am over 5/24 - and will likely be for some time, so they are off the table. If I had it to do over again, I would have started with them.

I've looked on Dr of credit and didn't see any new ones that meet my above criteria. Any other ideas?

DrGrnTum
Posts: 43
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 11:22 am

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by DrGrnTum » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:01 pm

ASpenderInRecovery wrote:
Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:25 pm
mega317 wrote:
Thu Jan 11, 2018 3:29 pm
Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those?
You also get 5% on Apple Pay and Android Pay this quarter. I started using Apple Pay for my weekly grocery trips and was able to capture the max in 5% rewards quickly that way.
With all these categories this quarter along with the purchase of gasoline we are on pace to max out the 5% limit on both or our Chase Freedom cards.

And yesterday my South West Airline Companion passed kicked in.

I love this game!!

rayson
Posts: 207
Joined: Mon Dec 23, 2013 2:46 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by rayson » Fri Feb 09, 2018 2:46 pm

JBTX wrote:
Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:38 pm
In terms of sign up bonuses, I feel like I've kind of hit a wall. I have arbitrarily set a minimum of $500 signup bonus minimum, and have avoided anything over $100 annual fee.

This year I did

Capital One Venture - $500
Merril Card - $500
BOA Premium - $500
Amegy Business - $1000

I tried one of the chase cards but was rejected because I am over 5/24 - and will likely be for some time, so they are off the table. If I had it to do over again, I would have started with them.

I've looked on Dr of credit and didn't see any new ones that meet my above criteria. Any other ideas?
$1000 signup bonus is outstanding!

I'm just beginning CC churning game, and I found the best card to begin with is Chase Sapphire Preferred for 60,000 ultimate reward points (equivalent value is $750). Normal bonus is 50k points, but if you are pre-approved through Chase website, you may be eligible for a 60k bonus. Additionally, 5000 bonus points can be had by adding an authorized user.

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