What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

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

Post by TravelGeek » Mon May 21, 2018 9:23 pm

dustinst22 wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 7:35 pm
This is my strategy. I'm constantly trying to improve it as I'm addicted to general optimization (it's what I do in my business). My general goal is free flights for vacation + maximum cash back.

Alliant -- General Spend - 3% back on everything, might cancel after first year due to annual fee kicking in. Will likely be switching to Amex Blue Business and using my Schwab Plat for 1.25 multiplier when Alliant hits 1 year. That will provide 2.5% back on everything with no annual fee.

Amex BCP for Groceries - 6%

AMZ Prime Card for Amazon Spend - 5%

Uber Visa for Restaurants - 4%

Costco Citi for Gas - 4%

Discover IT and Chase Freedom for 5% categories

Consumers Credit Union Cash Back Card to hit tier for 4.6% on my emergency fund checking acc of 20 K. This yields 4.6% back on checking + 1% back on the CC for the tier spend.

C1 SPARK for my Business spending which is substantial (online marketing) 2%
You know what's interesting? I currently have a fleet of 16 credit cards, and there is literally zero overlap between your cards and mine :)

And I am not saying that your strategy is bad. Certainly looks "cheaper" (in AF) than mine.

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

Post by Wildebeest » Mon May 21, 2018 9:50 pm

My credit card rewards strategy does not work.

My son's: "Dad, you save money by not spending. " does.

My inlaws: "Going broke saving money" is so true.

Credit cards rewards is like picking up pennies in front of stream rollers.

I learned my lesson with Fidelity 2% cash back card as well with Bank of America VISA card, the steam roller got me.

It was not not money, just the time being on the phone trying to extricate oneself from the quicksand of charges, they try to unleash on you for trying to pick up the pennies.
The Golden Rule: One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself.

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

Post by EyeYield » Mon May 21, 2018 10:21 pm

State Farm Visa.
Certainly not the best, but it works for me. I buy a lot of insurance, but admit I don’t try to play the rewards game like a lot of you.

3 points per $1 spent on insurance premium payments
Up to $4,000 annually, 1 point per $1 thereafter. And 1 point per $1 for every thing else. No annual fee.

They do add a premium at certain point intervals, but you have to put them all on a gift card or in a checking account to use them all. My agent accepts payment via SF gift card, so I just use it to pay my premiums.
“Single redemptions to qualifying State Farm Bank Checking/Interest Checking accounts and State Farm Visa Gift Cards will earn a redemption premium as follows:
Points Redeemed / Premium
0-24,999 points - No Premium
25,000 - 49,999 - 25% Premium
50,000 - 99,999 - 35% Premium
100,000 - greater - 50% Premium”

I just wait until I have $1000 in points and SF kicks in an additional $500.
"The stock market is a giant distraction from the business of investing." - Jack Bogle

dustinst22
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by dustinst22 » Mon May 21, 2018 10:25 pm

TravelGeek wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 9:23 pm

You know what's interesting? I currently have a fleet of 16 credit cards, and there is literally zero overlap between your cards and mine :)

And I am not saying that your strategy is bad. Certainly looks "cheaper" (in AF) than mine.
Haha, well I'm always open to improvement and better optimization if you have suggestions!

Keep in mind, these are just the ones I keep, most of my cards are ones that I churn and cancel out (about 2-3 per quarter).

dkb140
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by dkb140 » Mon May 21, 2018 10:35 pm

I like the OP Rewards.

I use: Amazon Store Card for 5% on Amazon and Barclay Uber Visa for 4% back at Bars & Restaurants. Chase Freedom & Discover IT for 5% rotating.

I also use the CreditCards.com Wallet app to keep track of which card is best where.

dustinst22
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by dustinst22 » Mon May 21, 2018 10:36 pm

Bogle_Bro wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 9:08 pm
Moving 20k cash to consumers credit union asap to make 900 dollars a year to let it sit there

I'll knock out the grand speeding requirement with one daycare swipe...

12 vending machine-esqu purchases per month for the minimum transactions I guess

Heard you can do .50 cent transactions buying Amazon credits , or something, but haven't looked into it.
Yep! It's really excellent. I've been a member now for a few years, no issues. I do the 50 cent transactions on Amazon to fill up my personal gift card balance to hit the debit requirements. Takes like 2 minutes.

TheRightKost87
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by TheRightKost87 » Mon May 21, 2018 11:11 pm

MikeG62 wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 12:06 pm
The problem I see with the 5th night free is it requires you have enough points to cover the first four nights (which I don't have - at least not at properties where DW and I would want to stay).

In terms of value per point, I stayed at a Hyatt in downtown Nashville last fall. Cash room cost would have been ~$1,300 for three nights. I used 42K Hyatt points which covered the full cost of the room. I transferred those points from Chase UR, which I earned at 3 points per dollar spent ($14,000 in charges on my CSR card). So cash-back equivalent on that $14,000 of spend was 9.3%.

DW and I are looking at a trip to Colorado (Springs and Boulder) in the late summer. A total of six nights I could book at two different Hyatt properties. Cash cost would be ~$1,400 for those six nights or 48,000 points. If I use some of my Chase UR points to generate the 48,000 Hyatt points, that would be 8.8% cash-back equivalent per dollar spent to earn those 48,000 points through CSR card spend.

When I look at Marriott, I can't find any deals remotely close to these levels of value per dollar spent to earn the points needed to cover the room cost. Maybe I am jaded by these high value Hyatt deals.

Another option to book hotel rooms is to use the Chase UR portal. There I know I can get 4.5% cash back equivalent for each dollar of CSR spend that generated those points. Comparing this to your example of 1.3 cents per point does not seem very competitive, unless I am missing something.

This is where I am finding the Marriott program to be lacking. Again, maybe I have not looked hard enough to uncover higher value deals with Marriott.
I had gotten two sign up bonuses for the Marriott points (well, SO got one of them). $3K spend for 100K points, x2, means I spent $6K to earn those 180K points and still have enough for another night left. So in terms of that, I got over 35% back on that spend. I acknowledge the sign-up bonus for them isn’t a perpetual strategy though.

I generally use CSR for my non-signup bonus spend as well.
"The problem with diversification is that it works, whether or not we want it to"

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

Post by letsgobobby » Tue May 22, 2018 1:21 am

Cit Aadvantage Gold MC 65,000 bonus points and annual fee waived first year is tempting.

Thanks to daughter’s braces, just knocked out the Hawaiian $2000 spend for 60,000 miles x 2 (Barclay’s).

If I’m not careful I’m going to get hit with the Chase 5/24 ban.

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

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 22, 2018 2:42 pm

Jags4186 wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 4:25 pm
VictoriaF wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 1:04 pm

BeneIRA,

Thank you for keeping me on track! I sometimes forget reasons for different cards. You are right: I can use Freedom Unlimited for un-bonused domestic purchases (and get URs) and continue using CapOne card for un-bonused foreign purchases.

Cheers,
Victoria
Why wouldn’t you use your Sapphire for foreign transactions? With the CSR you’ll get minimum 1.5cpp value for travel and if you’re transfering you’d be getting even more than that (since you’d rarely transfer for less than 1.5cpp value).
Many of my foreign transactions are registrations for events, courses, and other expenses that are not "travel." Also, Chase sometimes does not recognize small places as "lodging" or "restaurants."

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

THY4373
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by THY4373 » Tue May 22, 2018 4:24 pm

dustinst22 wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 7:35 pm
I also monetize my credit another way, but won't get into that here as I think its against the forum rules.
If it is what I think it is I'd be careful with that. A number of folks I know have been shutdown by banks for doing it. I assume you are only doing it with banks where you are willing to sacrifice the relationship?

dustinst22
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by dustinst22 » Tue May 22, 2018 6:22 pm

THY4373 wrote:
Tue May 22, 2018 4:24 pm
dustinst22 wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 7:35 pm
I also monetize my credit another way, but won't get into that here as I think its against the forum rules.
If it is what I think it is I'd be careful with that. A number of folks I know have been shutdown by banks for doing it. I assume you are only doing it with banks where you are willing to sacrifice the relationship?
precisely

Jags4186
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Jags4186 » Tue May 22, 2018 7:54 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
Tue May 22, 2018 2:42 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 4:25 pm
VictoriaF wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 1:04 pm

BeneIRA,

Thank you for keeping me on track! I sometimes forget reasons for different cards. You are right: I can use Freedom Unlimited for un-bonused domestic purchases (and get URs) and continue using CapOne card for un-bonused foreign purchases.

Cheers,
Victoria
Why wouldn’t you use your Sapphire for foreign transactions? With the CSR you’ll get minimum 1.5cpp value for travel and if you’re transfering you’d be getting even more than that (since you’d rarely transfer for less than 1.5cpp value).
Many of my foreign transactions are registrations for events, courses, and other expenses that are not "travel." Also, Chase sometimes does not recognize small places as "lodging" or "restaurants."

Victoria
Yes, but if you are not redeeming 1 UR point at greater than or equal $0.015 it seems somewhat pointless to be invested in the Chase ecosystem.

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

Post by gvsucavie03 » Wed May 23, 2018 5:51 am

Wildebeest wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 9:50 pm
My credit card rewards strategy does not work.

My son's: "Dad, you save money by not spending. " does.

My inlaws: "Going broke saving money" is so true.

Credit cards rewards is like picking up pennies in front of stream rollers.

I learned my lesson with Fidelity 2% cash back card as well with Bank of America VISA card, the steam roller got me.

It was not not money, just the time being on the phone trying to extricate oneself from the quicksand of charges, they try to unleash on you for trying to pick up the pennies.
I have never paid a penny in cc interest or late fees. Many more on this forum haven't either. Responsible use while enjoying benefits is a real thing. I felt the same way you did a few years ago, but my wife and I are very responsible with our spending.

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

Post by ResearchMed » Wed May 23, 2018 6:22 am

Wildebeest wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 9:50 pm
My credit card rewards strategy does not work.

My son's: "Dad, you save money by not spending. " does.

My inlaws: "Going broke saving money" is so true.

Credit cards rewards is like picking up pennies in front of stream rollers.

I learned my lesson with Fidelity 2% cash back card as well with Bank of America VISA card, the steam roller got me.

It was not not money, just the time being on the phone trying to extricate oneself from the quicksand of charges, they try to unleash on you for trying to pick up the pennies.
What "quicksand of charges"?

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

Post by Da5id » Wed May 23, 2018 10:45 am

ResearchMed wrote:
Wed May 23, 2018 6:22 am
Wildebeest wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 9:50 pm
My credit card rewards strategy does not work.

My son's: "Dad, you save money by not spending. " does.

My inlaws: "Going broke saving money" is so true.

Credit cards rewards is like picking up pennies in front of stream rollers.

I learned my lesson with Fidelity 2% cash back card as well with Bank of America VISA card, the steam roller got me.

It was not not money, just the time being on the phone trying to extricate oneself from the quicksand of charges, they try to unleash on you for trying to pick up the pennies.
What "quicksand of charges"?

RM
If one can't pay cards on time, the only winning move in the credit card game is not to play. One shouldn't pursue bonuses and rewards if one is going to carry a balance, pay late fees or pay other random penalties.

Most on this thread, myself included, never pay any charges other than annual fees that we deem worth the benefits. I think I once had a late fee by transposing digits (in the pennies) paying a Discover bill. Discover agreed to waive the fee :)

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

Post by dknightd » Wed May 23, 2018 11:10 am

I just put it towards my balance. Apparently boring, and perhaps stupid.The card I use most often only gets 1.5%. Better than zero :)

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

Post by Da5id » Fri May 25, 2018 7:45 am

Note that they are slightly degrading value of Chase Sapphire Reserve. Got an email today listing some new benefits (mostly uninteresting), but also that:

1) No longer get 3% on first $300 of travel (i.e. the reimbursed travel credit spending doesn't get you 3%)
2) No more price protection
3) Priority pass is limited to 2 guests, $27 for each additional one

Not earth shattering, just a slight nerf.

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

Post by IowaFarmWife » Fri May 25, 2018 8:04 am

dknightd wrote:
Wed May 23, 2018 11:10 am
I just put it towards my balance. Apparently boring, and perhaps stupid.The card I use most often only gets 1.5%. Better than zero :)
This is what my husband does, too. He loves simplicity, and there is nothing wrong with that.

arf30
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by arf30 » Fri May 25, 2018 2:24 pm

I keep it simple, Fidelity 2%, Capital One Quicksilver 1.5% (travel), and Amazon Prime Visa 5%. They all auto redeem so I don't have to think about it.

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

Post by bling » Fri May 25, 2018 8:01 pm

i use the following:

chase sapphire reserve: food/dining/travel
chase freedom: 5% categories
chase freedom unlimited: default card
amazon: amazon
amex blue cash preferred: groceries
bank of america cash rewards: gas

unfortunately, a combination of me not traveling often enough, and not wanting to use my points unless i get at least 1.7 cents/point means i have almost 200k unused UR points....

i've been toying with moving most of my spend to the BoA premium rewards card....since most of my investments are at merrill edge, in addition to free trades, this credit card would give me 2.625% cashback on everything i buy.

MikeG62
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by MikeG62 » Sat May 26, 2018 6:41 am

bling wrote:
Fri May 25, 2018 8:01 pm
i use the following:

chase sapphire reserve: food/dining/travel
chase freedom: 5% categories
chase freedom unlimited: default card
amazon: amazon
amex blue cash preferred: groceries
bank of america cash rewards: gas

unfortunately, a combination of me not traveling often enough, and not wanting to use my points unless i get at least 1.7 cents/point means i have almost 200k unused UR points....

i've been toying with moving most of my spend to the BoA premium rewards card....since most of my investments are at merrill edge, in addition to free trades, this credit card would give me 2.625% cashback on everything i buy.
I'd certainly swap the BofA premium rewards card for the CFU if in your shoes. You'll pick up an extra 112.5 basis points in rewards per dollar spent (vs. the CFU) with several options to offset the $95 annual fee.

We have a similar line-up of cards to you, except we use the Fidelity VISA as our default card. We also have a Discover card for their 5% rotating categories (have had it since 1987) - it's hardly used much though. We use a Pen Fed card for gas (5% CB) and have a host of airline cards (for free checked bags and priority boarding privileges). DW also has a bunch of retail store CC's for discounts only available to their CC holders.
Real Knowledge Comes Only From Experience

Snuffycuts99
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by Snuffycuts99 » Sat May 26, 2018 7:12 am

My strategy is pretty simple these days. I still have the old AMEX Blue Cash card with no annual fee. Once I hit 6500 in annual spend, I get 5% cash back on gas, groceries, and pharmacy. Typically takes me about 2 billing cycles to get there. All purchases outside of those categories go on the Citi Double Cash.

I'm not a heavy churner but I take advantage of great offers when they come up or when I have a large purchase outside of my typical monthly budget. I usually sign up for 2-3 new cards a year, pick up the sign up bonuses, and close them out.

bling
Posts: 285
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by bling » Sat May 26, 2018 8:00 am

MikeG62 wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 6:41 am
bling wrote:
Fri May 25, 2018 8:01 pm
i use the following:

chase sapphire reserve: food/dining/travel
chase freedom: 5% categories
chase freedom unlimited: default card
amazon: amazon
amex blue cash preferred: groceries
bank of america cash rewards: gas

unfortunately, a combination of me not traveling often enough, and not wanting to use my points unless i get at least 1.7 cents/point means i have almost 200k unused UR points....

i've been toying with moving most of my spend to the BoA premium rewards card....since most of my investments are at merrill edge, in addition to free trades, this credit card would give me 2.625% cashback on everything i buy.
I'd certainly swap the BofA premium rewards card for the CFU if in your shoes. You'll pick up an extra 112.5 basis points in rewards per dollar spent (vs. the CFU) with several options to offset the $95 annual fee.
the airline incidental on that card is pretty lackluster because it's only applicable to domestic airlines. AA gift cards are known to trigger the credit but i can't remember the last time i flew on AA...

anywho, you pushed to me do the math. based on my spending patterns, after accounting for annual fees and assuming a 1.5x redemption factor, CSR+CFU gives me 2.75% effective cashback, vs CSR+BoAPR which gives me 2.81%.

if i bump the factor to 1.7 (pretty easy with southwest flights), it becomes CSR+CFU=3.15% vs CSR+BoA=3.02%. tack on the bonus 5% spend from the freedom and UR points still come out on top for me.

but i really do hate staring at my 200k unused points....

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

Post by ResearchMed » Sat May 26, 2018 10:31 am

bling wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 8:00 am
MikeG62 wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 6:41 am
bling wrote:
Fri May 25, 2018 8:01 pm
i use the following:

chase sapphire reserve: food/dining/travel
chase freedom: 5% categories
chase freedom unlimited: default card
amazon: amazon
amex blue cash preferred: groceries
bank of america cash rewards: gas

unfortunately, a combination of me not traveling often enough, and not wanting to use my points unless i get at least 1.7 cents/point means i have almost 200k unused UR points....

i've been toying with moving most of my spend to the BoA premium rewards card....since most of my investments are at merrill edge, in addition to free trades, this credit card would give me 2.625% cashback on everything i buy.
I'd certainly swap the BofA premium rewards card for the CFU if in your shoes. You'll pick up an extra 112.5 basis points in rewards per dollar spent (vs. the CFU) with several options to offset the $95 annual fee.
the airline incidental on that card is pretty lackluster because it's only applicable to domestic airlines. AA gift cards are known to trigger the credit but i can't remember the last time i flew on AA...

anywho, you pushed to me do the math. based on my spending patterns, after accounting for annual fees and assuming a 1.5x redemption factor, CSR+CFU gives me 2.75% effective cashback, vs CSR+BoAPR which gives me 2.81%.

if i bump the factor to 1.7 (pretty easy with southwest flights), it becomes CSR+CFU=3.15% vs CSR+BoA=3.02%. tack on the bonus 5% spend from the freedom and UR points still come out on top for me.

but i really do hate staring at my 200k unused points....
I'm not familiar with all of those cards/programs, but regarding your comment that you "can't remember the last time [you] flew on AA", if you are referring to AA points/awards, those can be transferred to some very nice international carriers.

RM
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ResearchMed
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by ResearchMed » Sat May 26, 2018 10:32 am

Delete - duplicate.
Last edited by ResearchMed on Sat May 26, 2018 11:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
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MikeG62
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by MikeG62 » Sat May 26, 2018 10:49 am

bling wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 8:00 am
MikeG62 wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 6:41 am
bling wrote:
Fri May 25, 2018 8:01 pm
i use the following:

chase sapphire reserve: food/dining/travel
chase freedom: 5% categories
chase freedom unlimited: default card
amazon: amazon
amex blue cash preferred: groceries
bank of america cash rewards: gas

unfortunately, a combination of me not traveling often enough, and not wanting to use my points unless i get at least 1.7 cents/point means i have almost 200k unused UR points....

i've been toying with moving most of my spend to the BoA premium rewards card....since most of my investments are at merrill edge, in addition to free trades, this credit card would give me 2.625% cashback on everything i buy.
I'd certainly swap the BofA premium rewards card for the CFU if in your shoes. You'll pick up an extra 112.5 basis points in rewards per dollar spent (vs. the CFU) with several options to offset the $95 annual fee.
the airline incidental on that card is pretty lackluster because it's only applicable to domestic airlines. AA gift cards are known to trigger the credit but i can't remember the last time i flew on AA...

anywho, you pushed to me do the math. based on my spending patterns, after accounting for annual fees and assuming a 1.5x redemption factor, CSR+CFU gives me 2.75% effective cashback, vs CSR+BoAPR which gives me 2.81%.

if i bump the factor to 1.7 (pretty easy with southwest flights), it becomes CSR+CFU=3.15% vs CSR+BoA=3.02%. tack on the bonus 5% spend from the freedom and UR points still come out on top for me.

but i really do hate staring at my 200k unused points....
Clearly this is person specific, based upon how much you spend and on what categories.

WRT the BofA $95 annual fee, I believe you can use travel credits for seat upgrades to offset it (i.e., get $95 worth of seat upgrades for free). DW and I almost always upgrade seats to the "more comfort" or "premium economy" rows, so would be very easy for us to quickly offset the annual fee that way. YMMV though.

Good point on being able to juice the CFU 1.5% value to 2.25% (by transferring the points to your CSR card). I had forgotten about that. However, as you rightly point out, you will then have a ton of UR points which may take a while to use.

I have roughly 300,000 UR points right now. I would not necessarily want to convert spend on my general purpose CC to more of those points as I feel I have plenty and at the rate I am accumulating UR points (~180,000 points per year) I'd rather get value from my general purpose spend in other ways (like straight cash back or a statement credit).

BTW, I have been able to monetize Chase UR points at over 9% by transferring UR points to Hyatt and using for Hyatt hotel stays. Did this in Nashville last fall and I think the conversion amounted to 9.3 cents per dollar or spend needed to generate the points transferred. Looking at a trip to Colorado later this summer and the conversion there is in the upper 8 cents per dollar range. Not sure what the conversion to SW is worth, but there is really good value in the Chase relationship with Hyatt. Having said that, I don't stay in Hyatt hotels that often, but if its an option on a particular trip I will look to see how many points are required per night (versus the straight cash cost of the room) and decide whether it makes sense.
Real Knowledge Comes Only From Experience

SlowMovingInvestor
Posts: 821
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2016 11:27 am

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by SlowMovingInvestor » Sat May 26, 2018 11:25 am

I've received a targetted Citi offer to become a Citi Priority client (i.e. open CitiPriority accounts) and get 50K ThankYou points. I'm not a great fan of ThankYou points -- don't use their travel partners much.

I have heard that Citi also has a similar offer, but with AA miles offered. Any way I can use this targetted offer for AA miles instead (which I do use) ? Would it be work visiting a branch to fund out ? Citi branches are few and far between in my state, so reluctant to visit unless there's hope of getting miles.

PS: This is not exactly credit card rewards, but close enough that I thought it might belong in this thread.

bling
Posts: 285
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2012 12:49 pm

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by bling » Sat May 26, 2018 11:34 am

SlowMovingInvestor wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 11:25 am
I've received a targetted Citi offer to become a Citi Priority client (i.e. open CitiPriority accounts) and get 50K ThankYou points. I'm not a great fan of ThankYou points -- don't use their travel partners much.

I have heard that Citi also has a similar offer, but with AA miles offered. Any way I can use this targetted offer for AA miles instead (which I do use) ? Would it be work visiting a branch to fund out ? Citi branches are few and far between in my state, so reluctant to visit unless there's hope of getting miles.

PS: This is not exactly credit card rewards, but close enough that I thought it might belong in this thread.
just go on their website. looks like they have a 60k bonus right now.

https://www.citi.com/credit-cards/credi ... 1C1L10402W

SlowMovingInvestor
Posts: 821
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2016 11:27 am

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by SlowMovingInvestor » Sat May 26, 2018 12:06 pm

bling wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 11:34 am
SlowMovingInvestor wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 11:25 am
I've received a targetted Citi offer to become a Citi Priority client (i.e. open CitiPriority accounts) and get 50K ThankYou points. I'm not a great fan of ThankYou points -- don't use their travel partners much.

I have heard that Citi also has a similar offer, but with AA miles offered. Any way I can use this targetted offer for AA miles instead (which I do use) ? Would it be work visiting a branch to fund out ? Citi branches are few and far between in my state, so reluctant to visit unless there's hope of getting miles.

PS: This is not exactly credit card rewards, but close enough that I thought it might belong in this thread.
just go on their website. looks like they have a 60k bonus right now.

https://www.citi.com/credit-cards/credi ... 1C1L10402W
That's for the Credit Card. I'm not eligible for the Citi Credit Card (has not been 24 months since I closed my AA Credit card account).

I was asking about a 50K award of AA miles for opening a Citibank Priority bank account that Citi has apparently sent out to targetted customers. I got a targetted ThankYou points award instead.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by hmw » Sat May 26, 2018 12:12 pm

SlowMovingInvestor wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 11:25 am
I've received a targetted Citi offer to become a Citi Priority client (i.e. open CitiPriority accounts) and get 50K ThankYou points. I'm not a great fan of ThankYou points -- don't use their travel partners much.

I have heard that Citi also has a similar offer, but with AA miles offered. Any way I can use this targetted offer for AA miles instead (which I do use) ? Would it be work visiting a branch to fund out ? Citi branches are few and far between in my state, so reluctant to visit unless there's hope of getting miles.

PS: This is not exactly credit card rewards, but close enough that I thought it might belong in this thread.

You can use Thankyou points to make mortgage payment at 100points=$1.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by pennstater2005 » Sat May 26, 2018 1:01 pm

Finally got back into the game. Citi AA Advantage Card. 60k points for 3k spend. I'm doing it to get Home Depot gift cards to get this bad boy.

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

Post by NoHeat » Sat May 26, 2018 1:37 pm

My credit freezes are an annoying but necessary complication, when I seek credit-card signup bonuses.

Most banks will reject my application in a letter, but provide a phone number that I can call, allowing me to lift a freeze temporarily and finish the application right then, on the phone. It's a nuisance, although some banks make it easier than others.

But Capital One was the worst. Their recent letter specified a lack of credit history as the reason for rejecting my application, and they provided no phone number. So I wrote them, informed them I have freezes and that I would be happy to lift one if they specify the bureau and date. No joy, Capital One wrote back that nothing has changed in their view and their rejection stands.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by MonkeyPants » Sat May 26, 2018 2:14 pm

NoHeat wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 1:37 pm
My credit freezes are an annoying but necessary complication, when I seek credit-card signup bonuses.

Most banks will reject my application in a letter, but provide a phone number that I can call, allowing me to lift a freeze temporarily and finish the application right then, on the phone. It's a nuisance, although some banks make it easier than others.
I have freezes on the major agencies as well. But you can temporarily lift for any number of days of your specification online for a fee. It happens instantly. So on my last application in branch, I did a temporary thaw from my phone in the lobby before talking to the bank agent for the application and this worked without a hitch. Perhaps you may consider this approach next time to avoid any hassle associated with the rejection letter.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by LadyGeek » Sat May 26, 2018 2:42 pm

MonkeyPants wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 2:14 pm
I have freezes on the major agencies as well. But you can temporarily lift for any number of days of your specification online for a fee.
Heads up - Freezing and unfreezing credit reports will be free at the end of September. See: Free to freeze and unfreeze your credit report
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by VictoriaF » Sat May 26, 2018 4:05 pm

LadyGeek wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 2:42 pm
MonkeyPants wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 2:14 pm
I have freezes on the major agencies as well. But you can temporarily lift for any number of days of your specification online for a fee.
Heads up - Freezing and unfreezing credit reports will be free at the end of September. See: Free to freeze and unfreeze your credit report
Thank you, LadyGeek,

My procrastination has paid off ... unless I lose my identity between now and September.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by mudfud » Mon May 28, 2018 2:07 pm

bling wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 8:00 am
anywho, you pushed to me do the math. based on my spending patterns, after accounting for annual fees and assuming a 1.5x redemption factor, CSR+CFU gives me 2.75% effective cashback, vs CSR+BoAPR which gives me 2.81%.

if i bump the factor to 1.7 (pretty easy with southwest flights), it becomes CSR+CFU=3.15% vs CSR+BoA=3.02%. tack on the bonus 5% spend from the freedom and UR points still come out on top for me.
Could you please go through your calculations—how do you get 2.75% effective cash back with CSR+CFU?
Thanks,
Mud
"Are you sure you have tested an a priori hypothesis?" | | Image

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by bling » Mon May 28, 2018 2:48 pm

mudfud wrote:
Mon May 28, 2018 2:07 pm
bling wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 8:00 am
anywho, you pushed to me do the math. based on my spending patterns, after accounting for annual fees and assuming a 1.5x redemption factor, CSR+CFU gives me 2.75% effective cashback, vs CSR+BoAPR which gives me 2.81%.

if i bump the factor to 1.7 (pretty easy with southwest flights), it becomes CSR+CFU=3.15% vs CSR+BoA=3.02%. tack on the bonus 5% spend from the freedom and UR points still come out on top for me.
Could you please go through your calculations—how do you get 2.75% effective cash back with CSR+CFU?
Thanks,
Mud
travel/restaurants gets you 3x points, *1.5 = 4.5% equivalent cashback. combine that with miscellaneous spending, which is 1.5x1.5=2.25%, and you'll get a number in between.

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

Post by mudfud » Mon May 28, 2018 3:16 pm

bling wrote:
Mon May 28, 2018 2:48 pm
mudfud wrote:
Mon May 28, 2018 2:07 pm
bling wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 8:00 am
anywho, you pushed to me do the math. based on my spending patterns, after accounting for annual fees and assuming a 1.5x redemption factor, CSR+CFU gives me 2.75% effective cashback, vs CSR+BoAPR which gives me 2.81%.

if i bump the factor to 1.7 (pretty easy with southwest flights), it becomes CSR+CFU=3.15% vs CSR+BoA=3.02%. tack on the bonus 5% spend from the freedom and UR points still come out on top for me.
Could you please go through your calculations—how do you get 2.75% effective cash back with CSR+CFU?
Thanks,
Mud
travel/restaurants gets you 3x points, *1.5 = 4.5% equivalent cashback. combine that with miscellaneous spending, which is 1.5x1.5=2.25%, and you'll get a number in between.
Got it, thanks,
Mud
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by BUBear29 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 9:17 am

Want to see what you guys think:

Currently have the following cards: CSP, CFU, USAA (2.5%), Amex BCP.

I want to simplify down to two cards. Would you stick with CSP/CFU or go with USAA/Amex?

We typically buy flights on Southwest as we fly on AA for free (family member is corporate exec). Really just want points/cash for travel. I’m thinking USAA/Amex due to flexibility of use and ability to then earn points on southwest when booking flights with cash.

Thoughts?
There is no dignity quite so impressive, and no one independence quite so important, as living within your means.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by DiMAn0684 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:03 am

BUBear29 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 9:17 am
Want to see what you guys think:

Currently have the following cards: CSP, CFU, USAA (2.5%), Amex BCP.

I want to simplify down to two cards. Would you stick with CSP/CFU or go with USAA/Amex?

We typically buy flights on Southwest as we fly on AA for free (family member is corporate exec). Really just want points/cash for travel. I’m thinking USAA/Amex due to flexibility of use and ability to then earn points on southwest when booking flights with cash.

Thoughts?
Very much depends on how highly you value Chase URs.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by BUBear29 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 2:26 pm

DiMAn0684 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:03 am
BUBear29 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 9:17 am
Want to see what you guys think:

Currently have the following cards: CSP, CFU, USAA (2.5%), Amex BCP.

I want to simplify down to two cards. Would you stick with CSP/CFU or go with USAA/Amex?

We typically buy flights on Southwest as we fly on AA for free (family member is corporate exec). Really just want points/cash for travel. I’m thinking USAA/Amex due to flexibility of use and ability to then earn points on southwest when booking flights with cash.

Thoughts?
Very much depends on how highly you value Chase URs.
I really only use them for SW flights. I find the Chase portal is more expensive than Hotels.com
There is no dignity quite so impressive, and no one independence quite so important, as living within your means.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by TheRightKost87 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 4:14 pm

NoHeat wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 1:37 pm
But Capital One was the worst. Their recent letter specified a lack of credit history as the reason for rejecting my application, and they provided no phone number. So I wrote them, informed them I have freezes and that I would be happy to lift one if they specify the bureau and date. No joy, Capital One wrote back that nothing has changed in their view and their rejection stands.
Agreed, I've had nothing but problems trying to do business with CapitalOne. Couldn't get them to properly open one of their 360 checking accounts for me, despite numerous phone calls. Also, have received 3 targeted mailers from them pre-approving me for cards that I then apply for (while incurring a hard pull hit on my credit history), only to then be denied (with 800+ credit score). In short, they're garbage.
"The problem with diversification is that it works, whether or not we want it to"

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

Post by BeneIRA » Wed Jun 06, 2018 6:46 pm

BUBear29 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 2:26 pm
DiMAn0684 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:03 am
BUBear29 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 9:17 am
Want to see what you guys think:

Currently have the following cards: CSP, CFU, USAA (2.5%), Amex BCP.

I want to simplify down to two cards. Would you stick with CSP/CFU or go with USAA/Amex?

We typically buy flights on Southwest as we fly on AA for free (family member is corporate exec). Really just want points/cash for travel. I’m thinking USAA/Amex due to flexibility of use and ability to then earn points on southwest when booking flights with cash.

Thoughts?
Very much depends on how highly you value Chase URs.
I really only use them for SW flights. I find the Chase portal is more expensive than Hotels.com
If you are under 5/24, you're just missing the Freedom for the 5% rotating categories. I would recommend utilizing the Chase portal to transfer to Hyatt, which is quite a value if you stay at Hyatt Place/Hyatt House. I am with you on Hotels.com, though. Very underrated, especially for one off hotel brands.

DiMAn0684
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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by DiMAn0684 » Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:23 pm

BUBear29 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 2:26 pm
DiMAn0684 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:03 am
BUBear29 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 9:17 am
Want to see what you guys think:

Currently have the following cards: CSP, CFU, USAA (2.5%), Amex BCP.

I want to simplify down to two cards. Would you stick with CSP/CFU or go with USAA/Amex?

We typically buy flights on Southwest as we fly on AA for free (family member is corporate exec). Really just want points/cash for travel. I’m thinking USAA/Amex due to flexibility of use and ability to then earn points on southwest when booking flights with cash.

Thoughts?
Very much depends on how highly you value Chase URs.
I really only use them for SW flights. I find the Chase portal is more expensive than Hotels.com
If you search around, 1 SW pt value for Wanna Get Away flights is usually ~1.3c, so for each dollar you spend on CFU you'll get 1.5 UR pts which roughly converts to 1.95c in SW flights. Judging by this metric 2.5% is better, however another factor to consider is the ability to cancel SW point bookings at any time without penalty. That's a big deal for some people who book SW flights on points and see if a better deal comes around.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by BeneIRA » Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:52 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 1:04 pm
BeneIRA wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 6:38 am
VictoriaF wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 10:02 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 1:46 pm
VictoriaF wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 11:18 am
I want to get CSR.
- I have CSP for which I have received a bonus more than 2 years ago.
- I am under 5/24.
- I have other Chase cards that can keep my URs.

Question-1: After I cancel CSP, how soon will I be able to get CSR with bonuses?
- One of the bloggers had a recent discussion on this topic, and the comments ranged from "in one week" to "wait for 45 days until CSP clears from the system."
- What Bogleheads experiences have been?

Question-2: Should I convert CSP into Freedom Unlimited?
- Most bloggers recommend it, but I am wondering why should not I apply for FU later and get another bonus?

Question-3: Any guesses about Chase increasing the CSR bonus in the near future?

Thank you,
Victoria
1) 30 days should be enough
2) You convert to a Chase Freedom for more 5x bandwidth. Your everyday unbonused spend should go on AMEX Blue Business Plus
3) Highly unlikely
Thank you, Jags4186,

It's an interesting idea to have 2 x Chase Freedom. A large part of my 5x spending goes into Amazon Gift Cards, and consequently I am spending more on Amazon than I would have been spending otherwise. With a $3k/monthly budget I'd live on Amazon (double entendre?).

I don't have AMEX Blue Business Plus. A lot of my unbonused spending is when I am traveling abroad, and places that I am likely to use do not accept AMEX. I am getting 1.5% back from using a Capital One card. I am realizing that product changing (PC) to Freedom Unlimited (FU) would not offer any improvement over CapOne.

Victoria
While I am in the “get Freedom” camp, for at least domestic purchases, I would take the Freedom Unlimited over the Capital One Quicksilver because the Freedom Unlimited generates UR where the Quicksilver is cash back. Since you’re getting a CSR, you can move the UR to the Reserve and have the flexible points. Internationally, the Freedom Unlimited will never make sense due to the foreign transaction fees.
BeneIRA,

Thank you for keeping me on track! I sometimes forget reasons for different cards. You are right: I can use Freedom Unlimited for un-bonused domestic purchases (and get URs) and continue using CapOne card for un-bonused foreign purchases.

Cheers,
Victoria
Did you product change and successfully apply?

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by protagonist » Sun Jun 10, 2018 11:08 am

BeneIRA wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:52 pm
VictoriaF wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 1:04 pm
BeneIRA wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 6:38 am
VictoriaF wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 10:02 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 1:46 pm


1) 30 days should be enough
2) You convert to a Chase Freedom for more 5x bandwidth. Your everyday unbonused spend should go on AMEX Blue Business Plus
3) Highly unlikely
Thank you, Jags4186,

It's an interesting idea to have 2 x Chase Freedom. A large part of my 5x spending goes into Amazon Gift Cards, and consequently I am spending more on Amazon than I would have been spending otherwise. With a $3k/monthly budget I'd live on Amazon (double entendre?).

I don't have AMEX Blue Business Plus. A lot of my unbonused spending is when I am traveling abroad, and places that I am likely to use do not accept AMEX. I am getting 1.5% back from using a Capital One card. I am realizing that product changing (PC) to Freedom Unlimited (FU) would not offer any improvement over CapOne.

Victoria
While I am in the “get Freedom” camp, for at least domestic purchases, I would take the Freedom Unlimited over the Capital One Quicksilver because the Freedom Unlimited generates UR where the Quicksilver is cash back. Since you’re getting a CSR, you can move the UR to the Reserve and have the flexible points. Internationally, the Freedom Unlimited will never make sense due to the foreign transaction fees.
BeneIRA,

Thank you for keeping me on track! I sometimes forget reasons for different cards. You are right: I can use Freedom Unlimited for un-bonused domestic purchases (and get URs) and continue using CapOne card for un-bonused foreign purchases.

Cheers,
Victoria
Did you product change and successfully apply?

Another thing to consider is the money value of simplicity. Thinking, planning, etc costs time and time is money.

If you are on the fence about staying with Chase UR products or applying for something else that gives you nominal additional benefits, I would stick with UR. But rtry to combinemember, the big bang is just in the promotions. 2% of purchases or whatever is not such a huge deal in the long run. I would def. recommend combining Sapphire Reserve with both Freedom and Freedom Unlimited. The freedom cards have no annual fees so you only have to think about them once, I use Freedom Unlimited for most of my non-travel/restaurant purchases. I use Freedom when I can get 5%. I often cannot max out my Freedom card for 5% bonuses during several quarters, simply because I don't make enough category purchases. I don't carry other cards on a day-to-day basis....too much hassle. I use other cards mainly either to keep points/miles active if worth it (like IHG) or when working on a promotion. I haven't done new promos in awhile since I have enough points/miles to satisfy my needs for at least a few years, and he who dies with the most points does not necessarily win. I got sick of managing 17 active cards a couple of years ago. When I need more points I will apply for more cards. For now I don't think about it. You folks may not be in the same position.

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Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Post by VictoriaF » Mon Jun 11, 2018 12:44 pm

BeneIRA wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:52 pm
VictoriaF wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 1:04 pm
BeneIRA wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 6:38 am
VictoriaF wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 10:02 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 1:46 pm


1) 30 days should be enough
2) You convert to a Chase Freedom for more 5x bandwidth. Your everyday unbonused spend should go on AMEX Blue Business Plus
3) Highly unlikely
Thank you, Jags4186,

It's an interesting idea to have 2 x Chase Freedom. A large part of my 5x spending goes into Amazon Gift Cards, and consequently I am spending more on Amazon than I would have been spending otherwise. With a $3k/monthly budget I'd live on Amazon (double entendre?).

I don't have AMEX Blue Business Plus. A lot of my unbonused spending is when I am traveling abroad, and places that I am likely to use do not accept AMEX. I am getting 1.5% back from using a Capital One card. I am realizing that product changing (PC) to Freedom Unlimited (FU) would not offer any improvement over CapOne.

Victoria
While I am in the “get Freedom” camp, for at least domestic purchases, I would take the Freedom Unlimited over the Capital One Quicksilver because the Freedom Unlimited generates UR where the Quicksilver is cash back. Since you’re getting a CSR, you can move the UR to the Reserve and have the flexible points. Internationally, the Freedom Unlimited will never make sense due to the foreign transaction fees.
BeneIRA,

Thank you for keeping me on track! I sometimes forget reasons for different cards. You are right: I can use Freedom Unlimited for un-bonused domestic purchases (and get URs) and continue using CapOne card for un-bonused foreign purchases.

Cheers,
Victoria
Did you product change and successfully apply?
Not yet. I was procrastinating, and then I had a family tragedy that has replaced all other concerns.

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

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

Post by VictoriaF » Mon Jun 11, 2018 12:48 pm

protagonist wrote:
Sun Jun 10, 2018 11:08 am
Another thing to consider is the money value of simplicity. Thinking, planning, etc costs time and time is money.
Thank you, protagonist. You have expressed it exactly right. There are many life priorities that are far greater than optimizing CC rewards, and focusing on low hanging fruits is probably the best strategy.

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

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

Post by dbr » Mon Jun 11, 2018 12:49 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 12:48 pm
protagonist wrote:
Sun Jun 10, 2018 11:08 am
Another thing to consider is the money value of simplicity. Thinking, planning, etc costs time and time is money.
Thank you, protagonist. You have expressed it exactly right. There are many life priorities that are far greater than optimizing CC rewards, and focusing on low hanging fruits is probably the best strategy.

Victoria
It's a hobby and hobbies are entertaining.

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

Post by VictoriaF » Mon Jun 11, 2018 12:55 pm

dbr wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 12:49 pm
VictoriaF wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 12:48 pm
protagonist wrote:
Sun Jun 10, 2018 11:08 am
Another thing to consider is the money value of simplicity. Thinking, planning, etc costs time and time is money.
Thank you, protagonist. You have expressed it exactly right. There are many life priorities that are far greater than optimizing CC rewards, and focusing on low hanging fruits is probably the best strategy.

Victoria
It's a hobby and hobbies are entertaining.
I agree that with our hobbies we spend much more time than others may consider prudent.
I agree that many people participating in this thread are Credit Card rewards hobbyists and derive pleasure from playing this game.
I admit that I, too, play this game at a Beginner level and get pleasure when I get some results.

But this exchange was about something I have written earlier and I responded according to how I think about it now.

Thank you for reminding me that this is an entertaining hobby in its own right, with rewards apart from the cost-benefit ratios of time and money.

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

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