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
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.