I love credit cards so much!

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by FairestOfThemAll37, Jul 18, 2016.

  1. Narnia_girl

    Narnia_girl He's not a tame lion, but he is good.

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    I'm confused about a detail with Ultimate Rewards. We often fly Southwest and I know I can transfer UR points to use at Southwest. But it also says I'll get a 20% discount if I book on the UR site. I did a search of our next trip and Southwest didn't even come up in the results.

    So if I'm flying Southwest, is it possible to book from the UR site? And if I can, which is better: book Southwest from the UR site, or transfer the points and book directly with Southwest?
     
  2. hsmamato2

    hsmamato2 <font color=magenta>Tink in Training-Good Girl,Bad

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    I would transfer the points and book o question- points bookings are so flexible.... much better than thru the portal- I've only booked a hotel straight thru the UR portal,as mostly I transfer to other travel programs for easier usage. Southwest is a biggie for me, I love the points.
     
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  4. Albort

    Albort ODV Crew

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  5. AmyAnne

    AmyAnne DIS Veteran

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    So I found out that I was approved for the Chase Sapphire Preferred card!

    I'm wondering, any tips or tricks for meeting the spending requirement? We probably would normally spend about half of the $4000 in three months but (barring any big unforeseen expense) probably won't have the need to charge the other $2000. The default plan is to buy grocery store and gas gift cards. Other ideas?
     
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  6. calypso726

    calypso726 Escaping reality one Disney vacation at a time

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    Congrats!!!

    You could open up a Blue Bird checking account, purchase pin enabled gift cards that say debit card and load those at Walmart to your BB checking account and then transfer those funds to your real checking account and pay the credit card. You should be able to get through $2,000 without getting shut down. DH did $30,000 so we could get the British Airways companion pass. We had 3 BB accounts shut down in the process but managed it LOL Frequent Miler has a pretty good FAQ and how to do Blue Bird manufactured spending.

    You could open a non Blue Bird checking account with a bank that allows funding with a credit card. Just make sure you lower your cash advance limit with your Chase Sapphire Preferred to zero or $1 in case they suddenly don't allow credit card funding right when you decide to open the account. Doctor of Credit has a list of banks that allow it with data points.

    Get an authorized user card for a very trusted friend or family member that has large purchases coming up and planning to pay with cash or debit card. Have them use your CSP and pay you the cash. Or, don't get the AU card and simply buy what they need with your card and have them give you the cash.
     
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  7. hsmamato2

    hsmamato2 <font color=magenta>Tink in Training-Good Girl,Bad

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    @AmyAnne Yeah, Bluebird and all that walmart stuff.... smh- it can be dicey,and it's not for the faint of heart,or casual 'i need some spend to get my points on one cc' type of person...IMHO of course. My personal favorite is to get gc's to things I'm going to spend on anyway within the next year like grocery,certain travel cards, warehouse chopping,restaurants,gas,etc.Even Amazon gc's(I'm a big Amazon user)
    There are also a few bills that can be paid using a cc easily(and for free) and even rent, town taxes, etc(usually for a fee, but can be worth it for a one time spend) which don't require any hoops-jumping... How about car payments? Rent? Insurance bills? all those things can be paid with a cc in many cases. Enjoy your csp, it's a great card to have!
     
  8. Marionnette

    Marionnette Children see magic because they look for it

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    I totally agree. What the PP described is known as "manufactured spending". It's pretty harmless when done on a small scale but when you're doing thousands of dollars in manufactured spending, it can raise a red flag because money launderers are known to use this technique to hide funds. My advice would be to put as much of your regular spending on the CSP card during the 3 months. If you find that you're going to come up a little short, consider buying grocery GCs and GCs to other stores that you regularly shop at in order to meet the spend.

    CC companies are also cracking down on customers who take out cards just for the bonus, perform manufactured spending to meet the requirement, and then cancel the card after spending their bonus points. The practice had become so problematic that Chase instituted their 5-24 rule to curb the abuse. Chase will not approve you for a new credit card, even if you’ve never had that card before, if you’ve opened more than 5 new credit cards across all issuers within the last 24 months.
     
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  9. Narnia_girl

    Narnia_girl He's not a tame lion, but he is good.

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    I just completed the spending requirement for Sapphire Preferred, and like you I was worried I wouldn't meet that goal. It did help that we took a vacation to Canada and used the card a lot.
    Some other things I did were use it exclusively for daily expenses (and my husband did the same). So gas, groceries, household supplies etc.
    I did a few of our recurring payments this way: AAA membership, ProActive, Birchbox
    Normally I write check every month at church but for two months I gave online with CSP card.
    Did some Christmas shopping.

    I contemplated paying my son's college tuition bill. The school would have imposed a fee of about $33 but I figured it was worth it if I earned the $625 reward, but in the end I didn't need to do that.

    Another thing I'd suggest is going in to your CSP weekly and paying down the balance; I like doing that so I'm not socked with one big payment.
     
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  10. AmyAnne

    AmyAnne DIS Veteran

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    Thanks for the advice, especially the info about the Blue Bird checking account. I think if we are going to just focus on the CSP, it probably wouldn't be worth it to figure out "manufactured spending." However, now that I have started thinking about trying to get serious about travel points, I am thinking we might be applying for more cards in the not too distant future. In which case, it might make sense to try to figure the system out.

    Which brings me to my next question: I am pretty sure that this CSP card is the fourth new card within the past 24 months. I am assuming the next card (if there is one) should be a Chase card -- is there one that we really should try to get? (Already have the Freedom, which is a very old account, and the Ink Plus, which is one of the new ones).
     
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  11. calypso726

    calypso726 Escaping reality one Disney vacation at a time

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    You are very welcome. The other PPs who posted after me are correct. It isn't for the faint of heart and I would not risk the Chase relationship. We don't churn their cards. I keep my Chase cards and use them for normal spending. However, we did want to go for the BA companion pass so added MS to normal spend. DH's Bluebird was shut down, then mine, then BIL's. We still have SIL's BB account active and are not doing any MS with it. We will if we need to hit spend with a new CC bonus requirement but would mix it in with regular spending.

    If I wasn't past 5/24 I'd go for the new Chase reserve card. On August 21st Chase will be rolling out their new premium card which will have a 100,000 UR bonus. The card will have a very high annual fee, but will come with a $300 airline credit, $100 global entry credit, 3 UR points/$ on dining and travel if memory serves. I would get this card for the bonus and if I wasn't planning to keep it I'd product change it to a Freedom Unlimited when the annual fee came due the next year.
     
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  12. Albort

    Albort ODV Crew

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    if it really comes down to that point of not meeting minimum, theres a few suggestions you can try.
    1) buy gc. YMMV though, there are some places that wont allow it.
    2) Overpay your bill. Some utility companies allow an overpayment.
    3) use sites like radpad or plastiq, they do charge a fee though.
     
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  13. havaneselover

    havaneselover Dreaming about a Disney cruise

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    I plan to get the Sapphire Preferred (or maybe Reserve) next year in preparation for buying three plane tickets to Vancouver (haven't bought plane tickets for leisure travel in a decade). I'm going to time it so my dd's swim dues are paid during the first three months (about $3,000). Both kids also need braces in the next year or so so that's another option (would pay the bill with funds from my hsa).
     
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  14. Albort

    Albort ODV Crew

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    Looks like CSR is not under the 5/24 rule! Your in luck @calypso726 !!!
     
  15. calypso726

    calypso726 Escaping reality one Disney vacation at a time

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    I hope you are right Albort. The landing page for the leaked application link is dead now. I was reading data points from Reddit posters that some who were approved did not get the 100K bonus confirmed and were told is was not being offered. I imagine those will secure message Chase with an offer match request. So some are saying the bonus offer and 5/24 may go live on the 21st. I will be walking into a Chase branch on day 1 to apply. So is DH.
     
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  16. SMorgan711

    SMorgan711 It all starts with a wish!

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    WOW! thank you all so, so much! this whole thread has been a truly eye opening experience!! We have Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Freedom. I knew to transfer my Freedom points to Sapphire but didn't really understand where to go from there. We booked a flight home for Thanksgiving for SW (love SW!!) for around $125 one way which I thought was fantastic seeing as it was around Thanksgiving. Well, after reading this thread, I went back and saw that it was only 8,500 points one way.

    My question is, how do I determine whether using points vs paying cash is a good value at places that do the 1:1 transfer. Right now I'm looking at it like..... if I used 8,500 points as cash back, it would be $85 so using points to pay for the flight would cost me $85 vs paying cash which would cost me $125. Is that a good way to look at it?

    Another example with Hyatt which I think also does the 1:1 transfer. I was looking for a hotel room in Washington DC (Grand Hyatt Washington as an example) where the cheapest cash rate is $135. Points is 15,000 ($150 a night??). There's also a 7,500 points + $100 ($175 a night??) and also a club upgrade of $149 + 3,000 points ($179 a night??) Is my thinking correct? Just trying to figure out the best way to compare the different scenarios so it's as close to apples to apples as can be. Any help is greatly appreciated!!
     
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  17. calypso726

    calypso726 Escaping reality one Disney vacation at a time

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    You are welcome. It really depends on how you value your points. With the SW flight your points are worth 1.4 cents per point. With the hotel it is even less at .009 if a cent per point. I value my own Sapphire Preferred points at 2.1 cents per point due to how I redeem them which is for domestic and international business or first class flights. The general rule of thumb is to redeem for at least 1 cent per point but the higher the better. Everyone values their points differently and there is nothing wrong with that.
     
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  18. SMorgan711

    SMorgan711 It all starts with a wish!

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    got it! awesome! this makes me so excited ! are you getting all these points just by the initial sign on bonuses or also through yearly spending? We use our credit cards for all spending so I'll have to go through and see how many points I've used so far. I feel like maybe 20,000 or so for a year? ~$200? I also have the Amex blue cash preferred but I'm not sure if that earns points or just cash back. I'll have to look into that now. That card is probably where we earn the most points because of the 6% on groceries.
     
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  19. CaterFamily

    CaterFamily Life is short without Disney in it.

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    Tag! This info is AWESOMENESS
     
  20. calypso726

    calypso726 Escaping reality one Disney vacation at a time

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    The bulk of our points is credit card sign up bonuses. DH and I always apply for the same card so we get double the sign up bonuses. We do the dining rewards network with American Airlines and will unexpectedly earn points there when we eat somewhere that is part of the network. But aside of the credit card sign up bonuses we earn a lot of our points by maximizing the bonus category spending on the cards and utilizing shopping portals for online shopping. Sometimes you need to think outside of the box in order to take advantage of bonus categories. For example, the Chase Ink Plus card has office supply stores at 5 points/$ for spending. I don't have any need for a slew of office supplies but they do sell gift cards there. Therefore, I will purchase gift cards at the office supply store that I can use at places where I actually shop or spend money, Macy's, Whole Foods and of course Disney.

    Amex Blue Preferred is considered a cash back card. The Amex cards that earn membership reward points that you can transfer to airline partners are the Everyday and Everyday Preferred, Premier rewards gold and Platinum. The Starwood Preferred Guest Amex earns SPG points that can be transferred to over 30 airlines.
     
  21. SMorgan711

    SMorgan711 It all starts with a wish!

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    Got it! Thanks!!!!!! I am so excited to learn all of this! :yay::yay:
     

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