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Recently I blogged about how I’ve gotten 553,500 points and miles from only 7 credit card applications. However, I don’t use most of those cards on a daily basis – I usually keep them until their fees are due and then I usually apply for a new card and shift their credit lines to that or ask for bonuses to keep me as a cardholder (for more info about when to cancel a credit card, check out this post).
Which cards do you use the most? Share in the comments section and I’ll be drawing 5 random winners who will win 5,000 Chase or Amex points each – your choice! Comment by 11:59pm Eastern time on Monday November 7, 2011. The winners will be announced in the comments section and when you register your comment you need to use your email address so I can contact you directly regarding fulfillment. Do not type your email address in the comment text.
For those who can’t view the video:
When it comes to daily usage, I use two cards:
1) Chase Sapphire Preferred is my #1 card. I get two points per dollar on all dining and travel (which includes Airlines, Auto/truck/RV rental, Limos and taxis, Lodging, Travel agencies, Railways, Tolls and bridges, Parking (lots, meters, garages), Bus and Time shares). I also do most of my online shopping through the Ultimate Rewards shopping portal since they have lucrative offers, like an upcoming special of 20 points per dollar spent on Groupon on November 14, 2011. The card does not have foreign transaction fees and being a Visa Signature (or World Mastercard) it’s accepted a ton of places. See my full review of the card here.
2) American Express Premier Rewards Gold is a close second. I use this for all airfare because I get 3 points per dollar, as well as gas and groceries, which earn 2 points per dollar spent. You also get a 15,000 point bonus when you spend $30,000 within a calendar year. Full card review here.
3) I carry the Amex Platinum because I get a ton of benefits as a cardholder, such as lounge access to Delta, American and US Airways lounges (plus free Priority Pass), a $200 a year rebate of airline fees/purchases and a bunch more. The $450 annual fee has paid for itself many times over this year alone.
1) I often get asked why I don’t use the Capital One Venture card, which offers two points per dollar on every single purchase. The fact of the matter is, that card is amazing if you want to redeem for domestic and coach travel since each point has a maximum value of 1 cent towards the purchase of airfare. For me, I like redeeming for first/business class international trips, so I like the flexibility of being able to transfer points into frequent flyer programs and book low-level awards. Capital One points are not transferable, so I generally don’t value them as much. For example, to book a $5,000 business class award to Europe, you’d need 500,000 Capital One points, vs. as low as 50,000 Amex points to book an Air France promo award. Plus, the current sign-up bonus for the Venture card is only 10,000 points, so considering they had it up to 100,000 earlier this year and 25,000 until recently, I’d recommend waiting until they increase it.
2) Another industry favorite is the Starwood American Express, which is indeed a fantastic card since Starpoints can be used to redeem for Starwood hotels, but they can also be transferred to 30+ airlines – most at 25% bonuses. I may start rotating this card for some of my domestic non-category spend, but I currently have a lot of Starpoints so I’m focusing on building up my Amex/Chase accounts to take advantage of future transfer bonuses/promotions. One of the biggest downsides is that Starpoints can take weeks to transfer to airline frequent flyer programs, which pales in comparison to the instant transfers of Chase/Amex points to most of their partners.
Related reading: See my Top Deals page for a rundown of the top credit card deals and promotions.