Banks used to offer rich mileage sign-up bonuses for debit cards, but recent financial reform legislation slashed the amount of money they could make off those transactions so as a direct result we’ve seen most banks discontinue mileage-earning on debit cards. This is a shame because you don’t need good credit to get debit cards (it’s a soft inquiry on your credit) so pretty much anyone could get in on these bonuses.
However, SunTrust just announced new juicy offers for personal and business checking accountholders who open checking accounts and get Delta co-branded debit cards by June 30, 2012:
Personal offer: 15,000 SkyMiles on opening a new checking account with at a $100 minimum balance and a direct deposit (salary, pension, Social Security or other regular monthly income of $100 or more ) by 9/30/12. Receive an additional 15,000 SkyMiles when you get the SkyMiles debit card and make a non-pin purchase by 7/31/12. Cost: $75 for the debit card and a $12 monthly fee if your total account balance falls below $3,000. Fee waived for the first two months.
Business offer: 25,000 SkyMiles after the first PIN Point of Sale or signature-based purchase made with the card by 7/31/12. $120 annual fee for the card and varying fees based on the type of checking account you qualify for.
Suntrust is primarily based in the south and per the official terms it says you can only get this bonus if you live in AL, AR, FL, GA, MD, MS, NC, SC, TN, WV, VA and Washington, D.C. However, if you don’t live near a branch or have plans to be near one before the promo ends, you can call them at 1-800-SUNTRUST or try their online chat feature which is available between 8am and 6:30pm EST Monday-Friday.
This is a no brainer in my opinion. No credit pull, minimal hassle (I mean they let you sign-up via chat!) and only $75 for 30,000 miles (0.25 cents apiece) and $120 for 25,000 (0.5 cents apiece). This is also a great opportunity with people with children to rack up some miles – you can co-sign for a checking account for them and as long as their SkyMiles account is attached, they will get the miles and you can as well for your own account. While SkyMiles can be hard to use at times, they can be extremely valuable as I highlighted in this video post.
Hat Tip Frugal Travel Guy!