The 5 Cards The Points Guy Doesn’t Leave Home Without

Jul 12, 2019

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As the TPG staff was in the process of updating our Battle of the Metal Credit Cards guide, we thought “What’s in Brian’s wallet?” and how much does it weigh in at. So we checked in with The Points Guy himself to see what cards he’s carrying around on the daily, and the answer to our question is…

All together, these cards add up to 63.7 grams out of the wallet and 91.75 grams when including the wallet itself, cash in case of emergency and of course, Brian’s Global Entry pass. (That’s 3.2 ounces in US measurements.)

Usually Brian would also have his driver’s license among the rest of the cards, but unfortunately he misplaced it. However, because TPG has the Global Entry pass, he’s able to carry that around for identification rather than having the worry of keeping track of his passport while he waits for a new license. 

You may be wondering why these are TPG’s go-to cards, so let’s break down the benefits of each:

1. American Express Gold Card

This card is great for those who love to dine out and if you need to know one thing about Brian, it’s that he’s quite the foodie. This card earns 4x points on dining worldwide and offers the highest return on spend (8% back based on his valuations). Back in December, the Gold Card was on Brian’s wishlist because of the amazing dining rewards, and since then, it’s become a staple in his wallet precisely because of this perk. The up to $100 airline credit and up to $120 dining credit to offset the $250 annual fee also doesn’t hurt (see rates & fees).

2. Chase Sapphire Reserve

Prior to the Gold Card, the Reserve was Brian’s go-to card for dining out. But the main reason this card still holds its spot in his wallet is for its other amazing bonus category — 3x points on travel spend (hotels, Uber, car rentals, tolls, etc). This is obviously a big spending category for TPG, so it’s a clear winner when it comes to racking up points fast.

CSR cardholders get a value of 1.5 cents per point when booking through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal, which is great value when redeeming for travel. Not to mention that Chase has numerous notable transfer partners including United and Hyatt, so there’s a lot of flexibility and opportunity to really maximize your points.

3. Capital One Venture Rewards

Famous for its 10x miles per dollar and stackable rewards on Hotels.com (when booked and paid for via Hotels.com/Venture), it’s no wonder why this is a top card for TPG. Whether it’s for personal or business stays, there’s no question about using this card for accommodations through Hotels.com. Additionally, the travel Purchase Eraser feature is another lucrative redemption from the issuer that allows you to put your points towards other travel expenses, as well as transfer to its airline partners.

4. The Black Card (a/k/a Amex Business Centurion Card)

If you’ve been taking notes on what cards to get based on TPG’s wallet, you’ll have to stop here, as the coveted “Black Card” is by invite only and comes with a hefty $2,500 annual fee. Although this card isn’t for everyone, for frequent travelers and business owners like Brian, the Business Centurion card offers unmatched benefits like a personal concierge 24/7, access to Amex lounges across the globe, invites to exclusive events and big rewards for big spending. In fact, Brian’s Bottega Veneta wallet itself was a gift from the Business Centurion folks this past holiday season, which he talked about at the time on Instagram.

5. Bank of America Debit Card

Here at TPG we’re major naysayers about debit cards because they offer no real value when it comes to earning points and miles. However, it’s always good to have your debit card on you just in case you need to grab some cash and don’t want to pay a credit card fee. Plus, Brian is a member of the Bank of America Preferred Rewards program, which gives him extra perks, including a bonus of 2.625 points per dollar spent on all purchases on his Bank of America®️ Premium Rewards®️ Visa®️ credit card for being a Platinum Honors elite member.

For rates and fees of the Amex Gold card, click here.

American Express® Gold Card

With some great bonus categories, the American Express Gold Card has a lot going for it. The card offers 4x points at restaurants worldwide, at US supermarkets (up to $25,000; then 1x), and 3x points on flights booked directly with airlines or through amextravel.com.

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More Things to Know
  • Earn 35,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points when you dine at restaurants worldwide. Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X). Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • Earn up to a total of $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations. This can be an annual savings of up to $120. Enrollment required.
  • $100 Airline Fee Credit: up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year for incidental fees at one selected qualifying airline.
  • Choose to carry a balance with interest on eligible charges of $100 or more.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
See Rates & Fees
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.