CC strategy to maximize miles/points

Old Aug 31, 18, 7:57 am
  #1  
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CC strategy to maximize miles/points

So we are a family of 6 now and plan to travel extensively next summer, mostly to Asia out of MIA. I would like to maximize our cc spend to earn as many miles and points as possible. This is what I currently have:

- Chase Sapphire reserve
- Chase Amazon Prime
- Nordstrom rewards (which is sitting in the drawer and I plan to close it)

My average spent is about 5K/month

Husband has

- Chase Sapphire reserve
- Chase Ink Business
- Amex Gold
- BOF Business rewards

Please share your thoughts on which cards to close/open in order to maximize ?

Thank you
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Old Aug 31, 18, 9:30 am
  #2  
mia
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Originally Posted by Green_eyes View Post
...
- Chase Sapphire reserve
- Chase Amazon Prime
- Nordstrom rewards (which is sitting in the drawer and I plan to close it)

...

- Chase Sapphire reserve
- Chase Ink Business
- Amex Gold
- BOF Business rewards

...
1. No reason to keep two Sapphire Reserve cards in a household after the first year. When renewal time comes, downgrade one to a Freedom or Freedom unlimited account.

2. Which INK card does your husband have? (All INK cards are business cards, they all have another word in the name: Bold, Classic, Plus, Cash, Preferred.)

3. Which Gold American Express card?

4. Is BOF Bank of America?
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Old Aug 31, 18, 9:48 am
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Originally Posted by mia View Post
1. No reason to keep two Sapphire Reserve cards in a household after the first year. When renewal time comes, downgrade one to a Freedom or Freedom unlimited account.

2. Which INK card does your husband have? (All INK cards are business cards, they all have another word in the name: Bold, Classic, Plus, Cash, Preferred.)

3. Which Gold American Express card?

4. Is BOF Bank of America?
1. I guess I can downgrade my card, but what's the purpose of downgrading to Freedom? Will I lose my Priority Pass after downgrading?
2. Have to find out, I think its Gold amex for businesses, not sure exactly
3. Ink Plus
4. BoF business rewards cards
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Old Aug 31, 18, 10:07 am
  #4  
mia
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Originally Posted by Green_eyes View Post
....what's the purpose of downgrading to Freedom? ....
1. To save money. Reserve annual fee is $450 - 300 travel credit = $150 net. You can add an Authorized User card to your spouse's Reserve account for $75/year, and that will include a replacement Priority Pass membership.

2. To earn more points. Freedom earns 5 points per dollar on categories that rotate each quarter. Freedom Unlimited earns 1.5 points on ALL spending, but is bested by American Express Blue Business Plus which earns 2 points per dollar on ALL spending, up to $50,000 per year.


Sorry, I do not recognize the acronym BoF. Bank of ?
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Old Aug 31, 18, 10:09 am
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Bank of America, sorry about that!

I am thinking my hubby needs to close his Chase Ink Plus, since he is not really using it it much and open another business card with a large bonus offered at the moment.

Last edited by EmailKid; Aug 31, 18 at 11:24 am Reason: Back to back posts
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Old Aug 31, 18, 5:34 pm
  #6  
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Originally Posted by Green_eyes View Post
....

I am thinking my hubby needs to close his Chase Ink Plus.....
Maybe, but it's no longer offered. INK Plus earns 5 points per dollar in several categories. INK Cash earns 5 points per dollar in the same categories, but with lower annual limits. Is he using the INK Plus only for business, or also for some personal expenses that earn those bonuses?
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Old Aug 31, 18, 6:47 pm
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Originally Posted by mia View Post
1. To save money. Reserve annual fee is $450 - 300 travel credit = $150 net. You can add an Authorized User card to your spouse's Reserve account for $75/year, and that will include a replacement Priority Pass membership.

2. To earn more points. Freedom earns 5 points per dollar on categories that rotate each quarter. Freedom Unlimited earns 1.5 points on ALL spending, but is bested by American Express Blue Business Plus which earns 2 points per dollar on ALL spending, up to $50,000 per year.


Sorry, I do not recognize the acronym BoF. Bank of ?
I always thought Reserve AU didn't come with PP. Maybe it is GE that I am confused with.

Won't it be better for the OP to wait (i.e., get all the Chase cards they both want) before adding AU? This way, it makes things easier in terms of 5/24 rule (without the need to discus with CSR that card count includes AU).

Originally Posted by mia View Post
Maybe, but it's no longer offered. INK Plus earns 5 points per dollar in several categories. INK Cash earns 5 points per dollar in the same categories, but with lower annual limits. Is he using the INK Plus only for business, or also for some personal expenses that earn those bonuses?
The INK Plus comes with $95 AF. The 5x bonus is good up to $50K. If OP can't max to $50K, then downgrade the card to INK Cash; INK Cash 5x bonus is first $25K.

Last edited by EmailKid; Aug 31, 18 at 7:32 pm Reason: Back to back posts
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Old Sep 2, 18, 6:50 am
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Originally Posted by robchow View Post
I always thought Reserve AU didn't come with PP. Maybe it is GE that I am confused with.

Won't it be better for the OP to wait (i.e., get all the Chase cards they both want) before adding AU? This way, it makes things easier in terms of 5/24 rule (without the need to discus with CSR that card count includes AU).



The INK Plus comes with $95 AF. The 5x bonus is good up to $50K. If OP can't max to $50K, then downgrade the card to INK Cash; INK Cash 5x bonus is first $25K.
Then why not close it all together an open a new card to get a new bonus?
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Old Sep 2, 18, 9:45 am
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Originally Posted by Green_eyes View Post
Then why not close it all together an open a new card to get a new bonus?
If your plan is to travel next summer you could be booking some flights in the next couple months. You need to focus on cards with larger bonuses now, and take into account the finite number of cards you can open, and make spend for those bonuses, in the time available. Downgrading Sapphire Reserve to Freedom or Unlimited converts a redundant asset into something that might generate some extra points this year.
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Old Sep 2, 18, 9:57 am
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No point in closing the Nordstrom rewards card. Put a $1 charge on it every 6 months and put it in the sock drawer. Use it if you get a better % off value than using another credit card.
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Old Sep 3, 18, 10:57 am
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So after doing my research here is what I conclude, and correct me if I am wrong.

- our best bet is to open City Thank you Premier card with 60K bonuses, which will give us 120,000 points transferable to the most major airlines ( I wonder if one can open and refer the other one and get referral bonus?)
- open Bank of America Travel rewards OR Bank of America Premier rewards, which currently has 50K bonus points offer. I never had BofA cards so I dont know how easy it is to transfer their points to airlines or do I just book with their travel center?
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Old Sep 3, 18, 11:09 am
  #12  
mia
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Originally Posted by Green_eyes View Post
....Thank you Premier card with 60K bonuses, which will give us 120,000 points transferable to the most major airlines ....
I suggest you review the list of ThankYou transfer partners here. There is no sense in which I would call this most major airlines, but it may have the programs you need:

https://hub.thankyou.com/tygr-web/pa...amsListing.htm
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Old Sep 3, 18, 11:16 am
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Originally Posted by Green_eyes View Post
Then why not close it all together an open a new card to get a new bonus?
Yes. I would close the Plus and apply for the Cash for the sign up bonus.
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Old Sep 3, 18, 1:44 pm
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Originally Posted by Green_eyes View Post
So after doing my research here is what I conclude, and correct me if I am wrong.

- our best bet is to open City Thank you Premier card with 60K bonuses, which will give us 120,000 points transferable to the most major airlines ( I wonder if one can open and refer the other one and get referral bonus?)
- open Bank of America Travel rewards OR Bank of America Premier rewards, which currently has 50K bonus points offer. I never had BofA cards so I dont know how easy it is to transfer their points to airlines or do I just book with their travel center?
Sign up bonuses are definitely the way to go given your time constraints. But it’s not obvious to me that transferring points to miles is actually a great strategy in your case, unless your goal is to get one or two business class tickets (using miles) and then pay cash for the other 4-5 people in your party to sit in economy.

With a “premium” card Citi, AmEx, and Chase points can be redeemed for 1.25-1.54 cents/pt for airfare. It would be difficult to beat that exchange rate by redeeming miles for economy tickets, unless you have to buy tickets last minute. If you want to redeem for business class travel then exchanging for miles is generally the way to go (though not always — there are some absurdly cheap business class tickets on Chinese carriers ex-LAX these days!). But the chance of finding 6 business class award seats simultaneously available on one flight is effectively zero, plus you’d never save enough for 6 tickets in less than a year anyway.
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Old Sep 3, 18, 7:27 pm
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Originally Posted by milypan View Post


Sign up bonuses are definitely the way to go given your time constraints. But it’s not obvious to me that transferring points to miles is actually a great strategy in your case, unless your goal is to get one or two business class tickets (using miles) and then pay cash for the other 4-5 people in your party to sit in economy.

With a “premium” card Citi, AmEx, and Chase points can be redeemed for 1.25-1.54 cents/pt for airfare. It would be difficult to beat that exchange rate by redeeming miles for economy tickets, unless you have to buy tickets last minute. If you want to redeem for business class travel then exchanging for miles is generally the way to go (though not always — there are some absurdly cheap business class tickets on Chinese carriers ex-LAX these days!). But the chance of finding 6 business class award seats simultaneously available on one flight is effectively zero, plus you’d never save enough for 6 tickets in less than a year anyway.
what would be the best strategy in your opinion? I need 5 award tickets in J, or I can "buy" these tickets with premium card points, such as Citi thank you, BofA (just did that a month ago)
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