Author Topic: Rewards Travel "Savings"  (Read 24247 times)

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #50 on: January 03, 2014, 11:45:40 AM »
Oh I am interested in the signup bonus as well.  I don't know how eager I am to do the 'churning' game where I'm signing up for cards every quarter though.

I am on the low end of the 'excellent' rating for overall credit, a whole bunch of opening and closing of accounts will probably be enough to drop me to 'good'.

edit: Cards I have now are:
Marriott Platinum Visa - 13.24%, rewards you pretty much know, has an annual fee of like $65.

Barclay BlueGreen Mastercard - 16.24%
Earn 2 Encore Dividends for every $1 you spend at Bluegreen
Earn 1 Encore Dividend for every $1 you spend everywhere else
Use your Encore Dividends to pay your maintenance fees
Use your Encore Dividends to pay for bonus time accommodations

This card sucks, I don't use it.  I should probably just cancel it?  Maintenance fee this year was $600, but lets not get into that mistake. (at least its paid off)

Navy Federal Credit Union Platinum Visa - 8.99%, It has some kind of member mall thing I was told I could get cash back on, but I don't use it.

Bank of America Rewards World Mastercard - 5.49%, this was just recently changed over to a 'rewards' card. It is the only one with a balance on it due to the low APR.  I have never earned any points on this card, it just ended up being a balance transfer point years ago and I'm still working on paying it off.  It appears I earn 1 point per dollar.  Lame.  No annual fee though.  I doubt I'd ever get rid of this one due to the APR and its my longest held card (banks changed hands like 6 times though, lol).

Firstly, I would recommend re-evaluating what is important and what is not - the APR is irrelevant if you pay off in full each month.  If you are not paying off in full each month and still carry a balance on your card then that is a separate conversation, and you need to focus on a different strategy, which I am happy to discuss.

Secondly, your credit score is irrelevant unless you need credit - therefore if you are forecasting a mortgage or other large loan (where time value of compounded interest applies) then it doesn't matter a hoot if you go from Excellent to Good credit.

Third - don't close a card that has no annual fee.  The Navy Federal Card has zero annual fee I believe, so you just leave it open, this means that your credit score increases because your total credit line is larger.  You should never close a card down if has no cost to you to hold as you will improve your credit score by keeping them open, just put them in a drawer somewhere safe.

Fourth - if you hold a card that does have an annual fee and does suck, don't cancel it, downgrade it that turns it from a liability into an improvement of your available credit line, then put it in a drawer.

Fifth - some cards don't downgrade - they are quirky.  Take that Marriot card, call them up, ask to downgrade it to a Chase Freedom card (WAY BETTER, plus no annual fee) if they cannot because there are certain family rules and restrictions on downgrades ask them to waive the annual fee - they probably will, or give you points.  If they won't do either I would suggest applying for a new card first, then cancelling that one, as you do need to get rid of the fee on that card, and if you do so by downgrading you will dent your score, which is not ideal prior to a new application.

See this post - Credit Card Cancelling like a pro for how to downgrade the smart way:

http://saverocity.com/travel/credit-card-cancelling-like-a-pro-know-your-batna-before-you-call-part-1-american-express-cards/

One thing to be aware of, say you want to get rid of that crappy barclay card - they do offer a way better card called the Arrival.  If you were to swap to it your earning is going to be better, but you would lose out on the best part of that card, the signup bonus - so be careful that you don't downgrade or swap into a card and in doing so hammer your potential upside from the signup bonus.  The arrival comes with a 40,000 pts bonus valued at $440 in travel expenses.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2014, 11:47:11 AM by Saverocity »

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #51 on: January 03, 2014, 11:57:42 AM »
Actually, I missed it in the final line of your post, but you do carry a balance on your card.  With that in mind your primary goal should be to eradicate this.  My suggestion would therefore to focus your attention on a balance transfer option. 

This is a post where I calculate the savings between a couple of balance transfer cards to reduce your interest payments, http://saverocity.com/travel/credit-card-analysis-barclaycard-ring-1-statement-credit-balance-transfers/ in it I compare a new card called the Ringf from Barclays with the DiscoverIT card, currently offering 18 months 0% credit on Balance transfers. 

Probably the best card on the market for people with a balance is the Slate card by Chase - since it offers 15 months interest free credit on transfers and does not have the 3% upfront transfer fee that is common.  You can likely save a bunch of money by transferring to that card and using that 15 months to attack the principal without the interest eating up your payments.


adam

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 421
  • Age: 39
  • Location: SC
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #52 on: January 03, 2014, 12:06:15 PM »
I'm not doing any more balance transfers. I'm just going to focus on paying the BOA card off in the next 8 months.

The reason I'm leery about adding more cards without cancelling the ones I have is I'm already looking at $90k in available credit on those 4 alone. It seems silly to go over $100k (to say nothing about having $90k on the 4 existing cards).

Plus the $15k overdraft I have.  Shit I forgot about that, so much for that $100k window.

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #53 on: January 03, 2014, 12:15:17 PM »
I'm not doing any more balance transfers. I'm just going to focus on paying the BOA card off in the next 8 months.

The reason I'm leery about adding more cards without cancelling the ones I have is I'm already looking at $90k in available credit on those 4 alone. It seems silly to go over $100k (to say nothing about having $90k on the 4 existing cards).

Plus the $15k overdraft I have.  Shit I forgot about that, so much for that $100k window.

Everybody has their own arbitrary decisions on things like this, it really doesn't matter to anything but your own comfort zone, but I am glad you are focused on clearing off your debt, and wish you good luck with it.

adam

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 421
  • Age: 39
  • Location: SC
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #54 on: January 03, 2014, 12:20:39 PM »
I do appreciate your post about calling to get the fee waived / free points / downgrading cards.  I never knew the downgrade was a thing.   That means I could theoretically upgrade my NFCU card to a cash back one when/if I'm ready?  That cashRewards one does 1% back up to $10k then 1.5% back for any spending over $10k.

I wasn't planning on doing anything until that BOA card was paid off anyways.

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #55 on: January 03, 2014, 12:26:47 PM »
I do appreciate your post about calling to get the fee waived / free points / downgrading cards.  I never knew the downgrade was a thing.   That means I could theoretically upgrade my NFCU card to a cash back one when/if I'm ready?  That cashRewards one does 1% back up to $10k then 1.5% back for any spending over $10k.

I wasn't planning on doing anything until that BOA card was paid off anyways.

What I would recommend doing as soon as the annual fee comes near on the Marriott card is calling in, you can try the downgrade, or at least should get something better than you have now, in the form of a waived annual fee or some more points that will offset things.

Once you feel ready to get back on the horse, you need a new benchmark - no less than 2% back in a transaction, as can be provided by the Fidelity Amex.  Good luck getting there and happy to help with any other questions.

luigi49

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 291
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #56 on: January 07, 2014, 11:13:32 AM »
I'm hardly a guru but here's my advice:

Drop that Marriott card like its a hot potato.
Stay away from Delta, awards are a waste of time.
US is merged with American, soon will be oneworld partner.  Your focus therefore could be American, or if your travel habits are for domestic travel you should aim for Avios from British Airways and use them to fly on American metal (which the US soon will become).

Tell me more of your habits or goals and Id be happy to get into more details.

Its too bad but I find Delta have good service and better looking flight attendant :)

rockstache

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5859
  • Age: 2015
  • Location: Northeast
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #57 on: January 07, 2014, 11:42:47 AM »
If you already have the NFCU card and have been using it, the member mall things is really easy. You can just click on it directly from your account, and another window pops up, shows you how many rewards points you have and lets you browse through the items they have. I only have ever gotten gift cards (Kohl's, Target etc..), and now I don't use that card much anymore, but it is simple. If you already have points built up, don't let them go to waste.

Level1Engineer

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 3
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #58 on: January 07, 2014, 03:10:30 PM »
Just recently got into the travel rewards scene and I have to say I'm loving it!

The wife wanted to go visit her parents this year so her dad could meet his new granddaughter, but I just couldn't find the room in our budget (we're vigorously paying off our student loans right now). Last time we visited was two years ago and it cost ~$1300 for two tickets. This time we will be getting three tickets (we have a 2 year old who will be 3 by the time we go) and a rental car for $238 out of pocket (annual fees on two southwest cards and one alaska airlines card, plus $25 for booking fees on our tickets). That's just awesome; $238 is much easier to fit into our budget than >$2000.

That's just our first trip we will be going on this year. I have another one that I'm looking at pulling off for free (actually, I'll net $70).

I'm always looking for more tips, so I'll definitely check out your site, Saverocity!

BC_Goldman

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 153
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #59 on: January 08, 2014, 01:43:58 AM »
Saverocity,

Something of a tangent but at least in the same vein. Any thoughts about taking advantage of cash-back offers on new cards? I'm looking at an offer I got in the mail for the Chase: Slate card. No rewards but it's 0% APR until 4/15. The only reason I would consider it is because it also has no-fee balance transfers for the first 60 days so, in theory, I could open several cards that offer cash-back after minimum purchases, meet the minimums by buying prepaid debit cards and then transferring the balances to the Slate card. I'm seeing at least three cards that offer $100 cash back for $500 in purchases in the first three months. The problem I see is figuring out how to actually get the spending. I was in Home Depot the other day and remembered reading about buying debit cards. All the ones I saw said they could only be purchased with cash.

I'm not really interested in generating spending/points for miles. I just want to snag a couple hundred bucks worth of bonuses. I'm keeping my expenses low so there's not an easy way for me to spend more than a few hundred dollars a month through normal purchases. What I would really like is to figure out how to take advantage of the free balance transfer to pay off the $7k I have left on my car loan. Doesn't look like I can do it directly since the paperwork says I can only transfer card accounts.

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #60 on: January 08, 2014, 07:11:57 AM »
Saverocity,

Something of a tangent but at least in the same vein. Any thoughts about taking advantage of cash-back offers on new cards? I'm looking at an offer I got in the mail for the Chase: Slate card. No rewards but it's 0% APR until 4/15. The only reason I would consider it is because it also has no-fee balance transfers for the first 60 days so, in theory, I could open several cards that offer cash-back after minimum purchases, meet the minimums by buying prepaid debit cards and then transferring the balances to the Slate card. I'm seeing at least three cards that offer $100 cash back for $500 in purchases in the first three months. The problem I see is figuring out how to actually get the spending. I was in Home Depot the other day and remembered reading about buying debit cards. All the ones I saw said they could only be purchased with cash.

I'm not really interested in generating spending/points for miles. I just want to snag a couple hundred bucks worth of bonuses. I'm keeping my expenses low so there's not an easy way for me to spend more than a few hundred dollars a month through normal purchases. What I would really like is to figure out how to take advantage of the free balance transfer to pay off the $7k I have left on my car loan. Doesn't look like I can do it directly since the paperwork says I can only transfer card accounts.

Not Tangental at all.  This is exactly the sort of thing I do on Saverocity.  Here's what I would say:

Cashback signup bonuses are typically lower than points signup bonuses, and points signup bonuses can be used for cash back.

Cards like the Chase Sapphire and Ink Bold frequently offer 40/50K signup bonuses, and you can use the bonus as a statement credit which equates to cash back.  Whilst the spend requirement is higher at $3-$5K to trigger the bonus it is a better deal to get one card at that level than 3 cards at $100.  I also like the Barclaycard arrival though if you use that one for pure cash back the points are worth 0.5cents each vs using them for travel related expenses at 1.1cents each.

You certainly can transfer the car loan, each card is different but I confirmed with several cards that they will issue you a balance transfer check that you can write out to a car loan company, I forget if Chase offers these but think they do, give them a call to ask.

However, even if they do not you can still transfer by using a mezzanine step of purchasing giftcards and then paying off the loan with the balance of the giftcards by loading the cards onto a Bluebird Account from Amex and either using their bill pay or write a check.

If you want to get an idea of what you can do with Bluebird I wrote a post about how to fund an IRA with a credit card - which is pretty fricken awesome anyway!  You can change the word IRA to Car Loan and bobs your uncle:

http://saverocity.com/finance/how-to-fund-an-ira-with-a-credit-card-make-huge-profit-process/

Bruised_Pepper

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 190
  • Age: 31
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #61 on: January 08, 2014, 01:31:03 PM »
If you want to get an idea of what you can do with Bluebird I wrote a post about how to fund an IRA with a credit card - which is pretty fricken awesome anyway!  You can change the word IRA to Car Loan and bobs your uncle:

http://saverocity.com/finance/how-to-fund-an-ira-with-a-credit-card-make-huge-profit-process/

Have you ever gotten any "flak" when trying to use a Bluebird check?  E.g. someone who doesn't understand what it is and refuses to accept it? 

I was thinking that this would be a creative way to pay my rent via credit card (and immediately paying the balance off with my bank account), thus being able to achieve higher spend limits for sign-up bonuses. 

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #62 on: January 08, 2014, 09:56:49 PM »
No flak.  I pay my maintenance with it, looking forward to when I get a mortgage :)

daverobev

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3375
  • Location: France
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #63 on: January 09, 2014, 07:49:22 AM »
Crazy. So say you do this:

BoA Cash Rewards -> buy $500 Vanilla Reloads = $15 if you can do it at a gas station, $10 supermarket (not sure if Walmart counts in the US?) + $100 sign up bonus
$500 VR -> Bluebird
Bluebird -> credit card

If you do this to the BoA's category limit, which is $1500 a quarter, you'd get $45 - ~$12 in VR fees.. until you run out of Bluebird checks (looks like first 50 free til April).

Or, of course, you just sign up for a new card to manufacture the spending on.

Even if you have to buy the checks at ~ 50c/check it's not bad.

Oh - or you can just do Bill Pay back to the credit card I guess, even better!

Bruised_Pepper

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 190
  • Age: 31
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #64 on: January 09, 2014, 01:22:45 PM »
No flak.  I pay my maintenance with it, looking forward to when I get a mortgage :)

That's good to hear.  I guess, even if you did get someone who wouldn't accept it, you could just deposit it in your bank account and pay your card back with its own money, while paying your [insert other bill] with your bank account as usual.

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #65 on: January 09, 2014, 01:37:02 PM »
Crazy. So say you do this:

BoA Cash Rewards -> buy $500 Vanilla Reloads = $15 if you can do it at a gas station, $10 supermarket (not sure if Walmart counts in the US?) + $100 sign up bonus
$500 VR -> Bluebird
Bluebird -> credit card

If you do this to the BoA's category limit, which is $1500 a quarter, you'd get $45 - ~$12 in VR fees.. until you run out of Bluebird checks (looks like first 50 free til April).

Or, of course, you just sign up for a new card to manufacture the spending on.

Even if you have to buy the checks at ~ 50c/check it's not bad.

Oh - or you can just do Bill Pay back to the credit card I guess, even better!

You can get 5x action making $200+ per card.  5 figure annual profit...

BC_Goldman

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 153
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #66 on: January 09, 2014, 01:49:36 PM »
What's the sustainability of programs like this? Meaning, getting a 40k point bonus on signup is only good once, right? Can you close the card and then open a new one in a year or two to repeat gains?

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #67 on: January 09, 2014, 02:03:41 PM »
What's the sustainability of programs like this? Meaning, getting a 40k point bonus on signup is only good once, right? Can you close the card and then open a new one in a year or two to repeat gains?

Nope, all cards have different rules, but all bonuses can be earned multiple times.  Some people love the Amex Plat (I know it sounds so Anti Mustachian at $450 annual fee) but the swap each year between the regular and the biz version so there is a 2 year gap between each personal application and each business application (more than enough) and they constantly get the bonuses and perks so make a profit.

Other cards just allow multiple versions, hence me saying my luxury hilton stay in the Maldives had no real opportunity cost - I just got 3 cards all the same with a 50K bonus on each, covered 4 nights!

There are rules to know, but this is sustainable, easily to the 7 figure mark annually if you have a few tricks to meet the min spend requirements.

RootofGood

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1361
  • Age: 39
  • Location: North Carolina
  • Retired at age 33. 5 years in, still loving it!
    • Root of Good
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #68 on: January 09, 2014, 02:12:32 PM »
There are rules to know, but this is sustainable, easily to the 7 figure mark annually if you have a few tricks to meet the min spend requirements.

I don't really do the manufactured spending.  I only apply for a card or two at a time and put my regular expenses on the cards.  It's still really easy to hit a few thousand $$ worth of miles/points/cash (my wife applies for these cards too). 

daverobev

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3375
  • Location: France
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #69 on: January 09, 2014, 02:29:12 PM »
Crazy. So say you do this:

BoA Cash Rewards -> buy $500 Vanilla Reloads = $15 if you can do it at a gas station, $10 supermarket (not sure if Walmart counts in the US?) + $100 sign up bonus
$500 VR -> Bluebird
Bluebird -> credit card

If you do this to the BoA's category limit, which is $1500 a quarter, you'd get $45 - ~$12 in VR fees.. until you run out of Bluebird checks (looks like first 50 free til April).

Or, of course, you just sign up for a new card to manufacture the spending on.

Even if you have to buy the checks at ~ 50c/check it's not bad.

Oh - or you can just do Bill Pay back to the credit card I guess, even better!

You can get 5x action making $200+ per card.  5 figure annual profit...

5x action? Sorry you lost me - 5 different cards? Or some way of getting 5x points on one card?

yyc-phil

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1041
  • Location: Yellowknife NWT
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #70 on: January 09, 2014, 03:22:52 PM »
This might depend on each card, but how long generally do you think we should wait between the time we cancel a card and the time we reapply for the same card and get the sign-up bonus?

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #71 on: January 09, 2014, 03:25:35 PM »
Crazy. So say you do this:

BoA Cash Rewards -> buy $500 Vanilla Reloads = $15 if you can do it at a gas station, $10 supermarket (not sure if Walmart counts in the US?) + $100 sign up bonus
$500 VR -> Bluebird
Bluebird -> credit card

If you do this to the BoA's category limit, which is $1500 a quarter, you'd get $45 - ~$12 in VR fees.. until you run out of Bluebird checks (looks like first 50 free til April).

Or, of course, you just sign up for a new card to manufacture the spending on.

Even if you have to buy the checks at ~ 50c/check it's not bad.

Oh - or you can just do Bill Pay back to the credit card I guess, even better!

You can get 5x action making $200+ per card.  5 figure annual profit...

5x action? Sorry you lost me - 5 different cards? Or some way of getting 5x points on one card?

Both :)  5x points would get you the $200, owning 5 exit cards would get you a lot more!  The trouble isn't earning the points, it is taking them off the Bluebird, but one BB each in a family helps, then there are other options.

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #72 on: January 09, 2014, 03:28:40 PM »
This might depend on each card, but how long generally do you think we should wait between the time we cancel a card and the time we reapply for the same card and get the sign-up bonus?

Depends on the card, many offers will say in the print that 'this offer is not eligible for people who got signed up on the past X months'.  There really are a lot of cards though, so you should be hitting some serious numbers in order to be worried about that one.

Also, if you are going for the open/close I wouldn't close too soon, leave it til at least the 10 month mark to make sure there are no points claw back from third parties (EG United miles on a United co-branded card).

If the card is not a third party, such as:

Chase Ultimate Rewards
Amex Membership Rewards
Citi Thank You points

Then you need to make sure that you don't close down your card with points in there as that can make you lose the points you earned!

daverobev

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3375
  • Location: France
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #73 on: January 09, 2014, 03:41:13 PM »
Sorry.. "exit card"? I must've missed something :)

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #74 on: January 09, 2014, 04:04:25 PM »
You must have missed that I am busier than all hell today and therefore giving really crappy explanations - sorry.

The way to look at it is that you must buy a cash equivalent (such as a Vanilla Reload card) with your credit card, there is no limit to the number you can buy, so if you had the credit line you could buy $20,000 in a month. 

Then in order to liquidate the cards you need something like a Bluebird (which I called an exit card) because these tools allow you to take that $500 giftcard and basically add it to your bank account, to then pay off.  The Bluebird/exit cards are ones with limits - $5000 per person, so if you had just one person with one bluebird you are limited to $5000, but a couple has 2 so that is 10K, if you can increase the number of cards that can be 'exits' from the purchase loop then you can raise the limit on cashback earned.


daverobev

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3375
  • Location: France
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #75 on: January 10, 2014, 09:13:36 AM »
You must have missed that I am busier than all hell today and therefore giving really crappy explanations - sorry.

The way to look at it is that you must buy a cash equivalent (such as a Vanilla Reload card) with your credit card, there is no limit to the number you can buy, so if you had the credit line you could buy $20,000 in a month. 

Then in order to liquidate the cards you need something like a Bluebird (which I called an exit card) because these tools allow you to take that $500 giftcard and basically add it to your bank account, to then pay off.  The Bluebird/exit cards are ones with limits - $5000 per person, so if you had just one person with one bluebird you are limited to $5000, but a couple has 2 so that is 10K, if you can increase the number of cards that can be 'exits' from the purchase loop then you can raise the limit on cashback earned.

Got it, thanks!

It really does blow my mind that all this is possible... Sadly (I think) not available here in Canada in any way, shape or form... So I'll have to see if I can get some fun little trial hooked up when we go down to the States.

yyc-phil

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1041
  • Location: Yellowknife NWT
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #76 on: January 10, 2014, 09:21:14 AM »
You must have missed that I am busier than all hell today and therefore giving really crappy explanations - sorry.

The way to look at it is that you must buy a cash equivalent (such as a Vanilla Reload card) with your credit card, there is no limit to the number you can buy, so if you had the credit line you could buy $20,000 in a month. 

Then in order to liquidate the cards you need something like a Bluebird (which I called an exit card) because these tools allow you to take that $500 giftcard and basically add it to your bank account, to then pay off.  The Bluebird/exit cards are ones with limits - $5000 per person, so if you had just one person with one bluebird you are limited to $5000, but a couple has 2 so that is 10K, if you can increase the number of cards that can be 'exits' from the purchase loop then you can raise the limit on cashback earned.

Got it, thanks!

It really does blow my mind that all this is possible... Sadly (I think) not available here in Canada in any way, shape or form... So I'll have to see if I can get some fun little trial hooked up when we go down to the States.

There is a good site that has a Canada section: http://thepointsguy.com/category/canada/

I've been a faithful Aeroplan member since July 1984 when it started (and Canadian Plus until it was merged with AP), so going with Air Miles or other reward system is a bit mysterious for me, but it looks like there are other options out there for us Canadians. This month, I've applied for the Amex Aeroplan and TD Aeroplan, and should get both welcome bonuses soon. To date, these are the only ones I found interesting for me, unless I switch my mindset and start learning about the other reward programmes.

Keep us posted if you apply for one of those US reward cards and they work for us.

daverobev

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3375
  • Location: France
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #77 on: January 10, 2014, 11:19:59 AM »
You must have missed that I am busier than all hell today and therefore giving really crappy explanations - sorry.

The way to look at it is that you must buy a cash equivalent (such as a Vanilla Reload card) with your credit card, there is no limit to the number you can buy, so if you had the credit line you could buy $20,000 in a month. 

Then in order to liquidate the cards you need something like a Bluebird (which I called an exit card) because these tools allow you to take that $500 giftcard and basically add it to your bank account, to then pay off.  The Bluebird/exit cards are ones with limits - $5000 per person, so if you had just one person with one bluebird you are limited to $5000, but a couple has 2 so that is 10K, if you can increase the number of cards that can be 'exits' from the purchase loop then you can raise the limit on cashback earned.

Got it, thanks!

It really does blow my mind that all this is possible... Sadly (I think) not available here in Canada in any way, shape or form... So I'll have to see if I can get some fun little trial hooked up when we go down to the States.

There is a good site that has a Canada section: http://thepointsguy.com/category/canada/

I've been a faithful Aeroplan member since July 1984 when it started (and Canadian Plus until it was merged with AP), so going with Air Miles or other reward system is a bit mysterious for me, but it looks like there are other options out there for us Canadians. This month, I've applied for the Amex Aeroplan and TD Aeroplan, and should get both welcome bonuses soon. To date, these are the only ones I found interesting for me, unless I switch my mindset and start learning about the other reward programmes.

Keep us posted if you apply for one of those US reward cards and they work for us.

Yes I did see that site.. nothing going for manufactured spending though. Just signup bonuses, and we don't spend much *at all* so hitting the minimums would be hard. I might go for an Amex Gold Rewards *if* I get a job 'back home' later on in the year - $150+ off a $1200 flight is pretty good.

Saverocity

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 151
Re: Rewards Travel "Savings"
« Reply #78 on: January 11, 2014, 10:24:19 PM »
I just added two new sites to Saverocity, they are called Chasing The Points which focuses on Gift Card Churning and Big Habitat which focuses on reselling items.

Both are focuses on generating profit, in the form of points (manufactured spending) and profit from the transaction.  These may be useful reads for people in Canada who cannot play the Vanilla Reload game.