Author Topic: CC for a purchase- $650 vs $200 + 0% for 12 months?  (Read 2260 times)


  • Stubble
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CC for a purchase- $650 vs $200 + 0% for 12 months?
« on: January 27, 2016, 07:35:31 AM »
I have an upcoming $3k purchase in the next few months and I am evaluating the best card to make the purchase on.
There is the Chase sapphire which gives $650 ( in travel credit $500 plain cash back) after spend of $4k and the several other cards such as the Citi Thank You Preferred which give $200 cash back after $1.5k and also comes with a 0% apr for 12 months.

As noted above, my purchase is only $3k so I would need to spend an extra $1k with the chase to get the bonus which in the past for me has lead to less than optimal purchase decisions. Ie not reckless purchases just not nearly as frugal.

On paper the Sapphire would appear to be the clear winner but I am wondering if it actually would end up costing me more considering I would need to find and extra $1k worth of purchases. Even if they were essential items like groceries, I find that I am much less budget conscious considering I am being reinforced to spend as much as I can within that window of time. 

I also do like the 0% for 12 months on the Citi and other cards as I hypothetically could be making more than the difference if this money was invested for that time.

Any one been in the same boat here or have any insight?

life is short

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: CC for a purchase- $650 vs $200 + 0% for 12 months?
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2016, 09:02:05 AM »
Personally I would go for the Chase Sapphire Preferred. Spending another $1000 in three months should be an easy thing to do without having to spend more than your normally would. Gas and groceries with a few additional purchases (eating out, clothes, home goods, etc.) would easily get you there I think. But, if you think you're going to be prone to spending more than you would otherwise, I would probably reconsider getting a credit card at all.

I don't think that the 0% APR for 12 months should be considered in this situation. That's much too short of a time frame to think about investing instead.

You already said you'd be prone to spend more than normal to hit that $4k for the Chase. Seems it would be just as easy to say, "I can buy this stuff now and I don't have to pay for it for a whole year!"

It takes a ton of discipline to sign up for credit cards purely for sign up bonuses and cash back rewards. The credit card companies can offer such good bonuses because they know the vast majority of people are going to rack up way more in interest and debt than they'll ever pay in bonuses.


  • Handlebar Stache
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Re: CC for a purchase- $650 vs $200 + 0% for 12 months?
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2016, 02:02:09 PM »
You could purchase yourself some gift cards:
  • Favorite grocery store
  • Amazon
  • Costco
  • $500 One Vanilla VISA gift card and spend it down like a debit card.  ($4.95 initial fee)
There's also pre-paying your car insurance, Internet service, etc.  I'm somewhat frugal, but I could easily come up with $1000 of advanced spending.  Then just unload your gift cards to match your normal monthly spending needs, i.e. don't treat it like free money.