Author Topic: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?  (Read 4659 times)

jeromedawg

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2881
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« on: May 14, 2016, 09:48:44 PM »
Hey all

Just wanted to get some opinions on this. Is it worth it to sign up for a CC that incurs annual fees for the sake of increasing flexibility with what I can do with points, like transferring them to airline miles among other things? In this case, I'm specifically referencing the Chase Sapphire Preferred card. I already have the Chase Sapphire Visa Signature which doesn't have an annual fee but I can't transfer out the points I have to airline miles that I'm interested in redeeming to get better rates. If I applied for the Sapphire Preferred, I'd also qualify to get 50k UR (of course, with spending a certain $$$ amount) which would be huge too. But the cost incurred is a $95 annual fee (waived the first year). It doesn't seem very prudent to open a card just to reap the rewards and then turn around and close it. Catch 22 since you either agree to get charged an annual fee or have your credit affected from closing out a card within 2 years of opening.

Any thoughts on this? Or strategies perhaps?
« Last Edit: May 15, 2016, 04:43:51 PM by jplee3 »

mxt0133

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1559
  • Location: San Francisco
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2016, 11:56:19 PM »
It doesn't seem very prudent to open a card just to reap the rewards and then turn around and close it.

Considering that travel hacking is a strategy for many on the forum here, I would consider it very prudent.  I have opened about 25 credit cards between my wife and I the past year and a half and my credit score went down as much as thirty points but has come right back up.  Also if your credit is high, above 800, having it go down to 780 or 790 doesn't change anything from a lenders perspective you still have excellent credit.

If you do enough research into travel hacking then you will realize you will rarely ever have to pay the annual fee and if you do the rewards will more than pay for it many times over.

betsbillabong

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 11
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2016, 02:41:16 AM »
Can you elaborate on not having to pay the annual fee? I'm wondering whether to keep my Sapphire card. I'd love any pointers to resources on how best to manage the miles (I've got like 140k and have been too busy to figure out how to best take advantage of them. I've always just paid the annual fee though. Thanks!

Christof

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 594
  • Age: 43
  • Location: Germany
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2016, 04:30:21 AM »
If yor credit score doesn't support getting a credit card, meeting the minimum requirements and canceling the card before you incur any fees, you shouldn't play this game anyway.

So no, paying for a personal credit card should be an exceptionreserved  for special cases.

nanu

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 345
  • Age: 31
  • Location: Cambridge, MA
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2016, 06:04:41 AM »
Paying the annual fee can be worth it for certain cards (e.g. IHG card is only $49/year but each year you get a free night at any IHG hotel worldwide).

As for the CSP, I'm not sure it's worth it. But you can always call Chase and try to get them to waive the fee or you can downgrade to a no annual fee card like the Freedom or Freedom Unlimited (though then you can't transfer the points to airlines/hotels).

But yes, many people (myself included) open cards for the bonus, do the minimum spend, and then cancel after a year.
Some people would argue it's immoral, but you could also argue it's immoral to charge you the 20% (or more) APR that banks charge.
At the end, you should do what feels right to you.

jeromedawg

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2881
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2016, 09:59:00 AM »
It doesn't seem very prudent to open a card just to reap the rewards and then turn around and close it.

Considering that travel hacking is a strategy for many on the forum here, I would consider it very prudent.  I have opened about 25 credit cards between my wife and I the past year and a half and my credit score went down as much as thirty points but has come right back up.  Also if your credit is high, above 800, having it go down to 780 or 790 doesn't change anything from a lenders perspective you still have excellent credit.

If you do enough research into travel hacking then you will realize you will rarely ever have to pay the annual fee and if you do the rewards will more than pay for it many times over.

How did you get your credit to come back up by 30pts~ within the past year and a half?! I feel like it has taken *years* for my credit score to get to the point that it is and a drop that big would result in a huge setback.

MrSal

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 866
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2016, 11:07:36 AM »
It doesn't seem very prudent to open a card just to reap the rewards and then turn around and close it.

Considering that travel hacking is a strategy for many on the forum here, I would consider it very prudent.  I have opened about 25 credit cards between my wife and I the past year and a half and my credit score went down as much as thirty points but has come right back up.  Also if your credit is high, above 800, having it go down to 780 or 790 doesn't change anything from a lenders perspective you still have excellent credit.

If you do enough research into travel hacking then you will realize you will rarely ever have to pay the annual fee and if you do the rewards will more than pay for it many times over.

How did you get your credit to come back up by 30pts~ within the past year and a half?! I feel like it has taken *years* for my credit score to get to the point that it is and a drop that big would result in a huge setback.

utilization ratio ... my score 2-3 months ago dropped to 660 and now it is back again into the 780's

Rubic

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1071
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2016, 02:07:57 PM »
If I applied for the Sapphire Preferred, I'd also qualify to get $50k Edit: 50,000 UR points (of course, with spending a certain $$$ amount) which would be huge too. But the cost incurred is a $95 annual fee (waived the first year). It doesn't seem very prudent to open a card just to reap the rewards and then turn around and close it. Catch 22 since you either agree to get charged an annual fee or have your credit affected from closing out a card within 2 years of opening.

Any thoughts on this? Or strategies perhaps?

The CSP is certainly worth applying for to acquire the 50K Ultimate Reward points.  I have the business equivalent (Chase Ink+) which also gives me 5x points at office supply stores, e.g. Staples.  This assumes you can meet the minimum spending requirements: $3000 within 90 days of your application.

I don't know why you're stating that your credit score will be affected by closing out the card before the annual fee hits.  I've closed (or downgraded to non-AF) many cards in the past two years with no effect on my credit score.  I never have a balance, so my utilization ratio is always near zero.  I keep a spreadsheet with all my active cards so I can close/downgrade them on the month the annual fee hits.  BTW, It's not a good idea to close the card just after you've collected the sign-on bonus. Sometimes you can get the fee waived (though not for CSP) or the customer service rep will offer a retainer bonus.

The only AF card I plan to keep this year is the Chase Ink+, because it still pays for itself in UR points.



jeromedawg

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2881
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2016, 04:27:46 PM »
If I applied for the Sapphire Preferred, I'd also qualify to get $50k Edit: 50,000 UR points (of course, with spending a certain $$$ amount) which would be huge too. But the cost incurred is a $95 annual fee (waived the first year). It doesn't seem very prudent to open a card just to reap the rewards and then turn around and close it. Catch 22 since you either agree to get charged an annual fee or have your credit affected from closing out a card within 2 years of opening.

Any thoughts on this? Or strategies perhaps?

The CSP is certainly worth applying for to acquire the 50K Ultimate Reward points.  I have the business equivalent (Chase Ink+) which also gives me 5x points at office supply stores, e.g. Staples.  This assumes you can meet the minimum spending requirements: $3000 within 90 days of your application.

I don't know why you're stating that your credit score will be affected by closing out the card before the annual fee hits.  I've closed (or downgraded to non-AF) many cards in the past two years with no effect on my credit score.  I never have a balance, so my utilization ratio is always near zero.  I keep a spreadsheet with all my active cards so I can close/downgrade them on the month the annual fee hits.  BTW, It's not a good idea to close the card just after you've collected the sign-on bonus. Sometimes you can get the fee waived (though not for CSP) or the customer service rep will offer a retainer bonus.

The only AF card I plan to keep this year is the Chase Ink+, because it still pays for itself in UR points.

The Chase Ink you have is the Ultimate one or whatever where there's an annual fee right? Only other thing about actually acquiring the points is meeting the spending requirements (esp the $4000 in in the first 3 months - and I'm assuming the points wouldn't be credited till *after* you meet the requirement). Not sure what the 'easiest' way is to do that via manufacturing spending.

I always thought credit scores would be affected by closing cards in general. But I guess there's other criterion that affect your credit score, like utilization per MrSal. I find it odd that you say you've closed so many cards in the past two years with absolutely no effect on the credit score. I think if you downgraded them that would make more sense but if you actually closed the account(s), wouldn't that affect your score in some way/shape/form? Maybe I'll look into upgrading to the CSP instead.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2016, 04:29:22 PM by jplee3 »

Janie

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 77
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2016, 04:43:46 PM »
I haven't noticed any change in score after closing 4 cards this year. Credit usage as a percentage of available credit is a factor in credit score but I'm well under 20% of available, even with 1 or 2 cards. I wouldn't keep a card with an annual fee

fishnfool

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 337
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #10 on: May 15, 2016, 04:43:57 PM »
I am very fond of my Alaska Airlines Visa through B of A. It has a annual fee of $75 and we get a yearly companion voucher that will fly you anywhere they go for $99 plus tax. It usually saves us $300 to $500 every year since we signed up for it around 6 or 7 years ago. I've also used the air miles for reduced ticket purchases for more savings. DW went to N. Carolina one year to visit family using her miles + $59 from Calif. just using the free miles they gave her when she signed up for the card.

jeromedawg

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2881
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #11 on: May 15, 2016, 04:57:59 PM »
It doesn't seem very prudent to open a card just to reap the rewards and then turn around and close it.

Considering that travel hacking is a strategy for many on the forum here, I would consider it very prudent.  I have opened about 25 credit cards between my wife and I the past year and a half and my credit score went down as much as thirty points but has come right back up.  Also if your credit is high, above 800, having it go down to 780 or 790 doesn't change anything from a lenders perspective you still have excellent credit.

If you do enough research into travel hacking then you will realize you will rarely ever have to pay the annual fee and if you do the rewards will more than pay for it many times over.

How did you get your credit to come back up by 30pts~ within the past year and a half?! I feel like it has taken *years* for my credit score to get to the point that it is and a drop that big would result in a huge setback.

utilization ratio ... my score 2-3 months ago dropped to 660 and now it is back again into the 780's

Can you elaborate more on the ratio? Does this mean that it's OK to close cards as long as you're using or charging across all the cards you have?
« Last Edit: May 15, 2016, 05:00:24 PM by jplee3 »

jeromedawg

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2881
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2016, 05:01:46 PM »
I am very fond of my Alaska Airlines Visa through B of A. It has a annual fee of $75 and we get a yearly companion voucher that will fly you anywhere they go for $99 plus tax. It usually saves us $300 to $500 every year since we signed up for it around 6 or 7 years ago. I've also used the air miles for reduced ticket purchases for more savings. DW went to N. Carolina one year to visit family using her miles + $59 from Calif. just using the free miles they gave her when she signed up for the card.

I do have the IHG card, with the $49 annual fee and like the fact that we get a free reward night at any IHG hotel. We've used it for the past several years to do wknd or overnight getaway vacations and it's well-worth it IMHO.

kpd905

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1723
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #13 on: May 15, 2016, 05:05:02 PM »
You aren't charged the annual fee for the first year of the Chase Sapphire Preferred.  So you can grab the bonus, transfer the points and cancel at 11 months or so.

Rubic

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1071
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #14 on: May 15, 2016, 05:06:49 PM »
The Chase Ink you have is the Ultimate one or whatever where there's an annual fee right? Only other thing about actually acquiring the points is meeting the spending requirements (esp the $4000 in in the first 3 months - and I'm assuming the points wouldn't be credited till *after* you meet the requirement). Not sure what the 'easiest' way is to do that via manufacturing spending.

I always thought credit scores would be affected by closing cards in general. But I guess there's other criterion that affect your credit score, like utilization per MrSal. I find it odd that you say you've closed so many cards in the past two years with absolutely no effect on the credit score. I think if you downgraded them that would make more sense but if you actually closed the account(s), wouldn't that affect your score in some way/shape/form? Maybe I'll look into upgrading to the CSP instead.

If you can't meet the minimum $4K spending, defer applying for the card.  I looked around for $3K offers, but they're no longer available.  Manufactured spending is still possible, but getting harder, so you may want to test the waters before making a commitment.

The only (current) way that closing a card would affect my score is if it were tied to my utilization ratio, i.e. if I kept an open balance.  Your score isn't affected by closing accounts in good standing.

To my knowledge, upgrading to the CSP won't net you the 50K UR bonus, so don't bother unless you can confirm otherwise.

Additional rules:  Chase has applied the 5/24 rule for their cards.  This means you cannot have opened more than 5 new CC accounts, from any bank, within the past 24 months.  Based on your questions in this thread, I assume you're okay, but thought I might as well point it out.  Otherwise, if your credit score is in the high 700's and you can meet the minimum spend, the CSP is generally a good value.



jeromedawg

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2881
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #15 on: May 15, 2016, 05:16:13 PM »
The Chase Ink you have is the Ultimate one or whatever where there's an annual fee right? Only other thing about actually acquiring the points is meeting the spending requirements (esp the $4000 in in the first 3 months - and I'm assuming the points wouldn't be credited till *after* you meet the requirement). Not sure what the 'easiest' way is to do that via manufacturing spending.

I always thought credit scores would be affected by closing cards in general. But I guess there's other criterion that affect your credit score, like utilization per MrSal. I find it odd that you say you've closed so many cards in the past two years with absolutely no effect on the credit score. I think if you downgraded them that would make more sense but if you actually closed the account(s), wouldn't that affect your score in some way/shape/form? Maybe I'll look into upgrading to the CSP instead.

If you can't meet the minimum $4K spending, defer applying for the card.  I looked around for $3K offers, but they're no longer available.  Manufactured spending is still possible, but getting harder, so you may want to test the waters before making a commitment.

The only (current) way that closing a card would affect my score is if it were tied to my utilization ratio, i.e. if I kept an open balance.  Your score isn't affected by closing accounts in good standing.

To my knowledge, upgrading to the CSP won't net you the 50K UR bonus, so don't bother unless you can confirm otherwise.

Additional rules:  Chase has applied the 5/24 rule for their cards.  This means you cannot have opened more than 5 new CC accounts, from any bank, within the past 24 months.  Based on your questions in this thread, I assume you're okay, but thought I might as well point it out.  Otherwise, if your credit score is in the high 700's and you can meet the minimum spend, the CSP is generally a good value.

Thanks. Was considering going the buy Visa gift card, order MOs at Walmart money center and deposit back into bank account route. Not sure if that's still doable so will have to check more.

I should probably look into closing out some accounts soon. I only really utilize 3-4 among the CCs I have opened. I had opened a few previously for travel purposes a couple years back. And have a number of accounts aggregated over the past 10 years or so where I had opened to take advantage of a few promotions back then. I only closed the ones that had annual fees but have left many of the others open.
I called about upgrading and the rep told me no on the bonus, so opening a card is really the only way. 

kimmarg

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 749
  • Location: Northern New England
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #16 on: May 15, 2016, 06:12:06 PM »
I have a Southwest visa. It costs $39/year but every year I've earned at least one "free" flight. So even considering it a $39 flight it's much cheaper than any other way to fly!


ETBen

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 405
    • I started a journal about single parenting and the new life towards FIRE
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #17 on: May 15, 2016, 08:17:54 PM »
I've only signed up for ones that waive the fee the first year.  Also, I spend a ridiculous amount on childcare each year.  So that adds up to plenty of points, plus I then use pre-tax FSA $ to pay the bill. 

jeromedawg

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2881
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #18 on: May 16, 2016, 09:41:21 AM »
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is a good card especially if you like to eat out and travel. Ultimate Rewards are awesome. They do not expire and can transfer to a ton of different airlines/hotels my favorite is Hyatt 25k for almost any room in the world. The fee is waived year one and Chase is known to give you a statement credit to cover the fee is you call and ask to cancel your card before the anniversary date. Even if you have to pay, the card is still worth paying for it.

The sign up bonus alone covers 5 years worth of fees if you wanted to redeem it for cash, which you shouldn't since it's WAY more valuable when redeemed for travel. The card has some nice little perks like luggage insurance, trip insurance, primary rental car insurance, extra warranty on purchases, etc. Like I said UR are awesome

You should also look into getting at least one Chase Freedom Card (it has a tiny bonus but still free UR points for very little spend) for it's quarterly 5x rotating categories. Right now it's grocery and bulk stores like Costco and Sam's. 5x points per dollar up to $1500, so 7500 UR. Then you can transfer those UR points to the CSP or Ink Plus card (freedom cannot be redeemed for anything other than cash, that's why you move it to the CSP)

*Freedom has no annual fee
*those 2 card links above are my personal referral links

Feel free to shoot me any questions you have. I've helped a ton of people get into cash back/travel redemption
weyer36@gmail.com

Thanks! I think I'm gonna go ahead and sign up for it but I need to make sure I can deal with the $4k of spending requirement. I already have a Chase Freedom as well as the Chase Sapphire Visa Signature (in fact, I think I may have actually had the Preferred at some point in time and possibly downgraded it to the Sapphire [non-preferred] that I have now). We'll see if I get rejected by Chase  :)

As far as manufacturing the spending for the $4k, I've heard the Post Office will issue Money Orders and that they take debit (including Vanilla Visa Gift Cards). If this is true, I'm considering purchasing the VGCs from CVS, then taking them over to the PO to get MOs. Not sure if I'd deposit directly or if I'd cash out somewhere first but it's mainly getting the GCs converted to MOs.

homelesshobbit

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 106
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #19 on: May 16, 2016, 10:12:08 AM »
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is a good card especially if you like to eat out and travel. Ultimate Rewards are awesome. They do not expire and can transfer to a ton of different airlines/hotels my favorite is Hyatt 25k for almost any room in the world. The fee is waived year one and Chase is known to give you a statement credit to cover the fee is you call and ask to cancel your card before the anniversary date. Even if you have to pay, the card is still worth paying for it.

The sign up bonus alone covers 5 years worth of fees if you wanted to redeem it for cash, which you shouldn't since it's WAY more valuable when redeemed for travel. The card has some nice little perks like luggage insurance, trip insurance, primary rental car insurance, extra warranty on purchases, etc. Like I said UR are awesome

You should also look into getting at least one Chase Freedom Card (it has a tiny bonus but still free UR points for very little spend) for it's quarterly 5x rotating categories. Right now it's grocery and bulk stores like Costco and Sam's. 5x points per dollar up to $1500, so 7500 UR. Then you can transfer those UR points to the CSP or Ink Plus card (freedom cannot be redeemed for anything other than cash, that's why you move it to the CSP)

*Freedom has no annual fee
*those 2 card links above are my personal referral links

Feel free to shoot me any questions you have. I've helped a ton of people get into cash back/travel redemption
weyer36@gmail.com

Thanks! I think I'm gonna go ahead and sign up for it but I need to make sure I can deal with the $4k of spending requirement. I already have a Chase Freedom as well as the Chase Sapphire Visa Signature (in fact, I think I may have actually had the Preferred at some point in time and possibly downgraded it to the Sapphire [non-preferred] that I have now). We'll see if I get rejected by Chase  :)

As far as manufacturing the spending for the $4k, I've heard the Post Office will issue Money Orders and that they take debit (including Vanilla Visa Gift Cards). If this is true, I'm considering purchasing the VGCs from CVS, then taking them over to the PO to get MOs. Not sure if I'd deposit directly or if I'd cash out somewhere first but it's mainly getting the GCs converted to MOs.

I've never done the PO but Walmart's are my go-to for Money Orders. Start small ($50) and go through the entire process to make sure it works and you get a decent understanding. You can also fund a Bank account for a large chunk AND receive a bonus from that too. Click this Link

I've personally done PNC and Tech Credit Union
« Last Edit: May 16, 2016, 10:14:19 AM by homelesshobbit »

jeromedawg

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2881
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #20 on: May 16, 2016, 10:29:56 AM »
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is a good card especially if you like to eat out and travel. Ultimate Rewards are awesome. They do not expire and can transfer to a ton of different airlines/hotels my favorite is Hyatt 25k for almost any room in the world. The fee is waived year one and Chase is known to give you a statement credit to cover the fee is you call and ask to cancel your card before the anniversary date. Even if you have to pay, the card is still worth paying for it.

The sign up bonus alone covers 5 years worth of fees if you wanted to redeem it for cash, which you shouldn't since it's WAY more valuable when redeemed for travel. The card has some nice little perks like luggage insurance, trip insurance, primary rental car insurance, extra warranty on purchases, etc. Like I said UR are awesome

You should also look into getting at least one Chase Freedom Card (it has a tiny bonus but still free UR points for very little spend) for it's quarterly 5x rotating categories. Right now it's grocery and bulk stores like Costco and Sam's. 5x points per dollar up to $1500, so 7500 UR. Then you can transfer those UR points to the CSP or Ink Plus card (freedom cannot be redeemed for anything other than cash, that's why you move it to the CSP)

*Freedom has no annual fee
*those 2 card links above are my personal referral links

Feel free to shoot me any questions you have. I've helped a ton of people get into cash back/travel redemption
weyer36@gmail.com

Thanks! I think I'm gonna go ahead and sign up for it but I need to make sure I can deal with the $4k of spending requirement. I already have a Chase Freedom as well as the Chase Sapphire Visa Signature (in fact, I think I may have actually had the Preferred at some point in time and possibly downgraded it to the Sapphire [non-preferred] that I have now). We'll see if I get rejected by Chase  :)

As far as manufacturing the spending for the $4k, I've heard the Post Office will issue Money Orders and that they take debit (including Vanilla Visa Gift Cards). If this is true, I'm considering purchasing the VGCs from CVS, then taking them over to the PO to get MOs. Not sure if I'd deposit directly or if I'd cash out somewhere first but it's mainly getting the GCs converted to MOs.

I've never done the PO but Walmart's are my go-to for Money Orders. Start small ($50) and go through the entire process to make sure it works and you get a decent understanding. You can also fund a Bank account for a large chunk AND receive a bonus from that too. Click this Link

I've personally done PNC and Tech Credit Union

Thanks! I didn't know about funding a bank account - so you're saying you can fund a bank account using nothing but Visa GCs? BTW: Walmart doesn't take Vanilla Visa GCs right? So I'd have to find the Metabank or Sunrise bank issued Visa GCs in order to do the MO thing at Walmart.


homelesshobbit

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 106
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #21 on: May 16, 2016, 10:49:29 AM »
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is a good card especially if you like to eat out and travel. Ultimate Rewards are awesome. They do not expire and can transfer to a ton of different airlines/hotels my favorite is Hyatt 25k for almost any room in the world. The fee is waived year one and Chase is known to give you a statement credit to cover the fee is you call and ask to cancel your card before the anniversary date. Even if you have to pay, the card is still worth paying for it.

The sign up bonus alone covers 5 years worth of fees if you wanted to redeem it for cash, which you shouldn't since it's WAY more valuable when redeemed for travel. The card has some nice little perks like luggage insurance, trip insurance, primary rental car insurance, extra warranty on purchases, etc. Like I said UR are awesome

You should also look into getting at least one Chase Freedom Card (it has a tiny bonus but still free UR points for very little spend) for it's quarterly 5x rotating categories. Right now it's grocery and bulk stores like Costco and Sam's. 5x points per dollar up to $1500, so 7500 UR. Then you can transfer those UR points to the CSP or Ink Plus card (freedom cannot be redeemed for anything other than cash, that's why you move it to the CSP)

*Freedom has no annual fee
*those 2 card links above are my personal referral links

Feel free to shoot me any questions you have. I've helped a ton of people get into cash back/travel redemption
weyer36@gmail.com

Thanks! I think I'm gonna go ahead and sign up for it but I need to make sure I can deal with the $4k of spending requirement. I already have a Chase Freedom as well as the Chase Sapphire Visa Signature (in fact, I think I may have actually had the Preferred at some point in time and possibly downgraded it to the Sapphire [non-preferred] that I have now). We'll see if I get rejected by Chase  :)

As far as manufacturing the spending for the $4k, I've heard the Post Office will issue Money Orders and that they take debit (including Vanilla Visa Gift Cards). If this is true, I'm considering purchasing the VGCs from CVS, then taking them over to the PO to get MOs. Not sure if I'd deposit directly or if I'd cash out somewhere first but it's mainly getting the GCs converted to MOs.

I've never done the PO but Walmart's are my go-to for Money Orders. Start small ($50) and go through the entire process to make sure it works and you get a decent understanding. You can also fund a Bank account for a large chunk AND receive a bonus from that too. Click this Link

I've personally done PNC and Tech Credit Union

Thanks! I didn't know about funding a bank account - so you're saying you can fund a bank account using nothing but Visa GCs? BTW: Walmart doesn't take Vanilla Visa GCs right? So I'd have to find the Metabank or Sunrise bank issued Visa GCs in order to do the MO thing at Walmart.

No, you open a new bank that allows Visa Load as the initial funding source. Then pay the CC off with that money.

So get the CC, once you get it, as you are opening the bank account, it will ask you if you want to fund it. Chose the CC option and input the information. the CC will not charge a cash advanced on a lot of those bank on that website. it will count as a purchase and help you meet the minimum spend.

feel free to use my referral link

Rubic

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1071
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #22 on: May 16, 2016, 10:53:04 AM »
I've never done the PO but Walmart's are my go-to for Money Orders. Start small ($50) and go through the entire process to make sure it works and you get a decent understanding. You can also fund a Bank account for a large chunk AND receive a bonus from that too. Click this Link

I've personally done PNC and Tech Credit Union

Thanks! I didn't know about funding a bank account - so you're saying you can fund a bank account using nothing but Visa GCs? BTW: Walmart doesn't take Vanilla Visa GCs right? So I'd have to find the Metabank or Sunrise bank issued Visa GCs in order to do the MO thing at Walmart.

Be sure to carefully read through the Doctor of Credit link provided by homelesshobbit.  In particular, you want to set your cash advance limit to zero (or $100, if they won't allow a zero limit).  Actually, I do this for all my credit cards, so I eliminate the possibility of a transaction being coded as a cash advance.

In the past, I've funded bank accounts with a credit card (e.g. $38K -> Citigold), but most banks aren't allowing CC funding anymore.

homelesshobbit

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 106
Re: Credit Cards w/ Annual Fees...worth it?
« Reply #23 on: May 16, 2016, 11:08:05 AM »
I've never done the PO but Walmart's are my go-to for Money Orders. Start small ($50) and go through the entire process to make sure it works and you get a decent understanding. You can also fund a Bank account for a large chunk AND receive a bonus from that too. Click this Link

I've personally done PNC and Tech Credit Union

Thanks! I didn't know about funding a bank account - so you're saying you can fund a bank account using nothing but Visa GCs? BTW: Walmart doesn't take Vanilla Visa GCs right? So I'd have to find the Metabank or Sunrise bank issued Visa GCs in order to do the MO thing at Walmart.

Be sure to carefully read through the Doctor of Credit link provided by homelesshobbit.  In particular, you want to set your cash advance limit to zero (or $100, if they won't allow a zero limit).  Actually, I do this for all my credit cards, so I eliminate the possibility of a transaction being coded as a cash advance.

In the past, I've funded bank accounts with a credit card (e.g. $38K -> Citigold), but most banks aren't allowing CC funding anymore.

Yep, the $0 cash advanced limit is a good way to not get screwed.