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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-12-2007, 09:07 AM   #21
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by BarbaraAnne
Ceberon, are you sure you get 5 points per dollar? I just checked my account and am only getting 3 points. In fact, I just called them and they verified the 3 points per dollar credit.

If there is a way to get 5 points, please share it. Thanks!
Sorry, very likely that it is actually 3 points rather than 5. 5 did sound pretty high (I was just doing it from memory). In either case, it's a pretty good deal
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-12-2007, 11:15 PM   #22
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

If you travel or eat out a lot, try the Costco American Express card. It pays 3% cash for eating out, 2% for travel expenses, and 1% for everything else. I use it for business travel and get a nice rebate each year.
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 07:26 AM   #23
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

We charge about $50K a year on credit cards.

I have the Citi Dividend card. As mentioned above, it used to be 5% cash back on groceries and gas with $300 annual cash-back limit. So we used that only for groceries and gas.

We use use a CapOne cash-back card for overseas charges since it does not have an extra fee. It is 1% cash-back, but without the extra 2% foreign transaction fee of other cards.

We use a Chase card for the continental miles because it works out to better as mentioned above than 1% cash-back.

I have seen the Amex Blue card. Maybe it's the same deal as scrinch wrote about. It is not great if you charge only a few thousand a year (cash-back of 0.5%). But if you charge alot, then it has a higher overall cash-back rate. There is a "break-even" point though where above that amount it is better than a 1% cash-back card. Does anybody use it? It gives higher cash-back for restaurants.

So it looks to me like the best set up is a combination of cards that depends on your lifestyle.
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 11:29 AM   #24
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

In addition to some of the cards mentioned by others, we use Discover only for their special 5% rebates that vary quarterly.

For example, for the rebate for Oct1-Dec 31st was 5% on restaurants and fast food. The rebate for Jan 1st - March 31st of this years is 5% on travel (airfare, hotels, rental cars).

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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 11:38 AM   #25
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

For a generic cashback card, the EmigrantDirect/Juniper mastercard pays 1.4% on all purchases, provided you keep an account at EmigrantDirect with average balance greater than $10K over the past six months. (I think it pays 0.4% if you avg under $10K.) I use this in combination with some of the higher-rebate-but-restricted cards like Chase and Citi.
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 12:51 PM   #26
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

I have used Amex Blue Cash back for the last year. Rates are tiered so you have to be a high spender, but once over the minmum of $6,500 you start getting 5% on everyday items. For the 12 months just ended in January I spent just over $20k and with my spend pattern got a cash rebate equal to 1.95%. So, not bad for me, and I expect to spend more on it this year than 20k so expect to get over 2%/yr

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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 01:52 PM   #27
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

I tend to focus on getting cash rebates from our credit cards rather than miles or "thingies" that I never really wanted.

We have Wells Fargo credit cards, no annual fee, every $50,000 spent results in a $600 cash rebate.

We also have a Chase credit card which gives us miles on British Airways, 1 mile for every $ spent. We have never had an issue with not being able to get a flight to Europe using miles when required. We try and fit in one trip to Europe every year and usually fly British Airways. Our aim is to accumulate enough miles for Club Class or above.

We also have a Hawaiin Airlines credit card through BofA. 10,000 miles on joining, 1 mile for every $1. This is a good card for us as being on the West Coast with direct flights on Hawaiian it's a cheap long weekend destination for us.

We also have American Express, however compared to the above cards the rewards aren't as good. We have the green one. What I do like about American Express is their customer service. Way above the levels experienced at any bank.
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 02:11 PM   #28
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

I've decided to start using a credit card rather than the check book this year. So, I've been watching for a good cc offer. Just rcvd the Costco/AMEX application. It looks like a good deal, no fee and provides a tiered cashback option for all purchases (1% - 3%). Using one card that provides cash back on all purchases appeals to me rather than using multiple cards (also replaces the Costco card). Allows me to minimize the number of cards in my wallet. I use to be more concerned with having a card that offers a low interest rate, but since we pay off our cc balances each month, that tactic doesn't make sense.
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 03:11 PM   #29
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash


I'm surprised that (unless I'm mistaken) no one has mentioned the Pentagon
Federal Credit Union card, which gives 5% cashback on gas and 1.25% on
everything else. Of course you have to join, and (if you don't otherwise qualify)
join National Military Families Assoc before you can join PFCU, but I imagine a lot
of folks here are already doing that for the 6.25% CDs.

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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 06:38 PM   #30
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnEyles
I'm surprised that (unless I'm mistaken) no one has mentioned the Pentagon Federal Credit Union card, which gives 5% cashback on gas and 1.25% on
everything else. Of course you have to join, and (if you don't otherwise qualify)
join National Military Families Assoc before you can join PFCU, but I imagine a lot
of folks here are already doing that for the 6.25% CDs.
It depends on your expenses and the hassle factor of carrying & tracking extra CCs. We spent a grand total of $1400 on Hawaii gas last year, so our 5% rebate would amount to $70... and our USAA credit card runs 3% specials so the 2% difference would amount to $28.
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 08:35 PM   #31
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by brewer12345
Hmmm, I am actually wondering what to do with the huge wad of miles I now have on my Schwab Visa. Good for cash, airline tickets, and a bunch of overpriced crap consumer goods. I didn't quite have enough miles to get tickets for the 4 of us next month for a vacation, so I paid cash. Wondering whether the miles are worth keeping or if I should just cash them in.
I always cash my Schwab Visa miles in. In general if you read the fine print in the Worldpoint program offered by many cards, you'll find that it is hard to qualify for a a ticket that is worth much more than $.01/mile.

In contrast, I think Visa mileage cards offered by major carriers, 20-25,000 miles can be often redeem for $400-$500 flights or 35,000 miles for $500-$700 flights to Hawaii with advanced booking.

One other comment, I find the teaser promotions for many airline cards to be pretty good. Typically, I get 6-12 months free membership, plus 10-15,000 miles and a few fairly useless coupons, if you use the card pretty extensively plus take a couple of flights you can pick up a free airline ticket in a year. I then cancel the card and join another airline program.


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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 08:43 PM   #32
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceberon
I'm a big fan of Amazon's rewards card (by Chase). It gives the 1% (1 point per dollar) spent on any purchase, and then 5 points per dollar for Amazon purchases (I buy just about everything from Amazon, electronics, books, games, etc). You get gift certificates in the mail once you hit 2000 points ($20). Just type in the code, and you have "free" money to spend at Amazon

Much better than points you can only spend on certain things like Sony's crap card, or AA's points, etc.
Thanks, Ceb! I've been looking for a rewards card that would fit my style, and I completely forgot to look at Amazon. I also do ALOT of my shopping there! (and I did see the posts about it being 3%, not 5%, but that's still OK with me)

Again, Thanks!
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 08:57 PM   #33
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by clifp
One other comment, I find the teaser promotions for many airline cards to be pretty good. Typically, I get 6-12 months free membership, plus 10-15,000 miles and a few fairly useless coupons, if you use the card pretty extensively plus take a couple of flights you can pick up a free airline ticket in a year. I then cancel the card and join another airline program.
In November DW got a letter from Delta saying that her 36,000 miles were due to expire end of year. Amex were offering a Delta miles card free for the first year and 15,000 miles on first purchase. DW applied and spent $47 on the card. She got 15,000 miles, taking her over 50k miles and we booked 2 tickets to Quebec city in May. She cancelled the card yesterday (no penalty). - pretty good deal - thanks to Delta for pre-warning her as the miles were left over from her company travel. (she RE'ed 2.5 years ago)

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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 10:07 PM   #34
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash




I have a question.

How much extra incidental money do you wind up spending
when using those free air miles ?


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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-13-2007, 10:19 PM   #35
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceberon

I'm a big fan of Amazon's rewards card (by Chase). It gives the 1% (1 point per dollar) spent on any purchase, and then 5 points per dollar for Amazon purchases (I buy just about everything from Amazon, electronics, books, games, etc). You get gift certificates in the mail once you hit 2000 points ($20). Just type in the code, and you have "free" money to spend at Amazon

Much better than points you can only spend on certain things like Sony's crap card, or AA's points, etc.

I love my Amazon Visa.

The free $25 gift certificates are perfect
for using Amazon's free shipping option...
so you spend nothing on the DVD, CD,
Book, etc... and nothing on the shipping.

You can't beat that price

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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-14-2007, 05:54 AM   #36
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by Helena


I have a question.

How much extra incidental money do you wind up spending
when using those free air miles ?
If your goal is to take a trip who cares? If you were never going to travel in the first place then I suppose you spend more money, but you are getting something out of it.

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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-14-2007, 09:22 AM   #37
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Apparently, the chase cash plus card is still available for signup at chase bank locations (if you have nearby)....5% on gas, groceries, and drugstores....We have a couple of these that we use as our main cards...
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-14-2007, 09:38 AM   #38
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by Helena


I have a question.

How much extra incidental money do you wind up spending
when using those free air miles ?


None. If our vacation was going to cost $2K, including $800 airfare, getting free tickets saves $800 and reduces the total cost of the trip to $1.2K. We've yet to find any catch or hook where we spend "extra" money.
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-14-2007, 09:50 AM   #39
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by Helena
How much extra incidental money do you wind up spending
when using those free air miles ?
Sometimes there is a $5 to $25 to pay the airport service fee or tax. You would pay this fee even if you paid cash. If you change your mind, you can cancel your flight and get your miles back for a service fee.
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash
Old 01-14-2007, 11:01 AM   #40
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Re: Best credit card miles or cash

Quote:
Originally Posted by LOL!
Sometimes there is a $5 to $25 to pay the airport service fee or tax. You would pay this fee even if you paid cash. If you change your mind, you can cancel your flight and get your miles back for a service fee.
The costs have gone up recently. We just got 2 "free" tickets from Houston to Quebec and they cost $46.50 each. $36.50 in taxes and $10.00 handling because we booked by phone instead of internet. Problem is it is really hard to get free tickets on the internet because you can't access the partner airlines. The last 3 tickets I got were all on partner airlines. These "Delta" free tickets are actually on Continental.
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