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I had a client (on my real job) ask me the other day where on the blog I show what credit card to use for what to get the maximum value. I sheepishly said, uhhh, I don’t have one. Time to fix that right now.
I not only churn a ton of cards but I also use a ton of cards. I rotate what I keep in my wallet. I always have my Delta AMEX Reserve card, also my Sapphire and Freedom card and then one I am fulfilling some kind of spend from my latest churn. Some cards, like my INK BOLD, I use mostly for specific things that are set for autopay. So let me show some ideas for you.
“wireless/telecommunications services (excluding equipment such as phones and fax machines), cable and satellite television and radio services, office supply stores and wholesale distributors of office supplies.”
So what I do is set my cell phone and cable bills to autobill to my INK BOLD card. Simple and max rewards. When I do order office supplies I also use this puppy.
- Chase Sapphire. It is my card when in Sweden as there is no international transaction fee. I also use this when dining out as it pays 2x points in restaurants!
- Chase Freedom. This card rotates what it pays 5x UR points for every 3 months. There is a cap of $1500 each period but if you and spouse both have the card you are talking $3000 and a net win of 15,000 points! Another tip that is a YMMV but works for me is this. My local grocery store sells gas. They also sell their brand of gift cards. So, I buy $1500 in gift cards and then use them to pay for food and gas even after the 3 months from Chase is up!
- Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express. Earn triple points on airfare, double points on gasoline at U.S. stand-alone gas stations, double points at U.S. stand-alone supermarkets, and single points on other purchases. So food and gas on this card but ONLY when Chase Freedom does not have specials going on.
- ANY Delta AMEX card. When it comes to buying things on a Delta flight:
“Card members will receive a 20% savings on eligible in-flight purchases of food, alcoholic beverages, movies, television shows, video games and audio headsets on Delta Air Lines®-operated flights”
This is not instant credit but shows up as a credit back on your account a few weeks later. But still, 20% is not bad! I then use this for most other purchases to meet the spend to get MQM’s each year on my Reserve card.
- Hilton Honors card. When paying for a room at Hilton they pay you 6x points. This card is also an option for supermarkets, drugstores and gas stations as they pay 3 points per dollar on these places. For this card it depends on what Hilton points are worth to YOU or what you have on the way regarding a vacation at a Hilton property.
- SPG AMEX card personal and SPG OPEN Business cards. Like most hotel programs you get big bonus points for paying for your room etc. with the hotel’s card. The SPG card is the same way.
- Chase PC card. You can get 5x points for spend at hotels. You can get 2x points for gas, grocery and restaurants but I value PC points much less that UR points so I would stick with Sapphire other than paying for hotel stuff.
So there you have it. This is my basic list for maximizing points. Are there other things you do to eeek out a few more points on purchases with cards? Let your fellow DeltaPoints readers know. – Rene