There are really 3 different types of credit cards cards for me.
- Lousy sign up bonus, worthless awards program or a program I just won’t get to the minimum award level on. I don’t apply and waste my good credit.
- Sign up bonus cards that offer a full reward on completing sign up bonus. The best have no first year fee as we are basically being handed a free ticket The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card I’m touting would be in this category. I’ll fulfill the sign up requirements as quickly as possible and it may go in the sock drawer after that. In effect it becomes my “go to card” until I reach the minimum spend threshold. There is a list of these in the database on the right hand blog column (If I find the rewards program to be excellent, it may move to the next category).And an added bonus with some of these cards is the ability to get a revenue ticket that earns miles on the program of your choice. IE: Chase Sapphire, Amex Premier Rewards (when it was 25K), and the US Bank Flexperks card of the past.
- My daily use cards. The old standby SPG card is my “go to card”. I always have a backup card for places that will not take the American Express card. That card is usually not from category #2 as I want to get that minimum spend taken care of immediately. Right now mine is the United Signature card so I can piddle a few more points into my main program.
In summary category #1 cards never make it into my wallet, category #2 cards earn a spot in the leather for a short time only and the daily use card is there day after day after day. When I’m not earning a minimum spend, I’m using category #3 and staying there. The SPG card has been my go to card for 6 years now, except during the Citi Thank You points bonanza. Wow do I miss that one