General spending cards

For just about anything you want to get off your chest about credit cards.
Tubpbs
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Re: General spending cards

Postby Tubpbs » Fri Jun 10, 2016 6:57 pm

Vattené wrote:If I were solely getting rewards in the form of cash back, in theory I wouldn't have a problem with a guaranteed 2% card. This is my personal preference, but I like building up rewards - even cash back - to redeem in large amounts anyway and for a specific thing. Yes, I could take it as soon as possible and I understand the argument that one should get the cash as soon as they can, but if I'm going to devote this much time to credit card rewards I want to "feel it." If I just took a statement credit as soon as possible I wouldn't even notice it, in terms of my bank account. So, I'd have no problem waiting a long time to reach a redemption threshold.

However, I'd still be a little hesitant to get too many category cards because I wouldn't want it to impact my spending. I'm invested in MR anyway, so I'm happy with ED as a general spend card.


What makes you stick with ED vs. EDP? I've been curious about that. How many swipes a month do you average? What other factors do you consider in that decision?
Amex - BCP, Platinum, Business Gold
BoA - BankAmericard Cash Rewards
Chase - Freedom, CSP, RC, Ink Plus
Citi - DC, Prestige
Discover - It


Kevin86475391
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Re: General spending cards

Postby Kevin86475391 » Sat Jun 11, 2016 8:29 pm

For me a 2% general spend card like the Citi Double Cash is absolutely worth it. Non-category bills by far represent my highest spend area. I'm not charged a fee for using a card for my electricity, phone, and cable bill, but I am charged a small fee for running my rent through a credit card. However, that fee itself averages somewhere around 1%-1.5%, so by using my 2% Citi DC I come out very slightly ahead. That's not my main goal however. I simply don't want to use a check or debit card. I strongly prefer using a credit card. I'd probably still opt for a credit card over debit/check even if I only broke even or lost a small amount. So any gain, however, marginal, is more that worth it to me.

In general I can count on at least $1,500-$2,000 on the Citi DC as a bare minimum, sometimes more. So that comes out to at least $30-$40 per month in rewards. By contrast if I used one of my 1% cards instead I'd only get $15-$20 per month in rewards. To me that's more than worth it. That's at minimum an extra $180 per year, and in practice a good bit more.

And indeed I've by far redeemed more/higher rewards on my Citi DC than I have on my category cards - with the exception of signup bonuses, but long-term it still makes the Citi DC a great deal since there's no AF.

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Vattené
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Re: General spending cards

Postby Vattené » Mon Jun 13, 2016 4:52 pm

Tubpbs wrote:What makes you stick with ED vs. EDP? I've been curious about that. How many swipes a month do you average? What other factors do you consider in that decision?

I've been using Discover a lot during their double cashback promo for a guaranteed base 2%. I still use ED for at least 20 swipes, but before the year of double cashback started I would get 40 pretty easily. 30 swipes was never a big concern for me with EDP. The biggest factor at the time I applied was just wanting to avoid an AF, to be honest. It was and still is my first experimentation with a points-based system.

If I could do it over, I'm not sure whether I'd have applied for the EDP instead or not. I'm not as worried about keeping a card long-term now, but beyond just the fact that it has an annual fee, my thinking was also that I don't travel enough to redeem MR (at a valuable enough redemption, that is) once a year. I have no problem building up MR for multiple years if it means getting better use out of a rewards card than cash back. I still haven't seen firsthand whether or not that will happen, but it's worth it to me to experiment and find out for myself. I figure I can always go back to simple cash back if need be and get something out of my MR even if it isn't the best redemption value. It looks like by the time I get to my second year with the card, Amex Offers may be good enough for me to have paid for the EDP (assuming I'd get the same offers on EDP I have with ED), but I wouldn't want to count on that on an ongoing basis as a way to justify keeping a card.
-Vattené
FICO-8:
EX - 809 (11/16) | TU - 803 (11/16)
Primary Cards:
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now

Tubpbs
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Re: General spending cards

Postby Tubpbs » Mon Jun 13, 2016 5:54 pm

Vattené wrote:
Tubpbs wrote:What makes you stick with ED vs. EDP? I've been curious about that. How many swipes a month do you average? What other factors do you consider in that decision?

I've been using Discover a lot during their double cashback promo for a guaranteed base 2%. I still use ED for at least 20 swipes, but before the year of double cashback started I would get 40 pretty easily. 30 swipes was never a big concern for me with EDP. The biggest factor at the time I applied was just wanting to avoid an AF, to be honest. It was and still is my first experimentation with a points-based system.

If I could do it over, I'm not sure whether I'd have applied for the EDP instead or not. I'm not as worried about keeping a card long-term now, but beyond just the fact that it has an annual fee, my thinking was also that I don't travel enough to redeem MR (at a valuable enough redemption, that is) once a year. I have no problem building up MR for multiple years if it means getting better use out of a rewards card than cash back. I still haven't seen firsthand whether or not that will happen, but it's worth it to me to experiment and find out for myself. I figure I can always go back to simple cash back if need be and get something out of my MR even if it isn't the best redemption value. It looks like by the time I get to my second year with the card, Amex Offers may be good enough for me to have paid for the EDP (assuming I'd get the same offers on EDP I have with ED), but I wouldn't want to count on that on an ongoing basis as a way to justify keeping a card.


Fair enough points. I'm pretty upset they just raised the BCP to $95/year.

Also, the end of your post reminds me of CarefulBuilder's post about recovering his AFs just from Amex offers...wish he kept going haha.
Amex - BCP, Platinum, Business Gold
BoA - BankAmericard Cash Rewards
Chase - Freedom, CSP, RC, Ink Plus
Citi - DC, Prestige
Discover - It

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CarefulBuilder14
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Re: General spending cards

Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Mon Jun 13, 2016 8:25 pm

Tubpbs wrote:Fair enough points. I'm pretty upset they just raised the BCP to $95/year.

Also, the end of your post reminds me of CarefulBuilder's post about recovering his AFs just from Amex offers...wish he kept going haha.

Well, first and foremost, I stopped updating that thread primarily because I had little to say! Offers since January have been pretty disappointing - just a few extra dollars and MRs.

Also, I went from: PRG, EDP, BCE
to: SchwabPlat, ED, BCE

...so it's not quite apples-to-apples anymore.

There's only one Amex AF to defeat now, and offers aren't a big part of the battle.
Love: IHG, Platinum, Sallie Mae, AA Plat, CSP
Like: Discover, ED, BCE, Hyatt, Arrival, Freedom
Might drop: BrooksBros, Prestige (Costco PC?)
Might add: Proper business card, CSR, Ritz, Delta Gold
Letting new accounts cool off since May
Really not sure what I'll add next or when

JonE
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Re: General spending cards

Postby JonE » Mon Jun 13, 2016 8:36 pm

If it's with a bank you already have a credit connection with (as with me and Chase and their Freedom Unlimited card) that also works with their other cards, like CSP and the original Freedom, then I can see it being very beneficial. Beyond that there's not really a reason to go for another general spend card outside of that, in my case anyway.
Wallet: Chase Freedom, Discover IT
Chopping Block: Synchrony
Future: TBD

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Vattené
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Re: General spending cards

Postby Vattené » Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:08 pm

Tubpbs wrote:
Vattené wrote:
Tubpbs wrote:What makes you stick with ED vs. EDP? I've been curious about that. How many swipes a month do you average? What other factors do you consider in that decision?

I've been using Discover a lot during their double cashback promo for a guaranteed base 2%. I still use ED for at least 20 swipes, but before the year of double cashback started I would get 40 pretty easily. 30 swipes was never a big concern for me with EDP. The biggest factor at the time I applied was just wanting to avoid an AF, to be honest. It was and still is my first experimentation with a points-based system.

If I could do it over, I'm not sure whether I'd have applied for the EDP instead or not. I'm not as worried about keeping a card long-term now, but beyond just the fact that it has an annual fee, my thinking was also that I don't travel enough to redeem MR (at a valuable enough redemption, that is) once a year. I have no problem building up MR for multiple years if it means getting better use out of a rewards card than cash back. I still haven't seen firsthand whether or not that will happen, but it's worth it to me to experiment and find out for myself. I figure I can always go back to simple cash back if need be and get something out of my MR even if it isn't the best redemption value. It looks like by the time I get to my second year with the card, Amex Offers may be good enough for me to have paid for the EDP (assuming I'd get the same offers on EDP I have with ED), but I wouldn't want to count on that on an ongoing basis as a way to justify keeping a card.


Fair enough points. I'm pretty upset they just raised the BCP to $95/year.

Also, the end of your post reminds me of CarefulBuilder's post about recovering his AFs just from Amex offers...wish he kept going haha.


That sucks. Do you know if your next AF will be $95 or if you'll have some sort of grandfathering period before it gets implemented on existing cardholders? I'm sure they'll send you something in the mail about terms changing if you haven't heard definitively yet.

As an existing cardmember, can you get 10% cash back on cell phones this year or is that just for new applicants? I wonder if they're offering any benefit to help compensate for the AF hike. The cell phone thing is nice, but it's just a temporary promotion. Given Amex's track record in the last couple of years, I suspect it's just an AF increase and you won't get anything new from the card.
-Vattené
FICO-8:
EX - 809 (11/16) | TU - 803 (11/16)
Primary Cards:
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now

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CarefulBuilder14
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Re: General spending cards

Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:37 pm

Vattené wrote:That sucks. Do you know if your next AF will be $95 or if you'll have some sort of grandfathering period before it gets implemented on existing cardholders? I'm sure they'll send you something in the mail about terms changing if you haven't heard definitively yet.

As an existing cardmember, can you get 10% cash back on cell phones this year or is that just for new applicants? I wonder if they're offering any benefit to help compensate for the AF hike. The cell phone thing is nice, but it's just a temporary promotion. Given Amex's track record in the last couple of years, I suspect it's just an AF increase and you won't get anything new from the card.

Grandfathering rules, from what I've read, are not totally predictable. The old AF can sometimes linger for a few years, but eventually will increase.
Love: IHG, Platinum, Sallie Mae, AA Plat, CSP
Like: Discover, ED, BCE, Hyatt, Arrival, Freedom
Might drop: BrooksBros, Prestige (Costco PC?)
Might add: Proper business card, CSR, Ritz, Delta Gold
Letting new accounts cool off since May
Really not sure what I'll add next or when

4ktvs
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Re: General spending cards

Postby 4ktvs » Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:55 pm

I have a %2 cash back FNBO card that while they did grant me a CLI it was only a $300 auto CLI. $1k to $1300 still really sucks.

I am thinking about going for the Fidelity Visa for the $100 bonus they have right now. But due to US bank being the UW, I am not sure of what kind of limit I would get as they think much like FNBO.

But a Blispay might work, but as a start up I don't know if it's worth the new account hit for something that might not be around in a year or two.

I could also call FNBO and ask for a bigger CLI but I get the feeling it would be a waste of time.

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Vattené
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Re: General spending cards

Postby Vattené » Tue Jun 14, 2016 4:56 pm

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:Grandfathering rules, from what I've read, are not totally predictable. The old AF can sometimes linger for a few years, but eventually will increase.

Yeah I'm sure it is just a matter of time. Hopefully it's later rather than sooner.
-Vattené
FICO-8:
EX - 809 (11/16) | TU - 803 (11/16)
Primary Cards:
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now



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