25 year old, looking for best possible card to capitalize on my traveling

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sez
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25 year old, looking for best possible card to capitalize on my traveling

Postby sez » Fri Jan 10, 2014 12:47 am

Hello everyone,

I posted on here a few months back asking if there were any better cards out there that I ought to be looking into. I was advised to pay off the balances I was carrying on my cards and then start to think about it. I am a 25 year old graduate student and I am frequently traveling for school. I also work almost full-time and receive funding from my university. I have had a credit card since I was 18 and have very good credit.

Right now I have three cards Chase Slate, Chase Freedom, and Capital One Venture Travel Rewards. The Capital One is where I plan to carry my balance. I don't feel like I have been cashing in much with the Freedom rewards and I have a higher APR than the Slate so I am not exactly in love with the card. The Capital One has yet to give me an APR since there is no interest on it for a year, and I am currently carrying about 50% of the balance.

I frequently travel, as my research takes place abroad, I travel back to my hometown often, and I present and attend various conferences. I plan to travel very extensively next summer, particularly traveling in northern Europe and Asia. My question is, would anyone recommend any other cards that would be better for me to capitalize on all of this travel spending?

Thanks everyone. Any other questions please do ask.


MemberSince99
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Postby MemberSince99 » Fri Jan 10, 2014 2:07 am

Do you want perks or rewards

Amex is best for perks others for rewards perks being things like lounge access

Beyond that just look at the travel cards and compare this site has a nice comparison I'm on tablet so cut and paste is hard

samhradh
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Postby samhradh » Fri Jan 10, 2014 12:33 pm

Carrying ~50% balance on your Venture is not ideal if you're trying to get approved for premium cards. As you were advised in the past, so I will advise again, that you should pay down as much as you can of that balance. Even with a 0% APR you should still be wary of carrying half your CL.

MemberSince99 wrote:Do you want perks or rewards


Then answer this question for yourself. Perks being: Lounge access, free checked bags, priority boarding? Rewards: Double miles, higher rewards return, etc?

Then your search will be easier. You may consider trying to PC the Slate to the CSP since the Slate isn't worth much other than for balance transfers. The AmEx Plat is getting degraded so fast it's as if everyone in the world has it out for them; wouldn't recommend that card right now. Consider an airline card if you tend to fly one or a couple airlines the majority of the time.
Citi Forward ($10.1K), AmEx Blue Cash Everyday ($30K), Chase Freedom ($12.4K), Discover it ($5.5K), Barclaycard Arrival ($12.5K), L.L. Bean Visa ($5K). FICO 806 (TU), 812 (EQ), 806 (EX).

sez
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Postby sez » Fri Jan 10, 2014 1:45 pm

Thanks for the replies. I think I am more looking for double miles and higher rewards return. I am planning on paying down the Venture in the next few months as well.

samhradh, what do you mean by trying to "PC the Slate to the CSP?"

As far as airline cards go, I don't really fly with any consistent airlines. Would a star alliance card do better? I know some Asian airlines I fly on have partnerships with United and Delta who I often fly with to Asia, so that might be helpful. Other than that any other suggestions?

MemberSince99
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Postby MemberSince99 » Fri Jan 10, 2014 6:01 pm

PC = Product Change. You call them up and tell them you would like to convert your Slate card to another card they have, the CSP. (Chase Sapphire Preferred). CSP is a MUCH better card for travel, Slate is really just for transferring a balance to get a low rate on it.

takeshi
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Postby takeshi » Mon Jan 13, 2014 9:26 am

Also take a look at redemptions. Does no good to earn rewards that you can't use. See who you can transfer to. With Ultimate Rewards points are generally worth more if transferred versus making travel purchases via the UR mall.

sez wrote:As far as airline cards go, I don't really fly with any consistent airlines. Would a star alliance card do better? I know some Asian airlines I fly on have partnerships with United and Delta who I often fly with to Asia, so that might be helpful.

Check the terms of the card(s) you're considering. I know the UMPE states:
The primary Cardmember and one companion traveling on the same reservation will each receive their first standard checked bag free - calculated as a $25 value for the first checked bag, each way, per person - on United-operated flights when purchasing tickets with their United MileagePlus Explorer Card.

In other words, you don't get that benefit on Star Alliance flights -- just United. Double miles are also only on United tickets. Priority boarding is also only for United-operated flights.

sez
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Postby sez » Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:43 pm

Again, many thanks for the replies.

I think the most viable course of action I've found would be turning the Slate into a CSP. Can anyone care to share how nice the CSP travel rewards are and how much they will do me well this coming summer if I travel on it? I plan to take about six one way flights going from the US to Japan, then probably two or three weekend trips, then my return flight from Japan. Also using it for hotels as well. I feel my Capital One Travel Rewards, while it does give me some nice rewards and no annual fee, I wonder if the CSP or the Capital One Venture Rewards might be better for this coming trip.

I also looked at the UMPE and other United cards, but they didn't seem to have the best reviews and I can honestly go without a lot of their perks and incentives.

MemberSince99
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Postby MemberSince99 » Thu Jan 16, 2014 6:56 am

Here is a link from this site to all of the details on travel cards they have listed. At the top is a link to CSP with details.


It's two clicks. Then you hit back and click on something else if you want to compare. You gotta be willing to do SOME of the legwork here. Only highly overpaid executives get spoon fed everything in life.


http://creditcardforum.com/content/best-travel-rewards-credit-cards-15/

samhradh
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Postby samhradh » Thu Jan 16, 2014 9:57 am

Yes, please do some research on your own to figure out the best travel card for YOU. Saves a lot of time as we do not know you and your needs.

I will say that doing a PC from Slate to CSP will mean you DO NOT get the sign-up bonus.
Citi Forward ($10.1K), AmEx Blue Cash Everyday ($30K), Chase Freedom ($12.4K), Discover it ($5.5K), Barclaycard Arrival ($12.5K), L.L. Bean Visa ($5K). FICO 806 (TU), 812 (EQ), 806 (EX).

sez
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Postby sez » Sat Jan 18, 2014 11:28 am

I have looked at many of these cards before and have compared them. That being said, things look one way when you are comparing them then when you are actually using them. I am looking for feedback from people who have used such cards and have honest things to say about them.



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