Maxed Out 6% Cat on BCP

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Members share tips and tricks for getting the most miles, & points.
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freyj6
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Postby freyj6 » Thu Aug 14, 2014 4:46 am

If you shop at Whole Foods a lot, I hear a good option is to buy Whole Foods gift cards at department stores with one of the Chase Ink cards. If you're good with transfer options you can essentially get 8-10% back that way.

You can still pick up the old Blue Cash card I think, like others have recommended.

The new AMEX everyday cards are quite good for groceries if you're good with transfer partners, but the 20-30 transactions is a big hassle.

Honestly unless you want to go the complicated gift card route, I think your best bet would still be just to do Sallie Mae. Sure this year you'd miss out on a little cash back, but if you just hit your $6000 at the beginning of August, you're only spending around 10.5k a year on groceries. BCP + Sallie Mae covers you for the first 9k and you don't have to juggle points or number of transactions.

Cheers
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CarefulBuilder14
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Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Thu Aug 14, 2014 9:33 pm

freyj6 wrote:BCP + Sallie Mae covers you for the first 9k and you don't have to juggle points or number of transactions.


You do have to track how much you put on each card each month, though. The 6% BCP has a yearly limit but the 5% Sallie Mae has a monthly limit. Unless you know exactly how much you will spend on groceries in each month for the next year, it can be hard to decide when to use each one (if the goal is to maximize every dollar of cash back).

If you're going to go through both spending limits, the mathematically rational option would be to put the first $250 each month on Sallie Mae and then switch to BCP to 'soak up' any spikes in grocery spending. It could be annoying, though, to go over $250 on the Sallie Mae and then have leftover capacity on the BCP at the end of the year.

Sallie Mae has no AF, so it's hard to wrong having it. The main issue is that you have to switch between the cards a little every month for Sallie Mae to have a real effect - and that may involve more micromanagement than is desired.
Wallet: Prestige CSP SchwabPlat Freedom It Hyatt SallieMae AAPlat
SD: Arrival BrooksBros BCE ED IHG
Letting new accounts cool off since May
Really not sure what I'll add next or when

takeshi
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Postby takeshi » Fri Aug 15, 2014 7:14 am

rockyrock wrote:I called Amex today to see how close I am to reaching $6000 spend on groceries. Turns out I'm at ~$5800. I need to act fast as there are still five months left in the year.

Not the best solution for the remainder of this year but for that level of spend I agree that the old Blue Cash would have been a better fit.

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:I thought that was closed to new applicants, if not closed entirely.

There's a "Looking for an earlier version of the Blue Cash Card?" link that shows up under the BCE info.

rockyrock
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Postby rockyrock » Fri Aug 15, 2014 8:46 am

Thanks for all the options; I need to decide soon as I'm only getting 1% at this point.

Sounds like the Sallie Mae card could be a good option. Starting next year, my wife could continue to use the BCP and I could use the SM.

One of the Ink cards also could help out a lot as I purchase a lot of GCs. That is proly responsible for about $1k of the spend on my BCP. I buy Amazon and Starbucks GCs from the supermarket. With an Ink card I could buy those from Office Max or Staples...I could also use it for my phone and ISP--two areas I'm not currently maximizing.

EDP is also a good choice as I place high value on MR points. We average 60+ transactions a month between the two of us so meeting the required 30 to get the bonus isn't an issue. This would also be as easy as me using one and and my wife using the other so we don't have to trade or keep track as much.

As I said all good options. I'm leaning toward an Ink but I'll have to go see what the selection of CGs at my local office supply stores looks like.

Thanks again.
American Express (2005): Premier Rewards Gold & Blue Cash Preferred
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andrewket
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Postby andrewket » Sun Aug 17, 2014 9:11 pm

rockyrock wrote:I called Amex today to see how close I am to reaching $6000 spend on groceries. Turns out I'm at ~$5800. I need to act fast as there are still five months left in the year. I'll exceed $6k by the weekend.

I was thinking of applying for an ED card but I don't want another card with (reward) limits. I may not have a choice though, use the BCP until it is maxed out each year and then switch to the Everyday card.

My Platinum is up next month and I won't likely be renewing it. I was most likely going to try to PC it to a PRG. Maybe I can do that sooner and just go with the 2x MR for groceries...

Anybody know of gas stations that sell grocery store GCs? I could buy them with my Discover this qtr and max out the CB on it as well.


Are you married? Have you significant other apply for a BCP and add you as an authorized card holder. Gets you 6500x2 ($13k) per year.

rockyrock
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Postby rockyrock » Sun Aug 17, 2014 9:27 pm

andrewket wrote:Are you married? Have you significant other apply for a BCP and add you as an authorized card holder. Gets you 6500x2 ($13k) per year.



Yes, I am married, my wife's credit is not all that great though. Good idea otherwise.
American Express (2005): Premier Rewards Gold & Blue Cash Preferred
Chase: Freedom & UA Club USAA: Signature Visa & American Express
Discover it Bank of Hawaii Hawaiian Airlines WEMC Synchrony Sam's MC
Navy FCU Platinum Visa Citi Double Cash & AT&T Access MC

andrewket
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Postby andrewket » Sun Aug 31, 2014 8:34 pm

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:The Sallie Mae / Barclays card gives 5% cash back on groceries (and gas and books) but the grocery spending limit, you probably know, is $250 per month. After that, I think it's 1%.

If you like the Platinum's MR points system, the Amex PRG at 2x MR points is possible. I'm not aware of any cards that give serious discounts on grocery spending at your level.

Maybe you can get a second BCP? Will Amex do that?


They will to the same household. I have a BCP with my wife as an AU and vice-versa. $13k/year 6%.

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CarefulBuilder14
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Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Sun Aug 31, 2014 9:47 pm

andrewket wrote:They will to the same household. I have a BCP with my wife as an AU and vice-versa. $13k/year 6%.


See the OP's Aug 17 post (above yours).
Wallet: Prestige CSP SchwabPlat Freedom It Hyatt SallieMae AAPlat
SD: Arrival BrooksBros BCE ED IHG
Letting new accounts cool off since May
Really not sure what I'll add next or when

andrewket
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Postby andrewket » Tue Sep 02, 2014 6:04 pm

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:See the OP's Aug 17 post (above yours).


Yeah, sorry, was using a mobile app to read the forum and it only showed me the new message. Didn't realize I had already replied!



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