Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

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amex007
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Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby amex007 » Mon Apr 27, 2015 10:01 am

Ok I'm trying to be objective on my post here.
Which card combo is better? I hear all these good things about URs but I dont see a point of having cards that earn UR and MR unless you just spend a lot of money and can earn a lot of both. I understand the travel partners are different but then again amex gives you the flexibility with travel partners if you know how to do it right.

I'm also listing the PRG card instead of my Gold card since it is the better card (just i dont need the extra 3x airfare).

Freedom/CSP:
Freedom gets those 5% bonus categories but the only quarter that would be useful to me is April thru Jun 5x dining. I dont need the July thru Sept 5x gas since i live in nyc, dont need the Oct thru Dec 5x Amazon since i dont buy an awful lot of stuff on Amazon, and Jan thru March 5x grocery since i get 2x grocery on my ED. However, I recognize that 5x bonus is a monster bonus but the fact that i would only find it particularly useful 3 months out of the yr would annoy me.
CSP a great card with 2x dining and traveling and Freedom pts can be combined with it.
Freedom $0 AF and CSP $95 AF

ED/PRG:
ED is the only amex card that is not a charge card and is eligible for the MR program. 2x on grocery and 20% bonus MR pts if making 20 purchases in a statement period.
PRG (as of June 1) has 3x airfare, 2x dining and grocery, $100 airfare credit, no more forex fee. plus amex always has the ancillary purchase and warranty protections and excellent CS.
ED $0 AF and PRG $195!

I hear good things about UR program so I guess it is comparable to MR program and some even say it is better although Amex has 17 or so frequent flyer pgm/hotels and I think Chase has 10. However I dont think Chase has transfer fees while amex does.

So if your spending means only allow you to maximize one program, which would it be (and thus which combo cards)?
Amex Gold NPSL | Amex ED 28500 | Barclaycard Arrival 17500 | Hyatt visa signature 5000
sockdrawer-- GM 4000 | Unionplus 2200
EX 795 EQ 786 TU 790


Vermonster
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Re: Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby Vermonster » Mon Apr 27, 2015 10:48 am

One additional thing to add to the Freedom/CSP is that if you have a Chase checking you get an additional 10% of your points at the end of the year. So really your 5% becomes 5.5% and the 1% on everything else is 1.1%. It isn't much but it can add up to a small bonus ever year. I also like the CSP's "Travel" rewards. It covers a lot more of what I do in a normal year. Plus there is the 20% bonus for redeeming UR points on travel with the CSP.

For me the Freedom and CSP compliment each other very nicely. Where as the ED and PRG seem to overlap a bit. Unless you are spending hundreds a week at a grocery store, I don't thing the ED is really needed.
Chase Freedom $9k~~Chase Sapphire Preferred $6.5k~~Amex Blue Cash Preferred $12.4k~~Citi Double Cash $4.7k

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CarefulBuilder14
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Re: Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:12 pm

Vermonster wrote:One additional thing to add to the Freedom/CSP is that if you have a Chase checking you get an additional 10% of your points at the end of the year. So really your 5% becomes 5.5% and the 1% on everything else is 1.1%. It isn't much but it can add up to a small bonus ever year. I also like the CSP's "Travel" rewards. It covers a lot more of what I do in a normal year. Plus there is the 20% bonus for redeeming UR points on travel with the CSP.

For me the Freedom and CSP compliment each other very nicely. Where as the ED and PRG seem to overlap a bit. Unless you are spending hundreds a week at a grocery store, I don't thing the ED is really needed.


Freedom's 10% bonus is ending soon. You'll get a bonus in early 2016 for 10% of points earned in 2015. There will be no bonus for 2016 spending. I'll take it while it lasts, though.

I also really like the broad definition of travel for CSP.

I think the ED is pretty unexciting. The EDP is great for some people (I'm considering one - I cook more than I eat out, and I like to feed myself/guests well). EDP and Platinum make for a high-AF, but potentially excellent, everyday and travel combination. PRG really seems to be turning into more of an airfare/travel perks card than an everyday spending card.

Edit: Most of my spending goes to URs. If I replaced Sallie Mae with an EDP, then that would give me a good balance of URs and MRs.

I need to see what I could get as far as a bonus for EDP...or if PC rules have relaxed and I could PC my BCE into an EDP.
Very useful: SchwabPlat, CSP, IHG, Costco (was AA Plat), Freedom, SPG, Prestige (retention)
Somewhat useful: Discover, ED (was EDP), BCE, Hyatt
SD with activity alerts, might close: Arrival

Might add: Proper business card, CSR, Ritz, Delta Gold, First Tech, BofA Travel PH, Aviator Red

dickdaney
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Re: Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby dickdaney » Tue Apr 28, 2015 6:44 pm

It comes down to which rewards program you get more value from. For me Membership Rewards are better since I can transfer to Delta. If I lived in AA or United hub, Ultimate rewards would benefit me more. I'm likely going to change my CSP to a freedom so i don't have to pay an annual fee.

I also just like Amex's service better than Chase (and BoA). When I've traveled and make a large without notifying Chase or BoA, I've gotten my card declined. That is embarrassing and annoying. Amex has never done that to me. They will let the charge go through and then call/email me if they really think it's fraudulent.

having both the ED/EDP and PRG seems a little redundant. I can see the ED/EDP and platinum if you fly a lot.
Amex PRG
Amex Delta Platinum
Bank of America Travel Rewards
Chase Sapphire Preferred

takeshi
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Re: Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby takeshi » Thu Apr 30, 2015 10:15 am

amex007 wrote:Ok I'm trying to be objective on my post here.

Have you run the number for your spend? Are you sure these combos are the best fit for you versus other solutions?

amex007 wrote:Which card combo is better?

Better is always highly subjective. Consider redemptions. Which one has transfer partners that are more useful to you?

I live in a United hub city so it's easily UR for me. YMMV.

amex007 wrote:However, I recognize that 5x bonus is a monster bonus but the fact that i would only find it particularly useful 3 months out of the yr would annoy me.

If you'd only benefit from one quarter it's not a monster bonus. The quarterly cap is on $1,500 spend, -- i.e 7,500 points. That's not much for an entire year.

amex007 wrote:ED is the only amex card that is not a charge card and is eligible for the MR program.

Blue is also an MR card.
https://www304.americanexpress.com/cred ... -learnmore

There's also the EDP.

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CarefulBuilder14
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Re: Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Thu Apr 30, 2015 11:17 am

Another consideration is that with ED and EDP, you don't need a second card to be able to transfer the MR points. That's a benefit that Freedom and some Citi cards lack. Use the ED/EDP card for everyday expenses, and convert the MRs into award flights. Then use the CSP for hotels, trains, etc.

A regular ED might not be worth the hassle if you've got a Freedom and CSP, but for the right spending habits, the rewards from EDP can really be spectacular and make the AF a minor consideration. For me, it gives great year-round rewards in a convenient category (groceries) and serves as a great "everything else" card.
Very useful: SchwabPlat, CSP, IHG, Costco (was AA Plat), Freedom, SPG, Prestige (retention)
Somewhat useful: Discover, ED (was EDP), BCE, Hyatt
SD with activity alerts, might close: Arrival

Might add: Proper business card, CSR, Ritz, Delta Gold, First Tech, BofA Travel PH, Aviator Red

Vermonster
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Re: Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby Vermonster » Thu Apr 30, 2015 12:07 pm

For me the only downside of Freedom/CSP is the lack of consistent gas rewards. I am starting to see our grocery bill rise though so I'm thinking of adding a BCP to the lineup. Problem is, the wife hates having to remember what to use for what purchase. Most times she grabs her debit card as it is.
Chase Freedom $9k~~Chase Sapphire Preferred $6.5k~~Amex Blue Cash Preferred $12.4k~~Citi Double Cash $4.7k

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CarefulBuilder14
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Re: Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Thu Apr 30, 2015 12:20 pm

Vermonster wrote:For me the only downside of Freedom/CSP is the lack of consistent gas rewards. I am starting to see our grocery bill rise though so I'm thinking of adding a BCP to the lineup. Problem is, the wife hates having to remember what to use for what purchase. Most times she grabs her debit card as it is.

You might also consider Sallie Mae or EDP (for yourself and/or her).

I got 15 months at 0% with EDP, and 12 months at 0% with Sallie Mae. Since your existing balance is with Chase, you can't BT to a Slate.

In other words, you'll either need to pay some interest or a BT fee.
Very useful: SchwabPlat, CSP, IHG, Costco (was AA Plat), Freedom, SPG, Prestige (retention)
Somewhat useful: Discover, ED (was EDP), BCE, Hyatt
SD with activity alerts, might close: Arrival

Might add: Proper business card, CSR, Ritz, Delta Gold, First Tech, BofA Travel PH, Aviator Red

Nixon
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Re: Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby Nixon » Fri May 01, 2015 5:05 pm

Not sure if the OP qualifies for such, but the Chase Ink Plus is proving to be a very real contender in the rewards arena for me personally.

Keep in mind, I pepper a few personal purchases in with largely business but so far I'm at 12,500 UR for the month with 60,000 more coming at next statement cut for the spend bonus of $5,000 in 3 mos (was nearly done after 3 weeks). Kinda goofy seeing as I met the spend bonus in about three weeks without going nuts on the haagen dazs. I missed the cutoff for statement cut by $20 measily freakin' bucks! :p
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amex007
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Re: Freedom/CSP vs ED/PRG

Postby amex007 » Sun May 03, 2015 4:38 pm

Nixon wrote:Not sure if the OP qualifies for such, but the Chase Ink Plus is proving to be a very real contender in the rewards arena for me personally.

Keep in mind, I pepper a few personal purchases in with largely business but so far I'm at 12,500 UR for the month with 60,000 more coming at next statement cut for the spend bonus of $5,000 in 3 mos (was nearly done after 3 weeks). Kinda goofy seeing as I met the spend bonus in about three weeks without going nuts on the haagen dazs. I missed the cutoff for statement cut by $20 measily freakin' bucks! :p


Yea i heard bout the ink plus card being a good card but i dont qualify for business card.
Amex Gold NPSL | Amex ED 28500 | Barclaycard Arrival 17500 | Hyatt visa signature 5000
sockdrawer-- GM 4000 | Unionplus 2200
EX 795 EQ 786 TU 790



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