Credit card miles vs points?

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Credit card miles vs points?

Postby rlfmom » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:17 pm

We're currently using a Navy Fed Rewards Card (just because it's our bank) for almost all purchases (approx $4000/month) and want to find a better rewards card. We spend very little eating out, mainly buy gas, groceries, some clothing. Credit scores are high 700s, and we always pay off the card. We're anticipating taking at least 12 roundtrip domestic flights/year and don't care about first class upgrades or airline perks but we'd like to maximize either cash back or earned flights from travel purchases.

So- are we better off going with a Southwest credit card (or other airline miles credit card... Southwest just appeared to be the best from what I've been reading)? Or are we better off with one of the bank cards that give points like Chase Sapphire, AmEx Blue, or something else?

Thank you for this forum!! This rewards thing is very overwhelming!

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Postby CCG » Mon Jan 31, 2011 9:00 pm

Welcome to the forum rlfmom and I take it you or a loved one must be affiliated with the military. Thank you for serving our great country!

Choosing between credit card miles vs points depends on the card because the terms are used interchangeably. A true "miles" card will be one associated with an airline that gives miles on spending. Those miles can be converted to flights at given intervals, irrelevant of the ticket's cost - i.e. off peak roundtrip flight for 25,000 or 37,500 miles.

There are general travel cards not affiliated with specific airlines that advertise miles but it would be easier to think of them as points or cash back since typically 1 mile = 1 cent that can be applied to a travel purchase of your choice. An example of this would be the Discover Escape with its 2 miles per dollar spent, which equals 2% rewards.

For spending of $4,000 monthly with a significant portion on gas and groceries I would strongly recommend the Blue Cash. Credit Card Forum advertises the card and has a detailed American Express Blue review which should be helpful.

For comparison of travel cards, here is a sponsored ranking of the top 10 travel rewards credit cards.

All the best,

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Postby loopkie » Mon Feb 14, 2011 3:14 am

I would take points vs miles any day. There are a few good airline cards out there, I'm not denying that. The downfall is that the frequent flyer programs are becoming less generous and the old rule of 25,000 miles for a roundtrip is hard to come by.

Leo agogo
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Postby Leo agogo » Fri Feb 18, 2011 5:17 am

If you consistently fly the same airline on a frequent basis than their credit card may be a wise choice.

More importantly consider the annual fee as light spenders won't benefit if the card levies a fee.

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