What is your primary credit card?

Discussion in 'Other Credit Card Programs' started by Dangjr213, Feb 1, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. bearcat74

    bearcat74 Silver Member

    I'm also using the Delta Plat AMEX till I hit the 25K spend, then will be whatever card I need to hit a spend bonus on. The MQM's are what drive the spend there. Secondary right now are USAir Premier World MC and Priority Club Visa for when AMEX is not accepted. Was also mostly a debit card user till last year when I convinced the other half how many great places we could go with the signup bonuses alone! Also got her to go on her first MR with me in late 2010 (the DEQM out of Nashville). She still thinks I'm a slight bit insane, but loves the perks!
  2. julielou2
    • Original Member

    julielou2 Silver Member

    Oh my gosh...I remember the Green Card!. When I was a kid I would always pick up the Amex Green applications and then cut out the picture of the card and pretend I had an Amex Green Card!. All the kids on the block were so jealous of my status!
    LETTERBOY and desamo like this.
  3. desamo

    desamo Gold Member


    Every year, I look at the bigger, better, spendier cards, but I can't justify the annual fees on the Rewards Gold or the Platinum.
  4. MSPeconomist
    • Original Member

    MSPeconomist Gold Member

    The regular AmEx Plat charge card would get you (and guests) lounge access when flying DL, plus some fee reimbursements such as the GE application. It's expensive but the annual fee could be worth it if you qualify.
    bearcat74 and Kaanapali like this.
  5. Kaanapali
    • Original Member

    Kaanapali Gold Member

    In addition....the Amex Plat charge card also gives you $200 to spend on one of several airlines (you choose one and that is your airline for that year). Delta is one of the eligible airlines. You can buy with your Amex Plat (as others have) gift cards (say 4 X$50) from Delta - and have it reimbursed by Amex. This in effect lowers the annual fee :)
    bearcat74 likes this.
  6. MSPeconomist
    • Original Member

    MSPeconomist Gold Member

    This is why I said "some fee reimbursements such as..." I didn't want to attempt to reproduce the entire T&C but just to highlight what seemed to be most relevant.
  7. bearcat74

    bearcat74 Silver Member

    I have considered this and may pull the trigger if they put a nice bonus out there. The need to not pay for the Skyclub nearly saves the whole annual fee, not to mention the $200 in airline reimbursements. The key is getting non-flight MQM's at this point as paid business travel has been very light. If they would only ressurect the MR transfer promotion from last year (transfer 50K to DL and get 100% bonus plus 25K MQM). :)
  8. MSPeconomist
    • Original Member

    MSPeconomist Gold Member

    Just remember that it's lounge access when flying DL metal on the same day, which is not the same as a SC membership. However, it can work very well given the cost difference, especially if your're SkyTeam ElitePlus and thus get acess to all SkyTeam lounges worldwide when you fly international with SkyTeam.
    autolycus likes this.
  9. progapanda

    progapanda Silver Member

    Primary card, you ask? No such thing, say I!

    Let's see:
    1. (Non-flight) Travel and Dining? Sapphire Preferred (for the 2x UR points)
    2. (Flight) Travel, Supermarkets, Drugstores? ThankYou Premier (for the 15% discount, flight points, and 1.2x TY points)
    3. Everything else? Amex Platinum

    Unless of course, whatever I'm buying counts as a 5% quarterly bonus UR points category, then I'll put that on my Chase Freedom instead.
    If any of my friends saw this, they'd think I was crazy. But I know fellow MPers will appreciate this!
  10. Scottrick
    • Original Member

    Scottrick Gold Member

    IT really depends on whatever I'm churning at the moment. But in general, Chase Sapphire Preferred for most things, United Mileage Plus Select for tickets, and Hyatt or SPG card for hotels.
    emtesenair and traveltoomuch like this.
  11. CharlesG

    CharlesG Gold Member

    I only have two branded credit cards-- the SPG Amex, and Citi AAdvantage. Really considering the Chase Sapphire, which seems really good. I pay for many things in cash (debit), so another credit card isn't really something I'm in the market for.
    FrequentMiler likes this.
  12. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

    I still have a US Airways card. There's no point to it for me any more given the contraction of US's routes out of SFO. (I used to fly SFO-PIT frequently on a nonstop, but that route was canceled a few years ago.)

    I also have Amex Hilton and Citi AAdvantage.

    What I really need is SPG and United. I just need to finish paying off one thing before I apply for anything is all.
  13. (i am mindful of the 5% quarterly offers and also the 0% on new purchase and rewards on initial purchases
    within n months on my no fee cards)

    but generally:
    pen fed visa for gas (at 5%)
    bofa visa for groceries (at 3%) (this was formerly a schwab card that offered 2% back on everything, but
    is worthwhile because it gets me into museums for free the first weekend in each month)
    cap one cards for foreign purchases (no 3% fx fee and about 2.2% back in mileage points)
    fidelity visa for many other purchases (at 1.5%)

    doing some basic algebra on whether it pays for grocery purchases to use the $150 annual fee amex blue cash preferred (at 6%) versus the no-fee bofa visa (at 3%)

    in the steady state i would have to spend > $5000 in grocery stores annually for this card to earn more than
    the one i already have that pays 3%.

    (i estimate my grocery store spending is only about $50/week, but maybe if i bought more wine at safeway,
    where they aggressively discount and apply a 10% discount on 6 bottles.)

    during the first year, if i earned the $150 on $1000 during the first 3 months teaser, and it was all grocery store
    purchases at 6%, and spent $50/week for the other 9 months = $1800, i would make $108 after the annual
    fee, versus $84 on the no-fee card. the only way this card makes sense for someone like me is if i buy gift
    cards (as suggested) -- preferably for something like arco gas (which gives me a 6% discount on
    something that would require a debit card, and less on something that would pay me 2-5% normally) to satisfy
    the 3 month teaser and at various times during the year to increase my grocery spend.
  14. Chase is no doubt the best. AACiti Master and CapOne as well as Am. Express are the worst in sense of FF Reward redeem. I just tried to redeem mile with AA. Flight from LA to Boston. They did not give you the option for a direct flight. For 25K points in Chase I got a free direct flight LA to Boston.
  15. miles and smiles
    • Original Member

    miles and smiles Gold Member

    The annual fee on the AMEX Blue Cash Preferred is $75, not $150.
    $150 is the amount of cash back AMEX will give you initially if you are new to the card.
    So, you have to re-do your calculations:


    Also, I don't see that B of A has a card has a card that gives 3% cash back on groceries. I only see a card that gives 2% cash back on groceries. Can you provide a link?
    FrequentMiler likes this.
  16. Jane Chan

    Jane Chan Member

    Chase Preferred for travel and dining. AMEX PRG for gas and groceries and AMEX SPG for everything else. I have about 13 cards opened since last May so I spend something on the other cards every 4 to 6 months to keep it active.
  17. traveltoomuch

    traveltoomuch Silver Member

    This has changed again, and some may find it useful to see the new picture:

    • Hyatt: Hyatt Visa (3x)
    • UA: UA Select Visa (3x) (card not available to new applicants)
    • Gas & groceries: UA Select Visa (2x)
    • If I think I might want to return or dispute something: SPG Amex (with Return Protection)
    • Car rental: UA Explorer (primary insurance)
    • International, dining, and travel other than UA, Hyatt, and cars: Chase Sapphire Preferred

    This reflects remembering that gas & groceries get 2x on the UA Select Card, getting a Sapphire Preferred card, and giving up on FIA. It includes FIVE annual fee cards, which seems insane. I've moved all non-Hyatt spend off of the Hyatt card and given up on the lesser-earning cards (e.g. the Hitlon Amex and AA Visa)
    julielou2 likes this.
  18. julielou2
    • Original Member

    julielou2 Silver Member

    You make a good point. The credit cards we use are not static month after month.
  19. miles and smiles
    • Original Member

    miles and smiles Gold Member

    Things have changed for me now, as well. I now have just over a million miles and points, so I am focusing 99% on cash back.
    1- AMEX Blue Cash Preferred when I can get 6% cash back (or sometimes 3%)
    2- Priceline Visa - 2% cash back on everything else
    julielou2 likes this.
  20. HaveMilesWillTravel
    • Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    HHonors Amex (free one) where I get 6x points (grocery store, gas stations)
    Saphhire Preferred for Dining, most other things
    United VISA for United purchases
    CO OnePass MC for car rentals (due to be replaced as fee comes due)
  21. traveltoomuch

    traveltoomuch Silver Member

    This thread hasn't been updated in many months. Perhaps it's time to revive it.

    Changes to the above in the last year:
    • New Barclays Priceline Visa, largely for Priceline spend (5%+).
    • New Chase Freedom card, chasing the 5% bonused categories each quarter.
    • Closed the UA Explorer card, figuring that primary insurance was not worth the annual fee and hoping that another card will provide the same soon.
    • Considered adding an Amex small business card for the OPEN savings (5% at Hyatt).
    • Considering the Carlson card, for the bonus award nights
    • My FIA Fidelity Amex is back in the mix, largely for Costco spending.
    That's down to four annual fee cards. I will definitely keep Hyatt (free night every year!) and UA Select (5K EQM!, and partial fee waiver from UA). I'm likely to keep the Chase Sapphire and SPG Amex, too.
    Dangjr213 and julielou2 like this.
  22. julielou2
    • Original Member

    julielou2 Silver Member

    Good idea to resurrect! The cards I'm using today are way different then the ones I used a year ago. I'm sure that's true for many people...

    Freedom (gas and drug stores...until 3/31. Not sure where I will transition to effective 4/1...might open an Air Tran card while they are still running the 32 credit offering...)
    Sapphire Preferred (dining)
    Amex PRG (me for everything else...in order to reach 1K spend for 50K bonus)
    Amex Hilton (spouse for everything else provided they take Amex)
    BOA Rewards (spouse for everything else if they don't take Amex)
    Dangjr213 likes this.
  23. Dangjr213

    Dangjr213 Gold Member

    When not working on minimum spend, I only concentrate on UR points my primary use of points for my flights and hotels to position me for a cruise.

    Sapphire preferred (travel and dining)
    Ink Bold (any store that has a gift card carried by an office supply store
    Freedom for all else (until they move me off the exclusives program)
    julielou2 likes this.
  24. paladin87
    • Original Member

    paladin87 Silver Member

    I have so many cards now, I have to practically keep a cheat sheet in my wallet so I remember what card to use for what purchase based on what provides me the best earning rate.
    julielou2, traveltoomuch and edekba like this.
  25. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

    For the past few months

    • CSP - Travel/Food/Over Seas
    • Freedom - 5% Rotate
    • HHonors - CVS/Groceries
    • Ink - Gas/Utilities
    • United Exp - UA Flights & Car Rentals
    • SPG - Everything else.
    I just got the IHG & Hyatt card so that'll be my goto for the next qtr.

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