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We hadn’t applied for any credit cards since the end of October, when Ken’s app-o-rama resulted in more than 150,000 frequent flier miles and hotel points! So, it was time for me to take a look at what cards I could apply for.
Barclays US Airways Dividend Miles World Mastercard.
With US Airways’ and American Airlines’ merger of their frequent flyer programs probably only months away, I thought this would be a good time to bump up my balances while there are still separate products (meaning separate Dividend Miles and AAdvantage credit cards). I currently have a US Airways Mastercard open with Barclays, and had only just recently closed a second one, so I wasn’t sure if I could get approved for another one, since Barclays is one of the stricter lenders. But, I was approved right away!
Bonus: 50,000 Dividend Miles after first purchase
Approval Details: Instantly approved with $15,000 limit
To be honest, this card was not tops on my list. With only 10,000 Membership Rewards points offered, I wasn’t even sure if it was worth the credit inquiry. So, why did I apply for it? It was time to cancel my American Express Platinum card and I didn’t want to forfeit my Membership Rewards points balance.
If you’re not familiar, allow me to explain. American Express Platinum cards are Membership Rewards earning cards. But, if you cancel a Membership Rewards earning card and don’t have a separate Membership Rewards earning card, you forfeit your entire Membership Rewards points balance. (Could I possibly say the phrase “Membership Rewards” any more? Membership Rewards.) With a balance of more than 200,000 Membership Rewards points in my account, I definitely didn’t want to do that! Of course, I could’ve transferred those points to travel partners first, but I like the flexibility of being able to transfer the points when I need them and to what travel partner I need.
I had signed up for the Amex Platinum two years ago during a fluke 100,000 points offer. The card came with a $450 annual fee, but I thought it was worth it because you got free airline lounge access. Which means free booze. Which to me, a nervous flyer, is very helpful, and probably saves me money in the long run instead of hitting the airport restaurant bars. But, back in March or so, the American Airlines and US Airways ended their lounge partnerships. Since I fly those airlines the most, the annual fee was no longer worth it.
Anyway, long story short, I just needed another Membership Rewards earning card so I wouldn’t lose my points! The Amex EveryDay seemed like a good choice, especially since it doesn’t come with an annual fee.
Bonus: 10,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $1000 in the first three months
Approval Details: Instantly approved with a $5000 limit. This is by far one of the lowest limits I’ve been approved for in the past several years. Since this would be my 5th open American Express card, perhaps Amex didn’t want to extend me that much more credit!
Chase Marriott Signature Visa
Ken and I are in the early stages of planning a trip to Japan in Spring 2016. There is a Ritz Carlton in Kyoto that I have been eyeing up! A five night stay would be 240,000 points. Marriott points can be redeemed at Ritz Carlton properties, so I am looking to boost my Marriott point balances in the coming months to book a room for next spring. The Ritz Carlton has its own credit card, and sometimes its signup bonus is as high as 140,000 points. However, that card comes with a hefty $395 annual fee. Now, that’s not completely outrageous considering a single night at the Ritz Carlton Kyoto goes for about $880 (using dates for this spring as a baseline). However, since we have some time, I figure I can get some Marriott points for a lot cheaper between now and spring 2016!
Anyway, be on the lookout for me and Ken to be applying for more Marriott cards in the near future!
Bonus: 70,000 Marriott Rewards points after spending $3000 in the first three months.
Approval Details: Received “Pending Decision” message. This wasn’t terribly surprising, I figured I’d have to close out one of my four open Chase cards, like maybe my Chase Hyatt card. I gave it a few days, but the application status message still said they were reviewing my application. I finally called, and they said that my application had been approved with a $10,000 limit, but that it was taking some time to “assign a credit card number” to the account. Never heard that one before! Anyway, I was very surprised that I didn’t have to close out any other Chase cards to get my application approved.