Sapphire

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Best credit card combos: Ultimate Rewards

Best credit card combo

This is part 1 of a multi-part series of “best credit card combos”. The goal is to find the combination of 2 or 3 credit cards that, together, offer the best rewards for day to day spend.  The full series (not yet completed) will likely be as follows: Best credit card combos: Ultimate Rewards Best credit card combos: Membership Rewards Best credit card combos: ThankYou Rewards Best credit card combos: Mixed rewards I’ve written before…

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Cancelling my favorite cards

Every time an annual fee comes due on a credit card, I make a decision as to whether to keep, cancel, or downgrade the card.  Are the benefits that the card offers worth the annual fee?  If not, the card should be ditched.  It turns out, ironically, that I’m currently planning to cancel or downgrade a number of my favorite cards… Chase Ink Plus A few months after I started this blog in 2011, Chase…

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The Arrival Plus: More than just a new name

The Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard was already a terrific card, but it has recently become even better. A new name To understand why I think the new name is an improvement worth talking about, consider the situation prior to the name change: Barclays offers two versions of the Arrival card.  One, with no annual fee, offers 2 points per dollar for travel and dining (like the Sapphire Preferred card) and the other, with…

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Pi Day Pie for 3.14 points per dollar

Every year I like to celebrate Pi day (March 14, AKA 3/14, AKA 3.14) by showing a way to buy pie and earn 3.14 points per dollar along the way.  Keep in mind, this is a fun challenge, but not a recommended approach to buying pie.  Tools needed In order to earn 3.14 points per dollar buying pie, you need the Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card.  As in past years, we’re going to take advantage…

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The best cards get better, plus 5000 points

I love when great cards get even better.  Chase already surprised us recently by changing the benefits guides for most of their cards for the better.  You now receive automatic travel insurance benefits (except for rental car coverage) and purchase protections even if you pay only partially with your Chase card, or if you pay with points.  I think that’s a great enhancement.  Almost all other banks require that you pay entirely with their card…

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The best mix of Ultimate Rewards cards

Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program is hands down my favorite loyalty program.  Through incredible sign-up bonuses, generous category bonuses, and the often lucrative Ultimate Rewards Mall, it is easy to earn oodles of points quickly.  And, with any of Chase’s premium Ultimate Rewards cards (such as the Sapphire Preferred, Ink Plus, and Ink Bold cards), there are many ways to use points.  Here are some examples: Book any travel for 1.25 cents per point value. Transfer…

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5X everywhere without gift cards, part 1: Ultimate Rewards

At FTU in DC last weekend, I presented “You can still earn 5X everywhere.”  Many of the tips I presented involved reload cards, gift cards, and Bluebird cards, but I also showed how you can earn 5X almost everywhere without gift cards.  In this three part series, I’ll show you how. The cards shown above on the left earn Chase’s Ultimate Rewards points.  The cards on the right earn Citibank’s Thankyou points.  In this post,…

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Shoebuy double dip 30X. Is it worth it?

Through the Ultimate Rewards Mall, you can currently get 15 points per dollar when shopping there.  By itself, that’s pretty good!  However, it’s worth noting that gift card purchases count too. Double Dip for 30X Two readers independently contacted me around the same time with information about their Shoebuy experiences. Both reported success in this double dip.  That is, you can go through the Ultimate Rewards Mall once to buy a gift certificate for yourself,…

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Let’s just be friends

Secure message regarding card ending in 0504: My dearest Sapphire Preferred, I remember when we met, it was love at first sight.  Your sleek beauty, your steel resolve, and your giving nature made you irresistible.  My fondness for you grew as we travelled the world and dined in fine restaurants.  I will always treasure the times we had. I don’t know a good way to tell you this, but I’ve fallen for another.  I know…

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Marriott Triple Dip

While planning upcoming trips, a couple of Marriott properties have caught my eye.  They both received great reviews and are in perfect locations for where I want to be.  The downside is that neither has award availability for the time I want to go.  So, what are my options?  Can I double or triple dip my way to savings?  Can I get points for buying Marriott gift cards, and for using the gift cards to…

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