My goal here is to expose you to a way to make and/or save money, by using something that people often use to lose or fritter away money. I’m asking you to look at something differently, to consider making a paradigm shift, if you will. I will. I did. I do!
In 2011, not only did I make $3,843.94 tax-free using cashback cards but I also collected 238,000 airline frequent flyer miles without leaving the ground. This was more than enough points for 11 round trip Coach tickets or 5+ First Class tickets.
I suggest every adult get at least one of these airline cards, so you have a free flight at your disposal for emergencies. One year ago, when I got the call that my dad was dying, I used 25,000 frequent flyer miles for a ticket that otherwise would have cost me almost $1,000 on the exact same flight! A happier scenario: If you and your significant other each get a card, you can take a free trip together. Here are the BEST offers, by airline:
Click on “Chip’s Favorite Credit Card Offers” at the top right side of this website for up-to-date deals, terms, and conditions on these cards and more. Email me if you have any questions about which card might be right for your situation.
Delta SkyMiles Gold American Express – Get 30,000 bonus miles when you spend $1,000 on the card in the first three months from opening your account. That’s more than enough for a free flight! With this card, you get a free checked bag for up to NINE people in your reservation. That saves $50 round trip per person. No annual fee for the first year. Then $95/year if you keep the card.
Delta SkyMiles Gold Business American Express – You can also get the same deal with the business card. Remember, you don’t have to be incorporated to be a business. Anyone who has a li’l side biz can get a business card. You just apply as a “Sole Proprietor”, using your name as the business name and your social as the Tax ID number. Do both the personal and business card and wind up with 60,000 miles. Pretty sweet.
United MileagePlus Explorer Visa – Get 30,000 bonus miles with just ONE purchase. That’s more than enough miles for a free flight. Use the card to buy something for at least a penny and you will get the miles. You’ll get 25,000 miles after first use + 5,000 miles for adding an authorized user within two months of opening your account. No annual fee for the first year, then $95/year if you keep the card. You also get a free checked bag for you and your companion – that’s up to a $50 savings per person round trip.
Continental OnePass Mastercard – If you are going to get a card, get this one. Now. While it’s still possible. Get 30,000 bonus miles with just one purchase. Just like the United card above, make one purchase and you’ll get the miles. You’ll get 25,000 miles after first use + 5,000 miles for adding an authorized user. No annual fee.
Continental and United have merged. Get this card and transfer your miles to United. Then get the United offer. In the first quarter of 2012, Continental will fully merge with United, including the frequent flyer mile accounts. So, the clock is ticking. It’s like getting two promotions on one airline. You can read my 12 Reasons Why or watch My 1st Call To Action or see Vice Versa or Karen & Kevin Testify to learn more about this rare opportunity.
American Airlines Citi AAdvantage Visa – Get 30,000 bonus miles after you make $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of card membership. That’s enough miles for a free flight. No annual fee the first year, then $95/year.
British Airways Visa Signature Card – Get up to 100,000 bonus miles. They do not waive their $95 annual fee. I figured that was worth it to be able to fly round trip in business class from Los Angeles to Europe in a seat that converts to a flat bed.
Starwood Preferred Guest American Express – Get 10,000 Starpoints after your first purchase and an additional 15,000 bonus Starpoints when you spend $5,000 in six months. Starpoints are pretty handy. 20K Starpoints can be converted to 25,000 frequent flyer miles on 30 airlines. Starpoints can also be used for resort and hotel stays around the world. No annual fee the first year, then $65/year.
Starwood Preferred Guest Business American Express – You can also get the same deal with the business card. Do both the personal and business card and wind up with 50,000 Starpoints. If you share an address, you can share Starpoints. So if you and the meathead do this, it might be easier for one person to manage the points.
I have used hundreds of thousands of miles to fly for free over the past 20 years. I still have over a million frequent flyer miles; an overwhelming majority of those were earned through promotions like these.
My Golden Rule about credit cards: I only use a credit card to buy for things I would otherwise pay for with cash. When the bill comes, I use my cash to pay off the card in full. Period. I don’t care what the credit card’s interest rate is. Because I pay off my cards in full or else I won’t use them, the interest rate is never going to come into play.
Don’t be concerned about frequent flyer miles expiring. My post of solutions is all you need.
If you would like some tips about how to meet the spending requirements, click here and watch the video from 3:03 – 4:13. I talk about how you can use credit cards to pay cash with no fee at AmazonPayments and with a small fee at PayPal.
Thank you for clicking on “Chip’s Favorite Credit Card Offers” at the top right side of this website for up-to-date deals, terms, and conditions on these cards and more. I appreciate it! Not only will that ensure you get the correct offer, but we may get a referral credit from approvals. That support helps keep the 1s and 0s spinning around cyberspace bringing great Chip’s Money Tips to you!! Many graciases. Email me if you have any questions about which card might be right for your situation.
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