First App O Rama - moved post from newbies

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Credit Cards' started by Traveling Momma, Feb 17, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. Traveling Momma

    Traveling Momma Silver Member

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    I originally posted this in newbies and realized I should have posted here, where more seasoned FF are commenting and reviewing. I'm still learning. Bear with me....


    Hi all -

    I completed my first round of cards. We now have the following:

    For me
    Citi Advantage Visa - 50K points after 3K in 4 months
    Chase Business Ink - 50K points after 5K in 3 months
    Southwest RR Visa Personal - 50K points after 2K in 3 months (under review)
    Southwest RR Visa Business - 50K points after 2K in 3 months (under review)

    For the hubby
    Citi Advantage Visa - 50K points after 3K in 4 months
    Marriott Rewards Visa - 70K points after 1K in 3 months
    Barclays US Airways - 40K points after (not sure) need to check this

    Our home airport is Chicago and we're working towards the following:

    3 people (2 adults and one 5 year old) first class round trip to....
    South America - Galapagos (LAN)
    or
    Hong Kong - Bangkok or Singapore, Chiang Mia, Kosamui, etc...
    or
    China

    Southwest companion pass and points for domestic trips over the course of the next two years (1 per month)

    Our credit scores are 780 and 802 prior to the AoR above.

    My questions are the following:
    1. Are there any other cards we should sign up for now?
    2. Do you have any suggestions on hotel cards for the high end hotels that will get us a few nights in the more expensive international destinations?
    3. How do you keep your spending straight on all the cards? We spend about $10K/month each on regular spending so we won't have any problem meeting the minimums but once we reach it should I stop my reoccurring bills being posted to any of the cards?
    4. I've read that I should wait 91 days for my first Churn. Does this mean I stop spending on any of these cards and just apply for all new cards and meet those minimums?

    Thanks for your input and direction.

    Blue.
     
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  2. DrJack

    DrJack Active Member

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    Hello Blue and Welcome,

    Looks like you have some great travel ideas there. I myself will be going with my dad on Cathay Pacific through Chicago to Bangkok, and returning through Bali, all in business of course. This was done using 110k AA miles. Did you by chance each get two AA cards using the two browser method? If so, great, and you can fly Cathay. If not, that's ok, we can get creative.

    For international, you're lucky to be at a major hub for one world and star alliance in ORD. I would recommend that you consider boosting up your United balance (through Chase Ultimate Rewards and United's own product) and try to go in that direction. You can each get a sapphire preferred for 40k miles, and each get a United explorer card for 55k miles (don't apply for the public offer of 30k miles, check the blogs and posts to see how to get 55k). Also, this is very heavy on Chase apps, which you already have a few. Maybe the husband can be first on the chase apps.

    As for hotels, with your destination, allow me to highly recommend the Starwood Preferred Guest Amex. You both should get this card, and the brilliant part is you can combine points balances within the same household for free. This will definitely cover you in Asia, especially cities like Bangkok where you can get a 5* property (Royal Orchid Sheraton) for only 4000 points all in. Huge values here. Your Marriott card you already have may be very useful in places like HKG and Singapore.

    First thing you need to do is get online accounts set up for all your cards so you can view the spending. I like the "year to date" view, as it gives me a complete total of what I've done so far. Also, get an excel spreadsheet rolling with all of your cards, date applied, when to cancel, and when you hit the bonus points. It's very helpful to keep everything organized.

    Best of luck and have fun.
     
  3. pilotb757

    pilotb757 Silver Member

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    You applied for 3 Chase cards in one app., i doubt youll be approved for the SW cards, if lucky maybe one of them.
     
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  4. Traveling Momma

    Traveling Momma Silver Member

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    Great news. Both SW were pending and were just approved this morning. I already had 10K points in rapid rewards so basically just guaranteed the Companion Pass. Woot, woot!
     
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  5. Traveling Momma

    Traveling Momma Silver Member

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    Dr. Jack -

    Thanks so much for your direction. I can't tell you how much I appreciate this. Your suggestions are great. I setup the excel sheet as you suggested and have online profiles and logins for all cards and accounts. I've already met spending limits on the Citi Advantage Visa and so will now take it out of circulation and look to replace it with another one.

    Your suggestions are good ones. I'm on it!
     
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  6. pilotb757

    pilotb757 Silver Member

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    Congratulations. It is a very rare case to be approved for 3 Chase cards in one application.
     
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  7. Traveling Momma

    Traveling Momma Silver Member

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    I just had hubby apply for the SPG Amex too. It came back pending so I'll have him call the reconsideration line.Here's an update on where we are:

    For me
    Citi Advantage Visa - 50K points after 3K in 4 months - Spending met
    Chase Business Ink - 50K points after 5K in 3 months - Spending met
    Southwest RR Visa Personal - 50K points after 2K in 3 months (under review) - Not yet met
    Southwest RR Visa Business - 50K points after 2K in 3 months (under review) - Not yet met

    For the hubby
    Citi Advantage Visa - 50K points after 3K in 4 months - Spending met
    Marriott Rewards Visa - 70K points after 1K in 3 months - Not yet met
    Barclays US Airways - 40K points after (not sure) need to check this - one transaction only required so spending met
    SPG Amex - need to call the reconsideration line

    Does anyone know how the additional bonuses work for the cards like the following

    For the Advantage Citi Visa's - $150 Statement Credit.2 Admirals Club® One-Day Passes.
    For the Barclays US Airways - Two companion tickets every year, One complimentary US Airways Club® day pass

    Was I supposed to get these with my cards in the mail?

    I'm going to get the $1,000 in spending met for both the SW cards so I can hopefully get the companion pass on or before 3/1/2013. I have travel to Vegas I'd like to take using the Companion Pass on 4/11/2013. Is this doable?

    Thanks,

    Blue.
     
  8. c2d

    c2d Active Member

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    Just as a data point, I did my first AoR last week with the same 3 Chase cards (RR personal+business and Ink Bold). I had to call the recon line, but got them approved after 2 calls same day (1 for RR business and the other for the Ink Bold). I did 10 cards in 1 day with potential points from bonus alone @ 505,000 points!

    All that aside, about your question on SW CP -- once you hit CP status, you don't have to wait to get CP stuff in the mail. You can call and give them your companion info on the phone. Then it should only take a couple of days before you can use it, so yes, if you hit CP status by 3/1, then you should be fine using for 4/11 travel.
     
  9. Traveling Momma

    Traveling Momma Silver Member

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    c2d - thanks for the response. I just received the SW biz card today and becuase of month end bills have almost met the minimum spending for this card. I'm tickled to be able to use the Companion Pass. And, given your experience in your first AoR, I may just apply for 4 or 5 more cards. Why not?
     
  10. c2d

    c2d Active Member

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    Good luck! If you have recently done your 1st AoR, I would wait at least 91 days before the next one. If curious, you can take a look at details of my 1st AoR on FlyerTalk (I tried posting a link here, but won't let me post now as I am still quite new at milepoint; you can find me on FT under the same username).
     
  11. Traveling Momma

    Traveling Momma Silver Member

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    c2d - I just saw your awesome post on Flyertalk. Thanks for pointing to me this. You did great. Very organized and methodical about how you went about it. I'll be doing my first churn 91 days from now so will update all. Good luck with spending. I'm finding it a bit of work to keep up with what cards have the spending met already. And, I have many of my bills setup on auto bill that I'm now having to change to different CC card each month. My asst. has a lot of work. My husband is wondering why I'm changing his cc cards. A small price to pay, I think.....
     
  12. Traveling Momma

    Traveling Momma Silver Member

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    Ps. Hubby just approved for SPG Amex. Excellent.
     
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  13. c2d

    c2d Active Member

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    You're welcome! To your point about keeping track of all the cards and minimum spends etc, I have set up a spreadsheet on Google Docs that I can also access on my iPhone while I'm out. I highly recommend tracking your minimum spend deadlines as I have heard people not meeting the minimum by just few dollars or just a couple of days and not receiving the bonus. Congrats on the SPG Amex too.
     
  14. Traveling Momma

    Traveling Momma Silver Member

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    I have a spreadsheet that I keep in Dropbox that has all the information tracked. And, I use 1Password for online logins with auto pays on all credit cards along with Award Wallet to track miles.

    Thanks for the congrats on the Amex SPG. I'm going to wait the 91 days and then get really aggressive on my next Churn. Our credit is excellent so why wouldn't a bank want us? Onwards and upwards....
     

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