Hi, Thank you for creating such a user friendly forum. I have been soaking up all the information I can for the last few weeks and am finding this spot particularly helpful! Last month we (two adults, two kids) used UA miles to snag two round trip award seats to Italy, significantly cutting our costs and sparking my obsession. Now I am mapping out our strategy for the summer of 2014 and 2015. I am planning to launch our first round of credit card apps in the next two weeks - after our refinancing closes - and I would love the input of seasoned veterans. We do not anticipate applying for any loans after the refinancing in the foreseeable future. First some background: Our credit score is over 800. My husband has had a Chase Freedom card for at least three years, it was functionally our only card until he replaced with the Chase Mileageplus last year. I only have one card - a visa tied to a credit union that I have had for about 20 years and never use. My husband has a small business and we generally charge over $100,000 a year. For the summer of 2014, I have scraped our remaining UA miles together and booked three economy saver seats on a flight SFO to LHR in mid-June. Not the perfect dates nor routes--have saved searches in Expertflyer in hopes of improving. Plan to book three saver award returns as soon as later July schedule becomes available. Planning to pay for that fourth seat. I probably should have hired an award booker, but learned about them too late. Considering purchasing an EconomyPlus subscription to improve seats--husband does travel on United for business occasionally, and could use it as well. For the summer of 2015, my singular and only goal is 400,000 miles on Star Alliance, the current equivalent of four r/t business class seats to Europe. This is my plan to get there: Me: Apply for Chase Mileageplus Explorer and Ink Bold on the same day. Then apply for Chase Preferred in 3.5 months. Husband: Keep the Freedom to exploit 5x categories. Apply for Chase Sapphire and Ink Bold the same day. Then call Chase and ask if he can upgrade his Explorer to the Mileageplus Club card without closing his account to get 1.5x miles on our spending. From what I calculate the above should get to my goal, but is that too many Chase apps in the given timeframe? Will they be happy to upgrade husband's Explorer, or give him grief about his other recent credit card applications? I want to keep Chase happy, as SFO is a big United hub. I am also thinking of holding off on getting miles on other programs (AA, etc.) until I have exhausted what I can do with Star Alliance, as a way to slow down my churn. I don't feel the need for awards for domestic travel, and with kids we can only travel internationally once a year. Or Is that a bad idea? Thanks for reading, and all thoughts appreciated!