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As most people know, one of the best ways to earn a lot of points is to sign up for credit cards that have lucrative signup bonuses.  You can read about some of my previous churns here.

A little late, but I wanted to give you a recap of my churn from November, in the hopes that you can see which cards that I am applying for in case you might have missed a good offer out there.

chase-refer-a-friend-freedom-logoSometimes I feel like some of the things that I generally do in a credit card churn have reached the level of being superstitions rather than actually having any effect, but that doesn’t mean that I didn’t still do them!! :-).  For example:

  • I used an incognito Chrome window, just to be sure there wasn’t any existing information in my browsing history
  • I did all my applications on the same day, though I don’t know that still really does anything.
  • I sacrificed a live chicken and dipped my computer mouse in its entrails before each application.

Okay maybe not that last one 😛

Which card(s) to get

I like to approach things by looking at the available offers for each of the major banks (Chase, Citibank, Barclay, US Bank and Bank of America).  A good rule of thumb is that you don’t want to apply for more than 1 card of each type (business and personal) from any one bank.

You also want to make sure to only get as many cards as you can make the minimum spend on.  In the end, I decided on:

Carolyn

  • Barclay US Airways Card – tragically, I applied for this offer right before a better offer came out.  The one I got was 40,000 miles after first purchase, $89 fee not waived, and 10,000 miles upon anniversary.  I have messaged Barclays to see if I can be considered for the current (better) offer which offers 50,000 miles.
  • Bank of America Alaska Airlines card.  I had previously ignored Alaska Airlines, but after discovering how useful Alaska Airlines mileage partners can be, I decided to apply for it.  The offer I got was for 25,000 miles upon account approval, plus a $100 statement credit after spending $1,000.  Annual fee is $75, not waived.
  • Chase Freedom card.  Since I already have the card, I “referred” my wife to the card for an extra 5,000 Ultimate Rewards points.  Her signup bonus was 20,000 Ultimate Rewards after spending $500, plus 2500 additional points for adding an authorized user.  That deal has since expired however.

Dan

  • Bank of America Alaska Airlines card – I also applied for the same card as Carolyn
  • Barclay Arrival Plus card.  I’ve written before that the Barclay Arrival is one of the best cards to use for every day spend.  I actually already have the card, but I was trying to see if I could get another one (there have been reports that it is somewhat churnable).  This offer is 40,000 Arrival points after $3000 in spend.

Referral Links

One of the ways that travel bloggers make their money is through the use of “referral” links, where they earn money based on people applying and being approved for cards through links on their website.  Think of it as a refer a friend on steroids!

At the time of this writing, I do not have any specific affiliate links, but when doing a credit card churn, I like to reward the bloggers who I feel write good content in a responsible manner.

  • Alaska card – the best deal is not currently offered by any affiliate links, so I applied directly for those 2 cards
  • Barclay US Airways card – the affiliate offer does NOT have the 10,000 bonus miles at the anniversary (Something few bloggers mention), so I applied directly for this one as well
  • Chase Freedom – that was a refer a friend offer through myself, so no links there
  • Barclay Arrival – I used a link from Miles to Memories (though I may not be approved, so he may not get anything at all)

Results

  • barclaycardBarclay US Airways card – approved!
  • Chase Freedom – decision pending.  Since this is my wife’s card, I am waiting for the official notice, which I believe just came in with an approval.  (It shows up in her list of accounts but we haven’t gotten the card)
  • Bank of America Alaska Airlines – approved!
  • Bank of America Alaska Airlines – approved!
  • Barclay Arrival Plus – decision pending.  Barclay is known for being somewhat stingy with approvals, and I got a letter in the mail a few weeks later saying that I had “sufficient credit”on my existing Barclay Arrival card.  I still need to call in and see if there’s anything that can be done, but I’m not holding my breath on it.

What about you?  Any good card offers out there that I missed?

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