Miles and Points: How I Got Started Part 1

Hi Everyone!

I know that its been about 3 weeks since my last post…I’m sorry! Today’s post is going to be about what else? Miles and Points! Originally I had no interest in miles and points because I thought it was going to be time consuming and expensive. But guess what, it was time consuming but not as expensive as I thought it would be.

So how did I get started?

Well it was after my 2012 Asia Trip to Hong Kong and Taiwan that I began to think about collecting miles and points for future international travels. I always wanted to experience the “premium cabins” but lacked the necessary funds to do so. There is no way I’m paying over $10K for a round trip. NO WAY! After returning home and giving myself a few weeks to recover from jet-lag I started looking around for ways to earn miles and points. My favorite go to source was Flyertalk. The forum had a wealth of information that was so easy to understand that I joined. Like most bloggers will tell you, credit card sign up bonuses are the easiest ways to obtain miles… they are so right. But before you go off to sign up for every rewards cards out there, there are several things you have to ask yourself/be aware of:

1. Credit Score

Credit Score plays a huge part of whether or not you will be approved or rejected for a certain card. Any score over 700 will most likely give you an approval. I have heard mixed experiences about scores under 700.

2. Sign Up Bonus

What is the sign up bonus? It is generous or meh? When I apply for credit cards, I tend to go for the cards with a good sign up bonus. For example, I got the US Airways® Premier World MasterCard® for 40,000 points after first purchase plus the $89 annual fee. Why is this a good deal? It cost $1400 to purchase 40,000 miles on US Airways website. Enough said!

3. Spending Minimum

This one is a biggie for me. I make above minimum wage but I don’t like to spend alot (who does?!). I always look to see what the spending minimum is. For example, the US Airways® Premier World MasterCard® is the perfect example. There isn’t a spending limit. I got 40,000 miles for buying a pack of gum and $89 annual fee. So technically I only needed to spend about $90. Perfect!

4. Benefits and Perks

This usually is what determines if I keep a credit card or not after a year. To me, my Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card is worth the $95 annual fee hence I have kept the card for over 2 years now. I love not having to go through the automated system when I need help and the speed in which I get to talk to a rep. And the best thing… No foreign transaction fees! Most credit cards charge a 3% foreign transaction fee when you make a purchase overseas but not with this card. I have literally saved several hundred dollars in foreign transaction fees in the last 2 years.

These 4 items are pretty much on my mind when I apply for a credit card. I usually weigh the pros and cons. 95% of the time, the pro wins, but sometimes the cons do win and I won’t get a card because of that. Am I obsessed with points and miles? I would say no, but my friends seem to think so since I am constantly talking about points and miles and calculating when we dine out how many points I would earn for using a certain card.

Okay that concludes Part 1, I should be back with Part 2 soon…

Until next time,

Lisa ♥

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