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USAA will give me reward points for using my DEBIT card. I've never charged a dime to it!

Just FYI, I'm sure most of you are aware but USAA discontinued this. It was either lose the ATM Rebates or lose the Debit - as - Credit Rewards.

I have a USAA Mastercard and AMEX. The AMEX is a joint card used by me and my GF (got tired of askign checkout lady to split transaction for us). Each earns 1 point per dollar. What really is cool though is goign into the USAA Membershop and you can get more points at certain merchants. Example, drugstore.com is 6 points a dollar, I ordered something I was going ot purchase there anyway so I earned extra points. I used to be able to earn 7 points per $1 at theknot.com buying gift cards for items id be spending on anyway (gas cards, amazon etc). While I do justify using my credit card over my debit card often because of the points, I never spent more freely because of the points, and I never put myself in a situation where I can not cover the charge I also pay the balance every month.

Now USAA offers an AMEX same deal but it is 2 points on gas and groceries id of gotten this had I opened the account one month later. while it may be trivial in short term, I buy enough gas and groceries to not see some sort of benefit to it. W use all of our joint purchase points at the end of the year on reverting to cash for christmas gifts or we will use it for a vacation.

Edited by Bishop
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try giving them your real name instead of your BODN moniker...might help them locate your account.

Some of the best advice I ever heard Dave Ramsey give: "I've never talked to any millionaires that got rich by racking up reward points using a credit card."

Here's what I do, I find a card with a great deal (like $400 or $500 for spending $3,000 in 3 months) and I use that card exclusively until I reach the target dollar amount. Once I reach the target do

While I do justify using my credit card over my debit card often because of the points, I never spent more freely because of the points, and I never put myself in a situation where I can not cover the charge I also pay the balance every month.

Said it before and I'll say it again:

Not worth it.

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Revival:

Anyone have an Amex Gold or Platinum card? There are two gold cards...depending on the reward percentages the annual fee is $125 or $175 while the platinum is $450 a year.

I have an AMEX Centurion (or commonly known as "Black"). I'm not sure if they're issuing them right now, it's a little expensive and the hurdle to get one can be a little high for a lot of folks but it is definitely worth it, especially if you travel a lot.

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Said it before and I'll say it again:

Not worth it.

Discipline. $600/yr is definitely worth it to me as a married w/ no kids O-2. I imagine an O-3/4 with 2 or 3 kids, that's a lot more expense which translates to a lot more rewards. It's *almost* free money (-that is unless you have an AMEX or similar with the fees to play..).
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Recently got a Home Rebate Visa card from Wells Fargo when I refi'd the house. 0% introductory APR and 1% of my purchases goes toward the principal on my mortgage. Since I only use the card to pay for my avgas, it's a win- win for me. Go fly, and get a little kickback on the house. :)

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Recently got a Home Rebate Visa card from Wells Fargo when I refi'd the house. 0% introductory APR and 1% of my purchases goes toward the principal on my mortgage. Since I only use the card to pay for my avgas, it's a win- win for me. Go fly, and get a little kickback on the house. :)

That sounds like a pretty shitty deal to me: risking 11.15 to 23.15% variable APR to get 1% back...

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Negatron, only using it for the intro period. I dont carry a monthly balance. Just generating a little kickback on the principal is better than not. So, thanks. It works for me, but I'm disciplined when it comes to spending.

Edit to add: Butters gets it.

Edited by Marco
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Said it before and I'll say it again:

Not worth it.

I really don't get this irrational fear of credit cards. Credit is a tool, and like a hammer it can be quite helpful if used responsibly. It can also break someones face if used improperly.

I have one credit card and it is from USAA. I have paid the bill off every month since getting it. I have also received $400 cash back. I have paid USAA NOTHING for the card. It has no fees, and I have not paid any interest. They paid me $400. If I had an irrational fear of credit cards I'd have $400 less in other accounts that are earning ME interest. Over the long term that will turn out to be ALOT.

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Revival:

Anyone have an Amex Gold or Platinum card? There are two gold cards...depending on the reward percentages the annual fee is $125 or $175 while the platinum is $450 a year. While the main purpose for me is to go to Costco,

If the main purpose is to use it at Costco then I would get the Costco AMEX (True Earnings). No annual fee with your Costco membership, 3% cash back for gas, 2% travel, 1% everything else. Not sure if it has all the extras that you want but if the goal is to have a card to use there I would look into getting the True Earnings card.

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Negatron, only using it for the intro period. I dont carry a monthly balance. Just generating a little kickback on the principal is better than not. So, thanks. It works for me, but I'm disciplined when it comes to spending.

Edit to add: Butters gets it.

If you open/close credit cards for the intro gimmicks, you lose out when future creditors pull your report and see a bunch of opened/closed cards...

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Said it before and I'll say it again:

Not worth it.

Honest question, how do you establish credit if not for a credit card? It does not seem like you can do anything without having good credit and significant credit history. How would someone get a car loan without credit history?

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If you open/close credit cards for the intro gimmicks, you lose out when future creditors pull your report and see a bunch of opened/closed cards...

No one said anything about closing it. But thanks for the advice.

Let me put it in simple terms. I refi'd my house and accepted the card which was offered to me. I didn't apply for it. I really appreciate the advice Threeholer, but I'm not a kid fresh out of bootcamp. I know exactly what I am doing. The only reason that I shared was to highlight the nice treatment I received from Wells Fargo. And once again, since that card is used to fill the tanks on the plane, I found it funny that flying is contributing to my mortgage. My wife gets it, so that's all that matters to me. Have a super-swell day. I'm out.

Edit to add: Butters gets it again.

Edited by Marco
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Not true! .69 seconds on google yielded this. A little long but just might educate a few of you that apparently really need it. Mortgage brokers will tell this shit all the time to scare you into taking their deal and not shopping for a better rate. Assholes!

Bottom line. If inquiries hurt your credit, you have shitty credit.

Thanks for the unneeded lesson on FICO. I wasn't talking about inquiries. I was talking about things such as "too recent since last credit line opened" and so on that do actually show up.

However, this statement you replied with is the best:

Does applying for credit affect my FICO score?

Fair Isaac's research shows that opening several credit accounts in a short period of time represents greater credit risk. When the information on your credit report indicates that you have been applying for multiple new credit lines in a short period of time (as opposed to rate shopping for a single loan, which is handled differently as discussed below), your FICO score can be lower as a result.

Bottom line: there are different kinds of credit and different ways they are scored.

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I just got the Chase Sapphire Preferred card. No fees on international purchases, 2% back on travel (airline tickets, hotels) and all restaurants. 1% on everything else. I also got 5,000 bonus points just for getting my wife a card and then 40,000 bonus points for spending $3,000 in the first 90 days.

I then transferred those miles directly to United Airlines and got my mother-in-law an almost free ticket to Germany. In three months this card has already made me about $1,000 in free money. Did I mention I have exactly $0 in debt and I haven't paid a dime in credit card interest in over 10 years? If you have any self-restraint at all, don't listen to Dave Ramsey when it comes to credit cards.

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If you have any self-restraint at all, don't listen to Dave Ramsey when it comes to credit cards.

If you had self-restraint, you wouldn't need Dave Ramsey's advice at all. He has a great system that works for those that can't see the long term value of money. It's not going to make you rich, but if you are lost and follow it, it will save you some head ache.

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I'm a big fan of Capital One's Venture Card. 2% back on every purchase which you can use for any travel expenses. No foreign transaction fees, and best of all, they waive the annual fee if you mention the Military Member Service Relief AcT.

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My lineup is:

AMEX Blue Cash Preferred: 6% cash back on groceries (up to $6K per year), 3% cash back on gas & department stores, 1% on everything else

Chase Sapphire Preferred: 2% points on travel, 2% points on dining out, 1% points on everything else, chase points are easily transferable to most airlines & hotel rewards programs 1-for-1

Chase Ink Plus: 5% points on cell phone & internet bills, 1% point on everything else

Target RedCard: 5% off of all purchases, discount taken at the register

The Sapphire Preferred came with 45,000 chase points during signup and the Ink Plus card came with 70,000 (offers vary throughout the year).

Long story short, I've redeemed hundreds of dollars in cash back, bought several round-trip airline tickets, and save 5% right off the bat at Target, and have never paid a penny in interest. Plus there's purchase protection, price-matching, rental car insurance, and a whole host of other benefits that come with many credit cards that can't be had with debit or cash.

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I check creditcards.com about once a month to look for good deals. My current lineup:

Chase Sapphire Preferred - Daily use card plus the 40,000 bonus points for signing up and spending $4,000 in the first 3 months. (First year no annual fee)

AMEX Platinum - Use it for the perks, not for domestic purchases (Priority Pass Select, Global Entry, SPG Gold, $200 airline credit, no foreign transaction fee, etc). Annual fee waived for 4 years now

Barclay Card Arrival Plus - Used it for the 40,000 bonus points at signup, plus 10% back in points when redeeming. Dropped to regular arrival with no annual fee after 1 year. First year no annual fee

Capital One Visa Signature - Used it for 40,000 bonus points at signup, dropped to regular after one year for no annual fee.

Citi Dividend, Capital One Quicksilver, and Bank Americard - Used them for the $100 free dollars for signing up, and now just let them sit.

Chase Freedom - Just a good card to have, and Chase points are better than any other points.

Amex Blue Sky Preferred - Use it for the $100 annual airline fee reimbursement on top of the $200 reimbursement from the Platinum. Annual fee waived for 4 years now.

Plus store credit cards when the deal is good. (Macys, Pottery Barn, Target, Kohls, Home Depot, etc.)

I have never paid one cent in interest or carried a balance on any card, and in the last 5 years I've made about $8,000 in cash back, travel and rewards. I track my cards and rewards on a spreadsheet to ensure I never end up paying an annual fee.

Edited by Gravedigger
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Gravedigger, I certainly believe in using credit cards for convenience & bonuses/perks, but yours is a situation that actually can bite you. Having too many open, unsecured lines of credit reduces your credit score (making it harder to qualify for and/or putting you in a higher interest tier for mortgages, car loans, etc.), and it also works against you for those loan apps in that your limit (not actual balance alone) factors in to your "total debt" (for purposes of the app).

Recommend closing those cards you're not actively using. Hell, you could probably re-open in 6 months for more bennies, since you appear to enjoy the game....

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