Applying For More Credit Cards For More Free Flights – But Which One’s This Time?!

So it’s time to apply for some new cards as it has been a little over 4 months. It’s that time again!! Exciting, confusing, and thought-provoking. Some people call what I’m about to do an “App-o-rama”. I suppose it’s fitting. I’m debating and going back and forth on which offers to pull the trigger on, and what my travel goals are. These days I am earning miles & points faster than I can burn them! This is a good problem to have, as it ensures that I’ll be traveling for free or very cheap for a long long time, & that makes me happy!
If you haven’t read my 4 posts under “Beginner’s Steps” talking about credit scores, credit reports, credit cards, & more, then you may want to read those to understand some of the things I’m about to talk about. They can be found here:

Why More Credit Cards?

For those who have a good credit score and clean credit report, the sign-up bonuses offered by new credit cards are the quickest, easiest, and most lucrative way to earn frequent flyer miles & hotel points. I’m sure you’ve figured this out by now, that I do this regularly. I generally try to space out my applications for new cards by 3-4 months preferably, unless there’s an AMAZING offer that is time sensitive for a credit card.

What’s The Goal This Time Around?

To be approved for 3-5 new credit cards that will boost my points in airline programs, but ideally hotel programs and non-specific programs such as those that offer transfers to other travel partners, or just allow reimbursement of generic travel. Such as programs like Membership Rewards, Ultimate Rewards, ThankYou Points, Venture Rewards, etc.. I have a huge abundance of airline miles right now, so I’m trying to diversify my portfolio of points and miles per say. I guess that’s the investor inside of me! Haha. I’m not a picky traveler at all, so I generally redeem my miles for flights in coach/economy, and I have no problem staying at a hostel, so obviously my lodging preferences are all the way across the board. Get me a bed in a decent location with wifi so I can see the sights with ease and get some sleep at night and I’m a happy camper! So when I redeem hotel points for $1,000 hotels, I’m in travel Heaven!

Diversifying Credit Inquiries Across Different Banks:

This is definitely a priority of mine, and the reason being is to maximize the amount of cards that I can potentially get approved for. I’d love to spread out my applications across banks such as 1 card from any of the following:
Chase, Citibank, American Express, Bank of America, Barclays, & CapitalOne.
Any cards from Barclays I consider a free inquiry because they only pull my TransUnion credit report, and generally the other banks like Chase & Citi don’t, therefore my TransUnion report doesn’t show near as many hard credit inquiries that my Experian report does. This is good!

Deciding Which Cards To Get This Time:

I currently have over 20 credit cards in my name, so a lot of the really popular cards aren’t available to me currently. I also have 6 open American Express cards, and the last time I applied for a new one, they said that I had the maximum number of cards allowed for 1 person. I ended up canceling one and they approved me, but I don’t want to have to do that this time & go into the application with high odds of being declined. So I’m thinking I’ll avoid American Express this time.

I’d love to get the Chase Ink Bold card for another 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points (transferable to United, Hyatt, Southwest, etc.), and the American Airlines business visa from Citi for another 50,000 AA miles. Both of those are business cards though, and I’ll be filing the papers for Travel and Credit LLC next month, so I will wait till next time around when I can prove a business bank account and have an EIN. You can usually still get business credit cards without an EIN & Business Bank Account, but I want those cards to have the new business information on it, and I’ve previously been declined for the AA Business card by just using my name, so I don’t want to push it!

When I login to my United account, I’m targeted for the 60,000 mile card that offers 50,000 miles after first purchase and the annual fee is waived first fee on top of other benefits that I will use. So that will be my Chase card.

Strongly considering the 50,000 mile Virgin Atlantic card from Bank of America. It requires a $2,500 minimum spend in the first 3 months, and you have to add an authorized user for the last 5,000 miles. I have this card on my TOP DEALS PAGE, mostly because you can transfer the points to Hilton HHonors at a 1:2 ratio which means I’ll earn 100k Hilton from this one card. It has a $90 Annual Fee which is worth it to me. Bank of America also has 2 different Hawaiian Airlines cards for 35k each and those transfer to Hilton at 1:2 also, so I think I’ll get the Virgin America this time and the Hawaiian Airlines ones next time.

I also like the Citi Thank You Points Premier card for 50,000 ThankYou Points after spending $2,500 on it. I can use these for $500-$625 of flights or travel activities. I will definitely use this as sometimes I am flying on the most random airlines in foreign countries, and I do a lot of tours and activities while traveling too, so I like that this could pay for them!

My hands are tied on the US Airways 40k card from Barclays. Generally I’d love to get a Barclays card more than once a year, and this is a card that is reported that you can get the card & the bonus more than once. Double positive! The only problem is that on my last set of applications I applied for my 2nd Barclays US AIrways card and I got DECLINED! I’d love to try again, but I can’t make up my mind.

Last but not least, the CapitalOne Venture Rewards card. They offered a mileage match last year where you could send in a statement from your frequent flyer miles balance and they would match up to 100,000 miles! Those can be applied towards any travel purchase at 1cpm, so $1,000 of free travel – car rentals, hotels, tourist activities, etc.!  This year, they recently offered it as a SPENDING match. After approved, you have to send in a PDF statement from one of your credit cards year end summary, and they’ll give you 2 points per dollar spent, up to 100,000 points which is $50,000 spent on your card. A lot of people were upset at the offer this year. I have a card that I hit $30,000 in spending on from last year due to some reimbursable expenses and a wonderful company called Venmo, which means I’d receive at least 60,000 points if approved. 60,000 points is worth $600 in travel expenses. I’d use that up pretty quick I think, and it would be well worth it! A little nervous though b/c CapitalOne was my first EVER credit card when I turned 18 (5 years ago), and they have never been interested in upgrading me since then. That card has a $600 credit limit, while I have cards now with over $10,000 credit limits. Hopefully they approve me and we can advance our relationship!

What do you guys think? Scroll down to comment. I’ve been rambling on and on. I’m probably going to apply within the next 48 hours. I’ll be sure to post my progress on the site and live on my Twitter.

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  1. Bruce says:

    How do you deal with paying the annual fee in the 2nd year after the card companies waived the fee for the first year?

    • admin says:

      Great question!
      Generally when the annual fee is coming up it becomes an evaluation for me where I have to decide if the benefits are worth the fee. Then either way I still call the cc issuer and tell them I’m considering canceling the card due to the annual fee and that I’m wondering if they’d waive the fee or offer me something to keep the card. I’ve had card issuers offer statement credits worth as much as the annual fee and I’ve had some say “too bad so sad!”.
      Some cards are worth keeping due to benefits I use like free bags, extra 10,000 miles every year you keep the card, high points per dollar spent, etc… But it just depends. I’ve canceled my fair share of cards too.

Trackbacks for this post

  1. I Applied For 5 New Credit Cards | Travel and Credit
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