Amazon: Pay with American Express Membership Rewards Points, Get up to 40% Off (Targeted)

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(Check AmEx again to see if eligible again for this new round. Might also want to check if you have Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou, or Discover cash back. Note that Amazon links may not show up on RSS/email, please visit the website.)

If you have an American Express card with Membership Rewards (MR) points, you can redeem them to buy eligible items at Amazon.com. The redemption rate is 1 MR points = 0.7 cents to spend at Amazon, which unfortunately is less than a cent per point and thus not really the ideal use of MR points. (My base redemption is 1 cent per point minimum toward any Delta flight.) However, here are targeted promotions where you can save money after redeeming just 1 single MR point (a penny’s worth). (To see the link, you may need to visit this page on the internet if viewing this via e-mail or RSS.)

Here are some additional tips:

  • If you haven’t linked yet, you can link your Membership Rewards points balance to your Amazon account here.
  • If you have already linked your cards and aren’t targeted, you may consider removing your American Express card from your account completely, and then linking it again after a day, and then checking the offer page(s) again after another day.
  • Items must be marked as both sold AND shipped by Amazon.com.
  • Be sure to select your American Express as your payment method and redeem at least 1 point or $0.01 in value of Membership Rewards points.
  • Savings should be reflected on the final order checkout page, before you commit to purchase.

This is a recurring perk for existing American Express cardholders, which is why one of my two “keeper” consumer American Express cards is the Amex EveryDay Card (keeps my Membership Rewards points active with no annual fee, helps qualify for various Amazon promotions). The other is the Blue Cash Preferred from AmEx (6% cash back on US supermarkets, up to $6,000 annually).

You can also earn and keep Membership Rewards points active with a small business card. My favorite business American Express card is the Blue Business Plus Card – Earn 2X Membership Rewards points on all purchases, of up to $50,000/year. There is also the Blue Business Cash Card that earns a flat 2% cash back on up to $50,000 in purchases each year. Both have no annual fee.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Coinstar Bitcoin ATM Review: Buy $100 BTC, Get $15 BTC Promo, But Still a Pass

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Coinstar kiosks count your physical coins for you and take a pretty big 11.9% cut, unless you redeem for a gift card (where they still get a cut from the retailer). Walmart and Amazon are my favorite options, although I usually save up my coins for their occasional bonus promos. I just received this peculiar $15 BTC promo from them:

Curious about crypto? Try purchasing at a Coinstar Bitcoin ATM powered by Coinme. Through June 30, 2022, when you create a new Coinme account and purchase $100 or more of crypto at a Coinstar Bitcoin ATM you’ll get $15 in bitcoin!* Use the promo code CoinstarBTC and be sure to use the same email address when you create your new Coinme account.

Purchasing crypto at a Coinstar Bitcoin ATM is simple:

– Create a Coinme account
– Find a Coinstar Bitcoin ATM
– Purchase a crypto voucher with cash (coins are not accepted for crypto transactions)
– Redeem your voucher to instantly claim crypto with Coinme

Did you catch that? You can’t buy Bitcoin with physical metal coins. Even at a Coinstar kiosk, of all places! Why not? How are paper bills somehow different??

*Terms apply. Valid for new Coinme accounts only. The $100 crypto purchase must be made in a single transaction at a participating Coinstar location using your Coinme account. This offer begins May 16th and ends June 30th, 2022. If a qualifying purchase is made during the offer period, $15 in BTC will be deposited to your Coinme wallet within seven (7) business days of purchase. See Official Rules for more details.

In addition, there are some serious fees:

Each crypto purchase carries a transaction fee of 4% and a cash exchange fee of 7%.

So you put in $100 in paper bills (don’t even get to return coins back into circulation), only get $89 of Bitcoin plus $15 of bonus Bitcoin, but then when you sell you have to pay another fee. All this along with BTC high price volatility. And you have to sign up for another crypto broker. Pass.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Delta SkyMiles American Express Cards – Up to 60,000 Bonus Miles

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Delta Airlines American Express cards offer various special perks like free checked bags, priority boarding, and the ability to earn Delta Skymiles with card purchases. As you can only get the welcome offers once on each of these cards per person per lifetime (each card is considered different), I recommend waiting until a limited-time offer to maximize your benefit. Here are the current offers:

Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card

  • Earn 40,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • $100 Delta flight credit after $10,000 in purchases on your card in a calendar year.
  • First checked bag free on Delta flights – that’s a savings of up to $240 per round trip for a family of four ($30 each way, per person).
  • Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding.
  • 2X miles at Delta purchases, at U.S. Supermarkets and at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery in the U.S. Earn 1 miles per dollar spent on all other eligible purchases.
  • $0 annual fee for the first year, then $99. (See Rates and Fees)
  • Terms Apply.

40,000 Skymiles is worth at least $400 in Delta airfare. Delta offers a minimum value out of your Skymiles via the “Pay with Miles” option. That means 50,000 Skymiles can reduce the price of your Delta ticket by $500 at the very least. (5,000 mile = $50 minimum redemption.) You can still book the traditional award tickets and possibly get better value.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

  • Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost(R) per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs up to two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion(R) Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion(R) Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Up to $100 Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck(R) after you apply through any Authorized Enrollment Provider. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • First checked bag free on Delta flights – that’s a savings of up to $240 per round trip for a family of four ($30 each way, per person).
  • Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • $250 annual fee. (See Rates and Fees)
  • Terms Apply.

The Platinum version can be a worthy upgrade from the Gold version if you can take advantage of the annual Companion Certificate (i.e. book two tickets together on Delta at least once a year). I’ve used it several times in the past and it is easy to use while booking tickets online at Delta.com. My savings from using the companion certificate has ranged from $200 to $500.

Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card

  • Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • Earn up to 60,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost(R) per year. After you spend $30,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 15,000 MQMs up to four times per year, getting you closer to Medallion(R) Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion(R) Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Delta Sky Club access. Complimentary access into the Delta Sky Club(R) for you when travelling on a Delta flight.
  • Centurion Lounge access. Enjoy complimentary access to The Centurion(R) Lounge when you book a Delta flight with your Reserve Card.
  • Up to $100 Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck(R) after you apply through any Authorized Enrollment Provider. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • First Class Main Cabin domestic round-trip companion certificate. Receive a domestic First Class, Delta Comfort+(R) or domestic Main Cabin round trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • First checked bag free on Delta flights – that’s a savings of up to $240 per round trip for a family of four ($30 each way, per person).
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases.
  • Earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases.
  • $550 annual fee. (See Rates and Fees)
  • Terms Apply.

The Reserve version can be a worthy upgrade for frequent Delta fliers. Enjoy Delta Sky Club and/or Centurion Lounge access on your Delta flights, that First Class companion certificate can be worth thousands, earn additional MQMs on your purchases, etc.

BUSINESS Card Versions

Delta SkyMiles® Gold Business American Express Card

  • Welcome Offer: Earn 50,000 Bonus Miles after spending $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • $100 Delta flight credit. Additionally, receive a $100 Delta Flight Credit to use toward future travel after you spend $10,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year.
  • First checked bag free on Delta flights – that’s a savings of up to $240 per round trip for a family of four ($30 each way, per person).
  • Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding.
  • Earn 2 Miles on every dollar spent on eligible purchases made directly with Delta, on every dollar spent on eligible U.S. purchases for advertising in select media, on every dollar spent on eligible U.S. shipping purchases, on every eligible dollar spent at restaurants. Earn 1 Mile on every eligible dollar spent on other purchases.
  • $0 annual fee for the first year, then $99. (See Rates and Fees)
  • Terms Apply.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card

  • Welcome Offer: Earn 60,000 Bonus Miles and 5,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after $25,000 in purchases in a calendar year, up to two times per year. This helps get you reach elite Medallion Status, but does not earn you miles towards reward flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. Worth up to $100 towards Global Entry (which includes TSA PreCheck).
  • Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate. You can receive a domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. Take a friend or family member when you fly Delta. Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • First checked bag free on Delta flights – that’s a savings of up to $240 per round trip for a family of four ($30 each way, per person).
  • Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding.
  • Earn 3 Miles on every dollar spent on eligible purchases made directly with Delta and on every eligible dollar spent on purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn more miles on big purchases with 1.5 miles per dollar on single eligible purchases of $5,000 or more (that’s an extra half mile per dollar), up to 50,000 additional miles per year. If your purchase qualifies for a category that has a higher mileage accelerator, only the higher accelerator will apply (ex. you would earn 3X miles on purchases made directly with Delta and Hotel Stays instead of 1.5X).
  • Delta Sky Club(R) Access – enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • With Status Boost(R), earn 10,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your card in a calendar year, up to 2x per year getting you closer to Medallion Status.
  • $250 annual fee. (See Rates and Fees)
  • Terms Apply.

Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card

  • Welcome Offer: Earn 60,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • Status Boost(R) earns 15,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $30,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to 4x per year getting you closer to Medallion Status.
  • Delta Sky Club access. Complimentary access into the Delta Sky Club(R) for you when travelling on a Delta flight.
  • Centurion Lounge access. Enjoy complimentary access to The Centurion(R) Lounge or Escape lounges -The Centurion(R) Studio Partner when you book a Delta flight with your Reserve Card.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. Worth up to $100 towards Global Entry (which includes TSA PreCheck).
  • First Class Main Cabin domestic round-trip companion certificate. Receive a domestic First Class, Delta Comfort+(R) or domestic Main Cabin round trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card.*Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • First checked bag free on Delta flights – that’s a savings of up to $240 per round trip for a family of four ($30 each way, per person).
  • Plus enjoy 3X miles per dollar on all eligible Delta purchases.
  • After you spend $150,000 on your Card in a calendar year, you earn 1.5 miles per dollar (that’s an extra half mile per dollar) on eligible purchases the rest of the year. If your purchase qualifies for a category that has a higher mileage accelerator, only the higher accelerator will apply (ex. you would earn 3X miles on purchases made directly with Delta instead of 1.5X).
  • $550 annual fee. (See Rates and Fees)
  • Terms Apply.

Again, Delta offers a minimum value out of your Skymiles via the “Pay with Miles” option. That means 100,000 Skymiles can reduce the price of your Delta ticket by $1,000 at the very least. (5,000 mile = $50 minimum redemption.) You can still book the traditional award tickets and possibly get better value.

In my opinion, the Delta Gold is still the best for most casual Delta customers because of the free checked bag, new $100 flight credit, and relatively big sign-up bonus. The main draw of the Platinum is the MQMs for those that want to achieve status (and thus free upgrades), along with the Main Cabin companion certificate. The main draw of the Reserve cards is MQMs, the airport lounge access and the First Class companion certificate. I have used the companion certificate several times in the past and have gotten good value out of it.

During a limited-time offer, I will add these to my list of the Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Chase IHG Rewards Club Traveler Card Review: 800,000 Points Offer, No Annual Fee

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

The Chase IHG Rewards Club Traveler card is the IHG hotel card that includes special IHG perks but with no annual fee. Here are the highlights:

  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after spending $2,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • Earn 15X points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel.
  • Earn 2X points at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants and 1 point per $1 on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Fourth Reward Night Free when you redeem points for any 4+ night stay.
  • No annual fee.

Note the following:

This product is not available to either (i) current cardmembers of any IHG® Rewards credit card, or (ii) previous cardmembers of any IHG® Rewards credit card who received a new cardmember bonus for this credit card within the last 24 months. This does not apply to cardmembers of the IHG® Rewards Premier Business credit card.

What can you get with IHG points? The best redemption value for IHG points is for free hotel nights. The other options offer significantly less value. While the points don’t translate directly to a dollar value, I would use a conservative estimate of 0.50 cents of value per point, which would make 120,000 IHG points worth an estimated $600 value. Not bad for a no annual fee card. You can perform the calculations for hotels that fit your needs. I tried a bunch of other various combinations and got between 0.5 cents and 0.8 cents per point equivalent value.

IHG stands for Intercontinental Hotel Group which has over 5,000 hotels including the following brands:

  • Intercontinental Hotels & Resorts
  • Crowne Plaza
  • Kimpton
  • Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express
  • Staybridge Suites
  • Candlewood Suites
  • Hotel Indigo
  • EVEN Hotels

IHG points expire after 24 months of inactivity, which is relatively long so with occasional activity you can easily save up these free nights for later. Chase Ultimate Rewards points also convert to IHG points.

The 4th Reward night free perk can be very valuable and nice to see on a card with no annual fee.

Total of 15x points per $1 spent when you stay at IHG. Here’s how this breaks down: Earn 5X points per $1 spent as an IHG® Rewards Club Traveler credit cardmember + 10X points per $1 spent from IHG® for being an IHG® Rewards Club Member, for a total of 15X points total at any of their 5,400+ IHG® hotels & resorts.

Given my 0.5 cent per IHG point valuation, I would book my IHG nights on this card, but not my everyday purchases on an ongoing basis. I would just put a little spending on there to keep my IHG points from expiring.

  • 2 IHG points per $1 spent at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants.
  • 1 IHG point per $1 spent on all other card purchases

Upgrade to Premier? Downgrade to Traveler? If you can reliably use a anniversary night certificate (40,000 point value) and get $99 value out of it, you should consider going with the IHG Rewards Premier credit card mentioned on the same application page. The Premier card also adds some other small perks like Platinum Elite status and a TSA Precheck fee credit.

If you already have the Premier card and don’t want to pay for those added perks, you may consider asking if you can downgrade to this Traveler now without any annual fee.

Bottom line. The Chase IHG Rewards Club Traveler credit card now comes with no annual fee and a boosted sign-up bonus. As with most of these co-branded cards, the best value is obtained if you can redeem for IHG hotel nights.

During the limited-time offer, I will be adding this to the Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Citi Premier Card: 80,000 ThankYou Points (Highest Ever Offer, Worth $800 in Gift Cards, $640 at Amazon, More)

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

The Citi Premier Card is an improved rewards credit card with the ability to transfer points to airlines miles as well as an added $100 annual hotel savings benefit. Right now, they have a highest-ever limited time offer of 80,000 bonus points (redeemable $800 in gift cards at thankyou.com) Here are the highlights:

  • 80,000 bonus ThankYou points after $4,000 in purchases in the first 3 months
  • 3X points at Supermarkets
  • 3X points at Restaurants
  • 3X points on Gas Stations, Air Travel, and Hotels
  • 1X points on all other purchases
  • $100 Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • Points Transfer allows you to transfer points to participating airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $95 annual fee.

Note the following fine print which mentions other ThankYou-related Citi cards:

Bonus ThankYou® Points are not available if you received a new cardmember bonus for Citi Rewards+®, Citi ThankYou® Preferred, Citi ThankYou® Premier/Citi Premier® or Citi Prestige®, or if you have closed any of these accounts, in the past 24 months.

$100 Annual Hotel Savings Benefit details.

Once per calendar year, enjoy $100 off a single hotel stay of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, when booked through thankyou.com or 1-800-THANKYOU (powered by cxLoyalty) and subject to the additional requirements stated below. For speech or hearing impaired TTY: Use 711 or other relay service. To receive the $100 annual hotel savings, you must pre-pay for your complete stay with your Citi Premier Card, ThankYou Points, or a combination thereof. If you choose to use the benefit, the $100 annual hotel savings will be applied at the time of booking.

Note: In 2020, the Citi Premier card eliminated the 25% points bonus when redeemed for travel booked at Thankyou.com.

80,000 ThankYou points = $800 in gift cards. You can view your redemption options at ThankYou.com. I took a quick look and it takes 10,000 ThankYou (TY) points to redeem for a $100 gift card to retailers like Target, Lowe’s, Home Depot, Gap, Banana Republic, Barnes & Noble, Bath and Body Works, Bed Bath & Beyond, Cabelas, Kohl’s, Land’s End, LL Bean, Sears, and Zappos. So with 80,000 TY points, you could get eight $100 gift cards from different stores (handy for gifts), or all from the same store. You may also be able to find options to send a check towards your mortgage payment and/or student loan payment.

Personally, my default redemption is for Home Depot and/or Lowe’s. As an owner of an older house, there is always an appliance or home-improvement purchase around the corner. Target is another useful option.

Hotel points and airline miles transfer options. Citi ThankYou points are also now available to transfer to certain airline mileage programs on a 1:1 basis including JetBlue TrueBlue, Virgin Atlantic, Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific, EVA Air, Etihad, Flying Blue by Air France and KLM, and Thai Airways.

For example, 80,000 ThankYou points can be transferred to 80,000 JetBlue TrueBlue points, which can then be redeemed free airfare at a ratio that varies between 1.1 cents per point and 1.6 cents per point. Even if you are conservative, this still works out to over $880 in JetBlue airfare.

Alternatively, 60,000 TY points can also get you 60,000 Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles. If you know how to redeem these points wisely and like to fly in international business class, you can get a lot of value. For example, Singapore Airlines has some very nice award options and great customer service.

Amazon and Best Buy. You can also use the “Pay with Points” features at Amazon and Best Buy, but you will only get 0.8 cents per ThankYou points in value at Amazon. For example, 80,000 ThankYou points will offset $640 in Amazon.com purchases.

Airfare booked through Citi ThankYou Travel Center. You can also redeem ThankYou points for 1 cent per points value towards airfare booked through the Citi ThankYou Travel Center at ThankYou.com. For example, 80,000 ThankYou points will offset $800 airfare booked through the Citi ThankYou Travel Center at ThankYou.com. This is a travel portal similar to other airfare comparison sites, so you can book basically any seat on any airline using this method and still earn frequent flier miles on the flight.

Bottom line. The Citi Premier Card is a rewards travel card with 3X points on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel and hotels, along with a $95 annual fee. Currently, new cardholders can get a sign-up bonus of 80,000 ThankYou point that can be redeemed in a variety of ways.

I have applied for this account as part of my Free IRA Goal for 2022. I will be adding this to the Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Southwest Airlines Credit Cards: 50,000 Bonus Miles Worth $650+ in Airfare, Also Counts Toward Companion Pass

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Southwest Airlines offers the unique Companion Pass, which lets you pick one person to fly with free when you book both paid AND award flights (including to Hawaii!) on Southwest. Importantly, points earned from credit cards are qualifying points toward the requirement, including sign-up bonuses! You can often get very close to that magic 125,000 points with a calendar year when you add up the potential miles from these Southwest consumer and business cards. This is on top of the excellent value you can get by redeeming those points for Southwest flights (ex. 75,000 points can get you $1,100+ in Wanna Get Away airfare with no blackout dates).

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus credit card

  • New Offer: Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • 3,000 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • 2X points on Southwest(R) purchases.
  • NEW: 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
  • NEW: 2X points on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • NEW: 2 EarlyBird Check-In(R) each year
  • NEW: 25% back on inflight purchases
  • All points earned count towards Companion Pass(R).
  • $69 annual fee.

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier card

  • New Offer: Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • 6,000 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • NEW: 3X points on Southwest(R) purchases.
  • NEW: 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
  • NEW: 2X points on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • NEW: 2 EarlyBird Check-In(R) each year
  • NEW: 25% back on inflight purchases
  • All points earned count towards Companion Pass(R).
  • $99 annual fee.

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority card

  • New Offer: Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • 7,500 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • NEW: 3X points on Southwest(R) purchases.
  • NEW: 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
  • NEW: 2X points on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • NEW: 2 EarlyBird Check-In(R) each year
  • NEW: 25% back on inflight purchases
  • NEW: 1,500 Tier Qualifying Points towards A-List Status for every $10,000 in spend
  • 4 Upgraded Boardings per year when available.
  • $75 Southwest annual travel credit.
  • $149 annual fee.

The following are business credit cards:

Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business card

  • 80,000 points after $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • 9,000 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • NEW: 4X points on Southwest(R) purchases.
  • 3X points on Rapid Rewards® hotel and car partners.
  • NEW: 2X points on rideshare.
  • 2X points on social media and search engine advertising, Internet, cable and phone services and 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • 4 Upgraded Boardings per year when available.
  • Inflight WiFi Credits (up to 365 x $8 credits per year).
  • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® Fee Credit in the form of a statement credit of up to $100 every four years.
  • $199 annual fee.

Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business card

  • 60,000 Rapid Rewards points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • 6,000 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • NEW: 3X points on Southwest(R) purchases.
  • 2X points and Rapid Rewards® hotel and car rental partners.
  • NEW: 2X points on rideshare.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • NEW: 2 EarlyBird Check-In(R) each year
  • $99 annual fee.

Value of Rapid Rewards points. Redeeming Southwest points for flights varies in a narrow range, but a very reasonable approximation from my experience is 1.3 cents in Wanna Get Away airfare in per point. That works out to $650+ in Wanna Get Away airfare for every 50,000 points or $1,300+ in Wanna Get Away airfare from 100,000 points (you are still liable for taxes and fees from $5.60 one-way). Importantly, Southwest does NOT have blackout dates or seat restrictions when you redeem with points. This means that Southwest points are much easier to use than a “saver award” on traditional airlines.

Now, if you manage to qualify for the the Companion Pass on every trip that you book with those points, that doubles the potential value of each award redemption. In other words, 125,000 Rapid Rewards, would usually get you $1,850 in Wanna Get Away airfare, but with the Companion Pass you’d get an extra companion ticket for every flight booked.

There may be other options like gift cards, but the redemption value is less than half the value you could get from redeeming for flights.

Southwest points expiration policy, per Southwest.com:

Do the points I earn expire?

No, your Rapid Rewards points do not expire. However, if you choose to close your account, the points in your account will be terminated.

Southwest still includes two free checked bags per person. The fees on the other airlines have crept up to $30 per bag, each-way. That adds up.

Our family policy is to not try out a new credit card unless it offers us $500 in total value. Just the free award flights from the points are enough to satisfy that rule, and then you can add on the potential value of the companion tickets.

Card restrictions. All of these Southwest credit cards are subject to “5/24” restrictions, which means that your application will be automatically denied if you have opened 5 or more credit cards in the last 24 months (check your credit reports). Our household strategy is to have one person only apply for Chase 5/24 cards, and the other person applies for everything else. There is also this language on the consumer card:

The product is not available to either (i) current Cardmembers of any Southwest Rapid Rewards® Credit Card, or (ii) previous Cardmembers of any Southwest Rapid Rewards Credit Card who received a new Cardmember bonus within the last 24 months. This does not apply to Cardmembers of the Southwest Rapid Rewards Business Card and Employee Credit Card products.

Basically, you can get one sign-up bonus from a Southwest consumer card once every 24 months. You can also get one sign-up bonus from a Southwest business card once every 24 months.

Stack your Companion Pass with Chase Ultimate Rewards points. If you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can transfer Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest points on a 1:1 basis. If you book an award flight with those Southwest points while you have the Companion Pass, you can double the value of your Ultimate Rewards points as well.

Bottom line. Southwest credit cards offer new cardholders the opportunity to earn hundreds of dollars worth of Wanna Get Away airfare, but if you time things right and maybe combine a personal and business card, you can also grab the Southwest Companion pass, which provides a free companion ticket on every flight bought with cash or points booked both during the rest of the year in which you earned it, AND the full next calendar year. Finally, Southwest still includes two free checked bags per person on every flight.

Also see: Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers and the Top 10 Best Business Card Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card: 60,000 Bonus Points = $750 Value, 3X points on Dining, $50 Annual Hotel Credit Added

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is a premium travel rewards credit card that has gotten very popular due to its rewards structure and flexible Ultimate Rewards points that can be redeemed for cash, travel credits, or transferred to airline miles and hotel points. I’ve had it for years. Here are the highlights:

  • 60,000 bonus Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. 60,000 points can be redeemed for a $600 cash statement credit or $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards(R). You can also convert to airline miles or hotel points.
  • 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • 25% more value with Pay Yourself Back(SM). Your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • 5X total points on all travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards. 2X points on all other travel purchases.
  • 3X points on on dining, including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out. (Previously 2X.) 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • 3X points on select streaming services. Includes Disney+, Hulu, ESPN+, Netflix, Sling, Vudu, Fubo TV, Apple Music, SiriusXM, Pandora, Spotify and YouTube TV.
  • 3X points on online grocery purchases (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs).
  • $50 Annual Credit on hotel stays purchased through Ultimate Rewards. New cardmembers will start earning towards the credit immediately and existing cardmembers will start earning after their next account anniversary.
  • 10% Anniversary Point Bonus. Each account anniversary, cardmembers will earn bonus points equal to 10% of total purchases made the previous year. That means, $25,000 in spend will earn an additional 2,500 bonus points.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • $95 annual fee.

Note the following text:

The product is not available to either (i) current cardmembers of any Sapphire credit card, or (ii) previous cardmembers of any Sapphire credit card who received a new cardmember bonus within the last 48 months.

Chase has an unofficial rule that they will automatically deny approval on new credit cards if you have 5 or more new credit cards from any issuer on your credit report within the past 2 years (aka the 5/24 rule). This rule is designed to discourage folks that apply for high numbers of sign-up bonuses. This rule applies on a per-person basis, so in our household one applies to Chase while the other applies at other card issuers.

Ultimate Rewards points. This card offers a special 25% bonus on travel redemptions made through the Ultimate Rewards travel website. For example, 60,000 Ultimate Rewards = $750 in travel. Similar to Expedia or Travelocity, you can book flights on most major airlines and hotel chains. This makes it much more flexible to spend your points. You can even buy something more expensive and pay the difference.

If you have other Chase cards that earn Ultimate Rewards points like the Freedom Flex, Freedom Unlimited, Ink Business Cash or Ink Business Unlimited, you can transfer points into this card account and take advantage of the this higher premium. In other words, your existing Ultimate Rewards points balance could be increased in value by getting this card.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve Card is the “ultra-premium” rewards card that offers a bigger 50% bonus on travel redemptions, along with more perks and a higher annual fee.

Prefer airline and/or hotel points? This card also allows you to transfer Ultimate Rewards points into hotel and/or airline miles. Transfer to United Airlines, British Airways, Air Canada, Singapore Airlines, Korean Air, Southwest, Hyatt Hotels, IHG Hotels, and Marriott Hotels at a ratio of 1 Ultimate Rewards point = 1 mile/hotel point. Miles redemption continue to offer great value for savvy travelers, especially for last-minute travel and business class seats. I personally use the transfers to “top off” my account to reach a free coach ticket or free hotel night when I don’t have enough points otherwise. My favorite options are United miles, Southwest miles, and Hyatt hotel points. I usually save up my points for a Hyatt hotel stay that gets me over 2 cents per point value.

Cash redemptions are a simple and easy option at straight conversion of 100 points = $1.

Sharing points. Ultimate Rewards points are instantly transferable to other accounts including family members, as long as they have their own Chase card with Ultimate Rewards as an authorized user. This way, you can pool points together for transfers and redemptions if you like.

Additional card benefits:

  • Primary car rental collision damage waiver insurance. Decline the rental company’s collision insurance and charge the entire rental cost to your card. Coverage is primary and provides reimbursement up to $75,000 for theft and collision damage for most rental cars in the U.S. and abroad. Most other cards only offer secondary coverage that kicks in only after the deductible of your individual insurance policy is used.
  • Trip Cancellation/Trip Interruption Insurance. If your trip is canceled or cut short by sickness, severe weather and other covered situations, you can be reimbursed up to $10,000 per trip for your pre-paid, non-refundable travel expenses, including passenger fares, tours, and hotels.
  • Trip Delay Reimbursement. If your common carrier travel is delayed more than 6 hours or requires an overnight stay, you and your family are covered for unreimbursed expenses, such as meals and lodging, up to $500 per ticket

Bottom line. The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is a popular premium travel rewards card. The sign-up bonus is currently 60,000 Ultimate Rewards points worth 60,000 United miles, 60,000 Hyatt points, or $750 towards travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal or in select categories via their Pay Yourself Back tool. The 3X points on dining out, online grocery, and select streaming services plus a $50 annual hotel credit are new additions.

You can only get one Sapphire bonus every 48 months, so compare with the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card, which offers a bigger 50% bonus on travel redemptions, along with more perks and a higher annual fee.

This offer is on my list of Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card: 2X Miles on All Purchase + 75,000 Bonus Miles Offer

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Offer increased to 75k. The Capital One Venture Rewards credit card is their premium travel rewards card with unlimited 2x miles per dollars on all purchases. 75,000 miles can be redeemed as a $750 credit towards any travel purchase made with the card (any airline, any hotel, AirBNB stays, Uber rides, no blackout dates). Here are the highlights:

  • One-time 75,000 bonus miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Flat 2X miles on ALL purchases.
  • Up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck.
  • Enjoy two complimentary visits per year to Capital One Lounges or to 100+ Plaza Premium Lounges through our Partner Lounge Network
  • Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you’ll get our best prices on thousands of trip options
  • Use your miles to get reimbursed for any travel purchase-or redeem by booking a trip through Capital One Travel
  • Transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Miles won’t expire for the life of the account and there’s no limit to how many you can earn.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • $95 annual fee.

(Capital One’s “ultra-premium” card is the Venture X card, which has more perks including Priority Pass airport lounge access and a $300 annual travel credit through Capital One Travel, but also a higher $395 annual fee. This Venture card is more directly competitive with the Chase Sapphire Preferred, while the Venture X competes more directly with the Chase Sapphire Reserve.)

Redemption details. Capital One “miles” can be redeemed directly for a cash statement credit on a 1 mile = $0.01 basis when offsetting any travel purchase made on the card within the past 90 days. In other words, 50,000 miles = $500 toward travel. That means you can fly on any airline or stay at any hotel, pay with this card, and then “erase” that purchase using your miles balance later. This even includes AirBnB vacation rentals, car rentals, and Uber rides.

This means that earning 2 miles on on every $1 in purchases essentially makes this a 2% back card when applied towards travel. You also have the option of booking travel through their travel portal, similar to Chase Ultimate Rewards, but you are not required to do so. You have the flexibility of booking through them or making the purchase directly through the airline, hotel, car rental counter, etc.

Miles transfer options. Capital One now allows you to transfer your “miles” into select airline miles programs as well. Here are the airline transfer partners:

  • Aeromexico
  • Air France/KLM
  • Air Canada Aeroplan
  • Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
  • Avianca Lifemiles
  • British Airways Avios
  • Emirates Skywards
  • Etihad
  • EVA
  • Finnair
  • Qantas
  • Singapore Airlines Krisflyer
  • TAP Air Portugal
  • Turkish Airlines
  • Virgin Red

Hotel partners

  • Accor Live Limitless
  • Choice Hotels

If you know how to leverage one of these international airline miles programs, this can be a very valuable option. Otherwise, it’s nice to know you can always get a certain level of value by redeeming against any travel purchase.

Bottom line. The Capital One Venture Rewards credit card earns 2x miles on all purchases, which you can either redeem against any travel purchase or transfer to one of their airline/hotel partners. Right now, there is an offer of 75,000 bonus miles, worth $750 towards travel.

Due to the $500+ first-year value, I will be adding this card to my list of Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Discover Card Free Online Privacy Protection Review (Opt Out of People Search Sites)

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Discover is offering their credit card and banking customers another free service called Online Privacy Protection (press release). Essentially, it automatically submits opt-out requests at 10 selected “people search sites”. These are creepy websites that scrape your personal information from many different publicly-available databases and then makes money by selling access. I wrote about these invasive sites previously and you may be surprised at how much information about you is floating around out there – age, current and past addresses, phone numbers, and the names of your parents, siblings, children, cousins, and in-laws.

Once catch is that you must access this feature via the Discover app. They are still rolling it out, so it may not be available to everyone yet. I used the QR code from the link and it seemed to find it directly after installing the app.

After signing up for the service, I was disappointed that it didn’t find my name on any of the databases. I was hopeful that was because I already opted out of several of these sites manually a few years ago. However, I still did find some of my information some of the sites. I was hoping this service really might be valuable by saving time, and it still might for you, but it doesn’t seem to be perfect.

Mainly, this exercise just reminded me of how sleazy these people search sites are and the annoying ways they manipulate people to pay them money. Don’t give them a single penny!

Here are the ten sites (not linked on purpose):

  • Addresses.com
  • AnyWho.com
  • InstantCheckmate.com
  • InstantPeopleFinder.com
  • Intelius.com
  • Spokeo.com
  • TruthFinder.com
  • USSearch.com
  • YellowPages.com
  • ZabaSearch.com

I mainly use my Discover card for the 5% cash back categories and the occasional Amazon Pay with Points promos, but I suppose that I do appreciate these side efforts. Besides being one of the first to offer a free FICO score, they also have a free Social Security and Experian credit inquiry alert service.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Mastercard Free ID Theft Protection and Credit Monitoring

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Update April 2022: Just a quick update that this has been a useful, additional free identity theft protection service. Today, I electronically signed some “power of attorney”-type papers through Docusign and they had me answer some identity verification questions like “which address have you been associated with?” that pulled from my credit reports and driver’s license data. Immediately, I got the following alert from Mastercard Identity Protection that even included the exact questions asked:

Previously, this service has also alerted me that my personal information like name/email have been found in data breaches from random websites like autoexpresscars.com and drivesure.com. These are all events that did not trigger any alerts from my other credit bureau-based monitoring services. Therefore, I feel signing up for this additional free service rounds them out. Services like Docusign are useful but open you up to potentially more severe cases of fraud.

Original post:

Data breaches are scary fact of life these days. If you have a Mastercard, did you know that they offer a Mastercard ID Theft Protection service to cardholders for free? If you activate it, Mastercard has paid on your behalf for a private-label identity theft protection service provided by Generali Global Assistance, Inc. (GGA). The same way that Safeway doesn’t actually make their generic version of Cheerios, Mastercard has outsourced this service. Thanks to reader Bill P for the tip.

Services are provided by Generali Global Assistance, Inc. (GGA), one of the largest providers of private-label identity protection services in the United States. GGA has handled thousands of identity-related cases and has protected millions of customers since it began offering the service in 2003. GGA’s in-house identity theft resolution specialists are certified identity theft risk management specialists – CITRMS® certification by the Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE) and FCRA-certification (Fair Credit Reporting Act by the Consumer Data Industry Association).

You’ll receive an alert if there’s a change to your TransUnion credit report (e.g., new inquiries, new accounts, updated personal information by creditors). That’s nice, but I already get more comprehensive coverage from all three bureaus than this from my combination of Credit Sesame, Credit Karma, and FreeCreditScore.

The difference that caught my eye was their emphasis on full-service, human help if you do become a victim of identity theft. Emphasis mine:

This program is designed to help protect you from identity theft and provide full-service, hands-on assistance in the event of an incident. Studies have shown that the largest cost to victims of identity theft is lost time and stress associated with figuring out how to restore their identity, including replacing cards and documents while communicating with creditors to dispute fraudulent activity. In the event of an incident, we will assign you with a personal case manager to help you resolve issues, saving you countless hours and reducing the stress associated with identity theft.

Their package of services includes: identity theft affidavit assistance and submission, creditor notification, dispute and follow-up, 3-bureau fraud alert placement, inform police/legal authorities, placement of credit freeze and opt-out services provided by certified identity theft resolution specialists.

These could be hollow claims, but hopefully they are truly helpful in taking care of these things on your behalf. If you have a Mastercard, it may be another worthwhile service to add to your defenses.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

SoFi Credit Card: 3% Cash Back For a Year w/ Direct Deposit (Limits Apply)

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

SoFi has another new promotion if you have the SoFi Credit Card and SoFi Checking/Savings and a qualifying Direct Deposit every month: 3% cash back for 1 year (365 days) on a maximum of $12,000 of purchases ($360 in rewards).

After the cap of $12,000 in purchases that will earn 3% cash back (36,000 points redeemable for $360 in total rewards), it will revert back to the standard 2% cash back rate. That means you’ll really only earn a max of $120 more than you would have otherwise at the standard 2% cash back rate. Still, not bad as the products are already competitive without any promos (1.25% APY on up to $150,000 with any direct deposit, 2% cash back on purchases).

1) You will need to maintain a qualifying Direct Deposit every month with SoFi Checking and Savings in order to continue to receive this promotional cash back rate. Qualifying Direct Deposits are defined as deposits from enrolled member’s employer, payroll, or benefits provider via ACH deposit. Deposits that are not from an employer (such as check deposits; P2P transfers such as from PayPal or Venmo, etc.; merchant transactions such as from PayPal, Stripe, Square, etc.; and bank ACH transfers not from employers) do not qualify for this promotion. A maximum of 36,000 rewards points can be earned from this limited-time offer. After the promotional period ends or once you have earned the maximum points offered by this promotion, your cash back earning rate will revert back to 2%.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Best 0% APR Balance Transfer Credit Cards – July 2022 (Updated)

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

0aprRising rates 📈 also means credit card APRs are going up. Shopping around for the best balance transfer offer can save you thousands of dollars in interest. Below is a freshly updated list of the best 0% APR balance transfer offers. I try to include a good mix of different bank and lesser-known credit unions with easy membership requirements.

How to find the best combination of the longest 0% APR period and the lowest balance transfer fees. If you are paying 18% APR, that’s like paying 1.5% on your balance every month. Paying a 3% upfront fee for an 21 month period of 0% would be like paying your current interest rate for 2 months and then getting 0% interest for the remaining 19 months. That may be preferable to 12 months at 0% with no balance transfer fee, especially if you spread out your payments over the entire period and use that additional time to pay it all off by the end. Here is an example comparison.

  • $5,000 balance, 18% APR, 12 month payoff = $458 per month for 12 months. ($5,500 total paid)
  • $5,000 balance, 0% APR + No BT fee, 12 month payoff = $417 per month for 12 months. ($5,000 total paid)
  • $5,000 balance, 18% APR, 21 months payoff = $279 per month for 21 months. ($5,865 total paid)
  • $5,000 balance, 0% APR + 3% BT fee, 21 month payoff = $245 per month for 21 months. ($5,150 total paid)
  • $5,000 balance, 0% APR + no BT fee, 21 month payoff = $238 per month for 21 months. ($5,000 total paid) ** not an available offer **

Hopefully, you can see how one might prefer the $245 per month for 21 months, even thought it results in a slightly higher total amount paid than the $417 per month for 12 months. Especially if this creates an attainable plan that the end of 21 months, you are debt-free. Even if there was no balance transfer fee for 21 months (which unfortunately isn’t an option), the difference would be $7 per month.

If you are sure you can pay it all off within the shorter 0% period, then you should pick the no balance transfer fee option.

1) Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card – 0% Intro APR on balance transfers for 21 months from date of first transfer. All transfers must be completed in first 4 months. You also get 0% Intro APR on purchases for 21 months from date of account opening. After the intro APR offer ends, a variable APR will apply. There is a balance transfer fee of 5% of the amount of each credit card balance transfer or $5, whichever is greater. No annual fee.

2) Wells Fargo Reflect Card – 0% Intro APR on balance transfers for 18 months from date of account account opening. Intro APR extension of up to 3 months with on-time minimum payments during the introductory and extension periods. (Note this is not the same as starting the countdown from the time of transfer.) Introductory balance transfer fee of $5 or 3% of the amount of each balance transfer, whichever is greater, for 120 days from account opening. After that, it is of 5% each credit card balance transfer or $5, whichever is greater. No annual fee.

3) US Bank Visa Platinum Card  – 0% Intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 20 billing cycles. Balance transfer fee of $5 or 3% of the amount of each balance transfer, whichever is greater. Side perk of up to $600 in cell phone protection. No annual fee.

4) BankAmericard Credit Card – 0% Intro APR for 18 billing cycles for purchases and balance transfers made in the first 60 days of opening your account. After the intro APR offer ends, a Variable APR will apply. A 3% fee (min $10) applies to all balance transfers. $100 statement credit online bonus after making at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening. No annual fee.

5) First Tech Fed Platinum Mastercard0% Introductory APR for 12 months on balance transfers and no balance transfer fee during the first 90 days after account opening. After the intro APR offer ends, a variable APR will apply. You must be an First Tech Federal Credit Union member to obtain this card, but membership is open to everyone who joins a partner organization for as little as $8 (Financial Fitness Association). You must also keep a nominal amount (usually around $10) in a share savings account. No annual fee.

6) Wings Financial CU Platinum Card0% Introductory APR for 12 months on balance transfers after account opening and no balance transfer fee. After the intro APR offer ends, a variable APR will apply. You must be a Wings Financial Credit Union member to obtain this card, but membership is open to everyone who joins a partner organization for as little as $5 (Wings Financial Foundation). You must also keep a nominal amount (usually around $10) in a share savings account. No annual fee.

7) Navy Federal Platinum Card0% introductory APR for 12 months after account opening for balance transfers requested within 30 days of account opening. No balance transfer fee. You must be an Navy Federal Credit Union member to obtain this card, and membership eligibility is restricted primarily to military personnel including Army, Marine Corps, Navy and Air Force, but now includes veterans and family members. You must also keep a nominal amount (usually around $10) in a share savings account. No annual fee.

8) La Capital FCU Rewards Card0% Introductory APR for 12 months on balance transfers and no balance transfer fee during the first 90 days after account opening. After the intro APR offer ends, a variable APR will apply. You must be an La Capitol Federal Credit Union member to obtain this card, but membership is open to everyone who joins a partner organization for as little as $20 (Louisiana Association for Personal Financial Achievement). You must also keep a nominal amount (usually around $10) in a share savings account. No annual fee.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.