My Latest Round Of Credit Card Applications

In the interest of full disclosure, One Mile At A Time earns a referral bonus for anyone that’s approved through some of the below links. These are the best publicly available offers that we have found for each card. Please check out our advertiser policy for further details about the partners we work with. Thanks for your support!

Update: This offer for the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card is expired. Learn more about the current offer here.

While I spend a lot of time writing about credit cards, I’ve actually not applied for that many credit cards the past year or so. I’m not sure why. I’ve been living in hotels and have been happy with my overall card portfolio. So I guess I’ve just been complacent.

This past Friday I planned on applying for a US Airways Mastercard before the opportunity went away, and got instantly approved. So I figured I might as well apply for a few more cards that I’ve been eying for a while.

In the end I applied for five cards, all of which I got approved for (eventually).

Here are the five cards I applied for:

CardCurrent BonusMy Valuation
US Airways® Premier World Mastercard®• 50,000 US Airways Dividend Miles after the first purchase
• Annual fee: $89
1.8 cents/mile x 50,000 = $900
Minus $89 annual fee = $811
Citi ThankYou® Premier Card• 20,000 bonus points after you make $2,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
• Earn an additional 30,000 ThankYou points after you make another $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of your second year of being a cardmember
• Annual Fee: $125, waived the first year
• On 4/19/2015, this fee will be reduced to $95 on all accounts
1.6 cents/mile x 50,000 = $800
Minus $95 annual fee the second year = $705
British Airways Visa Signature® Card• 50,000 Avios after spending $3,000 within three months (offer is only available to applicants that haven’t had the card in the last 24 months)
• Annual fee: $95
1.3 cents/Avios x 50,000 = $650
Minus $95 annual fee the second year = $655
Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express• 15,000 Membership Reward® points after $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months
• Annual fees: $95
Terms and Conditions Apply
1.8 cents/point x 15,000 = $270
Minus $95 annual fee = $175
Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® Credit Card• 25,000 Mileage Plan miles upon account activation
• Companion Fare every year from $121(USD) ($99, plus taxes and fees from $22) • Annual fee: $75
1.6 cents/mile x 25,000 = $400
Minus $75 annual fee = $325

Before I explain the details of the specific cards, let me explain my “general” logic. When you apply for cards you always want to diversify the issuers of the cards as much as possible. In most cases you can’t be approved for two cards from a single issuer in a day. So in this case I applied for five cards, and each was from a different issuer, including American Express, Bank of America, Barclaycard, Chase, and Citi.

With that in mind, here’s the explanation of why I applied for each card:

US Airways® Premier World Mastercard®

This card is a no brainer. It offers a big sign-up bonus, and this is actually the last chance to apply for it and get the bonus, given that this product is soon being converted into the AAdvantage Aviator Card, at which point you won’t be able to apply for it anymore. It’s nice to add 50,000 miles to my AAdvantage balance once the programs merge in a few weeks.

I applied for the card online and got instantly approved.

Cathay-Pacific-First-Class-04
50,000 more miles which can be redeemed for Cathay Pacific first class — yay!

Citi ThankYou® Premier Card

This is a card I’ve written a lot about lately, and really want to get and keep long term. Citi announced that they’re revamping the benefits on this card as of April 19, 2015, and one of those changes is that all travel and gas purchases will accrue 3x points.

Citi-ThankYou-Premier-10

Since I spend a good amount on travel, picking up this card is a no brainer. The fact that Citi is lowering the annual fee (which is waived the first year anyway) makes this card even more compelling.

I applied for the card online, and got a message asking me to phone in to get an immediate decision. I phoned them up and the agent just needed to verify some information. In a matter of minutes I was approved.

British Airways Visa Signature® Card

Last week I wrote about why I think this card is worth picking up. The sign-up bonus is available to those that haven’t earned the welcome bonus in the past 24 months (which presumably is lots of us), and 50,000 Avios are extremely useful for travel on shorthaul routes, given British Airways’ unique distance based award chart.

50,000 Avios is enough for 11 one-way tickets in the US for travel of 650 miles or less.

While Avios are not the most aspirational currency they’re incredibly practical.

I applied for the card online, and was approved after shifting around some credit from other existing Chase cards (Chase doesn’t seem to have a limit as to how many overall cards you can have, but rather limit your total available credit between cards).

Alaska Airlines 737 SeaTac Airport
Avios are great for shorthaul redemptions on Alaska Airlines

Amex EveryDay℠ Preferred Credit Card from American Express

This is a credit card I’ve desperately wanted to pick up, given that it’s arguably the most compelling card for everyday spend. If you make 30 purchases per billing cycle you earn a minimum of 1.5 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent. For everyday, non-bonused spend, I don’t think cards get better than that.

If nothing else, I’m excited to pick up this card for paying my taxes. I can basically pick up Membership Rewards for ~1.25 cents each while paying my federal income taxes using this card.

The Amex EveryDay℠ Preferred Credit Card will no doubt be joining the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card at the top of my wallet.

I applied for the card online and got instantly approved.

Singapore-Suites-Class-2
Redeem your Membership Rewards points for Singapore Airlines Suites Class

Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® Credit Card

I love Alaska miles, and it’s easier to pick up this card (again) than it is to be served a pre-departure beverage on Alaska.

While it’s not a huge sign-up bonus, I figured I might as well pick up another one of these cards.

I applied for the card online and got instantly approved.

Bottom line

This is the first time in a while that I’ve applied for multiple cards in a day. First of all, I forgot just how exciting it can be to apply for multiple cards in a day. Like, I actually got a rush out of it.

While these weren’t necessarily the cards with the biggest sign-up bonuses, some of these are cards I’ve long wanted to apply for. In particular, I plan to keep the Amex EveryDay℠ Preferred Credit Card from American Express and Citi ThankYou® Premier Card long term, as they offer a really compelling return on everyday spend.

Regarding Comments: The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

Comments

  1. RE USAir card: Have you had it before? Would be interested in more info. I had one that I closed in December, hoping to get it a second time before it goes away. So far, no luck.

  2. Hi Ben,

    Are you aware if ‘churning’ credit cards affects your credit rating? In the past 12 months I’ve had around six different credit card accounts with different financial institutions and I’ve recently been rejected for two credit cards that, on paper, I qualified for.

    Without going into too many details, I have a relatively high annual income ($120K) and minimal debts (no mortgage, pay my credit cards in full every month etc.). The only factor I contributed my rejection to was the high number of accounts I hold/have held. Whilst this may not be the case, are you aware of any precedent regarding this?

    Thanks.

  3. I have a question about applying credit card. I have US Airways Master Card. If I deactivate or cancel my card. Do I still get the same welcome benefit when I apply again in the future?

  4. Lucky, I’m considering some new apps. Would you go with CSP over IHG and BA? I have Chase Ink Plus and Chase Hyatt. How do you compare Citi Thank You to Citi HiltonHHonors Reserve? Thank

  5. Why not apply for the Alaska Airlines that offers the $100 credit after $1000 spend?

    Or does that not offer an affiliate commission?

  6. Lucky–do you think the everyday preferred is better than the SPG fit everyday spend? One offers the extra .25 mile per dollar while the other offers a lot more flexibility. I can never make up my mind. Your thoughts?

  7. Do you have multiple apps open and apply all at once? I try and use separate browsers and click submit almost simultaneously but dunno if it makes a difference.

    I also got the TYP, are you just gonna transfer to Krisflyer or explore some of the more obscure partners?

  8. I’ve been eyeing the Citi TY Premier, but held back because of the travel partners. I may still apply for it with the hope that AA eventually gets added as a partner. Do you think this is likely in the future?

    I tried for my 3rd US Airways card but they caught on to me, and did get denied, but figured it was worth a shot

  9. Lucky – You and Tiffany have hinted that you’ve applied for the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature Card multiple times, which is probably the reason why you’re able to fly Emirates F so much. How often can I apply for them without being denied? My credit is about 770 and I’ve been doing a “round of applications” every 4 months for the past year or so. Thanks!

  10. I have a USAir card that I have had for a about 1.5-years now. It is the one that gets 10k bonus each year which makes the annual fee worth it. I tried to churn the card back in Jan and got rejected and then tried again last weekend. There were reports that this sometimes would go through but usually it would not. Had no luck on the recon line (max one card I was told). In retrospect, I should I have just closed the card as 10k/year is not nearly as good as 50k right now (I can’t imagine 10k will be worth it in 5 years). Now I am at the point though where it is too late and I don’t think there will be enough time for me to close it and re-apply before they stop taking applications. Oh well, live and learn.

  11. @ JorgeC — I don’t know what the actual limit is, but I’ve basically applied for one every time I apply for any cards. I’ve never tried to get more than a few per year.

  12. @ Stannis — Nope, I don’t use different browsers, just apply for one and then the next, given that these are all from different issuers.

    My plan is to probably redeem these through KrisFlyer or FlyingBlue.

  13. @ SSpOP — The version I linked to doesn’t offer me a commission either. Where is this better offer available?

  14. @ Eric — It all depends what you’re looking for. The CSP and Citi ThankYou Premier are infinitely more valuable for everyday spend, so they’re probably what I’d go for if the goal is a card to keep long term.

  15. @ Makalo Lee — It all depends on the person. Some have reported success earning the bonus again, while others don’t. Seems to vary substantially. Keep in mind that pretty soon it won’t be able to apply for the card anymore, though.

  16. @ Anthony — Well credit scores can be pretty complicated, and there are lots of things that factor into them, which I explain at the top of this page:
    http://onemileatatime.boardingarea.com/best-current-credit-card-offers/

    So if you don’t have many other open cards then yes, it would impact your score quite a bit. But having a lot of available credit can actually help your score as well. Have you tried pulling your credit so you can better figure out what the problem might be?

  17. @ elteetrav — I have indeed had it in the past, though it has been a while, and I didn’t presently have one open.

  18. @Lucky @SSpOP — If you just do a search for “Alaska Airlines card 25k miles $100 statement credit” you should find it easily. A blog called Pontscentric reported recently that you can do the old Citi AA two-browser trick and get two identical cards with a combined credit pull, so 50k miles + $50 profit (after two $75 fees, not waived in the first year) with $2k in spend and a single pull. Pretty great. Haven’t tried it myself, been opening this card and a business version every four months or so but this is much better.

  19. Lucky — wondering why you value us air miles at a higher price than alaska? What I like about alaska is that it accesses economy plus on Cathay, while advantage does not. I find many dates with e plus and no seats in economy, business or first. Only way I see them as being worth less is the fear that they might become skymiles, in which case they would be worthless.

    Anyone on alaska — can one actually churn them every 90th ?…? 91st date?….? Does the two browser trick really work — anyone do it in the last three months?

    Thanks

  20. @ Westin — Really varies by year. In the past year I haven’t applied for many cards at all, unfortunately.

  21. @ Robert — Nope, unfortunately nothing to report there. I have a note out to them, though, so hope to have an update soon.

  22. @ Andrew — Whoops, those are old valuations. Should have more current ones soon. Agree they’re worth more than US Airways miles, or at a minimum worth the same amount. I don’t know the exact rules, I just apply for the card a couple of times a year.

  23. Lucky – you said you havent had the US Air card in a while. but I’m guessing you have atleast a few Barclay’s products currently. if so, how many currently (before this US card?) I’m having a tough time getting a 2nd US card, reading data points on FT, not a lotta ppl are having success either. and ofcourse forget recon, so just wondering how you got instant approval.

    I have 2 Barclay’s products currently, incld a US and Lufty M&M card. heard the “limit” is 2, atleast as far as instant approval goes? both of these cards were instant approvals. so now I’m thinking maybe I should cancel the M&M in hopes of picking up another US card. dont wanna cancel the first US card cause it has the anniversary bonus, also dont wanna risk NOT being approved for another one before sign ups close cause I wanna keep one US card long term even when it changes over to the Aviator series.

    if I close the M&M, I can always pick it up later to keep my M&M miles from expiring. so any thoughts or tips regarding my gameplan would be appreciated from you or fellow readers! I hope sign ups are open for atleast a couple more weeks after I cancel and the system “updates” itself for better instant approval odds.

  24. Applied for the Barclaycard US Airways card, since I figure this is my last chance to grab it. It got waitlisted for further consideration though. Of course, there’s some information out there claiming that the US Airways and American FF programs are going to get merged before the ten-day window for review, and in my experience the reconsideration period is usually just a polite way of denying you. Not sure if I should bother calling up or not, since they don’t seem to be as generous as Chase. I only have one other Barclaycard, the Arrival+ Mastercard.

  25. Lucky,

    Dumb question – what happens to the bonus and earned points when you cancel these cards? For instance, I’ve had the BA Visa for a couple of years, earned quite a bit of Avios, and am now considering canceling it and getting the CSP or Citi Thank You Premier. I’d would think the Avios I’ve earned are mine and would remain that way even if I close my BA Visa card. True? Same with the US Airways card – I just got it, but don’t intend on keeping it for a whole year even. Do the bonus miles die if I don’t redeem them before closing the card?

    Thanks,
    Arun.

  26. This post is so full of point “valuations” that I am reminded again how useless the whole concept is.

    Here are @Lucky’s redemption “values” for the major hotel loyalty programs:

    Club Carlson 0.4 cents/point
    Hilton HHonors 0.4 cents/point
    Hyatt Gold Passport 1.4 cents/point
    IHG Rewards 0.5 cents/point
    Marriott Rewards 0.8 cent/point
    Starwood Preferred Guest 2.2 cents/point

    First, notice a pattern? Although they have the smallest footprint and the most expensive room rates, @Lucky values SPG and Hyatt much much higher than the other programs. Is it a coincidence that he also happens to gush all the time about the two programs that he ranks at the top (he’d value Hyatt GP highest but that would go against the blogosphere dogma of valuing SPG higher because of the mythical SPG AMEX Card).

    I did not check but I suspect that among the airlines he ranks American first. Why? Well, take wild guess!

    Here’s a dose of reality.

    The blogosphere and @Lucky value Hilton Honors points at 0.4 cent/point.

    Now consider this real example:
    I will [for real] be spending 5 nights around New Year’s eve 2015 at Conrad Koh Samui (Thailand).

    Hilton Hotel: Category 10
    Standard award room rate: 95,000 HH points/night
    Standard room rate in $$: $988/night

    Under HHonors all elites get the 5th award free, which is equivalent to 20% off

    As a HH Diamond my standard award rate will be 20% of 95K = 76K [will save 95K points for the stay]

    Let’s do the math…

    For 5 nights at Conrad Koh Samui, the following rates will be available:

    in hard cash: $988 for best available rate * 5 = $4,940
    in HH points with 5th night free: 76,000 * 5 = 380,000 HH points
    in HH points without the 5th night free: 95,000 * 5 = 475,000 HH points

    What is my redemption value as HH elite?
    With the 5th night off, it will be = $4,940/380,000 = $0.013/point = 1.3 cents/point.

    What is the redemption value for a general member?
    Without the 5th night off, it will be:$4,940/475,000 = $0.010/point = 1.0 cent/point

    The redemption value of HH points will be between 1.0 – 1.3 cents.

    Where is the value of 0.4 cent/point that @Lucky and others throw around as the “value” of a HH point?

    That is why I roll my eyes every time @Lucky says “I value each ‘program-name’ point at ___cents/point.”

    His valuations are so subjective that, if they have any meaning at all, it would be only narrowly for him and those with his lifestyle, which is not very many people 😉

  27. @DCS: Do you have a personal vendetta against Lucky? Because by my estimation (and almost everybody else’s), his valuation is fair (and pretty much in line with everybody else).

    You used one of the most extreme examples of a category 10 Hilton property in your example. Now let’s use an equivalent Hyatt hotel – let’s say Park Hyatt Maldives or Park Hyatt Paris Vendome, which routinely costs $900-1000/night.

    Strictly on point redemption, it would take 30K Hyatt points to get a night stay at the Park Hyatt Maldives or Paris Vendome, less than 1/3 of the 95K Hilton points required in your example. Given that the cost per night is roughly equal, simple logic would lead one to believe that the Hyatt points are at least 3X more valuable on a per point basis than the Hilton points, correct? Using your method, where a Hilton point is worth 1 cent (assuming non-elite status), the Hyatt point would be worth 3.17 cents (acknowledging that there is no “Fifth Night free” award with Hyatt).

    Also, Lucky uses the AVERAGE value of a hotel night stay across all categories, not just a category 10 extreme case as you have used. Most category 9 or 10 Hilton stays average $400-500 a night, which leads to a non-elite Hilton point evaluation of 0.4-0.5 cents. Again, as in the example explained above, Hyatt points are 3X more valuable, thus an evaluation of 1.2-1.5 cent per Hyatt point is not out of the question. (While looking to book a night at the Hilton Tokyo in September, I found the room rate was $220 or 44K points, which, lo and behold, is equal to a 0.5 cent evaluation for the Hilton point).

    You keep saying Lucky’s point evaluation is subjective. However, in the example you provided, your evaluation was based on two very subjective factors: 1) you based the evaluation on your elite status, which most people won’t or don’t have, and 2) you used the most extreme case of a category 10 Hilton Hotel. Yes, we understand that the points game is about aspirational awards, but you can’t base the value of a reward system based on the “most aspirational” scenario as you have described. Heck, if that was the case, and we used your methodology, Club Carlson points would “objectively” be worth 1.6-1.8 cents because I would be basing it on 1) somebody holding a Club Carlson Visa to, in effect, “double” the point value (an assumption not much different than you using your Hilton “elite” status to raise the Hilton point evaluation), and 2) using the Mayfair Hotel in London in the cost basis, which routinely costs $550 per night, and at two nights for $1100 and a redemption of 70K points, leads to a point evaluation of 1.6 cents per Club Carlson point (and if you did the same for the Radisson Edwardian Mercer street, would be $900/50000 = 1.8 cents). Again, this is the most extreme of cases and aren’t representative of the normal user (who may not have the credit card and who may not be redeeming points at a property in London or Paris).

    Frankly, the one guilty of subjectivity is you, DCS.

  28. @ DCS — You’re right, I’d like to revise my valuations. I’m soon headed to the Maldives, and the nightly rate is ~$1,275. I’m paying just 20,000 Hyatt points per night. I guess Hyatt points are therefore worth over six cents each!

  29. @ Adam — I only otherwise have the Barclaycard Arrival Plus. I previously applied for the US Airways Card at least a couple of years ago, and closed it down late last year. With Barclaycard it’s always tough to tell what the chances of getting approved are, unfortunately.

  30. Question on the BA 50k offer. You say that you can’t have had the card for 24 months, or have gotten the bonus within 24 months… which is it?

    I have the card open now, and was about to cancel it to avoid the upcoming annual fee. But I got the signup bonus in June 2012… which is more than 24 months ago. So if I apply again, am I eligible for the 50k signup bonus?

  31. @ qasr — You can’t have received the bonus within the past 24 months, per the T&Cs. Sorry for any confusion.

  32. Ben: I don’t understand why you keep ignoring the Citi Prestige card in all of your recent posts and instead highlight the Citi Thankyou Premier. The Prestige has very similar high earning rates for travel and dining purchases but also comes with AA lounge access (when flying AA/US) and Priority Pass Select (including 2 guests), among other benefits. Plus, the $250 annual fee credit can be done twice in one calendar year, thus cancelling out the annual fee. The Citi Prestige card in effect competes with both the AMEX Platinum and the Chase Sapphire Preferred (and is certainly stronger than the ThankYou Premier), and yet you never, ever mention it.

  33. Should I get the Citi AAdvantage Gold Mastercard? It offers 50,000 AAdvantage Miles for $50 annual fee and then 40,000 if you pay 1,500 in 3 months and an additional 10,000 if you pay 5,000 in one year.

    Isn’t that better than the US Airways Premier World Mastercard? Thanks

  34. @ Wesley — Yeah, you certainly could. But they’re not mutually exclusive. You could get them both if you wanted.

  35. @Daniel M – The points earning potential with the Premier is higher than the Prestige, due to the expanded definitions of travel for the Premier, and the annual fee is far lower as well.

  36. Any thoughts on whether Amex will ever increase signup bonus on Everyday Preferred? I really want, but can’t really justify signing up for a card for only 15,000 points when Amex only lets you get bonus once now.

  37. @ Jamie — It’s anyone’s guess, but I wouldn’t count on it. Amex hasn’t offered big publicly available sign-up bonuses for a long time.

  38. It’s so sad how far behind times you are, the average guy on dans deals forums knows how to apply for multiple cards from the same issuer in one day. I myself have been approved for 6 Amex cards by one rep within 10 min. Get with the game a bit before you start blogging about it. You embarrass yourself when you enter territory that you’re clueless about, stick to travel and you’ll be ok.

  39. @Norman & @ Lucky:

    Q.E.D. because all you did was to make my point.

    The time to determine the redemption value of points is after one has redeemed. There is no single redemption value because there is so much subjectivity in deciding what to redeem the points for. What you guys may decide to redeem for would in all likelihood not be my cup of tea. Also, most of the valuations that are peddled completely ignore the costs of acquiring the points…

    I am off to Budapest to accumulate more HH points at Hilton BUD toward affording that planned redemption at Conrad Koh Samui!

    Cheers!

  40. BTW, @Norman, I did compute the redemption value also for general members and not just for elites, and it was still much higher than 0.4 cpp. Look at the my post again.

    Also both you and @Lucky thought that computing the values for Hyatt would demonstrate that Hyatt’s points are somehow more valuable. That is another fallacy because such comparisons are meaningless without including the point acquisition side of the equation. The most reliable way to judge and compare different programs and the relative “value” of their points is with a metric I call descriptively “Spend Per Free Night” because it takes into account both the point acquisition and redemption sides of the equation. I did the math for all the major programs so that you would not have to:

    https://milepoint.com/forums/threads/exploring-spg-point-values-by-hotel-category.114263/#post-2551672

    … and my results are corroborated by those of a blogger who did the math for different categories and elite levels (things scale proportionately up and the down the award charts):

    http://travelcodex.com/2014/03/much-cost-earn-free-night/

    You want objectivity? You might want to start good there… 😉

    G’day!

  41. I must return to the following point because it is critically important: the relative “values” of loyalty programs simply cannot be compared as these folks did up-thread.

    @Norman: “Using your method, where a Hilton point is worth 1 cent (assuming non-elite status), the Hyatt point would be worth 3.17 cents (acknowledging that there is no “Fifth Night free” award with Hyatt).”

    @Lucky: ” I’m soon headed to the Maldives, and the nightly rate is ~$1,275. I’m paying just 20,000 Hyatt points per night. I guess Hyatt points are therefore worth over six cents each!”

    Are Hyatt points WORTH 3 or 6 times more than HH points? The answer is, of course NOT. Those two statements about Hyatt vs. Hilton points are meaningless because they fail to take into account the point earning side of the equation. What happens when the relative point earnings are taken into account was crisply summarized by one blogger who did it ( http://travelcodex.com/2014/03/much-cost-earn-free-night/ ):

    [B]”From this first figure, we can see what I’ve shown before, that Hyatt, Hilton, and Marriott all have award charts that are similarly priced. The fact that Hilton may sometimes charge up to 95,000 points for an award night is compensated for the fact that it can offer 15 points per dollar, while Hyatt offers only 5 points per dollar. Starwood, however, has some incredibly high-priced awards among its top tiers, while IHG Rewards and Club Carlson may offer significant value even after Club Carlson’s recent devaluation.”[/B]

    If you prefer to see the above demonstrated with glossy charts, I will provide the link again:
    https://milepoint.com/forums/threads/exploring-spg-point-values-by-hotel-category.114263/#post-2551672
    The point encapsulated here simply cannot be ignored by anyone who purports to rate or determine the relative “values” of loyalty programs.

    Got to compare apples and apples!

  42. “In most cases you can’t be approved for two cards from a single issuer in a day.”

    You’re freaking kidding. Right?

  43. @ DCS…the points are worth what they are worth come time for the redemption. You are trying to make an argument which loyalty programs are better not which points are worth more. You may earn more Hilton Points for a paid stay but they are still worth on average around .5 cents a piece. If you are earning 20 points per dollar when staying there then you are getting a 10% return on your stay. At hyatt I find their points worth around 2 cents a piece. So if you get 5 points per dollar on a paid stay then you get a 10% return. So they are equal in that way but there are other ways to earn the points like through UR etc. so even that skews it.

    Just from regular credit card spend it is easier to get a reward stay at SPG and Hyatt versus hilton. You earn 3 pts per dollar on hilton cards and would need to spend 10000 dollars to get a lower end redemption. You could get that by spending 3000 on spg’s card and 5000 on a hyatt card earning 1 pt per dollar.

    Regardless at the end of the day the points are worth what they are worth – the earning rate only comes into play in deciding which “program” to value more.

  44. @Mark O sez: “Just from regular credit card spend it is easier to get a reward stay at SPG and Hyatt versus hilton.”

    I addressed that very issue here: https://milepoint.com/forums/threads/exploring-spg-point-values-by-hotel-category.114263/#post-2551672

    Take a look and call me in the morning, but the reason is one of SCALE: SPG and Hyatt redemption rates are numerically the lowest, so, yes, it is easier to afford an award on CC spend with both programs than with, say, Hilton. On other hand what is 3 points/$ spend on CC when one can earn 32 points/$ or 45 points/$ from stays? It is why the earning side must be taken into account.

    Look at what happens when we adjust the AVERAGE REDEMPTION VALUES for the relative earning abilities. Based on points that can be earned from hotel stays, we have the following relationships for top elites:

    1 GP point = 3.2 HH
    1 SPG point = 6.7 HH

    Now let’s express Hyatt’s and SPG’s redemption rates on the same scale as HH’s by adjusting for the relative point earning abilities (using Hilton as the common denominator):

    Hyatt’s 1.8 cents/point adjusted for earning ability = 1.8/3.2 = 0.6 cent/point
    SPG’s 2.2 cents.point adjust for earning ability = 2.2/6.7 = 0.3 cent/point

    Not too different from the AVERAGE value of 0.4 cent/point estimated for Hilton is it?

    What that means:

    Hyatt’s 1.8 cpp or SPG’s 2.2 cpp would get you about the same award as 0.4 cpp HHonors points!

    From now on, bloggers should be in the habit of quoting point earning-adjusted redemption values, and I won’t take issue with them.

    Gotta go because my IAD-FRA flight on my way to BUD is now boarding, but I hope I gave you some things to think about… 🙂

  45. @DCS what you are not grasping is a majority of the people reading these blogs are not staying at the hotels but are rather getting the points through credit card spend. And these valuations are used when comparing credit card sign up bonuses. How much you earn on stays does not matter in these cases. If you got 50000 hyatt points or 50000 hilton points as a sign up bonus everyone would want the hyatt points because they would be worth more for redemption dollars….does not matter which is easier to earn by staying at the hotel.

    You continue to talk about earning through paid stays – THIS DOES NOT MATTER when evaluating how much a point is worth for a credit card sign up bonus. You continue to argue about the total merits of an award program where most people here don’t care when signing up for a credit card but rather look at what will this sign up be worth to me and the .5 cents for hilton points is accurate for that. You are fighting a completely different battle here. You have to be able to see this.

  46. @Mark O — What you are not grasping is that loyalty points do not grow on threes — i.e., they are not free. I costs real money to earn them, be it through CC spend or paid stays. In either case, the modeling would have to take into account how the costs of points that are ultimately redeemed. In fact, the modeling would be the same; the only thing that would change would be the source of points…

    Do you think it is a coincidence that bloggers are enamored with with Hyatt and/or SPG? The bloggers’ business model is to push credit cards and earn real cash for each person they get to sign up. There has to be enthusiasm about the cards being pushed or few would sign up. To build excitement, the two programs for which award nights can be obtained relatively quickly from CC spend are touted as the best thing since sliced bread even though they are actually the least affordable programs for most who play the mile/point game on their own dime. Nevertheless, regardless of where the points come from, any valuation needs to take into the associated costs to be credible.

    An exercise that I will do when I have the time is to compare the relative “values” of the awards purchased with points earned through CC spend or through revenue stays for the various program…

  47. The last one escaped me before I proofed. Here’s a cleaner version:

    @Mark O — What you are not grasping is that loyalty points do not grow on trees — i.e., they are not free. It costs real money to earn them, be it through CC spend or paid stays. In either case, the modeling would have to take into account the costs of points that are ultimately redeemed. In fact, the modeling would be the same; the only thing that would change would be the source of points…

    Do you think it is a coincidence that bloggers are enamored with with Hyatt and/or SPG? The bloggers’ business model is to push credit cards and earn real cash for each person they get to sign up. There has to be enthusiasm about the cards being pushed or few would sign up. To build excitement, the two programs for which award nights can be obtained relatively quickly from CC spend are touted as the best thing since sliced bread even though they are actually the least affordable programs for most who play the mile/point game on their own dime. Nevertheless, regardless of where the points come from, any valuation needs to take into the associated costs to be credible.

    An exercise that I will do when I have the time is to compare the relative “values” of the awards purchased with points earned through CC spend or through revenue stays for the various program…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *