cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card

Established Contributor

Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card

You know, it almost becomes a GAME. hahaha. How much premium cash back can I get? Smiley Wink

 

Well, I just PC'd today from a Citi Diamond Preferred to a Citi Forward. What did it for me over a regular thank you card is the 5 thank you points (aka 5%) on restaurants...along with music stores, movies and bookstores as a nice touch. And despite conflicting results from google searches, it appears that it pays 5% at Amazon because classifies as a bookstore. And I know it does from my own CC statements.That's an especially nice touch. So, with 5% on restaurants on the Forward, I can switch one of my 5% categories on my US Bank Cash + from restaurants to department stores. Of the 5% choices, it's the most useful for me. 

 

So when the Citi Forward arrives in the middle of Feb, I will change my US Bank Cash + 5% for the 2nd quarter 2013 to department stores and get 5% on:

 

Restaurants (Forward)

BookStores (amazon too): (Forward)

Movies (Forward)

Music Stores (iTunes too?) (Forward)

Gas (PenFed)

Department Stores (Cash +)

Cell Phones ( Cash+ or Ink)

Landline Biz Phone (Cash+ or Ink)

Cable/Internet (Cash + or Ink)

Office Supply Stores (Ink)

All insurance...home, car and business (Cash+)

Electric Bill...home and business (Cash+)

Gas Bill...home and business (Cash +)

Municipal Sewer (Cash +)

Water Bill...business (Cash +)

Radio Advertising for Business...merchant code fluke on $500 per month! (Ink)

 

All this in addition to:

 

5% discount at Target (Red Card) 

5% back on all Gift Cards at Staples (Ink)

3% at Grocery Stores...Walmart SC too. (PenFed)

2% non-bonus baseline cash back. (Spark)

Bonus cash back through the Chase Ultimate Rewards Mall

Bonus cash back through Cap1 Central Perk

 

I suppose I could skip the 5% at Department stores with Cash + and just do gifts cards to those stores from Staples and put Airlines or Hotels but it's a pain to always do that. Besides, with the Bonus Cash back sites through Chase and Cap1, I can do about/almost 5% on hotels and airlines with the bonus cash back. Besides, those are less frequent purchases. All I really need now is the Fidelity Cash rewards Amex (flat 2% back) to use as a baseline for personal purchases and keep them off the Spark. If it was run by AMex themselves and not FIA Cards, I think I would have already. A Cash rewards Cap1 would also do the job. I'll spare that .5%. At least I get access to Central Perk. I'm trying lately  to not use my spark for personal use and have been trying my Cash + at 1.25% (.25% bonus for having gold checking) as a personal baseline.

 

Not bad, huh? Smiley Tongue

 

 

Start (Sept 2011): low-mid 600s. NOW: TU FICO: 801, EQ FICO 808, EX FICO 798 (PSECU). Goal: Achieved! Now Maintain!
Message 1 of 19
18 REPLIES
Established Contributor

Re: Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card

I also am creating a 5% back on everything staple of cards.  It really is a lot of fun chasing them down. 

 

 

Amex BCP/BC/Zync - Amex Business GR - Barclays NFL Visa Sig 49ers/Arrival - BoA BBR - Cap 1 Quicksilver - Citi Forward/Preferred - Chase Amazon/Freedom/Ink Plus - Discover IT - Fidelity Amex - GECRB Amazon/Walmart - PenFed PRV - Target - USAA Amex - US Bank CASH+/Club Carlson
Message 2 of 19
Established Contributor

Re: Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card

I can get gift cards at Staples for other merchants?

Gas: Discover It, Penfed Platinum Rewards x2, Chase freedom, Citi TYP
Plane tickets: CSP
Groceries: AMEX BCP, Penfed Platinum Rewards,Citi TYP
Clothes: Express, Amex BCP, Discover IT
Amazon: Citi Forward, Cash +
Restaurants: Citi Forward, Chase Freedom, Discover IT, CSP
Hotels and other travel: Discover Escape, CSP
Movies: BofA travel rewards visa signature(fandango), Discover IT, Citi Forward, Freedom
Bars, clubs, tomfoolery: CSP, Citi Forward, Discover IT, Freedom
Balance transfers: Kroger 123 rewards
Bill Pay: Chase Ink Plus, Citi Forward,
Everyday spending: Bofa Accelerated cash rewards amex, Discover Escape
Message 3 of 19
Established Contributor

Re: Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card

You could also get 5% back at home improvement stores and get 5% back on gift cards to other merchants.  That's what I did with my Cash +

Gas: Discover It, Penfed Platinum Rewards x2, Chase freedom, Citi TYP
Plane tickets: CSP
Groceries: AMEX BCP, Penfed Platinum Rewards,Citi TYP
Clothes: Express, Amex BCP, Discover IT
Amazon: Citi Forward, Cash +
Restaurants: Citi Forward, Chase Freedom, Discover IT, CSP
Hotels and other travel: Discover Escape, CSP
Movies: BofA travel rewards visa signature(fandango), Discover IT, Citi Forward, Freedom
Bars, clubs, tomfoolery: CSP, Citi Forward, Discover IT, Freedom
Balance transfers: Kroger 123 rewards
Bill Pay: Chase Ink Plus, Citi Forward,
Everyday spending: Bofa Accelerated cash rewards amex, Discover Escape
Message 4 of 19
Established Contributor

Re: Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card


ztnjpv wrote:

You know, it almost becomes a GAME. hahaha. How much premium cash back can I get? Smiley Wink

 

Well, I just PC'd today from a Citi Diamond Preferred to a Citi Forward. What did it for me over a regular thank you card is the 5 thank you points (aka 5%) on restaurants...along with music stores, movies and bookstores as a nice touch. And despite conflicting results from google searches, it appears that it pays 5% at Amazon because classifies as a bookstore. And I know it does from my own CC statements.That's an especially nice touch. So, with 5% on restaurants on the Forward, I can switch one of my 5% categories on my US Bank Cash + from restaurants to department stores. Of the 5% choices, it's the most useful for me. 

 

So when the Citi Forward arrives in the middle of Feb, I will change my US Bank Cash + 5% for the 2nd quarter 2013 to department stores and get 5% on:

 

Restaurants (Forward)

BookStores (amazon too): (Forward)

Movies (Forward)

Music Stores (iTunes too?) (Forward)

Gas (PenFed)

Department Stores (Cash +)

Cell Phones ( Cash+ or Ink)

Landline Biz Phone (Cash+ or Ink)

Cable/Internet (Cash + or Ink)

Office Supply Stores (Ink)

All insurance...home, car and business (Cash+)

Electric Bill...home and business (Cash+)

Gas Bill...home and business (Cash +)

Municipal Sewer (Cash +)

Water Bill...business (Cash +)

Radio Advertising for Business...merchant code fluke on $500 per month! (Ink)

 

All this in addition to:

 

5% discount at Target (Red Card) 

5% back on all Gift Cards at Staples (Ink)

3% at Grocery Stores...Walmart SC too. (PenFed)

2% non-bonus baseline cash back. (Spark)

Bonus cash back through the Chase Ultimate Rewards Mall

Bonus cash back through Cap1 Central Perk

 

I suppose I could skip the 5% at Department stores with Cash + and just do gifts cards to those stores from Staples and put Airlines or Hotels but it's a pain to always do that. Besides, with the Bonus Cash back sites through Chase and Cap1, I can do about/almost 5% on hotels and airlines with the bonus cash back. Besides, those are less frequent purchases. All I really need now is the Fidelity Cash rewards Amex (flat 2% back) to use as a baseline for personal purchases and keep them off the Spark. If it was run by AMex themselves and not FIA Cards, I think I would have already. A Cash rewards Cap1 would also do the job. I'll spare that .5%. At least I get access to Central Perk. I'm trying lately  to not use my spark for personal use and have been trying my Cash + at 1.25% (.25% bonus for having gold checking) as a personal baseline.

 

Not bad, huh? Smiley Tongue

 

 


I would recommend the BCP as well for 6% on groceries and gift cards to other merchants.

Gas: Discover It, Penfed Platinum Rewards x2, Chase freedom, Citi TYP
Plane tickets: CSP
Groceries: AMEX BCP, Penfed Platinum Rewards,Citi TYP
Clothes: Express, Amex BCP, Discover IT
Amazon: Citi Forward, Cash +
Restaurants: Citi Forward, Chase Freedom, Discover IT, CSP
Hotels and other travel: Discover Escape, CSP
Movies: BofA travel rewards visa signature(fandango), Discover IT, Citi Forward, Freedom
Bars, clubs, tomfoolery: CSP, Citi Forward, Discover IT, Freedom
Balance transfers: Kroger 123 rewards
Bill Pay: Chase Ink Plus, Citi Forward,
Everyday spending: Bofa Accelerated cash rewards amex, Discover Escape
Message 5 of 19
Valued Contributor

Re: Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card


ztnjpv wrote:

You know, it almost becomes a GAME. hahaha. How much premium cash back can I get? Smiley Wink

 

Well, I just PC'd today from a Citi Diamond Preferred to a Citi Forward. What did it for me over a regular thank you card is the 5 thank you points (aka 5%) on restaurants..

 


There is a question if Forward really is 5%, most redemption options are nearer 4%.  Add Thank Your Preferred as well, and it becomes really 5%

Message 6 of 19
Established Contributor

Re: Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card

FutureBillionaire:

 

I would recommend the BCP as well for 6% on groceries and gift cards to other merchants.

................................................................................................................................................................

 

The BCP would be a no-brainer card in my wallet except that we grocery shop at walmart about 90% of the time. and Amex's merchant codes do not count Walmart SC's as groceries. And then I already get 5% on gas with PenFed. So, to pay the AF for a card that ends up being for a smattering of groceries and gift cards...even at 6% is just no worth it for me.

 

If Amex merchant codes suddently accepted Walmart SCs as a grocer, I'd have it in a heartbeat. In the meantime (aka forever), the 5% at Staples works when the need arises. I am not a huge spender on personal things outside the basics. If I know in advance that I need to get something at, say Home Dept or Macys or wherever, I'll go get the cards first. I have done this with Best Buy and Lowes as a matter of fact. But even then, the gift card denominations in the stores aren't that huge but it works when the need arises.

Start (Sept 2011): low-mid 600s. NOW: TU FICO: 801, EQ FICO 808, EX FICO 798 (PSECU). Goal: Achieved! Now Maintain!
Message 7 of 19
Established Contributor

Re: Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card

BS,

 

Yeah, I have seen quibbling over the true redemption rate of thank you points. I have read that it depends on the card you have if you get a true 1:1 or something less. I'll see. There's has to be something worthwhile I would need at 1:1 even if gift cards are not it. Maybe hotels or an occasional flight. 

Start (Sept 2011): low-mid 600s. NOW: TU FICO: 801, EQ FICO 808, EX FICO 798 (PSECU). Goal: Achieved! Now Maintain!
Message 8 of 19
Established Contributor

Re: Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card

OK but someone needs to come up with a plan on what we should switch the Cash+ to.  Besides the Bill Pay and with the Discover restaurant quarter(I have Forward too) I am stumped.  I heard Lowes sells all types of gift cards.  I could switch it to home improvement but meh.

 

Edit: You could also switch it to electronics and buy Amazon Kindle gift cards from Best Buy.  That would earn the 5%(actually 6.25%).

Double edit: Just remembered I have the Forward for Amazon lol.

Amex BCP/BC/Zync - Amex Business GR - Barclays NFL Visa Sig 49ers/Arrival - BoA BBR - Cap 1 Quicksilver - Citi Forward/Preferred - Chase Amazon/Freedom/Ink Plus - Discover IT - Fidelity Amex - GECRB Amazon/Walmart - PenFed PRV - Target - USAA Amex - US Bank CASH+/Club Carlson
Message 9 of 19
Valued Contributor

Re: Assembling the 5% Arsenal. Continued with new card


ztnjpv wrote:

BS,

 

Yeah, I have seen quibbling over the true redemption rate of thank you points. I have read that it depends on the card you have if you get a true 1:1 or something less. I'll see. There's has to be something worthwhile I would need at 1:1 even if gift cards are not it. Maybe hotels or an occasional flight. 


I think that student loan/mortgage are 1:1.  But the additional card (with no AF) brings it to 1:1 for gift cards, so as long as your app history isn't too heavy.

Message 10 of 19