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Is that "everything else" card really necessary?

Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?


kdm31091 wrote:

AlcarUGA wrote:

I've actually been surprised by how many transactions I do that don't fit a category, and I'm not a big spender. My DC gets lots of use. Is the extra 1% on those swipes going to change my life? No, but I like having it, and the card itself is free.


Right but you also have a CSP and PRG, two annual fee cards. Don't some "everything else" transactions kind of necessitate being placed on those to justify the fees?


You have a point in the long run, and I may PC or cancel one of the two at some point.  Both gave me great signup bonuses, and I have a fair amount of travel spending. Both will get restaraunt swipes once the Discover categories shift. Maximizing two rewards programs is a topid for another day! Smiley Happy

 

In the meantime I wish my general spender, the DC, had a much higher limit. I'm using the heck out of it. Smiley Frustrated

Message 21 of 57
Community Leader
Super Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?


jaylau17 wrote:

kdm31091 wrote:

jaylau17 wrote:

I always feel like these pseudo-philosophical musings -- when taken down the same slippery slope that forms the basis of the threads I've seen that are similar to this -- really all end up with the same conclusion. Why have a Double Cash when you already have a Quicksilver -- it's only a .5% difference!!! .5% difference in a month is only a small amount, a few dollars really!! So why bother?? But then, why bother having a Quicksilver when you have a Freedom that earns 1% on non-category spending -- only a .5% difference!? The difference is only a small amount, a few dollars really!!  Is it necessary?!

 

 

Well, of course it's not "necessary". Virtually no one earns rewards in such a substantial fashion (assuming they are earning their rewards in an artless way) that it has a vastly meaningful difference in their lives, particularly when we're talking about a few percentage points in rewards for each swipe. When people get a Double Cash over a Quicksilver they have been using, their mindset isn't, "Oh, my gosh. The extra .5% cashback on my purchases will help me afford my water bill this month that I never would have been able to afford before with my Quicksilver's 1.5%!"  It's not a matter of necessity, of course, but this is not only obvious, it's also a bit of a straw man argument to depict anyone's position as such. These people are simply looking for a long-term, better value card, and that's fine.


Perhaps "necessary" conveys the wrong tone but I mean it with the implication of "worthwhile" more than anything. Of course, no cash back or rewards are a necessity to live one's life. My point here is that are the gains from having a "generic" card, amongst a handul or more of category cards, really useful enough to justify a separate account and the HP/AAOA ding? That's the discussion, not so much whether these things are vital/necessary to life, which of course they are not.


Ah, but see, that's a very different question and one that is much more subjective. Is couponing worthwhile? Is discount-hunting worthwhile? Is getting that small amount of extra cashback worthwhile?

 

It's a complicated equation for each person that involves many variables -- one's value of time, savings, expended effort, and enjoyment gained from doing it are the main ones. It seems to not be worthwhile to you -- that's ok. It is to me and a lot of other people as well. We can agree to disagree.


LOLOL!! 

(BK7 d/c-08/2013/FICO-400's) ~ 07/2017 FICO 08- EQ-669, TU-676, EX-681
Scores being held down by tons of INQ/New acts Smiley Wink
Message 22 of 57
Senior Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?

No, probably not.  For me, especially between Amtrak and SPG getting nearly 3 cents a point in value.  Yes the SPG will have an annual fee eventually, as does the amtrak from day 1, but at least with amtrak it includes yearly extras that exceed the cost of the AF (I guess SPG kinda does too).

 

It is always nice to have options.  The DC may not last forever though.

 

Thank you for keeping us in check KDM, I always value your posts!

 

Be thankful you dont have a minimum $50 cash out like my Commerce Bank card has!  At least they finally stopped paying people points for interest charges....but its 2 and 3 % categories are heavily capped.

EQ 730, TU 730, EX 720. INQs EQ-1, TU-9, EX-7 AAOA 4yrs Util 6% Inspiration: Themanwhocan's Cash Back Charts
Message 23 of 57
Valued Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?

I think it really boils down to your own wants, as far as reward cards.

 

If you want to focus your rewards in a particular way, then it makes more sense to use fewer cards.

 

If you're just trying to max out all possible savings, it makes sense to have as many cards as will get you there. 

 

Sure, some folks would be best served with a single 2% everything cashback card because they want to keep it simple, but there are others (myself included) who are possibly a bit obsessed with squeezing out max rewards for every eventuality, regardless of how seemingly insignificant the increase over a fewer-card system might be.

 

At the end of the day, if you are pleased with your credit card lineup and not creating credit card debt I feel like you are on the best path for you.

Message 24 of 57
Super Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?


jfriend33 wrote:

No, probably not.  For me, especially between Amtrak and SPG getting nearly 3 cents a point in value.  Yes the SPG will have an annual fee eventually, as does the amtrak from day 1, but at least with amtrak it includes yearly extras that exceed the cost of the AF (I guess SPG kinda does too).

 

It is always nice to have options.  The DC may not last forever though.

 

Thank you for keeping us in check KDM, I always value your posts!

 

Be thankful you dont have a minimum $50 cash out like my Commerce Bank card has!  At least they finally stopped paying people points for interest charges....but its 2 and 3 % categories are heavily capped.


Actually, my Barclay Cashforward does have a $50 threshold for redemption, which for my spend is kinda high. I also have a DC that's in the SD. But really both are kind of in the SD.

Message 25 of 57
Super Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?


kdm31091 wrote:

Perhaps "necessary" conveys the wrong tone but I mean it with the implication of "worthwhile" more than anything. Of course, no cash back or rewards are a necessity to live one's life. My point here is that are the gains from having a "generic" card, amongst a handul or more of category cards, really useful enough to justify a separate account and the HP/AAOA ding? That's the discussion, not so much whether these things are vital/necessary to life, which of course they are not.


If you are into simplicity, HP/AAoA hardly matters, as you will be applying for very few things anyway.    If you are considering adding a general card to the "handful or more of category cards" then yes, it depends on the amount of non-category spend you expect and whether the app will prevent you getting a different card later on, which can be very hard to quantify.

 

But generally, outside MS and maybe those going for premium cabin international travel, none of the cc stuff is really significant.   People get excited at a $400 bonus (and more suprisingly, to $25 per quarter bonuses).   Yes, all "free" money (to some extent) but in the scheme of things, not all that much.

Message 26 of 57
Valued Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?

I'm actually quite surprised at home much action my Double Case and Discover (Double Cash bonus) have received over the last year. There are lots of purchases that don't fit into neat categories, such as hardware store visits where I'm picking up some smaller items and don't want the hassel of waiting for the online order. 

EX: 800+; EQ: 800+; TU: 800+ --> Entered the garden on 11/15/14. Planning on leaving around 1/1/17.
Message 27 of 57
Valued Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?

BTW, congrats on the green, kdm! 

EX: 800+; EQ: 800+; TU: 800+ --> Entered the garden on 11/15/14. Planning on leaving around 1/1/17.
Message 28 of 57
Super Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?


longtimelurker wrote:

mongstradamus wrote:

i don't know if it counts as an "everything else " card since it does have bonus spend on groceries and gas, but I use EDP as my everything else card to get the thirty swipes and get the 50% bonus.


Yes, if you value MR/UR/TYP etc enough, getting one of those per $ (min) greatly reduces the need for an everything else card


This guy is trying to save up MR/UR/TYP for singapore airlines so i do value them quite an bit. 



EX Fico 804 11/16/16 Fako 800 Credit.com 11/16/16
EQ SW bank enhanced 11/16/16 839 CK fako 822 11/16/16
TU Fico discover 10/19/16 814 Fako 819 Creditkarma 11/16/16
Message 29 of 57
Regular Contributor

Re: Is that "everything else" card really necessary?

This is a very interesting discussion - thanks for starting it, kdm. I suspect that for most people (even most people on here), setting up a new card (and taking the HP/AAoA ding) just for capturing non-category spend might not be worthwhile. But it seems to me that there is always some other concern lurking in the background when we are thinking of getting a new 'everything else' card (or any card for that matter). Here are a few (off the top of my head):

 

1. Complementing one's existing lineup - e.g. I currently use my CSP for general spend (love UR and Chase), and I'm planning on gardening for a long time. But when I do decide to exit the garden, I might well be very drawn towards a card like the Freedom Unlimited, which would complement my Freedom+CSP UR combo very well.

 

2. Having a card from a different card network - e.g. alternatively, I might be drawn towards getting a Mastercard like the Citi DC, for the (rare) place that offers a discount only to Mastercard and not to any other network. Example: Radpad currently charges 1.99% for Mastercard, but 3.49% for Visa/Discover/AMEX.

 

3. Having a Chip-and-PIN card - e.g. alternatively, I might want to have a Chip-and-PIN card for travel, and this might lead me to think of the Barclaycard Arrival Plus.

 

4. Having a no-FTF card - e.g. this might lead someone to consider getting the Quicksilver to use abroad.

 

5. Getting bored of one's existing cards, and wanting to add some spice into one's lineup!

 

Getting a new card just for the 'everything else' spending might not be worthwhile on its own, but in most cases one of the above additional concerns (or countless others) are inevitably present, and so one might well have reason to go ahead and get a new 'everything else' card.

Message 30 of 57