Re: The Best Way to Use Reward CC?
05-25-2010 02:25 PM
PenFed Cash Reward Visa - 13.99% APR - $9,500 limit
USAA MC - 7.75% APR - $24,000 limit
USAA Amex - 9.9% APR - $14,000 limit
VS CC - 24% APR (?) - $680 limit (VERY rarely used - usually once every 6 months to keep alive and paid off 2 days after purchase)* (not reward but only other CC)
I have the first three cards as well. I have found that USAA doesn't seem to mind my not using my AmEx much. Here's what I would suggest:
PenFed for gas (5% at pump) and grocs (2% at real grocery stores)
USAA MC for pretty much everything else
USAA AmEx for occasional big-ticket items, for the purchase protections
VS for, ummm, what VS sells
PenFed dropped their "everything else" category from 1.25% to 1%, so there's no difference in rewards between them and USAA, other than with USAA, you don't get the rewards every month. A $100 purchase with either card is still only going to get you $1 in rewards.
If your MC is a World MC, it pretty much has the same coverage as the AmEx, but at least this is one way of deciding which to use when.
I've done better with USAA rewards for airline tickets than with cash back, so I go with that.
Are you newish with USAA? I need to call and ask about that checking account tie-in, which I've never heard of. Unless you're talking about their debit card paying 1/2%, which isn't a ton, but it's certainly more than most debit cards.
FICO's: EQ 781 - TU 793 - EX 779 (from PSECU) - Done credit hunting; having fun with credit gardening. - EQ 590 on 5/14/2007