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Need Travel Card Recommendations!

New Contributor

Need Travel Card Recommendations!

Hello all!

This year I will spend about 6 months traveling internationally for business. While flights, hotels and rental cars are booked directly with my company all incidentals, food and gas are paid by me and reimbursed. I'd like to apply for a travel card that would maximize rewards on dining and include no foreign transaction fees. The Chase Sapphire lineup and American Express Gold come to mind here...

 

Below are my current data points:

- Equifax FICO 8: 697

- Experian FICO 8: 709

- Transunion FICO 8: 705

 

- Overall Utilization: 24% currentl reporting. This will drop to 8% tomorrow with NFCU Flagship payoff, and 1% in February with Apple Card payoff

- Average Age of Credit: 5 years

- Newest account is only 7 months old

- Annual Gross Income: $120k - $150k

- 11 Inquiries over 24 months, half of these are mortgage apps

- Currently at 4/24

- 4 30-day lates and one 60-day late, all from 2019

 

I am an active member with Chase. I opened my account about 4 months ago and immediately deposited $50,000 and setup direct deposit. I currently have no preapproved offers with them, unfortunately. 

I am also an AMEX member, but no prequalified offers yet, either. I did apply for an AMEX Platinum about 3 weeks ago and was denied due to high balances and low credit score (630 at the time) which has gone up to the 709 listed above, and should increase even more once my NFCU Flagship reports my PIF tomorrow. I know I can drop an app with AMEX and only receive a soft pull if it's denied, but I'm more concerned about Chase. Does my profile look decent enough for a CSP/CSR? I am also open to any other recommendations! Thanks all for the help!

Message 1 of 5
4 REPLIES 4
Established Contributor

Re: Need Travel Card Recommendations!

I am no expert, the number of inquiries are going to hurt a bit I think.  Your scores are borderline.  I think if you wait until after your util drops and gain some points it may help but with the latest and scorable inquiries getting the CSP/CSR or AMEX Gold  may not be possible. 

 

How long ago did you get that NFCU Flagship? If your are eligible to apply for another NFCU card I don't know how strict they are but the More Rewards could be a good fit for you, though not every place internationally takes AMEX.  

 

Good luck, getting rewards on the company dime is nice Smiley Happy 





Message 2 of 5
New Contributor

Re: Need Travel Card Recommendations!

Hi there! Thanks for the recommendations! I actually have the More Rewards card! I originally app'd for the Platinum in 2019 and PC'd to the More Rewards shortly after. The Flagship was opened in February of 2020. I have been considering going for the Cash Rewards card to complete the trifecta and have a shot at my first 6-digit SL, but I also didn't want to hit 5/24 before getting a Chase/AMEX card...

Message 3 of 5
Valued Contributor

Re: Need Travel Card Recommendations!

@c7r35, I agree that your profile may be marginal for CSP and especially CSR. You say you had no preapproved offers, but did you check in-branch with a Chase banker? Sometimes the website isn't the best or only place to check. 

Between CSP and Gold, I think AMEX Gold is a more sure bet. But for international travel, AMEX isn't always accepted. MasterCard and Visa have more solid international networks so you might at least need a backup if you go with AMEX. But I'm not sure AMEX would approve you either with all those 2019 lates, the recent Platinum denial, and inquiries.  

Here are a few more thoughts. For one, it sounds like you don't need a TRAVEL card like your headline says. You need a GAS and DINING card.  So let's reconsider. 

  1. Do you shop at Costco or have a Costco near you? I think the underwriting on the CITI Costco Visa is a little easier than some of their travel cards.  For the cost of a Costco Membership (which often pays for itself if you can use it), you get a card that pays 4% on gas and 3% on dining & travel. No spending cap on dining or travel ($7K on gas.).  No Annual Fee (other than Costco membership.)  And no Foreign Transaction Fee. I think you can join Costco on the web even if you don't have one nearby, and that allows you to purchase on their website at member prices. 
  2. Do you use Verizon for cellphone service? The Synchrony Verizon Visa pays 4% on gas and groceries and 3% on Dining.  Now it does pay in Verizon dollars, so would credit your account but it still works to indirectly put cash back in your pocket.  No spending caps.  No annual fee, no Foreign Transaction Fee.   It gives you monthly discounts on your Verizon bill if you autopay with the card. The SUB is a monthly bill discount over the first 24 months with the card.
  3. Capital One Savor pays 4% on dining with no cap.  $300 SUB. $95 annual fee. No Foreign Tranaction Fee. Capital One has issued core cards as both MC and Visa. I believe they currently use MC?
  4. I'm not sure if CITI is any more lenient than Chase but I think they might be. (Other opinions??). The CITI Premier card pays 3x Thank You points on Dining, Gas, Groceries, Air travel, and hotels.  Each TY point can be worth more than a penny ... sometimes 1.7 ccp or more. So 3x TY can be worth up to about 5.1 ccp, depending on redemption.  There is a $95 Annual Fee to offset. No Foreign Transaction Fees. Issued as a MasterCard. 

 




As of 01/11/21

Total Length of Credit > 35 years; AoOA (Currently open accounts) > 27 years
AAoA > 7 years; AoYA less than 1 year (Aug 2020)
Credit Limits: Total > $573K. Average > $28K. Utilization 1%.
Total Inquiries (TU:3 ~ EQ:4 ~ EX:7); Scorable Inquiries (TU:1 ~ EQ:2 ~ EX:4)
New Accounts: 1/6 months; 4/12 months; 11/24 months (as of 01/11/21)
* Hover cursor over each card to see name & CL, or press & hold on mobile app.
** Gardening since 08/15/20. Garden Goal: Gold Spade on 02/15/21
Message 4 of 5
Valued Contributor

Re: Need Travel Card Recommendations!

Well never mind, lol.
Just saw your GOLD card approval, @c7r35!  
Congratulations ! 




As of 01/11/21

Total Length of Credit > 35 years; AoOA (Currently open accounts) > 27 years
AAoA > 7 years; AoYA less than 1 year (Aug 2020)
Credit Limits: Total > $573K. Average > $28K. Utilization 1%.
Total Inquiries (TU:3 ~ EQ:4 ~ EX:7); Scorable Inquiries (TU:1 ~ EQ:2 ~ EX:4)
New Accounts: 1/6 months; 4/12 months; 11/24 months (as of 01/11/21)
* Hover cursor over each card to see name & CL, or press & hold on mobile app.
** Gardening since 08/15/20. Garden Goal: Gold Spade on 02/15/21
Message 5 of 5
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