Tag Archives: Bank of America

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Which 10 Credit Cards am I Considering for my March App-O-Rama?

Good morning everyone, happy Thursday.  My last App-O-Rama (where I applied for several new credit cards at the same time) was back in mid December 2016.  I usually wait 3+ months between App-O-Ramas, so the time has come to start my next round of credit card applications.  I am going to list the credit cards I have in mind in the order in which I will probably apply for them.  If you have any feedback on my strategy or think I am missing or applying for the wrong credit cards, please leave a comment below. Without further ado, let’s begin…

1. American Express SPG Business Credit Card – 25,000 SPG points after spending $5,000 in 90 days and an additional 10,000 SPG points after spending $3,000 in 120 days.  No annual fee the first year, then $95 in the second year.

With the impending merger with Marriott, this might be my last opportunity to apply for the SPG business credit card.  I can’t pass up this opportunity. 35,000 SPG points are worth ~$700 in hotel nights and airfare (and possibly much more).

2. Bank of America MERRILL+ Credit Card – 50,000 points after spending $3,000 in 90 days.  No annual fee.

Doctor of Credit reports that you can apply for this credit card over the phone.  50,000 points is worth $500 cash or up to $1,000 toward airfare. Continue reading

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Comparing the Alaska Airlines $120 Companion Fare Code vs. Virgin America $150 Companion Discount Code

Yesterday, the news broke that you could now redeem your Alaska Airlines companion fare code for flights on Alaska Airlines and Virgin America.  That is great news, especially if you have 1 or more companion fare codes and if Virgin America serves the routes you want to fly.  I’ve written about the Alaska Airlines Companion Fare Code a few times:

The overlooked part of the news from yesterday is that Virgin America has their own less-than-amazing companion discount code.  No one ever talks about that code, but I am going to compare the Alaska Airlines companion fare code to the Virgin America companion discount code and show you which code is better.

First things first, if you have the Bank of America Alaska Airlines Visa Signature Credit Card (personal or business version), you will get the companion fare codes.  To locate those codes, log into your Alaska Airlines account and click Valid under Discount and Companion Fare Codes.  You will see all the companion fare codes listed, their expiration date (travel must be booked by that date) and the terms and conditions of the companion fare code.

Alaska Airlines Comanion Fare Codes

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Easily Track Credit Card Sign Up Bonuses & Bank Account Bonuses with these 2 Spreadsheets

Hat tip to my friends Bodie and Ramzi for the reminder.

Good afternoon everyone.  2 weekends ago, I was at FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Advanced in Seattle and, naturally, the topic of credit card sign up bonuses and bank account bonuses came up.  Call me old fashioned, but I have a spreadsheet for just about everything – including credit card sign up bonuses and bank account bonuses.  If you are just getting into the credit card or bank account bonus game (I made $2,850 last year from bank account bonuses), it is very important to be detail-oriented and organized.  I have used these 2 spreadsheets since day 1 (I’ve made some modifications along the way), but I think they can definitely keep you organized.  Up first, I have my Credit Card Sign Up Bonus Template.xlsx.  Let me explain this spreadsheet.  Please ask me a question if I miss anything or if anything is unclear:

  • Credit card name, merchant type, credit card number, CVV (3 digit code on the back or 4 digit code on the front of AMEX cards) and expiration date are pretty self explanatory.  I use real data and password protect the spreadsheet, but you can use the last 4 digits of your cards if you feel more comfortable.  I use real data so I can purchase anything online, wherever I am, without having to carry every single card with me.
  • Phone numbers are great for calling customer service without having the card in front of you and come in handy if your card is lost or stolen (most of these numbers are saved into my phone as well).
  • Credit limit is not super useful, but if I need to make a large purchase, I know exactly which cards have big credit limits.  It can also be helpful if you need to make a reconsideration call and move some credit around from existing credit cards.
  • I also track all of my debit cards and authorized user cards so all the info is in one place.

Credit Card Sign Up Bonus Template 1

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Quick Tip: Access Bank of America Museums on Us by Logging into your BofA App (YMMV)

Good morning everyone.  This past Sunday, my brother and I went for a long walk around San Francisco (~11 miles from my apartment through San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park and up the coast).  Along the way, we stopped at the de Young Museum.  Luckily for us, it was one of Bank of America’s Museum on Us weekend (the first full weekend of every month).  Unfortunately, you need to show them a Bank of America credit or debit card and I never carry Bank of America credit cards with me (they are not top of wallet, but more like back of drawer cards), but I did find a work around to get free access to the museum.

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My Outrageous 2017 Travel Predictions + Reader Ideas Needed

Good morning everyone, I’m sorry for the delay, but I have been diligently thinking about my 2017 travel predictions.  I am going to channel my inner Nostradamus to come up with some outrageous travel predictions for 2017.  Doctor of Credit has a good resource for all other 2017 travel predictions.

Disclaimer: I have made some travel predictions in previous years and I am more often wrong than right, but that losing streak has not dampered my prediction spirit.  To see how bad I am at making predictions, please read A Look Back at my 2016 Predictions (Airlines, Hotels, Credit Cards & MS).  I consider myself an optimistic pessimist (I prepare for the worst, but hope for the best), so these travel predictions will sound depressing.

Airlines

  • Southwest seems bent on making the Companion Pass very difficult to get unless you fly Southwest every week.  I believe credit card signup bonuses will no longer count toward the Companion Pass and Southwest might kill the whole concept of the Companion Pass entirely or switch to a certificate program similar to the Alaska Airlines companion fare or Virgin America companion ticket.
  • Other airline credit cards will adopt the Alaska Airlines companion fare (you pay full price and your companion pays up to $120) or the Virgin America companion ticket (you pay full price and your companion pays full price minus $150).

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