Tag Archives: Membership Rewards

My Wildly Ambitious 2020 Airline, Hotel & Credit Card Predictions

Good afternoon everyone.  Generally, at the end of the year, I like to review my travel predictions for the past year and make new predictions for the coming year.  After a long streak of poor prediction performance (2018 prediction results, 2017 prediction results, and 2016 prediction results), I decided not to make any travel predictions for 2019.  But my predictions are coming our of retirement / hibernation today.  I really recommend reading the travel predictions that Stephen at Frequent Miler made, especially his top 5 predictions:

  1. Capital One To Add Virgin Atlantic As Travel Partner
  2. Amex Membership Rewards To Transfer To JetBlue On A 1:1 Basis
  3. Free Breakfast For IHG Spire Elite Members
  4. Citi To Allow Card Referrals
  5. Chase And/Or Amex To Increase Referral Limits

I am going to piggy back on his predictions and add a few of my own.  So without further ado, here are my travel predictions for 2020

My 2020 Airline Predictions

  • Alaska, American, Delta, or United will introduce a “Cash and Miles” payment option for award tickets.  Clarification: This is not to be confused with Delta’s “Pay with Points” option where you get 1 CPP for each Delta SkyMiles for paid flights.  I’m thinking more along the lines of the way British Airways and Avianca do it for award tickets.
  • Allegiant Airlines, Frontier Airlines, Spirit Airlines, and Sun Country will announce a merger, but I’m not sure who will merge with who.

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Why Do We Keep 16 No Annual Fee Credit Cards?

Good afternoon everyone, I hope your weekend is off to a great start.  A few days ago, I wrote a post titled I Paid $4,588 in Credit Card Annual Fees in 2019 – Was it Worth it?  In that post, I shared the 21 credit cards that I plan on keeping and how I justify paying the annual fees on those credit cards.  I felt bad for the 16 no annual fee cards that Laura and I have and decided to write a post about them too.  Roughly half of the no annual fee credit cards were downgraded / converted from a credit card with an annual fee.  Besides the rewards that some of the no annual fee credit cards provide, keeping no annual fee credit cards open long term is good for your credit score.  It improves the length of credit history (average age of accounts), which represents 15% of your total credit score.  It also helps with the amounts owed (your credit utilization ratio), which represents 30% of your total credit score.  Lastly, it helps with payment history (paying your credit card bills on time), which represents 35% of your total credit score.  For more info, check out this Doctor of Credit page.

Image source: https://www.kiplinger.com/article/credit/T017-C000-S002-how-your-credit-score-is-calculated.html

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I Paid $4,588 in Credit Card Annual Fees in 2019 – Was it Worth it?

Good morning everyone.  As we approach the end of the year, I decided to take a look at my credit card spreadsheet and see how much my wife and I paid in annual fees this year.  I removed all the no annual fee credit cards and here are the 26 credit cards that have annual fees (sorted alphabetically).  I will break down this list into cards that I am 99% sure that I will cancel, 99% sure that I will keep, and the 50/50 cards that I might keep or cancel.  Read through this post and let me know if you agree or disagree with my thinking.

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American Express Card Changes: Trip Delay Insurance; Corporate Card Lower Annual Fees & Earning Rates [Updated 11/4]

Updated 8:30am PT on 11/4: I just reviewed my American Express Business Platinum Charge Card statement and noticed changes to trip cancellation / interruption insurance, trip delay insurance, Boingo Preferred Plan, and Gogo Preferred Plan.  Please scroll to the bottom of the post to see those updates.

Good afternoon everyone, I hope your weekend is going well.  I was just reviewing my recent American Express credit card statements and spotted a few announcements / changes.  None of these changes seem that important to me, but they do cover Gold Card trip delay insurance, corporate card annual fees, corporate card earning rates, Green Card bonus categories, and mediation / arbitration.  This statement came from my American Express Gold Card, but I saw most of the same announcements / changes listed on my other American Express credit card statements too.

Effective January 1, 2020, the American Express Gold Card is introducing trip delay insurance.  This insurance only kicks in when you book a roundtrip flight and your flight is more than 12 hours delayed.  If that happens, you are covered for up to $300 in reimbursements for meals and accommodations.  It says this coverage is secondary, so it must kick in after the airline’s coverage (primary coverage).  I’m not sure how competitive that is with other premium travel rewards credit cards.

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American Express Card Changes: Claims Resolution, Person to Person Transactions & Plan It Feature

Good morning everyone, I hope you had a great Labor Day Weekend.  My American Express Gold Card statement just closed and I noticed that there were a few “Important Changes” listed at the bottom of my statement.  I will share the details of those changes and provide my thoughts.  There was also a change to the Plan It feature listed on my American Express Everyday Credit Card statement, which I will share at the bottom of the post.  To get started, American Express announced immediate changes to the “Claims Resolution and Claims Resolution for Covered Borrowers” section and upcoming changes regarding “Limits on person-to-person transactions” that will go into effect on November 1, 2019.

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