After finishing up my husband’s Credit Card Application Spree and redeeming all of the sign up bonuses, I’m ready to rinse and repeat and embark on my own application spree.
However, since the current free money opportunities change so quickly, I’m creating a new target list for my own spree that includes the most current offers to take advantage of. As always, my goal is to bunch the inquiries and apply all in one day and maximize the earnings.
Here is my list of credit card applications currently in progress. They are listed in priority order, mainly to make the most money in sign up bonuses, but also to spread the applications across different companies and pick up some cards I really want so I can answer some reader questions.
Credit Card Application List
- Chase Sapphire Preferred. I’m starting off with the $400 sign up bonus to see if I can recycle this offer. A reader, Maggie, wanted to know if we can take advantage of this offer twice, so it’s on the top of my list to find out. I had a Sapphire card awhile back, so we’ll see if this offer allows you to get the offer a second time.
- Starwood American Express. $300+ sign up bonus. Like some other readers, I’ve been waiting for this offer and the Starwood card is one of my target cards during this application spree to score the 30,000 points and convert it into over $300 in Amazon money. The annual fee is waived and the offer ends on Sept. 4.
- Starwood American Express business card. $300+ sign up bonus. Just like the personal Starwood card above, I’m going for the double dip for another 30,000 points! All the Amazon cash should give me a great head start on Christmas shopping this year!
- Capital One $100 Sign Up Bonus. The $100 sign up bonus on this card is really easy. In addition, the card earns cash back equivalent to 1.5%, so it’s one I’d like to have in my toolbox for the future in case some of the 2% cards ever get downgraded.
- US Bank FlexPerks. $150-$300 or more. You can redeem the sign up bonus of 15,000 FlexPoints for a $150 Statement Credit. However, right now, they’re running an Olympic bonus that could be worth over 30,000 points depending on the final medal count.
- Pen Fed Platinum VISA. $250 bonus. I already have the Penfed Platinum Cash Rewards, but got an email to switch to the PenFed Platinum Rewards card. They’re offering 25,000 points to make the switch from cash to points. The card still gives 5% cash back on gas purchases, so I’m thinking I’ll make the switch to get the cash back before they force it on me. If you have the old card and haven’t switched yet, search for an email titled “Accelerate your rewards with the PenFed Platinum Rewards Card” with the details. As long as I’m working with some credit changes at Penfed, I’ll probably pick up some of the Penfed auto loan money at 1.49%. At that rate, I’m happy to put a lien on my car to take some cheap money and put it to other uses!
- Citi ThankYou Preferred Card. $150 sign up bonus. Citi has moved up on my list after I found that we can redeem Thank You points for cash via the mortgage payment process I detailed in the Best Way to Maximize Citi Thank You Points.
- Barclay NFL card. $200 cash back after the first use is about as easy as it gets after you redeem the 20,000 sign up points. I have quite a few Barclay cards already, so I’m not sure if they’ll let me add this one or not.
- Citi Forward Card. $100 sign up bonus. Since you can combine this with other Thank You point accounts, it’s an easy redemption option for me. In addition, I want to test out if you can really get 5% cash back on all Amazon.com purchases.
- Citi Dividend. $100 sign up bonus and 5% rotating quarters. My rule of thumb is always to apply for two Citi cards since they seem to be the easiest to get approved. If the first two come back with immediate approvals, I’ll add this one in at the end just to see I can get 3 at once.
- American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card. $250 sign up bonus. Now that I squared away the Best Way to Maximize American Express Points, I’m signing up for this card to redeem for gift cards since the annual fee is waived for the first year. However, I’m not sure if American Express will allow me to signup for this card in addition to the Starwood cards above; worth a shot!
- Amazon Visa. The Amazon card is only a $30 sign up bonus, however, lately I’ve noticed some great deals and rebates on Amazon that you must use their credit card for. In preparation for holiday shopping, I think I might want to have this card available for any deals that might require it.
- US Bank Cash Plus. The newest card to offer 5% cash back categories with a twist: you get to pick the categories. One of the categories to choose from is bill pay. Earning 5% on paying bills is enough to make me want to check this card out! Stay tuned, as Kate will have more on this card in an upcoming article.
- Ink Bold with Ultimate Rewards. $500 bonus when you redeem the 50,000 bonus points with no annual fee for the first year. The rewards stretch a little further if you redeem for travel, but I’m in a cash mode. My target of this application spree is personal cards, but if I make it all the way through this list, I’ll probably circle back and add some additional business credit cards.
More on My Application Spree
Travel Cards. Again, I’m sticking to the cash cards right now and saving the travel cards for a future Travel Application Spree for Points and Miles.
0% Balance Transfers. An application spree wouldn’t be complete without throwing in some 0% balance transfer money. After I pick up all the cards with sign up bonuses that I want, I’ll tack on a few 0% cards at the end. Most likely the Slate from Chase since it has 0% for 15 months with no balance transfer fee.
Cards I Skipped. There are a couple of cards I eliminated including the Chase Freedom MasterCard. While there is a $100 sign up bonus, I already have 2 of these; I’m taking a wild guess that Chase won’t let me have another one, so I don’t want to waste the application when I can use it to pick up some other cards. In addition, I’m on the fence about the Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express with a $100 sign up bonus. I already have the preferred version of this card, so I’m going to hold off on this one right now.
If I can qualify for all of the sign up bonuses, the income from the spree is: $2980. The total for Scott’s application spree was just over $1500 and my goal is to double that, so I might have to apply for the Discover Student More Card to get the $20 sign up bonus to make it an even $3,000!