An extra rant for this week to get something off my chest. I mentioned in my interview with Million Mile Secrets, that I have avoided blogs up until about a year ago. I honestly never saw much value in them. After all, why not just go to Flyertalk and read 10 thousand pages instead?
But last December I found MMS blog with the post on reconsideration process and it finally made sense. I couldn’t believe how much I didn’t know. Because of the info found on his site, I was able to get approved for credit cards without any income.
A blog also provides a safe environment for a reader to ask questions, without getting chewed out. I did notice, that my particular segment is somewhat underrepresented in this hobby. Its not to say, that there aren’t any fantastic blogs geared towards family. But none were saying exactly, what I wanted to say.
I waited and waited to see if someone would fill the gap. After all I have no IT skills. And while I used to write, it was a long time ago, on a piece of paper and in Russian. But when I saw one blogger suggesting to buy 1500 dollars worth of gift cards to iTunes and Starbucks for a hundredth time, I did what any control freak would do. I started my own blog.
If you follow major sites in this hobby, here is what most would lead you to expect :
1) You will be flying to Europe and Asia for free each year in first class, all 4 of you.
In your dreams, maybe. It takes an obscene amount of miles. Plus, its practically impossible to get 4 seats together in first or even business class.
2) You will be going on vacation every other week.
Not if you only have 2 weeks off each year.
3) You will be staying in Hyatts for free from now on.
Not if you transfer from Ultimate Rewards, you won’t. Thats because you could have redeemed those points for cash instead. Most middle class families would do better to transfer to Southwest and just pay for condos out of pocket.
4) You will be doing mileage and mattress runs because status and upgrades are important, since now you are on the road all the time.
See point number two.
5) You will be going to CVS on a regular basis to buy prepaid money products, because your sign-up bonuses are never enough. Ever.
Not of you have 2 small kids and a spouse, who is going crazy from watching them all day.
6) You would be foolish to use any other card for your non-bonus spending, other than Chase Sapphire Preferred. The card is the best thing since sliced bread in spite of the 95 dollar annual fee.
I argue, it is NOT for most middle class families and have proven it HERE
7) You will be buying 1500 dollars worth of gift cards to iTunes or Starbucks from Lowe’s with your Chase Freedom.
I won’t even comment on that one. 🙂
Please don’t take any of it as me making fun of those, who are doing all of those things. Obviously, I am opinionated. Duh! But I am also a firm believer, that people should do whatever makes them happy, when it comes to their money and points. If you love Hyatts, mileage runs, lattes and vanilla reloads, by all means, go for it! I do NOT think someone is superficial, just because they prefer luxury. If I had millions of miles and points, I would only fly first class and stay in fancy hotels.
But lets get real, folks. None of those things apply to most middle class families, who don’t travel for business. Families like mine. And that is most families in America. Those are the ones I hope to reach. The blog pie in this hobby is pretty much sliced at this point. People have their favorites and they won’t be switching to my primitive looking site. Plus, most of them would not appreciate my simplistic message, which is totally fine.
I don’t have any advanced point earning techniques. My blog and me are not cool. And I’m cool with that. I said before that my message was : ordinary families can afford travel with the help of credit card bonuses. I thought about it some more and don’t think it was entirely correct. Its more along the lines of: ordinary families should optimize their limited credit card spending potential, in order to afford travel and save money in general.
I ask myself constantly: would my blog be obsolete if sign-up bonuses disappeared tomorrow? I would like to think the answer is NO. Thats why I do posts on pure finance and long term cards. Lets face it, you can find best credit card bonuses listed on any blog. Well, at least if they pay commission! 🙂
But I would like to think I do more than that. And I would love to reach more families. So please, let your friends know about my blog. I don’t care if they apply here, I just want them to read my posts. I can’t promise, they will be flying in first class to Tahiti after applying for a few cards. But they should be able to get enough points for those 2 weeks of vacation per year.
Photo credit goes to luxist.com