Questions From Readers

Now and again, I’ll try  to feature questions from readers. I hope you’ll find this segment   helpful. The absolute best way to contact me is via email at Don’t hesitate to reach out! Unless I’m on vacation, I’ll usually respond within a day.  I also try to make sure I acknowledge every comment on my blog. That said, I don’t always get a notification, so if for some reason I miss it, please email me. You can also use my “Ask me a question” page at the top.

Speaking of, here was a comment from a reader:

“–Do you think it makes sense to upgrade Amex Everyday (no fee) card to Amex Everyday Preferred?
–Also do you think I should churn the SPG card when the fee kicks in?
— For your personal daily spending what cards to you use?
— If there was just one card you could keep, which one would it be? why?”

My response:

1. It could make sense to upgrade it, but it does depend on how much you put on cards per year. If most of your spending goes toward new bonuses, then you have to think long and hard about that annual fee. Read my post comparing the two
2. You can only get sign-up bonus on the personal version of Amex SPG once per lifetime. You can get it again on the business version as long as you haven’t had the card in the last 12 months. Personally, I think Amex SPG is overrated when it comes to low spenders. I recommend you read this post if you haven’t already
3. Hmm, most of my spending goes towards new bonuses, but I do try to utilize 5% categories on Chase Freedom (when I can remember).
4. Probably Amex Everyday Preferred. I would get one in mine and my husband’s names. That way, I could take advantage of 4.5 points per dollar on grocery purchases by buying 2 Visa gift cards per month. You get that return on up to $6,000 per year, per account. I usually shop at Walmart, but even with 1% fee, it would be worth it to get the points. Of course, as I said, right now, most of my spending goes towards new cards, so I’m very picky about annual fees. That’s why I still don’t have Amex Everyday Preferred. It is IMO the best card for middle-class families who like to travel and only get a few new bonuses per year.

And here is a question I got via email:

“We are considering going to Cancun next October and staying for 5 nights at an all-inclusive resort. (Kids Club!!!) I think I can figure out airfare on miles between our Southwest, AA and British Airways miles. But cutting off a slice of our all-inclusive hotel fee is going to be tougher.

I was wondering if you are familiar with what hotels we could use Citi thankyou points on? Would it be a good idea for my husband and I to each sign up for the Citi thank you premier card and combine 100,000 points to use for booking an all-inclusive in Cancun? Would that translate to $1250 towards the hotel? How can I tell which hotels would be bookable with points+cash through Citi thankyou? The resort we are considering is the Gran Caribe Real.”

My response:

Unless it has changed, Citi Thank You Travel center is supposed to be powered by Expedia. So, if you see a hotel on Expedia, it should be listed on Citi as well (note to readers: you can see hotel listings even if you only have  Citi Thank You Preferred).  I checked, and quite a few all-inclusive resorts came up.  And yes, you would get $1,250 toward hotels, plus whatever you get via minimum spending. It could certainly be worth it, just depends on your plans. October is a slow season, so prices should be reasonable. I think getting 1.25 cents per Citi point is pretty good, especially if you plan to spend cash anyway.





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