Category: Credit

Credit card roulette: BMO World Elite MasterCard

Too much time passed since my last credit card application 😉 so I figured, why not do another!  A few weeks ago I received this targeted personalized offer in my email to upgrade my simple no annual fee BMO Airmiles creditcard to the BMO Air Miles World Elite MasterCard (that’s a mouthful!)

This card isn’t a card I usually qualify for as it has an income requirement of $80,000. Some people doing these deals do sneaky things and inflate income, according to posts I’ve read on Flyertalk. I don’t. There is a public offer out right now for this card if you just go out and apply for it. You can read all the details and comments here on RFD. (Yes, I get much of my info from the internets, don’t you?)

It’s a great deal, 3000 Airmiles, companion flight rebate, first year free, after a $3,000 spend in the first 3 months and also Priority pass member ship with 2 free passes. The deal I got isn’t quite as good but given that I don’t fulfil the normal income requirement… I can’t complain!

I get 1,500 bonus Airmiles after a $1,000 spend, first year free and also the priority pass membership with 2 free passes.

I applied last week and woohoo! I got it! It showed up in the mail fairly quickly and I destroyed my old card and started using the new one.

Since Tom got the card as well we hope to use his  Airmiles to go to NYC again next summer! Since i’ll also be sitting on some Airmiles and I expect to be able to collect some more I hope to use my Airmiles to visit Newfoundland next year, and just pay the tax. 🙂

 

BUT WHY!? (A summary I also noted on my last creditcard related post)

 

Why do I do this? To afford travel, travel will never be totally free as there are always costs involved but travel hacking has allowed me to see and do things I wouldn’t be able to afford otherwise.

 

Does it hurt my credit? No!

I keep tabs on my creditscore using creditkarma.ca; my score updates every Monday, I request my free Equifax report once a year and am generally watchful of whats happening on my credit.

I also have a fraud warning on my profile to verify identification prior to extending credit as I previously had a compromised creditcard.

Is it illegal?  Very much no.  There is no trickery here: just reading the fine print, getting a credit card and using it what its intended for; spending and then reaping the rewards. Yes I change cards a little more often than the average joe but I’d stick with a card if it was rewarding enough. I’m a huge fan of the American Express Gold card for its benefits for example and if I weren’t being tempted by other companies would consider that a solid card for every day spending.

Does it hurt my ability for future big things like buying a house? Not really!

As I am not currently in the market for any car or home related loans I have no problem continuing this game. With any new application my score may drop a few points, usually nothing big and sometimes there is no change at all. This application had zero effect on my score with TransUnion and BMO verifies through Equifax. Were this to change and were I to need to start shopping for a mortgage or something big I would take the appropriate actions, shut a few things down and slow down my applications but for now… happy travel hacking!

Have you ever tried travel hacking?

Credit card roulette: TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite Card

It’s been a little while since my last credit card application, a month or two i’d say, so high time to give it a try on another one! Here’s a screenshot of what I was eyeing up earlier today;

 

Please forgive the amount of notifications on my phones screenshot, I’m bad for ignoring them! You can read about this card further on the forum thread on RedFlagDeals right here. With the fee waived for the first year and 50,000 td points this is a decent deal for me. The 50,000 points will be worth about $250 in travel credit on the Expedia for TD, I’m not super interested in any of the other “perks”, like insurance as I already carry other cards that have the needed medical and travel insurances for when I trawl the globe. 🙂 This card has an income requirement of $60,000 or household $100,000, with my extra job this year I was able to jump through that hoop so I applied!

 

It’s always a little bit of a surprise doing these applications, and a happy party when it’s succesful! Can’t wait to snag these points and use them! 😀  I’ve only been declined one card in the past four years (the Chase Marriott Visa that no longer exists, sadly, it was great value and very churnable) Do I worry about these cards affecting my credit? Nope, because they don’t really

Why do I do this? To afford travel, travel will never be totally free as there are always costs involved but travel hacking has allowed me to see and do things I wouldn’t be able to afford otherwise.

Does it hurt my credit? MMMnope!

I keep tabs on my creditscore using creditkarma.ca; my score updates every Monday, I request my free Equifax report once a year and am generally watchful of whats happening on my credit.

I also have a fraud warning on my profile to verify identification prior to extending credit as I previously had a compromised creditcard.

Does it hurt my ability for future big things like buying a house? Not really!

As I am not currently in the market for any car or home related loans I have no problem continuing this game. With any new application my score may drop a few points, usually nothing big and sometimes there is no change at all. This application had zero effect on my score. Were this to change and were I to need to start shopping for a mortgage I would take the appropriate actions, shut a few things down and slow down my applications but for now… happy travel hacking!

Have you ever tried travel hacking?

HELP! Trying to say good-bye to my credit-card

I’m trying and failing, miserably.

I had two credit-cards at one point, one $500 dollar limit card and one card that has varied from a $2000 to a $10,000 limit. I closed the $500 card a long time ago, I think it was 2007? The other card I’ve never managed to max out, good thing, and the limit now sits at $2000 and the balance at ZERO. It’s been a few months now since I’ve carried a balance and I’m starting to feel a wee bit uncomfortable about it. I use it too often, I still use it for everything so I can get the air-miles. I shop for groceries, pay my gas, vehicle repairs, utility bills, phone bills. Almost every bill and expense I have is paid with that card. Today I was going to pop in to Tim Horton’s to grab a coffee and a muffin until I remembered that I locked my card away in my safe and I didn’t have cash OR debit. Ugh.

The thing is though, even though I don’t carry a balance I still paid $1.94 in interest on the stupid card last month, because I took a cash advance at some point and left it for a few days. Now that I’m finally catching up and moving past the paycheque to paycheque living I don’t really need it any more. I keep it in my wallet now and say ‘it’s for emergencies and for when I travel, and buying stuff online’ but really… who am I kidding? I use it for everything, the only difference is that I don’t rack up the balance anymore. Who am I to think I can outsmart the credit-card company? They make billions upon billions for a reason and let’s face it… I’m goal-oriented but I fail. I am human and I am flawed. *sigh*

So… maybe it’s time to say good-bye or at least tuck it away in the safe for a few weeks and start kicking the habit. I am not going to be closing the account because it is the oldest account on my credit report and until I become completely debt-free (and buy my next house) I do still need a good credit-score.

I know of myself that I spend more, way way more, when using a credit-card because I like to give myself rewards for accomplishments. No cash? Oh I’ll use the credit-card. (Like today) I recognize that for myself this is only going to lead to further disaster… I’ve done it before!

Such a difficult decision! Am I the only that struggles like this to say good-bye to a stupid piece of plastic? Help! I could really use your input on this one… what do you think I should do? I locked it away for now and I’m going to see how that goes… but I really am torn about just cutting it up all together and leaving the account open, or just keeping it active but locked up. Hmmm.

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