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Everything posted by PhoenixDown

  1. Hi folks I have about 300k Chase UR points. I’m looking into flights from New York (JFK) to Amsterdam (AMS). Trying to maximize value for redemption! If I book a flight through the Chase UR site, the redemption value is 1.5 centers per point however the flights seem to be about $60 higher plus baggage fees. Would I be better off transferring the points to an airline for direct use? What has your experience been? I will be returning to JFK from Copenhagen, Denmark (CPH).
  2. Any hoops to jump through for proving you have a business account?
  3. I usually try to stay at AirBnB's when possible as they are often the most affordable option -- in some cases, I end up staying in really awesome locations for a 1/4 of the price of a modest hotel in the area. As for payment, it all goes on my CSR. I have an Amex SPG card which I am thinking of converting or cancelling. I like Starwood/Marriot but I just don't see the value in it for me anymore.
  4. Are you using it to eat out? That would be a good area to look at.
  5. The price increase seems steeped in comparison to the benefits.
  6. One other issues -- AMEX classifies specialty shops (i.e. liquor stores, cheese stores, etc) as Grocery however they only give you one point per dollar. Very disappointed by that actually.
  7. I have found a lot of exclusions to the "grocery store" category. Best think you can do is make a purchase then check the rewards statement -- not the itemized list that details the charge as grocery. When I asked Amex, they specifically exclude specialty stores (i.e. wine stores, cheese shops) and are looking more for your typical WholeFoods type of place that sell multiple items.
  8. I flew from Amsterdam to NYC on first class. I paid a lot for that ticket but it was only seat left and I had to be home.
  9. Are the rewards even worth it after the initial bonus?
  10. When I would watch late night TV and see those commercials for the payday loans, I thought it would be cheaper to go to your local mobster as they would charge you less interest and maybe even give you more favorable payment terms.... of course they know they can collect. Anyway - I think California is nuts. If they want to change the law, then change the law. Stop doing it from the bench.
  11. I would wait a few months, see if you can get the 3x increase on the Amex and hopefully use that to get a higher limit on your next app.
  12. When I went through my transaction history for 2018, I confirmed they were all listed as Groceries. Its only when I went to the reward detail (which was a pain to download) and did the math that I saw I was getting the bad end of this.
  13. Your post reminded me to check my rewards on my Blue Cash Preferred as I made a good amount of liquor store purchases this year (I've gotten into whiskey and bourbon in a big way). Anyway, I saw I was only getting 1% instead of 6% even though the charges were coded as grocery. Online Chat was worthless spouting that speciality stores (i.e. Cheese shop, wine stores, fish markets, special food item stores, etc) don't quality. Based on that and my revised spend, I am going to downgrade the card. I am a little annoyed because I would have put those charges on other cards with better rewards
  14. So is this going to replace the chase travel portal where we would book through today?
  15. I will break even this year but after my next trip, I plan to convert it to a Double Cash if they still allow that.
  16. I have the Citi AA card and the only real benefit has been the free checked bag when flying domestic. That said, I find myself choosing Jetblue or Alaska more often.
  17. FYI: Most liquor stores come up as Grocery and count toward it. Depending on your consumption, you can easily pay that AF off on that alone.
  18. I may take a shot and ask AMEX for a CLI on my SPG card so when it goes over to Chase, I can combine limits and close it out. My AMEX BCP has 28k and SPG has 13k so I'm a bit afraid of spooking amex.
  19. I personally like the Banana Republic card as you get an extra 10% off and depending on spend, you get some bonuses you can use on future purchases. Works across gap brands too. I want to cancel my Macy's card however. I simply don't shop there anymore
  20. Yeah, really ... a whopping $9. I didn't think I got points for it anyway so its no lose but yeah.
  21. I have the Blue Cash Preferred and I usually spend enough in to warrant keeping the card w/ annual fee. The 5x on grocery stores is great - and liquor stores usually count toward it. The 3x on gas was good but my Costco Visa tops that at 4% Its a niche card for me. Most of my spend goes on the Chase Sapphire Reserve

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