New Bank of America Premium Rewards Credit Card with $500 Signup Bonus ($95 Annual Fee)

Direct Link

Key Benefits

  • 50,000 points (worth $500) after $3,000 spend in 90 days
  • $95 annual fee (not waived the first year)
  • $100 airline incidental statement credit (baggage fees, etc.)
  • $100 Global Entry or TSA Pre✓ credit every four years
  • 2% back on travel and 1.5% back elsewhere
  • No foreign transaction fees

My Take

The signup bonus is good, clearly, but subtracting the annual fee leaves you with a net $405. On the other hand, depending on how easy the $100 airline incidental credit is to redeem, this might bump the card back up to near $505 in value.

2% back on travel and 1.5% back everywhere is only interesting if you have $50,000+ on deposit with Bank of America or Merrill Edge. I’ve covered this on this blog before, but with that much in assets, you can qualify for Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards Tiers (link), boosting your credit card rewards by 50% (for $50,000 to $99,999) or 75% (for $100,000+). This would bring your total cash back to:

  • Platinum ($50,000 to $99,999 in assets): 3% cash back on travel and 2.25% cash back everywhere else
  • Platinum Honors ($100,000+ in assets): 3.5% cash back on travel and 2.625% cash back everywhere else

There is a no annual fee version of this card (link). The main differences are:

  • Smaller ($200) signup bonus
  • No $100 airline incidental credit
  • No bonus earnings on travel purchases (1.5% cash back everywhere, boosted to 2.25% or 2.625% with Platinum or Platinum Honors)
  • Points redeemed only as statement credit against travel expenses (not that difficult, but still an extra step)

Lots of cards have Global Entry credits and no foreign transaction fees nowadays, so I don’t care about those.

Overall, this card is worth getting for the bonus. It’s worth keeping if you have $50,000+ on deposit with Merrill Edge or Bank of America and the $100 airline incidental credit is easy for you to redeem. If you have $50,000+ on deposit but have trouble redeeming the airline incidental credit, you can consider downgrading to the no annual fee version of this card when your annual fee comes due. Anyone else should cancel.

Chase Adds New Restrictions to Sapphire Credit Card Applications

Via Doctor of Credit, Chase has added a pair of new restrictions to the Sapphire card lineup, which includes the Sapphire, the Sapphire Preferred, and the Sapphire Reserve credit cards.

  • You will no longer be approved for any Sapphire product if you currently hold another Sapphire product of any type.
  • You will no longer be eligible for the signup bonus on any Sapphire product if you have received a signup bonus on any Sapphire product within the past 24 months.

The 24-month rule is similar to their current rule, except it normally only applies for cards of the exact same type, i.e. if you received a signup bonus on the Sapphire Preferred, you were only prevented from getting the signup bonus on another Sapphire Preferred within 24 months of the date you received the bonus. Now with this updated rule, all Sapphire cards are being lumped together, such that receiving a signup bonus on one type of Sapphire card makes you ineligible for a bonus on any of the other Sapphire products as well, for a period of 24 months.

In short, if you are looking for a Sapphire card signup bonus, make sure you a) cancel or convert any existing cards you have and b) haven’t received a Sapphire card signup bonus in the past 24 months. If you satisfy both of those, you’re good to go. Obviously, the 5/24 rule still applies as well.

Citi Prestige Card Signup Bonus Increased to 75,000 ThankYou Points

Direct Link (may require incognito mode)

Via Doctor of Credit and The Points Guy, the signup bonus on the Citi Prestige Card has increased to 75,000 ThankYou points after $7,500 spend in 3 months.

Quick Summary

  • Annual fee of $450 is not waived
  • Points are worth 1.25 cents each toward airfare or can be transferred to travel partners
  • $250 annual air travel credit
  • 4th night free hotel benefit (based on average cost per night over four nights and does not include taxes or fees)
  • $100 fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓
  • Priority Pass select membership
  • No foreign transaction fees

While the annual fee is not waived, it is effectively $200 after the air travel credit, and you can technically get two credits your first year (the credit goes by calendar year, sort of — it resets after your December statement) for a net profit of $50. $100 fee credits for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓, Priority Pass memberships, and no foreign transaction fees are dime-a-dozen these days, so I don’t value those benefits very much at all.

This card is certainly worthwhile for the signup bonus, but it is only worth keeping long-term if you can get a lot of use from the 4th night free hotel benefit.

While this card does earn 3x points on Air Travel & Hotel and 2x points on Dining & Entertainment, the Chase Sapphire Reserve is better. So, meh, as far as earning more points is concerned.

Increased 80,000 Point Offer for Chase IHG Rewards Club Select Card

Direct Link

80,000 points after $1,000 spend in 3 months.

Annual fee of $49 is waived the first year.

I have and keep this card because of the free anniversary night every year you pay the annual fee.

Update: Via Doctor of Credit, after you are approved, you may be able to match to this targeted higher offer if you send Chase a secure message via their website.

Chase Hyatt Card Signup Bonus Changing to 40,000 Points on June 29, 2017

Via OMaaT, the Chase Hyatt Card’s signup bonus will be changing from two free nights anywhere to 40,000 World of Hyatt points on June 29, 2017.

40,000 WoH points is equivalent to two nights in a Category 5 property.

Pros:

Points won’t expire as long as you have activity in your account. The two free night certificates from the current signup bonus need to be used within a year.

Cons:

Two free nights are more valuable if you are redeeming for a Category 6 or 7 property.

Increased Signup Bonus for All Three Southwest Cards and Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Red Card

All of these offers are the highest ever. Note that none of these annual fees are waived the first year. Easy companion pass if you are approved for two of the Southwest cards.

Chase Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Plus Card – 60,000 points after $2,000 spend in 3 months; $69 annual fee

Chase Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Premier Card – 60,000 points after $2,000 spend in 3 months; $99 annual fee

Chase Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Premier Business Card – 60,000 points after $3,000 in spend 3 months; $99 annual fee

Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite Mastercard – 50,000 miles after first purchase; $95 annual fee

U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve Visa Infinite Card – 50,000 Point Signup Bonus (Worth $750 in Travel)

Sorry, I was on vacation for two weeks and didn’t find time to post this right away. In any case, this new card has been discussed widely on other blogs, so hopefully you’ve heard about it already.

Direct Link (must be recognized as an existing U.S. Bank customer by their system to apply, which can take up to 35 days after opening an account with them)

U.S. Bank has launched a new credit card called the Altitude Reserve Visa Infinite Card. Its signup bonus is 50,000 points (worth $750 in travel) after $4,500 spend in 90 days.

Major features include:

  • $400 annual fee
  • $325 in travel credits every cardmember year
  • 3x points on mobile wallet purchases (Apple Pay, Android Pay, Samsung Pay, Microsoft Wallet)
  • 3x points on travel purchases (airlines, hotels, car rentals, taxis, limousines, passenger trains, cruise lines)
  • Points worth 1.5 cents each toward airfare, hotels, car rentals when booked through U.S. Bank’s Rewards Center
  • Primary auto rental collision damage waiver
  • $100 fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓
  • No foreign transaction fees

The travel credits make the annual fee on this card effectively $75. Whether this card is worth keeping long-term will depend on how much value you can get from the bonus categories, particularly the 3x points on mobile wallet payments, which is unique.

There are some other benefits, such as a Priority Pass membership, Gogo Inflight Wi-Fi passes, etc., but I don’t value those much because you can get similar or better from other credit cards.

American Express Business Platinum 50% Airline Bonus Being Reduced to 35%

Quick Summary

The American Express Business Platinum Card currently refunds 50% of your Membership Rewards points when you use their Pay with Points feature. This benefit gives you an effective value of 2 cents per MR point.

Starting June 1, 2017, this refund will be reduced to 35%, reducing the effective value of MR points to 1.538 cents per point. There will also be a new cap of 500,000 points rebated per year. In most cases, MR points will be best used for transfers to airline partners, which is how it was before this benefit was added.

Discussion

Any flights booked prior to June 1, 2017 will continue to receive the 50% rebate, even if you are flying at a later date.

The amount of time it takes for the rebate to post is also being increased, though we currently don’t know by how much.

New cardholders (including those who have upgraded from another type of card) who applied between October 6, 2016 and May 31, 2017, will still receive the old benefits (50% rebate, no cap) for one year from the date their cards were issued.

HT: The Points Guy & Doctor of Credit

Increased Bonus for British Airways Visa Signature Card (100,000 Miles / $20,000 Spend)

Chase has increased the signup bonus for the British Airways Visa Signature card. It is now tiered as follows:

  • 50,000 Avios after spending $3,000 in the first three months
  • 75,000 Avios (i.e. an additional 25,000 Avios) after spending a total of $10,000 in the first year
  • 100,000 Avios (i.e. another additional 25,000 Avios) after spending a total of $20,000 in the first year

I’m not terribly excited by this offer due to the very high spend requirement but thought it was worth mentioning.

There is no special link required to sign up — you can just go to the regular landing page.

Alliant Cashback Visa Signature Credit Card (3% Cash Back First Year, 2.5% Thereafter, $59 AF Waived First Year)

There is no online application currently. Call (800) 328-1935 to apply.

Quick Summary

  • 3% cash back first year, 2.5% after that
  • $59 annual fee, waived the first year
  • No foreign transaction fees

Link to Terms and Conditions

Discussion

There is no signup bonus, but you can get this card without a hard pull if you are an existing cardholder of their Visa Platinum or Platinum Rewards card, as long as your credit limit is currently over $10,000.

3% cash back is great of course, but that’s only good for the first year. For year two and beyond, the break-even point compared to a 2% cash back card is $11,800 in annual spend.

Do remember that there is also the BankAmericard Travel Rewards card, which gives you 2.625% back if you can quality for Platinum Honors, which requires $100,000 on deposit with Bank of America and/or Merrill Edge.

HT: FatWallet Finance