App Party Results: A Cool 5 for 5.
I love me some App Parties. Last week, I wrote about my upcoming apps and now the results are in. 5 for 5 with 4 instant approvals. Wasn’t expecting that many instant approvals, but I’ll take it. I’m used to having to pick up the phone and talk through some approvals, but I only had to call in on the Ink Plus. Easy call, too.
If you’re unfamiliar with App Parties then check out this post. Very briefly put, I do multiple rewards card applications on 1 day every 90-95ish days. I do this to rack up huge miles balances (so I can travel for pennies) and to protect my credit.
Here’s what I applied for, and why.
This was an easy decision. This is a new product from Citi & Hilton, and I just needed to get my hands on it. It comes with two free weekend stays when you spend $2,500 in 4 months. If used properly, these 2 free weekend nights can be worth as much as 100,000 Hilton points. Plus, you get instant Gold Status with Hilton. That means you will receive free wi-fi (shh, don’t tell Jordan) and free breakfast on all your Hilton stays. And you may get an occasional upgrade here and there.
- Earn 10 HHonors Bonus Points per $1 spent on hotel stays within the Hilton HHonors portfolio*
- Earn 5 HHonors Bonus Points per $1 spent on airline and car rental purchases*
- Earn 3 HHonors Bonus Points per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases*
- Enjoy the benefits of HHonors Gold status as long as you are a cardmember*
- No foreign transaction fees on purchases*
- Travel with ease and enjoy global acceptance with your Citi chip credit card
- Earn an anniversary bonus of 1 weekend night certificate at select hotels and resorts within the Hilton HHonors portfolio each cardmembership year with qualifying purchases*
There are some other cool category and spending bonuses too. You can check out my full review on the Citi Hilton HHonors card.
The first time I applied for this card, there was a “system error” so I opened and applied again. I was instantly approved the second time I applied.
I finally jumped on this card. You will get 20,000 Flying Club points on first spend, another 25,000 when you spend $2,500 in 90 days, and 5,000 more when/if you add 2 authorized users. Score.
I’ll be transferring my Virgin Atlantic Flying Club points to Hilton HHonors. They transfer at a 1:2 ratio, so 50k Flying Club points= 100k Hilton HHonors points. Also, the $90 annual isn’t waived for the first year.
This was a late addition to the App Party. The sign up bonus for the Amex PRG card is 25,000 when you spend $2,000 in 3 months. I’ve been eyeing the PRG for a while, so I pulled the trigger.
I need to start rebuilding my Membership Rewards balance, and the category bonuses make a lot of sense for my spending habits. I will earn 3x points on airfare and 2x points on groceries and gas.
And if you spend $30,000 through your Amex PRG annually, you will receive an additional 15k bonus. I hoard my Membership Rewards points and wait for a “transfer bonus promotion.” Then I transfer my MR points to Delta or British Airways. Those are my favs.
- Earn Fast: Earn triple points on airfare, double points on gasoline at U.S. stand-alone gas stations, double points at U.S. stand-alone supermarkets, and single points on other purchases
- Points are earned only on eligible purchases
I went with the Amex Hilton, because holding an American Express backed Hilton card gives you acces to Axon rewards. That means 4 nights at a category 7 property will cost 145,000 instead of 200,000. Beware, though- finding Hilton availability can be a challenge.
I’m netting a cool 50,000 Hilton HHonors points when I spend $750 in the first 3 months. And there is no annual fee EVER, so I will be keeping this card forever and ever.
There are also some generous category bonuses: 6x points on Hilton hotels, groceries, gas, phone, internet, and cable services. (I wouldn’t use this over the Ink Bold/Plus that earns you 5x Ultimate Rewards points on phone, internet, and cable.) You will get an additional 3x per $1 on everything else.
Remember, Hilton HHonors points aren’t the most valuable out there, so don’t get sucked in by the 6x per $1. The only category I would use this Amex Hilton card on is for groceries. Plus, there are just so many other easier ways to earn Hilton HHonors points. And it takes a lot of HHonors points to get value.
I was pumped when Chase brought back the Ink Plus. I got all giddy inside when I knew I had a new opportunity to earn highly coveted Ultimate Rewards points. It’s no secret that Ultimate Rewards points are the most versatile.
I love the category bonuses on the Ink Plus- 5x points on office supplies (yes, Visa gift cards from Office Depot), phone, internet, and cable services. Plus you get 2x points on gas and travel. Check out my full review of the Ink Plus.
The Ink Plus is just like the Ink Bold, but it’s a credit card instead of a charge card. And you will get 0% interest for the first 6 months. Love it, but don’t spend more than you can pay off with your credit cards.
I wasn’t approved instantly for the Ink Bold, but when I called to check the status of my application, I was approved on the spot. I didn’t even have to close my Ink Bold or another Chase rewards card.
Do what’s right for you.
Whenever applying for rewards cards and collecting miles – HAVE A GOAL. If you’re wanting international travel, don’t apply for the Southwest cards. Make sense? Have a plan, and collect points that will help you achieve your travel goals.
I went after so many Hilton HHonors points because I already have the Hyatt Credit Card, Chase Sapphire Preferred® and Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express. Plus, I could take a break from Chase by applying for the Citi Hilton and Amex Hilton cards. If you’re going to go the Hilton route, I would add the Citi Hilton Reserve first, so you will have Gold Status on any future stays. That was my plan.
And if you don’t have the Starwood Preferred Guest card, you should definitely take advantage of it before the sign up bonus decreases on Sept. 4.
Only apply for credit card with minimum spends you’re comfortable meeting, and if your credit score is in good condition. If you have any App Party questions, don’t hesitate to email or chat me.
— Noob Master