Meeting Minimum Spending Requirements: Vanilla Reload Cards

Our blog is about travel.  That’s our passion.  We love it.  We live it.  When I start to think about the moments that will flash before my eyes before I die… most of them will come from our travels.  I know this isn’t the case for everyone.  There are people who dread the thought of airplanes, different cultures and strange foods.  I crave it, though… ok, I more than crave it… I yearn for it.  I obsess about it.

Normally it wouldn’t be as possible as it is for us.  Travel tends to be expensive if you do it in the traditional ways, but we’ve gone beyond that.  We are travel hackers – we scour for opportunities to amass large stacks of frequent flier miles that we can greedily count like Scrooge McDuck.

Crystal Maiden Cave in Belize

The old-fashioned way to do it is to spend on travel=point credit cards – a dollar at a time… hardly amounting to a free ticket a year.  [disdainful scoff] Well that just doesn’t cut it.  There are six in my family and I’m not content with a family vacation once every six years.  So, that leaves the “Massive-mile-bonus” method of piling up bonuses with new credit card approvals – the subject of most of our “travel tips for cost-conscientious wanderlusters.”  This is great, and as I’ve mentioned, we’ve done some amazing things this way – from taking my whole family to Colombia for $574 to the $261 Panama trip we have planned for January.

But now we’ve got a little hybrid opportunity for you – and this is a good one.  We’ve extolled the virtues of the Chase Ultimate Reward Program – what I see as the most versatile (and thereby valuable) form of travel points.  We’ve told you how you can transfer points to their various travel partners – Marriott, United Airlines, Southwest, and British Airways – just to name a few.  And we’ve told you about the Chase Ink Bold Business card, a card which has many benefits – one of which is the 5x point bonus for dollars spent at office supply stores.

But you can only spend so much money in an office supply store, right? Yes, right… kind of… Now here’s where this gets interesting – most Office Depot stores sell Vanilla Reloadable prepaid credit cards.  What this means is that you can get 5x points on almost everything you can buy.  There’s a maximum of $2500 you can load on the card at a time – but let’s just say you load $1000 a month for your general expenses.  At 5,000 points a month, you’re pulling down 60k UR points a year!  And those things can really take you places.

The Ink Bold® Business Card card tends to be a little intimidating for people – though it offers 25k UR points on first purchase, the other 25k bonus points don’t come until you spend $10k on the card within the first three months.  That’s at least $3400 a month – something that can be a tall order for most people.  The real power here, though, lies in getting the card, getting the bonus, and getting the ongoing extra bonus.  There’s just no better way to get bang for your buck. This is the best business credit card around.

As with any of these ideas, once you start to abuse it, you’ll put yourself in jeopardy of losing the benefits, so tread lightly and try not to be too anxious like getting a Vanilla Reloadable Card and then immediately purchasing money orders – a sure sign that your intent is to abuse, not to use.  The basic rule is, don’t overdo it… but do it.

If you’re thinking you’d like to start taking advantage of the free travel opportunities that come with credit card bonuses, maybe you’re worried about it hurting your credit, or maybe you need help meeting spending requirements. Check in on these posts and keep following WorldWanderlusting.  The bottom line is that you can make excuses or you can make memories.

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1 Response to Meeting Minimum Spending Requirements: Vanilla Reload Cards

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