I trust many of you are taking advantage of the special Chase INK promotion this week, offering up to a 60,000 point sign-up bonus after $5,000 in spending rather than the regular 50,000 point offer. That deal expires tomorrow expired.
But any self-respecting or aspiring credit card aficionado with a solid credit score should also be thinking about other cards to sign-up for as well this week. Why? Because when you apply for several cards at once, your credit score score takes a smaller hit than applying for each card separately. That’s a general statement and I want to again emphasize that those with low credit scores should work on raising them before applying for credit cards that will likely be rejected, but for those whose credit will bear it, the average 2-5 point temporary hit is a modest price for the lucrative offers available now.
American Airlines has confirmed that it will stick with Citi for its branded credit cards, so it is no longer speculation that the days of Barclays issuing a US Airways credit card are numbered.
With no minimum spending limit, this card is an easy way to rack up 30,000 US Airways. US Airways award redemptions can test your patience, but the award chart is attractive right now and if you can grow your miles up to 90K, you can redeem what I’d call the best available longhaul redemption currently on the market, a round-tip from North America to both Europe and Asia for 90,000 miles with no fuel surcharge on a combo of Star Alliance carriers.
To give you an example of what you can do for 90K miles, check out what I recently booked for a client in Phoenix–with all flights in business class and a stop in Zurich and Seoul:
Even if you use the card once to buy a cup of coffee and never use it again, those 30,000 miles are enough for a U.S. round-trip ticket in economy class (Hawaii not included). Surely that is worth more than the $89 annual fee.
If you do not have status with US Airways or Star Alliance, do not underestimate the early boarding and first class check in perks as well–in an era in which the final boarding groups routinely have to check carry-on bags because overhead bins are full, it is always appreciated to be able to board early.
Also keep in mind that the miles will be merged with American Airlines at some point in the future so if you have an aspirational oneworld award you are eyeing, you may want to conserve your points for that (and sign up for the Citibank card for American Airlines as well).
Bottom line, this is a good card that will soon be disappearing. If you are ordering the Chase INK card this week, it likely won’t hurt your credit score to apply for this card as well and the sign-up offer is worth the effort and annual fee.