Personal Experience

Miles and Points Valuations: Economics and Philosophy

Introduction Miles and points enthusiasts generally fall into one of two camps: luxury travelers and economy travelers. Because “value” is often tied to market price, the luxury travelers generally flaunt greater redemption values as they are able to spend a marginal number of additional points for a first class ticket or opulent hotel stay that has a substantially higher open-market…
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Mortgage Approval After 66 New Credit Cards in 3 Years

Introduction People involved with credit-card churning often wonder what the impact of lots of credit inquiries and new accounts will be on their ability to qualify for a loan at a reasonable interest rate. I just went through this process and was approved for both a new mortgage and used car loan. Below I share my experience and  some recommendations…
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Signup Bonus Math: The Best Return on Credit Card Spend

Introduction Credit card signup bonuses offer the most efficient and cost-effective way to earn miles, points, or cash back. As a followup to my post 66 Credit Card Approvals in 3 Years, I break down the return you can expect from new accounts associated with each type of rewards currency, and show how I earned a 21.4% return on signup bonuses…
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66 Credit Card Approvals in 3 Years: A Synopsis

[Update 2017.4] – See Signup Bonus Math: The Best Return on Credit Card Spend for details regarding my return-on-spend. Introduction In June 2014, I came across the term “travel hacking” while reading a personal finance blog. It sounded interesting, so I learned about the basics of credit card points. At that time I had only one credit card, a Capital One Venture,…
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