I didn’t get my first credit card until I was 22 and had already graduated college, and since then I’ve been very protective of my credit. I don’t sign up for credit card offers just for the points because I know there will be a temporary hit to my credit card that I don’t want.
My Current Credit Card Situation
There’s no real reason for me to have a good credit score right now. I’m nowhere near being ready to buy a house, I purchased my car with cash, so having good credit doesn’t do much for me other than give me pride.
So over the past year, I’ve changed my ways and signed up for 2 new credit cards. My existing card is the 3-2-1 Bank of America Cash Rewards VISA, which gives 3% back on gas, 2% on groceries, and 1% on everything else.
New Credit Cards I Signed Up For
The first card I signed up for was the Chase Freedom card, which offers 5% cash back on rotating categories. Getting 5% on gas or 5% on groceries is sweet and crushes what my other card gets. So while I don’t always use the card, it is great when there is a category I use that is offering 5% cash back on each transaction.
Oh yeah, and when I signed up, they gave me enough points to redeem for $500 cash back. $500 to sign up for a card that I’ll use responsibly? I love taking advantage of all the perks credit card companies offer.
The second card I signed up for was the Southwest Airlines credit card. When I signed up, they were offering 50,000 points for spending $2,000 in the first 3 months. So what does 50,000 points get you? Oh, just about $833 in free flights! Since I was planning on a few trips over the next 12 months, I figured this was a no-brainer. If I was willing to sign up for a credit card for $500, all the more so I should be willing to sign up for one for over $800!
The difference is that with the Southwest credit card, there is a $69 annual fee. Since the rewards themselves aren’t so great if you don’t fly Southwest a lot (I don’t), I plan on cancelling the card before the annual fee hits me next time around. Take the $764 ($833-$69) and run.
Do You Sign Up For Credit Cards For The One-Time Rewards?
The hit to my credit is relatively minor and I’m not going to use my credit for the next several years anyway, and by that time, these minor hits will have fallen off my credit report.
Do you sign up for credit cards just for the rewards? Do you know of any other great credit card offers I can take advantage of?