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Credit card flyer miles

  1. Jun 26, 2012 #1
    I was reading this website about using credit cards to get flyer miles just by using the card and not having to actually fly to get the "frequent flyer miles", and I think I remember reading about someone here doing something like that.
    I haven't left my city in probably about 15 years, so I need to do something about that. I was thinking if I could get a couple of credit cards that accumulate points by using them, and I could use those points towards plane tickets or hotels, that would be great. But I don't know the drawbacks of it. Is it impractical? Would I have to spend tons of money just to get enough to fly? Are there fees associate with these credit cards that make it not worth it? I've done some research so far, but the credit card websites don't seem to like to put the negative aspects up front, so you have to search in depth to find them. I looked at the Chase Preferred credit card, and for the first year it's $0 fee, but then becomes a $95 fee after that. I wouldn't be able to travel within the first year, so I don't want to be paying fees for these cards. At least not $95 in fees for each card. Does anyone here have any experience doing this?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 26, 2012 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    Nothing comes for free. For credit cards you'd have to spend a lot of money, perhaps many times the amount of a ticket to get mileage for a ticket. Here's a website that might help:


    You can do the math just notice that when you sign up they give you a bunch of points and sometimes waive the annual fee but later the second year they charge the fee and reduce the points to 10 miles per dollar spent.
  4. Jun 26, 2012 #3
    Thanks for the reply, I'll check that out.

    Yeah, I figured I'd have to spend a good amount of money to get decent mileage, but I thought I could just spend that money buying stuff I would normally buy anyway, like food and gas. And 10 miles per dollar spent seems pretty good to me.
  5. Jun 26, 2012 #4


    Staff: Mentor

    yeah, okay that might work over time although I dont like the $95 yearly charge. I have Amex and Discover and don't remember paying a fee that high. If you don't care about the miles then maybe another card would be better.
  6. Jun 27, 2012 #5


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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    That's what some folks do. I've heard of one person who pays their mortgage payment by credit card, as well as other expenses, but then pays off the charges at the end of the month. They get lots of miles for airline tickets at relatively low cost.

    For business travelers, it makes sense, especially the club cards.
  7. Jun 27, 2012 #6
    Yeah I don't like that either. There's another one I could get that's like 65$, but I was wondering if there were any without any yearly fees. I know they probably wouldn't get me as many miles. I saw one that was like 1 point per 20$ spent. I don't know how the conversion from points to miles goes, but if it's 1 to 1, that's pretty terrible.
    How many miles per dollar spent do you get on your cards?
    That's what I would do. I've been doing that normally on my Vystar card, but I don't get any points or anything for using it. If I got a certain amount of miles per dollar spent, I'd just use that card to buy everything.
    What are club cards?

    Can you guys recommend any cards where there's either no fee or a small fee that gets decent miles per dollar spent?


    Edit: I found a card called the Starwood preferred guest credit card, which gives me 25,000 points if I spend $5,000 in the first 6th months, which I would easily do if I used it to buy everything. This card has a $65 yearly fee after the first year, but I heard you can cancel these cards after you receive the points, and you get to keep the points to use to buy miles or stay at hotels or whatever, is that true?
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2012
  8. Jun 27, 2012 #7


    Staff: Mentor

    you also need to look at the fees too. how much do you soak you on a late payment? How much interest do they charge?...

    I prefer more famous cards like Amex, Discover, Mastercard as they are accepted most everywhere. I also like the cash back feature as that is more flexible than miles.
  9. Jun 27, 2012 #8
    Interest is pretty high, but I've never made a late credit card payment. I usually pay it off 2 days after I use it. I would pay it off right when I get home from the store, but it doesn't let me.
    Interesting. I hate to ask so many questions, but this is all new to me.
    So with the cards you have, you just use them to buy normal every day things and you get a 1:1 dollar to point ratio, which translates to a 1:1 point to mile ratio if used for air travel? And what is the cash back feature?
  10. Jul 3, 2012 #9
    Just a couple of questions for anyone who knows. Are there any online bill paying services that allow me to use a credit card that don't charge? I tried my bank, but they only allow me to use their credit cards.

    And my other question is is there a card that gives better than a 1:1 ratio of dollars spent to airline miles?


    Edit: I'm a little confused. When you get airline miles from using these cards, do you actually get to travel that many miles? Because I'm reading something that makes it seem like "miles" is misleading.
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2012
  11. Jul 5, 2012 #10
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