If you read personal finance blogs with any regularity, you’ve likely seen all the ways people, including myself, make out like bandits by getting free stuff.
And by far, one of my favorite ways to get extra cash is with credit card signup offers.
It’s called credit card churning. And there are thousands of people who play the game each year, with some folks signing up for as many as 15 new credit cards each year. I thought about writing a post explaining how it works and addressing common concerns like the effect it can have on your credit score (both positive and negative), but I really can’t come up with a better explanation than the folks at Wisebread have done.
Definitely worth a read: Credit Card Churning: Making the Most of Bonus Offers
Now, on to the extra $500 I recently scored…
The Barclaycard Arrival™ Plus World Elite MasterCard® is currently offering a sweet 50,000 miles when you signup. And those miles can be redeemed for gift cards or $500 off your next trip.
Here’s what you need to know about this card:
How To Earn Miles with This Card
- Spend $3,000 on your card within 90 days of sign up, and you’ll get a generous 50,000 bonus miles.
- Earn two miles for every dollar you spend. This can be on purchases made by you or your authorized users.
- Receive 5% back in a Travel Redemption Bonus when you redeem your miles for travel. So, if you redeem 30,000 miles, you’ll get back 3,000 miles as a bonus. (I love this feature!)
What You Can Redeem Miles For
Barclaycard is unique in that you purchase your airplane ticket or other vacation reservations such as a hotel or rental car on your card first and then they reimburse you. At first I thought this kind of sucked, but I’ve been enjoying being able to use my miles on all of my travel.
A lot of cards limit your ability to spend the miles on just companies they are partnered with. You’re also not limited by blackout dates or weird frequent flyer rules, which is pretty awesome.
The Other Details — Card Fees
Barclaycard is generous to travelers when it comes to fees (as is expected), but in other places, you’ll pay a bit more:
APR – It ranges from 16.24% to 23.24% based on your credit worthiness. The APR for cash advances is 25.24%.
Annual fee. The first year, your annual fee is waived. But, if you decide to keep the card for a 2nd year, your annual fee goes up to $89. This appears to be one of the prices you have to pay for such a generous rewards programs. If you’re used to playing the credit card game though, you’ll know that a lot of churners sign up for the bonus, use the card for a year, and then close it before the annual fee kicks in.
Foreign transaction fee. If you use your Barclaycard in another country, you will not be charged any foreign transaction fee. This is a rarity, as many other cards charge 3 to 4% transaction fees.
Late and returned payment fees. Each of these will cost you up to $37.
Overlimit fee. There is no fee for this.
Is the Barclaycard Arrival™ Plus World Elite MasterCard® Right for You?
If you are a frequent or even semi-frequent traveler, this card may be the perfect fit for you. There are plenty of cards that offer travel rewards, but very few let you make your own travel arrangements and then reimburse you, so to speak, when you redeem your miles. Not having to pay transaction fees is also a nice bonus.
The downside, of course, is the annual fee of $89, but if you make frequent international purchases, this fee would likely pay for itself when you don’t have to pay a transaction fee.
Of course, you can always just try it out like I did and earn 50,000 miles.
As always, if you do decide to give it a try, I always appreciate when you use my link. Helps keep the lights on around here. 🙂
Sign up here for the Barclaycard Arrival™ Plus World Elite MasterCard®.
Your Turn: Do you have the Barclaycard Arrival? If so, what do you think of it?
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