Award Wallet Upgrade Codes

Instead of posting them (and seeing them disappear in minutes), I’m going to do it a different way. Very simple…if you’ve emailed me for these in the past and haven’t gotten any codes, this time is for you. I want to make sure you guys are taken care of on this one. Should have enough to go around.  Enjoy your weekend!


milenerdAward Wallet Upgrade Codes

2 Rocketmiles Promos

My up and down opinions about Rocketmiles have been mostly up lately. Here are 2 promos, one of which is great…

First is 1,000 extra miles for booking in the next couple days. Fine. Whatever. The other is 5,000 bonus miles for those who signed up but haven’t used the service. Pretty strong offer. It requires a promo code, so check your email. That second one is probably worth a booking for some of you.


milenerd2 Rocketmiles Promos

Three Questions

3 very simple questions…

  1. If you are a newbie – What do you think could be done here to best help you “graduate” from newbie status? Specific answers, if possible.
  2. If you were once a newbie – What things helped you the most on your journey out of newbie-ness?
  3. If you have a specific mile/point expertise – Are willing to help newbies?

There’s a good reason for these questions, I promise…




milenerdThree Questions

Friends With Money

It’s that special time of year when companies want you to tell your friends about them. Y’ know, the true meaning of the holidays. Some of those companies are listed below. I like “win-win” promos where you and your friend both get paid. Uber has mastered this marketing…pretty much everyone spreads the word about them these days (see pic).

  • Silvercar is giving us each $100 if you’re new and rent a car for 2 days or more. Ends 12/31.
  • Is it possible that any of you haven’t signed up for Uber yet? Doubtful. But if you’ve somehow hidden under a non-Uber rock, they’re giving us both $30 if you sign up an account. Ends 11/21.
  • Chase could be giving you 5,000 Ultimate Rewards points for if your friends/family sign up for the Freedom card. You might also have offers for other Chase cards at the same link. Ends 12/8.
  • And of course…the return of American Express Small Business Saturday (otherwise known as “free money day”). 11/29.

aaron paul uber

milenerdFriends With Money

The Top 25 Credit Cards

(If you see any errors or missing cards, please let me know. I try to keep a full list, but it’s a lot of information and I do make mistakes).

Time for the monthly edition of my Top 25 Credit Cards. Again, if you’re a newbie, make sure you read The Newbie Guide. Many of your questions will be answered there. Basic things like not applying for 3 Chase cards at the same time should be known before you continue. For people running out of cards, remember there’s often a Business card option. I listed a few here but not many, so it might be worth exploring more Business cards. Also, “churning” might be an option. The dates here were a guideline but things always tend to vary individually.

Miles and points aren’t an equal currency. 50,000 Delta Skymiles are worth less to me than 50,000 miles from pretty much any other airline. 25,000 Hyatt points are worth a ton more than 25,000 Hilton points. And so on. These links work right now (November 17th at midnight). If you read this later, many of the offers will have changed. Things move fast in this game so read the offer details before applying. Here we go! My Top 25 current credit cards in order are…


  • Business Gold Rewards (Amex)
    • Spend $5,000 in 3 months. Get 50,000 points.
    • This offer comes and goes all the time. Back for now.
    • Possibly 75,000 points? That’s why it’s #1.
  • Ink Plus (Chase)
    • Spend $5,000 in 3 months. Get 50,000 points.
    • The points transfer to United, Southwest, British, Hyatt, etc.
    • 5 times the points on purchases at office stores.
    • Worth seeing if you can still get a 70,000-point offer in your local branch.
  • Sapphire (Chase)
    • Spend $3,000 (about to be $4,000) in 3 months. Get 40,000 points.
    • Still very valuable points. See Ink cards above.
    • One of my favorite cards to use when I don’t have any spends to meet.
  • Starwood Preferred Guest aka SPG (American Express)
    • Spend $5,000 in 6 months. Get 25,000 points.
    • Incredible card. I really, really love cash + points for hotel stays.
    • I’m also a big fan of some of their 3,000-point properties.
  • Barclay Arrival (Barclays)
    • Spend $3,000 in 3 months. Get 40,000 miles.
    • One of the best cards for actual spending, as discussed here.
  • American Airlines cards (Citibank)
    • Spend $3,000 in 3 months. Get 50,000 miles.
    • Read the wiki post for the most current links.
    • Better public offers with lounge passes here?
  • US Airways (Barclays)
    • Spend $1. Get 40,000 miles.
    • Still a good time to grab your American and US Airways miles.
  • United Airlines (Chase)
    • Log in and see if you are targeted for the 50,000-mile offer.
    • This offer is also being pushed heavily in airports.
    • A good business version may still work here.
  • Southwest (Chase)
    • Spend $2,000 in 3 months. Get 50,000 points.
    • Newish links. Plus card or Premier, Plus Business card, Premier Business card.
    • Great time to start working on your companion pass.
  • Mercedes Benz Platinum (American Express)
    • Spend $3,000 in 3 months. Get 50,000 Amex Membership Rewards points.
    • Big $475 fee but benefits like global entry credit and $200 credit.
    • A no-fee for the first year Platinum card is here.
    • Be on the lookout for MUCH better targeted Amex offers in your mailbox.
  • Platinum (American Express)
    • Spend $3,000 in 3 months. Get 40,000 points.
    • Temporary increase from the usual 25,000 points.
    • Incredible benefits, but $450 annual fee. $200 in credits does help.
  • Ritz Carlton (Chase)
    • Spend $2,000 in 3 months. Get 70,000 points.
    • Read why applying by phone is probably the way to go.
    • Older offers discussed here. One for 140,000 points.
    • If all other offers have expired, you can still get a free night.
  • Marriott (Chase)
    • Spend $1,000 in 3 months. Get 70,000 points and a free night.
    • When all Flyertalk offers expire, the standard one is just ok. Log into your Marriott account for a possibly better targeted offer.
    • The standard Business card links are here.
  • Hilton Honors Reserve (Citibank)
    • Spend $2,500 in 4 months. Get 2 weekend nights. Best Hilton card.
    • Gold status while you have the card. Upgrades, breakfast, internet, etc.
    • They just added a $100 statement credit to this offer.
  • British Airways (Chase)
    • Spend $2,000 in 3 months. Get 50,000 points.
    • If I were guessing, I’d say the 100,000-point offer will be back at some point.
  • Club Carlson Premier (US Bank)
    • Spend $2,500 in 90 days. Get 85,000 points.
    • Great hotel card and not from the usual issuers.
  • InterContinental Hotel aka IHG aka Priority Club (Chase)
    • Spend $1,000. Get 80,000 points.
    • One of the most underrated hotel cards out there.
  • Hyatt (Chase)
    • Spend $1,000 in 3 months. Get 2 nights at any Hyatt.
    • Even more valuable after the point devaluation.
  • Fairmont Hotel (Chase)
    • Spend $3,000 in 3 months. Get 2 nights and breakfast at any Fairmont.
    • Again, many of these hotels are very expensive.
  • Alaska Airlines (Bank of America)
    • Spend $1. Get 25,000 miles.
    • Offer with statement credit here.
    • Bank of America cards can be MUCH more “churnable” than most.
  • Lufthansa (Barclays)
    • Spend $5,000 in 90 days. Get 50,000 miles.
    • This offer comes and goes regularly.
  • Premier Gold (Amex)
    • Possible 50,000 points, rather than the usual 25,000.
    • A bit of a pain, but you can see if you’re targeted.
  • Propel (Wells Fargo)
    • Spend $3,000 in 3 months. Get 40,000 points.
    • It’s always good to see cards from different banks.
    • Here’s a solid Business card from Wells Fargo.
  • Hawaiian Airlines (Barclays)
    • Spend $1,000 in 3 months. Get 35,000 miles.
    • Business version is here.
  • FlexPerks (US Bank)
    • Spend $3,500. Get 20,000 FlexPoints.
    • The Business version is here. And an Amex version here.
    • Thanks to Christopher F. for getting me to add this card to the list.
  • Venture (Capital One)
    • Spend $3,000 in 3 months. Get 40,000 miles.
    • Up from 20,000 miles.
  • Frontier Airlines (Barclays)
    • Spend $500 in 3 months. Get 40,000 miles.
    • Frontier miles aren’t for everyone.
  • Thank You (Citibank)
    • Weird offer. 20,000 points for spending $2,000 in 3 months. Then 30,000 more points for spending $3,000 in first 3 months of 2nd year.
    • Bonuses on this card go up/down often.
  • Korean (US Bank)
    • Spend $1. Get 20,000 miles.
    • Down from 30,000-mile offer.
    • Business card is here.
  • Hilton Honors (American Express)
    • Spend $750 in 3 months. Get 40,000 points. Or 60,000 points here.
    • Hilton points are definitely not what they used to be.
  • Hilton Honors Surpass (American Express)
    • Spend $3,000 in 3 months. Get 60,000 points.
    • Get the previous card, and you’ll get tons of offers to upgrade to this one.
  • Hilton Honors (Citibank)
    • Spend $1,000 in 4 months. Get 40,000 points.
    • Between the 4 cards, you have LOTS of Hilton options.
    • They added a $50 credit for this one.
  • Prestige (Citibank)
    • Spend $2,000 in 3 months. Get 30,000 points.
    • Nice benefits including $200 credit, but huge $450 annual fee.
    • There is also a 60,000-point offer possible if you go into your local branch.
  • Diners Club Elite (BMO Harris Bank)
    • 3x points at gas station, grocery stores, and pharmacies.
    • Killer way to pick up Starwood points.
    • Big annual fee.
  • Asiana (Bank of America)
    • Spend $2,500 in 90 days. Get 25,000 miles.
    • Meh.
  • Virgin America (Comenity)
    • 2 different card offers I discussed here.
    • Issued by Comenity Bank, which is the best thing about these cards.
  • Freedom (Chase)
    • Worth having in your collection for the 5% quarterly bonuses.
    • No reason to close this one.
    • Other semi-decent quarterly bonus cards are the Citi Dividend and Discover It.
    • Here’s the old Amazon link for the Discover. This Slickdeals one might be a better offer.
  • LAN (US Bank)
    • 30,000 miles for spending $2,500 in 120 days.
    • Down from a 40,000-mile offer.
  • Expedia (Citibank)
    • Spend $2,000 in 3 months. Get 25,000 points.
    • Also a 15,000-point version with no annual fee.
  • Virgin Atlantic (Bank of America)
    • Skip this 25,000-mile offer and wait for 50,000 to return.
    • Again, Bank of America is more churnable than most.
    • Global Entry credit might still be working if you’re looking to save the TSA PreCheck fee.
  • Everyday (Amex)
    • Spend $1,000 in 3 months. Get 10,000 Membership Rewards points.
    • No annual fee. Preferred has a 15,000-point bonus with a $95 fee.
    • Free Amazon Prime for a year.
  • Sun Country (First National Bank of Omaha)
    • Spend $500 in 3 billing cycles. Get 40,000 points.
    • Not the most popular airline in the world.
  • Wyndham (Barclays)
    • Spend $1. Get 30,000 miles.
    • Offer goes up and down. We’re in a down time right now.
  • NFL (Barclays)
    • Spend $500 in 90 days. Get $100 credit.
    • Offer has been higher in the past.
  • Choice Hotel (Barclays)
    • You’re truly running out of cards if you’re still reading this far.
    • I keep this as the last card mostly out of tradition.

Recently Dropped:

  • Delta (Amex) – The 50,00 mile offer recently died.
  • LifeMiles (US Bank) – Dropped from 40,000 to 20,000 miles.
  • AirTran (Chase) – This one is gone for good.
  • Best Western (Barclays) – Again, who really cares?

*Beyond this mile/point list, the following are some great cashback cards*


milenerdThe Top 25 Credit Cards