For quite a while I used an MBNA credit card with travel points (now bank of america).
The card has significant ups and downs:
+ they can book a flight on almost any airline
+ you don't have to be a member of a specific program
- they only give credit for the first $7500 in spend per month (effects me big certain months)
- they will not pay more than $850 for a ticket
- they sometimes need help finding the most competitive rate
- they charge 60,000 miles for international tickets to europe versus 50,000 for most airline programs
If you add up the math and buy a $1200 european ticket, they're only paying 2/3 of the ticket. that sucks. Better off with a UAL or AA card where you can get the full fair for less miles.
It seems like the airlines cards have the best deals - though they're expected to be made less attractive: 50,000 points for a $1200 ticket. That translates to $50k in spend yielding about $0.024 per dollar spent - it's pretty great deal. The BofA card gives $0.014 - almost half the benefit.
Now I've been looking at the American Express card for costco. This is attractive for several reasons:
1. Can't use any other credit card at costco - so at least you get some benefit
2. Amount of rebate varies on what's bought: 3% for restaurants and gasoline, 2% travel and 1% elsewhere - costco effectively becomes 2% if you're an executie member.
3. No limits on credit for spending.
so the real question is based on various distributions, what will you end up with?
I'm not really sure, however, I think it will likely be more that the 1.4 cents on the dollar BofA offers. I'm going to begin shifting things over slowly, but it will take a year to see what we really get.
I've been looking at the costco amex card.
Anyone have any ideas?