Founderscard Status Challange Overload

Right now you can get United Gold, Marriott Platinum, Cesar Rewards Diamond (Match to Wyndham Diamond) for $295 a year (when paying for two years). Please use my link here to apply (no waiver of fees for military). I don’t have the time (or leave days) available to hit all three, but for all you road warriors out there this may be easy challenges to complete

United MileagePlus® Premier® Gold Status

United Gold will get you access to partner lounges when flying overseas, I already get it with the United Club card. You can use gold status to book the economy plus seat at the time of booking and make yourself more eligible for first class upgrades on the day of your flight.

The fine print: Receive MileagePlus® Premier® Gold status from September 1 – November 30, 2019, and keep it through January 31, 2021 by:

Enrolling in this Challenge by August 26, 2019 and Being enrolled in the MileagePlus® and PerksPlus programs (enrollment links provided) or Earning 15,000 Premier qualifying miles (PQM)2 or 20 Premier qualifying segments (PQS)2, and Earning $2,500 Premier qualifying dollars (PQD)2 during the challenge period.

Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite gives you upgrades to higher level rooms and free breakfast. I was able to get lounge access at the M lounge located in the Lincolnshire Marriott. I was also able to get unlimited food and beverage anytime at the Frankfurt Sheraton Airport:

The Fine Print:
To participate in this promotion, you are required to use your founderscard.com email address listed in the instructions above.
Existing Marriott Bonvoy members with base membership, Silver Elite or Gold Elite status are eligible for this promotion; members at Platinum Elite tier are ineligible for this offer.
Enrollment in Marriott Bonvoy (new members) or registration in Marriott Bonvoy (existing members) is required to be eligible for this offer.
Upon making 15 paid nights within 3 months of enrollment, participant will receive Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status for up to one year. After the first year, Platinum Elite status will be retained by staying the required number of nights under the terms of the Marriott Bonvoy program.
If new member does not make 15 paid nights within 3 months of enrollment, member will be downgraded to membership level which corresponds to number of nights stayed: Member tier for 0-9 nights stayed, and Silver Elite status for 10-24 nights stayed. Existing members who do not make 15 paid nights within 3 months of enrollment, will revert to their member level prior to this promotion.Nights stayed prior to enrollment are not eligible for this offer.
Credit toward this promotion is given for night stays with participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels which occur within the earning period. For a list of current Marriott Bonvoy participating brands, visit https://www.marriott.com/loyalty/earn/hotels.mi
Only one room per hotel is counted toward a member’s nights or stays. Paid nights at a qualifying rate count towards the promotion. Nights spent while redeeming an award are ineligible and do not count towards the promotion.
Offer is non-transferable. Offer is valid for one-time use. This promotion is subject to modification, cancellation, or limitation at Marriott’s discretion, with or without notice.
Note that it may take up to 48 hours for your account to reflect the promotion.
For full offer terms and conditions, click here.
For questions regarding this program, please contact the Marriott Elite Member Guest Services team at 1-800-321-7396

The Caesars Diamond pays for the FoundersCard itself since the status waives the resort fees at all Cesars Resorts. The resort fee is $39 before tax per night at the Vegas Cesars, and since Las Vegas Strip hotels now have a 13.38% tax rate, your nightly resort fee will be $44.22 after tax. If you even stay 5 nights a year the Founders Card membership is worth it!

Best use in my opinion is getting the matching Diamond status with Wyndham. This gives me mandatory suite upgrades at Wyndham Grand Hotels, as well as a local amenity like a food tour when booking with points. I just stayed at the Grand Wyndham in downtown Chicago and they gave me fruit and Voss Water waiting for me in my suite on top of a food tour:

The food tour was amazing and had a value of $60 a person. These come free when booking a room with points as a go free option, many examples here.

If you got the time and the points, look into Founderscard. Please use my link to toss me some points: https://founderscard.com/membership?code=FCJERRY623

10% Military Discount on Outdoor Pantry Freeze Dried Food

I was seriously looking at one of these Harvest Right food dehydrators:

In the end it turns out I just like astronaut ice cream, so the better solution was a place called Outdoor Pantry. I asked online, and they do give a military discount of 10% when you use code “military” on checkout.

I ended up getting $131.44 worth of food for hiking and camping. If you are in the market for emergency food (good for up to 25 years), then please use my affiliate link here: http://outdoorpantry.com?afmc=2s

-Derp

75K on Delta Reserve Personal Ends 31 July 2019

Last chance for 75k SkyMiles, 10k MQM and $100 on $5k spend. I just used Delta Skymiles to fly my wife and I from ORD to Frankfurt in Delta One last month. A trip report is coming soon. The outbound trip came with a mini Tumi toiletry case that I got customized at the Tumi store on Michigan avenue. SOmething to always remember that trip!

I am planning on flying to Amsterdam from DET next for 105K in Delta One Suites:

Sky miles are worth it (you just got to find it), and the annual companion cert that comes with the Reserve means a free first class ticket every year! If you haven’t gotten the Delta Reserve this is time to consider it while the bonus is 75K.

-Derp

Reject Chase’s Binding Arbitration? Update: No One Cares

Edit: TDWise covered all the details in an amusing and sarcastic article!

Reader Mason asks:

How will Chase’s recent notice of revision to their MLA and binding arbitration agreements affect us?

I went to the article link: https://www.classaction.org/blog/should-i-reject-jp-morgan-chases-binding-arbitration-agreement-for-credit-card-disputes?utm_source=newsletter59&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=ca_newsletter

I could not understand half of it, and I am not a lawyer, and the site gives no advice. If you want to reject this then you need to send this letter:

Chase Customer Service,
RE: Rejection of Chase’s Binding Arbitration Agreement
I am writing to inform you that I REJECT Chase’s binding arbitration agreement set to go into effect August 11,2019. Please confirm receipt of this communication and update my account appropriately.

to:

Chase Customer Service
P.O. Box 15298, Wilmington, DE 19850-5298

Thanks to a loyal reader for his insight on his own personal blog here. Turns out part of being part of the MLA, we are already opted out.

-Derp

Three Strikes With Amex

I got my third denial from AmEx. I had a feeling they were not going to approve me due strictly to the fact that I have these 5 open credit cards:

  • AmEx Hilton Honors Surpass (Was Surpass, then Ascend)
  • AmEx Hilton Honors Aspire
  • AmEx Hilton Honors (Vanilla)
  • AmEx Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant (Was SPG Luxury)
  • AmEx Marriott Bonvoy (Was Vanilla SPG)

In the past the application would have gone into pending, and a phone call would have given me an option to close an account to get under 5 cards. Now I get this message:

We’re sorry, Derp. We can’t approve your application. You’ll receive a letter within the next 10 business days explaining the specific reason. Thanks for your interest in an American Express card.

And on the status page:

Anyone else out there with AmEx problems. I don’t want to poke the beast, so I am planning on upgrading my SPG to another Bonvoy Brillant, and my two Hilton to Aspire in a year!

-Derp

Pre-Qualified For U.S. Bank Altitude

My wife took advantage of the $300 bonus with U.S. Bank Checking with this offer that ends today (24 July 2019). Upon opening the account she was informed that she was prequalified for the U.S. Bank Altitude. Her credit is 824 and she is at 4/24 as of right now.

She didn’t go for the Altitude, yet. She wants to clean up on Chase (Ink, CSR, United Club, Freedom, Freedom Unlimited, Marriott) before heading over to the Altitude. Hope the pre-qualified offer sticks around for the next 5 months!

-Derp

AGD 2019: ORD to BDL via IND and CLE

Our attempt at one of theseIn

Howdy folks, it was great meeting up with all you dental readers out at AGD 2019 at the Mohegan Sun Casino! I have been told that I am very bad with my trip reports. My backlogs of reports from my past trips of Germany, Mount Rushmore, NYC will never be filed on time or even at all. I think this is pretty shitty of me because that was the whole point of this blog was to show traveling with points. My message is: don’t just earn points, but use them! This needs to be better exemplified in future articles.

I will give Little Miss Traveler credit on being super diligent on reporting how to live out our points based travel lifestyle. She just posted on her most recent trip, and suggested that I write as I travel, so here goes…

Cost Summary

  • Flights: ORD to BDL RT: 34,000 Avios + $40.40 from Chase Iberia
  • Hotel (Expense to U.S. Bank Altitude $325 travel credit):
    • $147.95 military rate BDL Airport Sheraton
    • $200 Reciprocal Member @ Q Club via Marine Memorial
  • Car rental: $154.47 for two days on CSR ($300 Credit)
  • TSA Pre-Check from using my DoD ID number as my Known Traveler ID Number (KTID)
  • Lounges: AA Admirals club ORD, Escape Lounge BDL
    • American Airlines Executive Card
    • American Express Personal Platinum
  • In-Flight Dining: Free with Military ID
  • In-Flight Beverages: Free with Main Cabin Extra via CAC
  • In-Flight WiFi: Free with Barclay AA Aviator Silver

Departure

Typical for ORD, there were plenty of delays throughout the day due to thunderstorms. The morning of every flight, I always check out the misery map on flight-aware. This gives me an idea on how miserable my trip will be. I also use Trip It Pro via my membership with Founders Card.

Check in was chaos, lots of sad faces from all of the delays. There is one Kiosk in the back for military. You must use this terminal to check in, check luggage for free, and pick free Main Cabin extra seats. It has a screen that welcomes military members:

Look for this special kiosk

When you check in it will call an attendant to verify your status. This also some how assigns your military status to your ticket, because later on when I bought food the flight attendant said the computer showed my military service and the food was comped!

I used my DOD ID number from the back of my CAC as my KTID number on check in which got me precheck, I then checked two bags which got the priority bag tag as what I presume was from either having every single AA card or form military status.

Security line was short and I headed right to the AA Admirals club located in Terminal 3 right in between the H and K councourses. They would have let me in on just boarding pass and CAC alone, but I showed my AAdvantage Executive Card.

AmEx Biz Plat: 100,000 MR for $25,000 Spend

Almost worth doing even without the MLA waiver

Since my wife and I both have gotten the Biz Plat in the last 7 years (defacto life time), we are inelegibel for the 100k bonus. I have decided to have my mother get the AmEx Biz Plat for her real estate business. I would add myself as an AU and try for the MLA waiver, but I doubt that it would be honored. However with the current offer I could justify the $595 annual fee and here is why:

  • $200 in Dell credit
  • $200 in inflight reimbursements (going to try the cancel ticket method for statement credits)
  • WeWork membership for a year
  • 100,000 MR is worth $1,500 in flights alone

We have several large spends coming up related to the family business that would easily trigger the 1.5 MR for purchases above $5,000. If I stick to large purchases we are looking at 37,500 on spend alone on top of the 100k. Even if I were to book a flight to Hong Kong on American Airlines via Cathay Pacific metal for $1,375, it would cost me exactly 135,000 points, but I would get 35% of these points back (47,250) in a month. The flight would be only 87,750 MR. This would be lucutive enough to justify the nearly $600 annual fee!

The 100k offer is accessible only by referral, please use my links below:

Any data points out there for MLA/SCRA waivers for being an AD AU on a non-mil primary account?

-Derp

AmEx Cleans Up (By Cracking Down on Self Referrals)

If you earned points by using your own referrals, then AmEx just clawed back all of your ill gotten points! According to reddit r/churning people have been seeing thousands of points being removed from their MR accounts!

Self Referral Is Now Verboten!

If you engaged in the heinous act of self referral (the act of using your own referral for another card for yourself), then you have this message to look forward to:

We are writing to let you know that, after careful review of your Membership Rewards® account activity, we have removed points in your Membership Rewards® program account. Please ensure that any Additional Card Members who are authorized to redeem points from your account are notified of this change in your Membership Rewards balance.

Why we are removing these points We recently noticed point accrual or redemption activity on your Membership Rewards program account that indicates an effort to obtain or use points in a manner that is not appropriate. It’s important for you to know that the Membership Rewards program terms and conditions state that “If we in our sole discretion determine that you have engaged in abuse, misuse or gaming in connection with earning or using points or that you may attempt to do so, we may:

Take away any points in your program account, Temporarily suspend your ability to redeem points, Temporarily suspend your ability to earn points, Cancel your program account, or Cancel any of your American Express Cards”

This is not the first time the RAT (Rewards Abuse Team) has struck! BE WARNED amex is cleaning house, best not fuck with them right now. On the flip side their MR site has been updated to not look like an AOL website anymore:

Despite all of the bad noise, I think it’s showing that AmEx is keeping up with Chase. Hopefully the next step is $200 airline incidental credit becomes a generalized travel credit like Chase, U.S. Bank, and Citi’s respective top cards!

Let me know if you got the clawback! I have never practiced self referral, but rather spouse referrals where I would use my wife’s links and vice versa. This practice has not been shut down, yet.

-Derp

Rakuten (Ebates) 10%, Top Cashback 12% Cashback On Dell, Combine with Amex 2x MR on Dell, and $100 Credit For Free Xbox Gift Cards

I just got paid to buy stuff form dell.com! Right now Rakuten is offering 10% and TopCashBack is offering 12% on Dell.com. Here is what I did:

  1. Sign up for Rakuten here for 10%
  2. Sign up for TopCashBack here for 12%
  3. Log into www.americanexpress.com
  4. Add the Dell 2x MR offer (targeted) as well as the $100 credit to your AmEx Biz Plat
  5. Log in to Rakuten or TopCashBack and search for dell.com, use that link
  6. Buy the $100 xbox live gift card
  7. Use your AmEx Biz platinum at checkout
  8. Wait 12 hours and your code will appear in the Dell Digital Locker
  9. Go to microsoft.com to redeem the gift card as a credit to your Microsoft store.
  10. Buy a drone or monitor or whatever you fancy from Microsoft
  11. Check out and apply the gift card balance

Here are the steps in photos:

Make sure you add this offer first
Add this offer if you have it, if not then just pass on it
This is the card to buy as it appears on the mobile phone
How this looks on check out
The key is in the Dell digital locker at the bottom after 12 hours
Get $12 for a $100 xBox gift card on TopCashback!
Adding the code will give you tis screen
How the credit will appear once added to Microsoft.com
One of the many toys you can get with multiple Biz Plat Cards
Take advantage of their military deals on Surface Pro

Have fun!

-Derp