Earning points for everything has generated a bunch of reader questions and updates.

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Thank you all for so many emails this morning about earning points for just about everything you pay for each month including your home, rent, taxes etc! I had a bunch of things I was going to do but did not have time for any of them but it was a fun morning so that works on a Monday.

My friend PM&M got out the news about the Sky Deck on the way in NYC and ATL. I hope to be at one or both of the opening day ceremonies. I love the idea and the concept. As I tweeted out this morning, Delta is “UP”-ing the Skyclubs once again over the competitors’ lounges.

Also, the new Priority Club PointBreaks list came out. I looked at going to Fiji but just have way too much going on. I did manage to book a weekend at Hotel Indigo for a getaway for my friend and blog reader Nina who is still months away from getting into her home after SANDY. She is OK but can not wait to get back in her own home! Hugs to you Nina, you are the best.

So now on to some Q&A from my morning post. There really are few things any of us should ever pay for anymore with a check (unless it is a BlueBird check that is). So how do we do that. Really it is too simple. Here are the steps.

1) Get a free Bluebird
2) Use the card you want (like our Delta AMEX) to buy Vanilla reloads at CVS and pick credit at checkout
3) Load the $500 over to BlueBird
4) Pay your bills that don’t take our Delta AMEX with the BlueBird

A few words of warning. If you go too nuts with this AMEX may get upset. Upset means doing mean things to you like targeting you with the Financial Review or other things. I would spread out the spend with some AMEX & Chase. Always live by the old saying: pigs get fat and hogs get slaughtered.

Next, questions about  AMEX 365+ day cancel new card bonus rule. Chase will let you move lines of credit around just about any way you want. AMEX is different. You can, before you close a card, move the line of credit from a PERSONAL card to another PERSONAL card in your name. Same with a BUSINESS to another BUSINESS card but NOT from a personal to a business card. But it is a wise move to retain your credit line before you close a card from any bank if you can.

We are also nearing the END of the chance to buy DELTA MQM’s that count toward LAST YEAR’S medallion totals. It is an amazing chance to bump you up to GM or PM or DM if you are less than 10,000 MQM’s away from making it to one of those levels. Should you spend up to $1000 to do this? Only if:

1) as said, it will move you up to the next level AND
2) you are going to be flying a bunch in 2013

It is really a personal value choice but worth a look BEFORE 31JAN2013 when this deal ends. Do keep in mind, for THIS year’s totals, you can get 10,000 MQM’s from the Delta Reserve personal OR Business card if you have not had a Delta Gold/Platinum/Reserve card for the past 365+ days. For the $450 annual fee this is a much better price, but these MQM’s count on THIS year not LAST year like the buy MQM’s program. Clear?

Lastly, for those who are following me on Twitter, you know I have been tweeting about meeting some readers in Utah soon. I will have a post up tomorrow about that so stay tuned. – René

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  1. Pigs get fat, Hogs get slaughtered is the most worthless phrase ever. Is 5k too much a month? Is 3k? is 20k? All these “too much” too little are subjective to the person commenting. What we really need to know is How much is too much. Certain people push those limits. They are the pioneers who lead us through the woods.

  2. @MU – 100% disagree. If you have ever had the FR hit you, you would not say that. I also think smaller will keep things from going away too fast (as all things do at some point).

  3. @MU – Here is my answer that I think works. You need MIX. I run a TON of stuff on my DL AMEX. I mean all sorts of things. So, I try to keep my Vanilla numbers not out of hand compared to that. So say $2000 in normal spend try to stay around $3000 in vanilla spend per month on that card. To get extra $2000 use another card. What do you think?

  4. So I am a little confused…

    I have a Delta Platinum Amex as well as a Platinum Small Business Platinum Amex and a corporate Green card which work makes me use to pay for all corp travel :(. I also have a marriott rewards Visa.

    So on the Delta Platinum, it says if I spend 25k a year, I get 10k MQM and negate the MQD requirement that start 01/14.

    So lets say I open a BlueBird account through Walmart. and purchase the $500 vanilla reload for $3.95 at CVS. My mortgage is %1700 per month and my car payment if $442. That almost makes my first $25k. What does it cost to load the money from Vanilla onto Blue Bird? I am aleaready paying about 8% to purchase the $500 on Vanilla.

    My car insurance is another $340 per month. Now i have a decision to make…. Amex points or Delta miles….



  5. @Gregg – you are making it too hard. Make it simple. Stay with AMEX DL Plat. Buy say $25,000 Vanilla. Will cost you $197.50 in fees. OK? You would meet spend for MQD’s. You would also earn 25,000 skymiles worth at least $250. So, you see how kool this is. Then use the $25,000 to pay what you want. Clear?

  6. Sooo hypothetically speaking… If I got a myvanilla reloadable card… Can that be loaded on a bluebird?

  7. I have a reserve and plat amex and want to get another reserve for biz, but the statement above says that you must not have any card for a year to get the 10kMQM miles…thoughts?
    From above:—-if you have not had a Delta Gold/Platinum/Reserve card for the past 365+ days

  8. @Kevin – if you have NOT had a Delta AMEX BIZ card for 365+ days, then yes, you can get any of the 3 DELTA AMEX BIZ cards and get the new card bonus. Clear?

  9. I’m a little confused also. If the points are being created by the reloading of the Vanilla, why use Bluebird at all? Why can’t I just drain the Vanilla card using an ATM and redeposit into my bank account and reload? What am I missing, ATM fees?

    BTW, please don’t post if you think this will lead to abuse. Do you have a private email for questions that users don’t want posted publicly? Thanks.

  10. @MikeO – feel free to email me there is a link on top of the blog. You can not “spend” the reloads. They must be sent someplace like BlueBird. You can buy Vanilla Visa’s as I do to pay my gas and electric but you must watch out that the fee’s are not so big they offset the gains. Plus, or me anyway, if I USE the cards I am not just buying to liquidate. I like using what I buy and that is just me.

  11. Hi Rene – Question. I only need around $2K per month to pay my bills. Do I need 4 reload cards or is 1 enough. I f I only had one I would need to reload it 3 extra times? Thanks!

  12. @JBG – the MAX you can load on ONE card is $500. So, 4 cards. BUT, you can only buy $1000 per purchase at CVS. Do what you want, but I would buy $1000 one week, buy other things for a few days on the card, then $1000 next week (if you want to use the same card). If you want to use two cards, I would just do both at one visit and be done. I did run two with my Freedom on one visit on two transactions. ($1000 on one and $500 on the other).

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