Semi-Monthly Update (January 25, 2017)

My last semi-monthly update was rolled into the 2016 Totals post, so it’s been a while since the last real update.  It’s been a busy few weeks!  I have a lot of personal and general credit card news to report, some important travel news, and a run-down of some recent ValueTactics posts.

Travel News

costa-rica-977048_960_720Our Costa Rica trip is only 15 days away!  I think this trip will be a welcome mental refresher during this cold, boring stretch of Minnesota winter.  If we had snow, that would be one thing, but our recent weather has just been ugly.

A few days ago I completed the final piece of the puzzle for my summer Europe trip.  I bought a one-way ticket from MSP to ORD, where my United Polaris business class award flight will depart from.  The one-way ticket was only $122, purchased directly from American Airlines.  I paid $22 after I applied a $100 AA gift card I got for free with my (now cancelled) Wells Fargo Propel. The Propel has an annual $100 airline purchase reimbursement benefit.

New ValueTactics Blog Posts

Hotel Review – Couples Negril Resort, Jamaica is the long awaited review of this wonderful all-inclusive resort. Nicoleen and I stayed there for 4 nights in 2015 for stage 1 of our 10 year anniversary vacation series.
Year in Review – 2016 gives our annual totals for points and miles earned and spent.
Order Contacts Without a Prescription describes a tactic I use to avoid annoying perfunctory eye exams. If all you want to do is order more of your contacts, but you don’t have a current prescription, this tactic will work for you!
The Best Credit Card Offer . . . Ever is a quick analysis of the Chase Sapphire Reserve. The elevated bonus offer is now expired, but the card is still valuable with it’s new standard 50,000 Ultimate Reward sign-up bonus.
Our Jamaican All-Inclusive Vacation is an overview of the trip we took, including cost breakdown.

Credit Card News

reserve-smallThe big news in our household is that Nicoleen was able to get the Chase Sapphire Reserve when the bonus was still 100,000 Ultimate Rewards.  We’ll be focusing our spending on this card for the next few months i order to meet the $4,000 minimum spend.  Congratulations to those readers who also managed to get this card before the 100k bonus promo ended!  The Sapphire Reserve is currently still a great card with it’s 50,000 UR bonus, but if you want to discuss whether it’s the right card for you, contact me through e-mail or facebook.

Website News

As I mentioned in this facebook post, I will now be including a new stat in my credit card reviews.  When possible, I will report the total value I extracted from a particular card.  This may be any combination of cash, travel reimbursement, points use, flights, hotel stays, or other quantifiable benefits received from the card.  Obviously your mileage may vary, but this will be another tool at your disposal to measure the relative value of different credit cards and their associated sign-up offers.

Now you’re updated. Go employ some Value Tactics!

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