The Two Ways to Value Credit Card Sign Up Bonuses

A note from Sarah Page: Scott originally wrote this post years ago, but it is still very much valid and important today. 

Once a month we update a list of what, are in our opinion, the best travel credit cards on the market. We also update a similar list, but for small business credit cards, monthly. How I rank them is largely defined by their sign up bonuses. So the next logical question would be, how do I value those sign up bonuses?

There are two equally valid ways to value a credit card sign up bonus.

Last Day for United 60k & Marriott 100k Offers

Right now, the Chase United Explorer Card comes with 40,000 bonus miles after spending $2,000 in three months, and an additional 20,000 United miles after spending an additional $6,000 total in the first six months for a total of 60k bonus miles for $8k in spending with a six month timeline.

The Chase Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card comes with 100,000 bonus Marriott Rewards for spending $5,000 within three months.

Both of these cards' elevated bonuses will drop as of May 16, 2019.

Sapphire Preferred Improves Offer to 60k

Chase has increased the bonus on the Sapphire Preferred Card from 50,000 Ultimate Rewards to 60,000 Ultimate Rewards without increasing the minimum spending requirement which is still $4,000 within three months of account opening. The 50k bonus was worth at least $625*, more like $1,000* if you utilize valuable airline loyalty program transfer partners. Now it's worth at least $750*, and more like $1,200* transferring to airline partners.

New Sapphire Preferred Bonus: 10k Points Higher for a $95 Fee

The standard bonus for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is 55,000 Ultimate Rewards for spending $4,000 on the card within three months of account opening (+adding an authorized user). With that offer, the $95 annual fee is waive for the first year of cardmembership

There is a new offer out for Sapphire Preferred: 65,000 Ultimate Rewards for spending the same $4,000 within three months of account opening (+adding an authorized user).

ThankYou Premier 50k Bonus Changing Tomorrow

The Citi ThankYou Premier Card currently has an offer of 50,000 bonus ThankYou Points after $4,000 in purchases within the first three months of account opening.

According to One Mile at a Time, that sign up bonus is changing tomorrow, August 22. This is not shocking considering that, for the majority of 2016, the ThankYou Premier had no sign up bonus whatsoever. Then in December of 2016, Citi came back with 40k points for a $3k minimum spending requirement bonus.

9 Limited Time Credit Card Offers You Don’t Want to Miss

Competition is stiff among big boy issuing banks at the moment. It has a lot to do with the Chase Sapphire Reserve card kicking ass, and everyone else just trying to keep their head above water.

How does this affect you? Amazing credit card sign up offers. Lots of them. Here are nine that are only going to be around for a limited time.

United Card Publicly Offering Up to 55,000 Bonus Miles

Update August 6, 2014: In the comments here and other places, I've read that the 55k offer + $50 statement credit offer is not working for folks. Test it out. If it doesn't work for you, try out the same incredible 55k offer without a $50 statement credit.

The United MileagePlus Explorer Card is now publicly offering 50,000 bonus miles after spending $2,000 in your first three months as a cardmember.

How to Get Part of Your Annual Fee Back from Citi

The offer mentioned in this post is out of date, so all links have been removed. For the best current rewards card offers, see here.

In my experience, if you cancel a Citi card, Citi will refund you a prorated portion of your annual fee.

Why You Shouldn’t Get the 75k AMEX Gold Business Card Available Today Only

The Enhanced Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN

Get 30,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $5,000 in purchases with your new Card in the first 3 months following approval of your new Card account
Plus, get a statement credit for your initial Amazon Prime membership fee after you sign up for a new membership with your Card and meet the spending requirement in the same time period
As an Amazon Prime member, you get unlimited FREE Two-Day Shipping on millions of items on Amazon.com
Built with business-sized purchasing power and fast rewards
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