Maybe I’ve just been burned too many times in my life, but when I hear of an amazing offer, my first thought is that I want to see it in writing. Unless I’m sure that this way to earn bonus points or miles is real, I’m not going to spend time worrying about it.
I know that waiting for confirmation might limit my capacity to cash in on hidden bonuses before they get announced to the general public. I’m OK with that.
No time has my hesitation to jump into every supposed change into credit cards been more important than in the age of COVID-19.
For example, Citi’s PR team told several bloggers that the Citi Prestige would be allowing cardholders to spend the annual travel benefit for restaurant and supermarket expenses at the beginning of May. I waited until I received written proof of this from Citi on May 15th before writing about it.
That same PR team supposedly told bloggers that Citi would be extending the time to reach the spending requirement for a sign-up bonus on new cards to six months, matching the policy changes by AMEX and Chase. What happened if you believed this to be factual and took more than 90 days to reach the requirement, like Teja from Grabamile did? It turns out that Citi made no such accommodation for new cardholders, and if you took too long to meet the spending requirement, you’re out of luck. Too bad, so sad.
I had the same feeling this week when I read posts about how cardholders were reporting earning 5x on dining expenses on the Chase Sapphire Reserve card. While the Reserve usually earns 3x on dining, several screenshots showed cardholders earning 5x points on these charges.
Without hearing anything from Chase, I was hesitant to think this was an official change to the card earning benefits. I sounded my skepticism about this new “bonus” when I talked with Ed on the Miles to Go podcast.
It turns out this offer is now dead and we may never know if this was a mistake or a planned change that got turned on for some accounts by accident.
I realize that by saying this, I might appear to be the most boring person in the points and miles world. Unless you’re willing to maximize every possible offer, why bother even playing the game?
It turns out that Sharon and I live relatively normal lives. Besides splurging on our occasional trips overseas, we’re typical, everyday travelers who are just as happy staying at a Hampton Inn instead of a St. Regis. The same thing is true when it comes to earning points and miles. I might miss out on a great offer but I’m happy being the tortoise instead of the hare.
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary