Here is a scenario. You want to apply for the Citi AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard and earn the 60,000 American Airlines AAdvantage sign-up bonus miles, but there is no way you can spend $5,000 in 3 months. If this is your predicament with this or another credit card, don’t worry you’re not the only one.
If you haven’t yet applied, smart move. If you can’t meet a credit card’s minimum spending requirement, do not apply.
For those of you who have applied, and for those of you who haven’t, and think the spending requirement is too large for you to reach, here are 10 ways to help earn the sign-up bonus.
- Regular expenses. Stop paying with cash! Use your card to pay for your regular expenses like gas, groceries, restaurants, etc.
- Bills. Stop paying your bills via checks. Pretty much all bills can be paid online.
- Time big purchases. If you’re in the market for new furniture, you might as well time that purchase to coincide with a new credit card.
- Authorized user. Add a trusted friend or family member as an authorized user. The authorized user can spend freely using their card which is tied to your account. Just be sure this person can pay you back.
- Get reimbursed. Go on a family member and friend’s shopping spree, pay for their purchases and have them reimburse you.
- Rent/Mortgage. Check with the property owner if you can pay with a credit card. If they don’t, try Tio. Tio charges service fees, so I recommend using it only once if you don’t think you can meet the minimum spending requirement.
- Student loans. Check if you can pay with your credit card, or use Tio (or similar services) to pay student loans.
- Pay taxes. There is a fee for paying taxes with a credit card so be sure that its worth it, ie. the points out way the fee.
- Travel. Why not book a trip to start off your travel hacking hobby?
- Gift cards. You can buy gift cards that you can use at later time to rack up your spending. Some gift cards, such Visa gift cards come with a fee, but others like a Trader Joe’s gift card come with no fee. Purchase your gift cards wisely.
There you have 10 ideas to help you reach the minimum spending requirement, and I’ll leave you with some advice. Never overspend to where you won’t be able to pay off your monthly credit card statement, and when you have to pay a service fee be sure it is worth paying that fee. If you will be paying a hefty service fee to help you reach a spending requirement, I think you can go for it, because the amount of points are so big that it usually outweighs the fee. Just don’t make it a habit in your regular spending.
Will you put any ideas into play? Have you come up with other ideas? Let us know in the comments below.