Update: One or more card offers in this post are no longer available. Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers.
Million Mile Secrets reader, Ryan, tweeted:
I’m making a $5,500 purchase soon. Which credit card should I sign-up for to get the best deal?
Great question, Ryan!
Major expenses like home improvement projects, weddings, small business purchases, and medical bills put a dent in your wallet. You can take the sting out by using this spending to earn sign-up bonuses on credit cards for Big Travel!
Find out which cards will give you the most for your spending!
Earn Big Travel by Putting Major Expenses on These Cards
Credit card sign-up bonuses are the fastest way to earn Big Travel. But some cards come with large minimum spending requirements that are difficult for some folks to meet, even with my list of 40+ tricks. A major expense like a planned surgery, wedding, or home improvement project makes it easy to quickly earn the bonus.
This is only worth it if you plan on paying off the charge on your card right away. Because paying interest and fees can negate the value of any miles and points you earn.
The card that will work best for you, in part depends on your travel goals and how you like to travel. You don’t want to end up with miles and points that aren’t useful for you. So make sure you have a plan before you get started.
That said, here are a few suggestions!
1. Chase Sapphire Preferred
Link: Chase Sapphire Preferred
The sign-up bonus on the Chase Sapphire Preferred has increased to 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points! This is the highest public sign-up bonus I’ve seen on this card!
But you’ll have to spend $4,000 on purchases within the 1st 3 months of signing-up to earn the bonus. Ryan can knock out the spending quickly with his upcoming purchase.
Plus, he could ask to divide up his expense into to 2 separate payments. So he could pay $4,000 with the Chase Sapphire Preferred and use the additional bill of $1,500 towards the $2,000 minimum spending requirement on the AMEX Premier Rewards Gold.
Chase Ultimate Rewards are my favorite rewards points! That’s because they’re flexible and you can transfer them to great partners like United Airlines and Hyatt.
Plus, if your upcoming expense is for a paid vacation, you’ll earn 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel and dining in addition to the sign-up bonus!
Keep in mind, Chase has new rules and may not approve folks who’ve opened ~5+ new cards in the past 24 months. There are some exceptions. But if you’re new to this hobby, it’s a good idea to sign-up for the Chase Sapphire Preferred FIRST.
2. Chase Ink Plus
Link: Chase Ink Plus
Buying office furniture or electronics such as laptops and printers? Signing-up for the Chase Ink Plus is a terrific option if you have a small business!
That’s because Ryan will easily spend $5,000 on purchases within the 1st 3 months of opening his account to earn 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards bonus points.
And he’ll earn 5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points at office supply stores like Staples for another 27,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards points (his $5,500 spending X 5 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1)!
That said, the Chase Ink card application rules may soon change to include the new ~5+ cards in 24 months rule. So this is another card folks might want to apply for sooner than later!
We don’t earn a commission on this card, but we’ll always tell you about the best deals!
3. AMEX SimplyCash
If you prefer cash back, an upcoming major purchase is also an opportunity to earn the $250 sign-up bonus on the AMEX SimplyCash card. You’ll earn the bonus when you spend $5,000 on purchases within the 1st 6 months of opening your account.
Plus, if you can buy your big ticket item at a US office supply store, you’ll earn another 5% cash back!
This is another small business card. But before you deciding you won’t qualify, check out my list of 3 ways you might!
4. Chase British Airways
Link: Chase British Airways Visa Signature Card
You can now earn a total of 100,000 British Airways Avios points with the Chase British Airways card. This mega bonus doesn’t come around often!
But you’ll have to complete a large amount of spending to earn the full bonus. Here’s how it works:
- $3,000 on purchases in the 1st 3 months of opening your account (earn 50,000 British Airways Avios points)
- $10,000 (total) on purchases in the first 12 months of opening your account (earn an additional 25,000 British Airways Avios points)
- $20,000 (total) on purchases in the first 12 months of opening your account (earn another 25,000 British Airways Avios points)
So Ryan’s purchase of $5,500 gets him the 1st 50,000 British Airways Avios points and halfway to the additional 25,000 British Airways Avios points. Plus, he’ll have a full year to spend the rest and earn the 100,000 total British Airways Avios points.
This is a fantastic deal, even if you don’t earn the full bonus!
Earn Yearly Spending Bonuses
Link: Big Spenders Series
You can also use big expenditures to earn earn yearly spending bonuses such as elite status, miles & points, companion passes, and more!
So you might consider putting a large purchase on cards that will give you a bonus for spending big throughout the year such as:
- American Express Delta Platinum – 10,000 Delta elite miles after spending $25,000 in a year and another 10,000 miles when you spend $50,000+
- American Express Hilton Surpass – Hilton Diamond elite status (better room upgrades) after spending $40,000 within a calendar year
- Chase United MileagePlus® Explorer Card personal & small business – 10,000 United Airlines bonus miles after spending $25,000 in a calendar year
- Fairmont Visa Signature – 1 complimentary night each anniversary year you spend $12,000+
If you have a major expense coming up, you can use it to help meet a large credit card minimum spending requirement and earn Big Travel!
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is an excellent option because it currently has an increased sign-up bonus of 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points when you complete the minimum spending. Plus, if your purchase is for paid travel, you’ll also earn 2 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent.
Another option is to use your big expense to earn yearly spending bonuses like a complimentary night at Fairmont hotels with the Fairmont Visa Signature card.
Or you could go for the total of 100,000 British Airways Avios points sign-up bonus on the Chase British Airways card!
Thanks for your question, Ryan! I hope that helps!