The Big City Spender

You work hard, and you play hard.  You came to the city to compete with the best of the best, and you need every resource possible to keep up with everyone around you.  Getting the right credit card (or cards!) will help you to continue living life in the fast lane and may even help you step up your game a bit.  A first class ticket from the US to Tokyo is only 130K points away!

Chase Sapphire PreferredChase Sapphire Preferred

Not only is the Sapphire Preferred a cool card to hand over to a cashier, it’s a cool card to use for the majority of your expenses. The Sapphire Preferred gets 2X points on restaurants and travel (this includes subways, cabs, and trains), and an annual 7% bonus on all points earned. These points can be transferred 1:1 to United and used to book international flights. A roundtrip flight from the US to anywhere in Europe is 60,000 for Economy, and 100,000 for Business Class (go for business class).  The signup bonus of 40,000 points (after $3,000 spent in 90 days) is also transferable to British Airways to book domestic flights on American Airlines.  A trip from NYC to New Orleans will run you 20,000 miles roundtrip, so you can book 2 roundtrip tickets with the signup bonus alone!

  • 40,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months- that’s $500 toward travel rewards!
  • 2 points per dollar spent on travel and dining at restaurants & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Receive a 7% Annual Points Dividend on all new points earned on purchases – even on points already redeemed
  • Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95

American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card
The Amex Gold Card is a great card for the big spender and the frequent traveler. It’s purchase protection (up to $1,000) has come in handy for me, and the 3X bonus points on travel adds up quickly. The signup offer of 25,000 points (after $2,000 spent in 90 days) can be transferred to BA which will get you a roundtrip flight from NYC-LAX. If there is a transfer bonus (happens about 4 times a year) you will even be able to book one leg in business! You can also transfer your points to Aeroplan miles to book Star Alliance flights with relatively low fees.

  • Earn More: earn 25K Membership Rewards® points after you spend $2K during your first three months of Card membership; earn 15K points after you spend $30,000 in one calendar year
  • Earn Fast: 3X points for flights booked with airlines, 2X points at US gas stations and US supermarkets, 1X points on other purchases. Terms and limitations apply.
  • Use points for gift cards for dining, entertainment, and to shop over 300 of some of your favorite brands
  • Access to Benefits: Baggage Insurance Plan* when you travel, and shop with confidence with Extended Warranty* and Return Protection.*Underwritten by Amex Assurance Company
  • Book two consecutive hotel nights through American Express Travel and receive $75 back at checkout. Restrictions may apply
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $175
  • Terms and Restrictions Apply

The Platinum Card® from American Express

  • Earn 40,000 points after you spend $3,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • With the Platinum Card, you can receive up to $200 a year in statement credits for airline incidental fees like checked bags fees, flight-change fees, and snacks.
  • To receive the statement credit, you need to enroll and select a qualifying airline.
  • There are no foreign transaction fees with purchases made on your Platinum Card.
  • Platinum Card Concierge is your personal resource to help secure a last minute restaurant reservation, or shop for a hard-to-find gift.
  • Terms & restrictions apply.

The Amex Platinum is the ultimate credit card for the big spender. Besides for the prestige that comes with having this card, it has plenty of benefits like $10,000 purchase protection, airport lounge access, no foreign transaction fees, and a 24/7 personal concierge (see a full list of benefits here).  The Platinum comes with a high annual fee ($450), so consider if the benefits are worth it to you.  This card also covers $200 of airline fees annually and the $100 Global Entry Fee cost (potentially a $500 value if you have your card through two Januarys). There are many posts on the internet about the benefits of this card, and I highly recommend it.

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