The best and fastest way to earn miles and points is through credit card sign-up bonuses. Tran and I have more 30 cards between us. However, we use them responsibly by paying the balances in full each month to avoid high interest rates. Since this hobby, we rarely carry cash in our wallets. Why would we pay in cash when the cards could earn us points/miles?
We also figured out ways to meet spending requirements without exceeding our budget. This hobby hasn’t hurt our credit scores at all. In fact, it actually increased them.
These are my most recent estimated scores on CreditKarma.com.
Having that many cards requires some form of tracking to stay organized. We made spreadsheets/tables detailing the cards applied, dates of approval, the amount of spending requirement, and miscellaneous information such as the annual fees and other perks.
Here’s an example of how I track mine.
It is important to avoid applying for many cards at once since each card usually requires a hefty spending requirement. The banks are also tightening the rules on approving card applications. I didn’t do much research so basically got locked out of applying for most Chase cards. Tran learned from my mistake and spread out the applications. We recommend applying for 1-2 cards in the beginning to see how you could manage them. Once you get a hang of it then can try to apply for more…several months later. Remember, this is not a race to get the most credit cards. Also, please do not get into this hobby if you’re not able to pay off your balances in full because the interest rates will negate any benefits you receive. It is also not for you if you’re planning a big purchase like a car or a house within 6 months.
Most of the credit cards offer free FICO score monitoring. We check our accounts regularly along with CreditKarma to monitor the scores and to ensure there is no irregular activity.