Credit Card Spreadsheet
I teach business and part of that is teaching Microsoft Excel.
I like Excel and think it has many applications, but I realize most people don’t like spreadsheets.
If you google “credit card spreadsheets” you will usually find helpful spreadsheets on how to manage your finances and such – very organized!
This is different. On this ss I don’t want balances and interest rates and that stuff, I want important information like the bonus I received and when I have to pay an annual fee.
“But why that?” you ask – “isn’t the interest rate and balance the important stuff?”
It sure is important – and that is the number one thing to remember with credit cards – pay off your balance in full every month!!! (if you can) If you can’t pay off the balance in full and plan to carry a balance don’t put the purchase on an Amex card!!!
But…I am extremely organized when it comes to my finances…that is why I can take advantage of these offers. If you are as well, you should consider getting these bonus offers these companies put forward.
I know many people that are very good with money that are OK with free groceries every so often or free light bulbs at a Canadian Store that sells tires using their credit card. That is fine – but honestly I laugh every time I see a certain advertisement that offers $40 in free groceries when you sign up!!!
I ask myself a simple question. “$40 in free groceries, or $250 in travel…or a free flight?”
Anyway, here is a screenshot of my simple spreadsheet that does what I need it to do.
These are not my numbers or when I signed up, but close enough – and the fees and sign up bonuses are accurate.
What this does is tell me when a certain card fee is about to kick in and I can choose to pay that annual fee or perhaps cancel that card.
It also shows me what the bonus was to sign up for that card.
In this “made up” scenario (which can be done by anyone) the total credit card fees paid over a 2 year period from Jan. 2012 to Jan. 2014 were $1209.00. $400 of that was refunded – so net fees are $809.00 (Amex Plat 2 x $200 travel credit)
“Ouch – there ain’t no way I’m paying $800 for credit cards in just 2 years” “And 10 cards? This guy is crazy”
Sure, 10 cards may be too much for some people, but $800…hmm…what did “I” get for that $800?
You won’t believe what you get in this “made up” scenario.
$350 in travel
110,000 Best Western points – about 5-9 nights depending on hotel class.
36,000 Starwood points – about 5-12 hotel nights depending on hotel class.
80,000 Amex MR points – $800 in travel or 4 flights to Florida
50,000 Marriott points – about 3-5 nights depending on hotel class.
20,000 Aeroplan – convert to Avios – another flight to Florida
60,000 IHG points – about 2-4 nights depending on hotel class.
Do some totals.
I’ll go with the going hotel points “rates” as I know them.
1. 110,000 BW points at .7 cents each = $770 in hotel stays.
I have done 1 valuation and you have already pretty much broke even.
2. 36,000 Starwood points at (at least) 2 cents each = $720 in hotel stays.
3. 80,000 Amex points at (at least) 1.5 cents each = $1200 flights or more
4. 50,000 Marriott points at .7 cents each = $350 + 1 extra free night stay – so about $500 in hotel stays
5. 20,000 Aeroplan worth about 2 cents each = $400 in flights
6. 60,000 IHG points at .7 cents each = $420 in hotel stays.
7. $350.00 travel credit from Capital One Mastercard
So, $800 in CC fees gets you about $2400 in hotels, $1600 in flights and $350.00
So, $800 gets you $4350.
Those valuations are actually low so it’s more. You could easily get $5000 – $6000 in travel out of those cards, but there you go.