My first statement for my New Ink Bold business card recently closed. In my own weird sick world, that is actually really exciting. For the first time I could see the 5x bonus categories of telecommunications and office supplies at work. Since I am trying to meet my $5000 minimum spending requirement, I put the majority of my expenses on this card for the month. In total, my family charged $4211 dollars on the card (it was an expensive month) and earned 14,960 Ultimate Reward points for those purchases. These are points that I can transfer to Hyatt, United, British Airways, Marriott, Korean Air, Priority Club, and more on a 1:1 basis. In short, they are super valuable and flexible points. I paid for everything from batteries to domain names to hotel stays to phone line on this card, and I ended up averaging 3.55 Ultimate Reward points per dollar for these very mixed expenses. You can see the breakdown below. The “courtesy adjustment” was from an Office Depot online purchase I made through the Ultimate Rewards portal when Office Depot paying out at 10x. The purchase did not automatically post (which is pretty unusual for the UR portal), but Chase immediately did a courtesy adjustment when I alerted them to the problem.
Application Link: Chase Ink Bold
I bought a few gift cards on the card for anywhere from 5x – 10x. This was actually super fun and semi-addicting. I bought a $50 gift card to Outback Steakhouse on the Staples.com website and received 5x points for the office supply store purchase and 5x from the Ultimate Rewards portal for the purchase. That comes to 10x for dining at a restaurant that we typically visit about once per month anyway. Hey, we live in suburbia and Outback is about as good as it gets around here. 10x clearly kicks the pants off of the 2x that I would otherwise get for dining on my Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. Some other gift cards that you can order from Staples.com in the Ultimate Rewards portal for a total of 10x with your Chase Ink Bold include: Macaroni Grill, Maggianos, Cheesecake Factory, Ruby Tuesdays, Chili’s, and Pizza Hut. Perhaps the most exciting retailer available at 10x via this method for some addicts will be…….Starbucks. Hey Gary, you need to re-do this post! If you visit some of those restaurants anyway, this can be a great way to really maximize your earnings. There are many other non-dining retailer gift card options on that website as well.
We also purchased a $500 Visa gift card from our local Office Depot and earned 5x for that purchase. We used it all to pay one large bill we had online, and it was just about the easiest 2,500 points we have ever earned. Were it not for that card, the online purchase would have only earned 1x. We did have to pay about $5 extra for the purchase of the gift card, so the 2,500 points cost us about $5. We recently had some more large payments (like what we owed for when Little C visited the ER about a month ago), so again went and got a $500 gift card at a local office supply store for another easy 2,500 points. I’m not personally a fan of putting every purchase on a gift card, as it is harder for me to keep track of the purchases, and I like some of the purchase protections that come with some of my credit cards. I also have no desire to get in any potential trouble by solely or primarily using my card for this type of purchase, but there are some purchases (like the balance we owed the ER) that I am more than happy to put on a Visa gift card for the 5x points.
Another reason that I am digging this card is that they just matched me to the 60,000 point offer that was briefly available right before I applied for my card. I didn’t try to get matched to the offer until now (thanks Delta Points for the push to ask), and they immediately said yes, and the points are already in my account. So, it is very much worth a sending secure message if you applied in the last 90 days and want to be matched to that higher offer.
The moral of this story is that the Chase Ink Bold is at least as awesome as I thought it would be – in fact, it might be even better than I hoped. It’s earning power is unparalleled for many. Even if you never bother with gift cards, almost all families have cable, internet, and phone bills each month that total hundreds of dollars per month. If your family pays $300 per month in those categories, that is 18,000 Ultimate Reward points per year just for those expenses that you were going to have anyway. Of course, many folks can earn much more than that with this card. Heck, we earned just shy of 15,000 points in the first month alone. There is a $50,000 annual limit for 5x in the categories of telecommunications and office supplies, so don’t think you can get bajillions of points per year at office supply stores, but you can get quite a few.
I know many others were getting their New Ink Bold cards around the same time I did, so what are your thoughts so far if you have the card? How did you do maximizing the 2x and 5x categories so far?
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