Disclosure: Basic Travel Couple, LLC has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Basic Travel Couple, LLC and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Enrollment may be required for select American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to learn more.
Welcome to 2021! WE MADE IT “cue the fireworks”. It goes without saying that 2020 was a long, long year and I am certainly looking forward to rebounding over the next 12 months. A new year equates to new opportunities to earn bonus points and miles. I’ll break down how to maximize your earnings all down below in this basic guide!
In this Basic Guide
- Quarter One Spending Promotions
- Targeted Spending Promotions
- Other Spending Promotions
- Annual/Monthly Credits
Quarter One Spending Promotions
Quarter one spending promotions are broken down by bank and credit card categories. These promotions we make sure to max out each and every quarter to earn bonus points and miles when you spend in those categories. Our favorites are the Chase Quarterly Categories where you can get up to an extra $300 per year per card if you max out each category each quarter.
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Chase Freedom & Chase Freedom Flex – Cardholders can earn 5X/5% on up to $1,500 in spend at Wholesale Clubs, on Internet, Cable, & Phone Services, and on Select Streaming Services. Cardholders need to opt-in to this promotion in order to receive bonus points.
Earn $200 cash back once you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. This card also comes with no annual fee which is always a win in our book. We even like the extra 5% cash back on up to $1,500 each quarter you activate in combined purchases on rotating categories.
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Discover It Cashback – Cardholders can earn 5% on up to $1,500 in spend at Grocery Stores, CVS, and Walgreens. Cardholders do need to activate this promotion via the online banking portal.
US Bank Cash+ – Cardholders can earn 5% on up to $2,000 in spend at your chosen category. Cardholders do need to activate this promotion via the online banking portal.
Citi Dividend – Cardholders can earn 5% on up to $300 earned in cashback in bonus categories per year. The quarter one categories are Amazon and Select Streaming Services. Cardholders do need to activate this promotion via the online banking portal.
Targeted Spending Promotions
Many co-branded Chase credit cards have been targeted for a 5% bonus earning opportunity for quarter one of 2021. The targeted offers are for 5X/5% on up to $1,500 spent at Grocery Stores, Gas Stations, and Drugstores. To see if your co-branded credit has been targeted, use this link.
Examples of Chase Co-Branded Credit Cards that have been targeted include:
- British Airways
Barclays cardholders received targeted emails in November 2020 for a very generous spending offer. Targeted customers have the opportunity to earn up to $600/60,000 Miles via mixed spending.
- 10X on up to $1,000 spend at Grocery Stores
- 50,000 Points/Miles after spending $3,000
This offer ends on January 31st and does not require activation. In our basic household, my Cash Rewards and Lisa’s Arrival Plus card were both targeted for this offer. Many users of the Basic Travel Facebook Group reported that their Wyndham and American Airlines cards were targeted as well.
It’s important to note that this email can be lost easily. I was recently talking to my sister who was debating about product changing her Arrival Plus card and asked if she received the offer. She said no and I suggested that she do an email search. Sure enough, the email was there in her spam folder. That could have been a $600 mistake!
Citi has been sending out targeted spending offers over the last few months for online purchases. The ones that I have received are to earn 5% cashback on up to $500 spent at an online retailer. I suggest searching through your email (and spam) folder for these offers if you are a Citi credit cardholder.
The Platinum Card® from American Express holders have received some tremendous spending offers via American Express Offers. Enrollment Required. There have been a wide variety of these offers being sent out and it appears that the users who have been targeted opened the Platinum Card prior to November 1st, 2020. The Amex Offers listed below expire on June 30th, 2021.
- Best Buy (Earn up to $100)
- Avis (Earn up to $150)
- Home Depot (Earn up to $100)
- Insta Card (Earn up to $100)
- Home Chef (Earn up to $150)
Many The Business Platinum® Card from American Express holders have received a bonus spending offer if they opened the card prior to November 1st, 2020. This offer includes 4X bonus Membership Rewards points on up to $20,000 spend on the categories listed below. This spending offer also expires on June 30th, 2021.
- Office Supplies
Earn 75,000 membership rewards once you spend $5,000 on purchases within the first 6 months from account opening. This is an amazing travel card with plenty of extra perks for those who travel often.
- Earn 10x points on eligible purchases on up to $15,000 in combined purchases at U.S. Gas Stations and U.S. Supermarkets during your first 6 months of Card Membership.
- Enjoy complimentary access to the Global Lounge Collection, including our favorite Centurion Lounge access. (Such as Centurion Lounge DEN)
- Earn 5x MR points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel. Starting January 1, 2021, earn 5X points on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
- $550 Annual Fee. (Rates & Fees)
- Terms Apply.
- Learn More Here.
Other Spending Promotions
Chase Sapphire Cards – The Chase Sapphire Reserve Card card will earn 3X on grocery purchases up to $1,000 spent per month through April 30th, 2021. The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card card will earn 2X on grocery purchases up to $1,000 spent per month through April 30th, 2021.
The American Express Hilton Honors co-branded credit cards that offer an opportunity to spend your way to a free night certificate have all reset. There are three different opportunities to earn an annual free night certificate listed below.
- Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card – Earn a free weekend night certificate after spending $15,000
- Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card – Earn a free weekend night certificate after spending $60,000. All information about Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card has been collected independently by basictravelcouple.com
- The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card – Earn a free weekend night certificate after spending $15,000 and a second night after spending $60,000
Earn a 130,000 Welcome Bonus once you spend $2,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. $95 annual fee. (Rates & Fees). Terms apply.
Learn More Here.
All information about Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card has been collected independently by BasicTravelCouple.com. Hilton Honors Surpass Card is no longer available through Milevalue.com
- Chase Sapphire Reserve Card
- Doordash – $60 Credit
- Amex Platinum
- Uber/Ubereats – $15 per month. Enrollment Required
- PayPal – $30 per month (Ends June 30th, 2021)
- Saks Credits – $50 twice per year. January through June and July through December.
- $200 Airline Incidental Fee
- Terms Apply
- Amex Business Platinum
- Dell Credits – $100 twice per year. January through June and July through December. Enrollment Required
- $200 Airline Incidental Fee
- Terms Apply
- American Express® Gold Card
- $100 Airline Incidental Fee
- Terms Apply
- Amex Hilton Aspire
- $250 Airline Incidental Fee Enrollment Requiredc
- $250 Resort Credit
- Citi Prestige
- $250 Travel Credit *Grocery and Dining charges count towards this credit during covid-19 as a temporary change
When it comes to earning bonus points & miles, spending offers can be a lucrative option for padding your account. I am very much looking forward to planning 2021 travel and will certainly be subsidizing those future trips with the points & miles that I’ll be earning thanks to all of the generous offers I’ve received in 2021.
Let us know!
What is your favorite spending offer so far in 2021? I’d love to hear from you down in the comments or over in the 5,000+ Member Basic Travel Facebook Group!
More Basic Reading
- 2021 Credit Card Strategies and Goals with the Basic Travel Team
- Top Travel Credit Card Offers of the Month
- How to Complete the Atlantic City Status Match – Step by Step
- How to book a $4,386 two night stay at Miraval Arizona for $50
- Earn Free Money with these Sofi Bank Promotions!
Disclosure: Basic Travel Couple, LLC has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Basic Travel Couple, LLC and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Editorial Disclosure: Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities.
The comments section below responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.