How Me Being A Complete Moron Cost Me 28,000 Ultimate Rewards
Many websites, writers, bloggers will only show you their success stories. They want you to look at them as perfection, as an undoubted expert in the field. Well, that just isn’t honest. People make mistakes, even bloggers (especially bloggers?). And learning from mistakes are the best form of learning. I loved that my parents shared their financial mistakes with me which helped me on my path to financial independence from a young age. So here I am to show you my warts. To show you how me being lazy, unorganized and aloof cost me a nice chunk of Ultimate Rewards points. It was a simple mistake but it proved costly.
Fun With My Ink+ Card
The Chase Ink+ is probably my favorite card. It is an OG Chase Ink card that is no longer available to sign up for. It works similar to the Chase Ink Cash, earning 5X at office supply stores, on internet, cell phone and streaming purchases. The Ink+ does have a $95 annual fee but that is because the 5X earning caps are twice as much as the Ink Cash. You can rack up 250,000 Ultimate Rewards on the categories listed above each year versus only 125,000 with the Chase Ink Cash.
Most years I don’t quite max this spend out, at least not since many of my tried and true spending avenues dried up. I would hit up the office store deals when they came around but liquidating the $200 cards was a pain so I never went super heavy on them. That changed this year with a new liquidation method opening up to me, one I have shared in our MtM Diamond group on the spending podcast. So I have been like a bee to honey when those deals come around.
This week’s deal was no different. I grabbed $3000 worth on Sunday and another $1000 worth on Monday. I was sitting there with a big grin on my face, awaiting my 20,000 Ultimate Rewards…
Realizing My Mistake
That is when it dawned on me that my anniversary was coming up next month and I knew I had to be somewhat close to the limit for the year. I figured I would double check to see how much room I had for this deal to ensure I maxed out my earnings before my year reset.
I logged into Chase’s website and fired up the Ultimate Rewards site and that is when my heart sank. I noticed my purchases dating back a week or two were only earning 1X and not earning 5X. That is when I checked the tracker, something I should have done months ago, and noticed it was sitting at the full 200,000 Ultimate Rewards points for the year. Chase even makes it easy for us, notating how many of the 4X bonus points (the 1X on everything shows separately) you have earned for the year. I had completely ignored it up until now. It is something I don’t normally worry about but I should have this year with my increased spending.
I tracked it back a few weeks and the total spent that I will be earning a paltry 1X on is $7000. That is 28,000 Ultimate Rewards I will be missing out on. If I had paid attention I would have switched the spending to another Ink card or card with a welcome offer etc. However you want to look at it I am missing out on $420 in expected value. Don’t be me, track your spending!
This is a simple mistake that I thought that I would never make, but let me tell you that it cuts deep. I have been trying to rebuild my points stash since burning it to the ground. I have more than replaced my Membership Rewards balance but my Chase Ultimate Rewards one is lagging about 150,000 behind were it was early in the year. This moronic error accounts for almost 20% of that total. That is a big chunk of the goal punted down the field.
Luckily I won’t have to wait long for my 5X earning ability to reset next month. One thing I can tell you is that this is a mistake I will learn from and one I will not make again.
Have you made any blunders this year? Share your pain in the comments below.