Which Credit Card Should I Get Next?


Are you meeting the minimum spend on a credit card right now? If not, you might need a new credit card! One of the hardest things is trying to figure out which card you should apply for next. Here are 7 easy steps to help you make that decision easier.


1. Are You Under the Chase 5/24 Rule?

Chase Bank sponsors many of our favorite credit cards we use for travel hacking. The problem is that you won’t be approved for one of their cards if you have received more than 5 credit card approvals in the last 24 months. Any co-branded card. Chase, American Express, Citibank, Capital One – ANY. The only ones that won’t count towards your Chase 5/24 are most business credit cards. Because of this rule, we like to get the five Chase credit cards we want the most before moving on to the other credit cards sponsored by other banks.

So I would first get a Chase credit card as my next card, so you don’t miss out on them. Here is a list of the Chase co-sponsored credit cards:

  • Chase Freedom Unlimited
  • Chase Freedom Flex
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier
  • United Gateway
  • United Explorer
  • United Club Infinite
  • British Airways
  • Aer Lingus
  • Iberia
  • IHG Rewards Club Premier
  • IHG Rewards Club Traveller
  • Marriott Bonvoy Boundless
  • Marriott Bonvoy Bold
  • World of Hyatt
  • Disney Premier
  • Amazon Prime
  • Ink Business Preferred
  • Ink Business Unlimited
  • Ink Business Cash
  • United Business
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business


Whew! That’s a lot of Chase cards! There are at least five that I would definitely want as a beginner travel hacker. Get those first.

If you are 4/24, you might want to grab a couple of Chase business credit cards before you get that last personal credit card from Chase. Business credit cards do not count toward your 5/24 total if you are under that amount.


2. Is your spouse under 5/24?

Remember to play in two-player mode as much as you can. More points for you and/or your spouse to travel with! If you are over 5/24, look at what you can get your spouse to apply for. Remember, don’t apply for credit cards jointly. We want ALL the points we can get, and having each spouse apply separately is how we do that.


3. Where do you want to go?

Decide where you next want to travel and make a plan.

  • What airlines fly there?
  • What type of seat do I want to sit in?
  • Where do I want to stay? Hotel or Airbnb?


Once you’ve asked yourself those questions, start planning a trip, and see what credit cards you will need to travel for free or almost free. Start getting the cards that will make this trip a reality, meet the minimum spend, collect your bonus points and go for it!


Girl Sitting on Beach

Want a beach vacation? Make it happen with the right credit cards!


4. What airline do you prefer?

Is there an airline you prefer? Are you tied to certain airlines because of where you live? I used to live where the closest airport was only served by United Airlines. Obviously, my first credit card ever was a United credit card. To this day, it is my oldest credit card and one that I will never close. Keep your oldest credit cards because they help your credit score.

If you are over 5/24, pick an airline (or hotel) you like and get that card.


southwest airplane taking off

Love those free checked bags with Southwest? Get a Southwest credit card.


5. What hotel do you prefer to stay at?

I love Marriott for domestic stays and many international stays. In Rome, Italy we used a great Marriott hotel that was centrally located. Those nights were paid with points.

A great choice if you travel internationally is one of the IHG credit cards. They are sponsored by Chase, so you must be under 5/24. I have stayed at some great Intercontinental Hotels in Hanoi, Vietnam, and Dubai with points from IHG. Additionally, I have received upgraded rooms because I had a hotel status.

Hyatt and Hilton are also great credit cards to get for free night stays. Additionally, I keep most of my hotel credit cards every year if they offer a free night certificate.


IHG Dubai

Free breakfast and room upgrade in Dubai at this IHG hotel!


6. What card is currently offering an all-time bonus?

This is one of the factors that help me decide what to get. If a card is suddenly at a high bonus offer and I need a new credit card, that is the one for me. I have over 4 million points in my stash, so my next card is usually one that offers a high bonus.

Currently, there are some limited-time bonuses happening! We keep this list updated each month so you can refer to it.

I use Award Wallet and Travel Freely to keep me organized so I don’t worry about points expiring. My way of travel hacking is to just keep earning points. It seldom happens that I am not trying to meet the minimum spend on a new card.


7. Will you pay a high annual fee?

I happen to believe that a high annual fee doesn’t negate getting a credit card. Most cards with high annual fees have benefits that make them worthwhile. At least to me. However, if you don’t want to go there yet, look at cards with no annual fee or ones that waive them the first year. Even an annual fee of $95 is totally worth it for the bonus points you get the first year. Some no-fee or low-fee credit cards are:

  • Chase Freedom Unlimited
  • Chase Freedom Flex
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier
  • Chase United Explorer
  • Chase World of Hyatt
  • IHG Rewards Club Premier
  • IHG Rewards Club Traveller
  • Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express
  • Capital One VentureOne Rewards
  • Citi Rewards Card
  • American Airlines AAdvantage Mileup Card by Barclay
  • Advantage Aviator Red Club by Barclay
  • Citi Rewards Card
  • Citi Premier Card
  • Citi AAdvantage Platinum Card
  • American Express Delta Gold
  • Hilton Honors by American Express
  • Hilton Surpass by American Express
  • Marriott Bonvoy Boundless
  • Marriott Bonvoy Bold


Bottom Line

The way to go where you want, when you want is to always be earning a bonus on a credit card. Use our 7 steps to help you decide on your next card. Remember, we offer free credit card consultation if you are confused about which card to get. We are happy to help you pick your next card. With a healthy stash of credit card miles/points, you will be able to go just about anywhere! We have links to all of our credit cards, and we appreciate each of you who uses one!






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