What’s in The Factors Man’s pockets?

You see him on TV and see movies of him jetting off someplace within the fancy seats on the entrance of a airplane. “How does he do this?” you surprise. Then, you hear that he would not pay for many of his journey however as an alternative makes use of bank card factors and miles totally free (or near free) journey.

So, what’s within the pockets of Brian Kelly — founding father of The Factors Man — that permits him to journey this fashion? What bank cards is he utilizing to earn all of these frequent flyer miles? Let’s take a look at the bank cards he cannot go away dwelling with out.


Playing cards presently in The Factors Man’s pockets

Brian Kelly, The Factors Man founder, carries 10 bank cards and a debit card in his pockets every day. These playing cards are:

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  • American Categorical® Enterprise Gold Card.
  • American Categorical® Gold Card.
  • Bilt Mastercard®.
  • Enterprise Centurion® Card from American Categorical.
  • Capital One Enterprise Rewards Credit score Card.
  • Chase Freedom Limitless.
  • Citi Status® Card.
  • Ink Enterprise Most well-liked Credit score Card.
  • The Platinum Card® from American Categorical.
  • Chase debit card (for ATM withdrawals).

Let’s take a look at why these are his go-to playing cards.

American Categorical® Enterprise Gold Card

As you’ll be able to think about, Brian has numerous enterprise bills and having a card that routinely adjusts its bonus-earning classes every billing cycle makes issues straightforward. Plus, American Categorical Membership Rewards factors are extraordinarily beneficial.

Cardholders routinely earn bonus factors within the classes the place they spend essentially the most. You may earn 4 factors per greenback in your first $150,000 of annual bills within the eligible bonus classes (then 1 level per greenback after that). These classes embody airfare bought immediately from airways; U.S. purchases for promoting in choose media (on-line, TV, radio); U.S. purchases made immediately from choose know-how suppliers of laptop {hardware}, software program, and cloud options; U.S. purchases at gasoline stations; U.S. purchases at eating places and U.S. purchases for transport.

Learn our full overview of the Amex Enterprise Gold card.

American Categorical® Gold Card

If you might want to know one factor about Brian, it’s that he’s fairly the foodie. This card is nice for individuals who like to dine out.

This card earns 4 factors per greenback on eating at eating places worldwide and on takeout and supply within the U.S. It additionally gives the best return on spending (8% again, primarily based on our newest valuations) on this class. You can even earn 4 factors per greenback on as much as $25,000 of spending at U.S. supermarkets per yr (after which 1 level per greenback after that). Cardmembers additionally obtain as much as $120 in annual credit with Uber that may also be used with Uber Eats, in addition to as much as $120 in annual eating credit with choose eating places like Grubhub, Cheesecake Manufacturing unit and Shake Shack and even orders of wine from

Learn our full overview of the Amex Gold card.

Bilt Mastercard®

Most individuals who pay lease on their residences cannot pay with a bank card. Once they can, there are sometimes steep charges. The Bilt Mastercard would not cost charges on lease funds and permits cardholders to earn factors and miles when paying lease. That is additionally the one bank card that earns versatile factors and has a everlasting path for transferring these factors to American Airways. Together with lease funds, Bilt cardholders can earn 2 factors per greenback on journey and three factors per greenback on eating. Brian makes use of this card on a regular basis.

Learn our full overview of the Bilt Mastercard.

Editor’s notice: TPG founder Brian Kelly is a Bilt advisor and investor. The knowledge for the Bilt card has been collected independently by The Factors Man. The cardboard particulars on this web page haven’t been reviewed or supplied by the cardboard issuer.


Enterprise Centurion® Card from American Categorical

This card is accessible by invitation solely, and you will have to spend round $500,000 per yr in your Amex accounts to be invited to use. Then, you will pay $10,000 to open the cardboard and one other $5,000 per yr to maintain it after that. However the perks it gives are plentiful. Whereas the charges at which you earn factors from spending on this card aren’t spectacular, how you should use them deserves consideration. When paying along with your factors to purchase airfare, you will get a full 50% of these factors again in the event you’re reserving a ticket with American Categorical’ journey service. That makes factors value 2 cents apiece when paying for airfare with factors, doubling the worth that almost all different individuals get when paying with factors at checkout for airfare purchases from Amex Journey. And since these depend as bought tickets, you will nonetheless earn miles and status-qualifying exercise on these flights.

Cardholders even have entry to a private concierge, elite standing with lodge manufacturers, elite standing with a number of rental automobile packages and elite standing with Delta Air Traces. As if that weren’t sufficient, cardmembers even have meet and greet companies on arrival at choose worldwide airports, VIP arrival and departure companies at choose airports that can assist you pace via immigration strains, assured entry to Centurion Lounges at quite a few airports, Precedence Go lounge membership, limitless visits to Equinox health facilities, reserved seats at occasions and rather more.

Actually, Brian’s pockets itself was a present from the Enterprise Centurion of us throughout a earlier vacation season.

Learn our full overview of the Enterprise Centurion Card.

The knowledge for the Enterprise Centurion Card has been collected independently by The Factors Man. The cardboard particulars on this web page haven’t been reviewed or supplied by the cardboard issuer.

Capital One Enterprise Rewards Credit score Card

Brian as soon as mentioned that is the one bank card he cannot ever see himself closing. He makes use of it consistently, and there are two most important explanation why.

First, Capital One miles have persistently gained worth over the previous few years. On prime of the actual fact you should use them with a few of your favourite airline and lodge packages totally free journey, you can even use your miles to pay your self again by erasing journey purchases you paid for with the cardboard. This consists of issues like paying for a boutique lodge that does not take part in a rewards program in addition to utilizing Blade for a helicopter journey from the airport into downtown New York Metropolis to keep away from site visitors jams. The cardboard earns 2 miles per greenback on all purchases and much more when buying journey from Capital One journey.

Learn our full overview of the Capital One Enterprise card.

Chase Freedom Limitless

Some bank cards earn additional factors on the grocery store whereas others earn additional factors once you pay for a lodge. However this can be a nice card for all of these “different” purchases that do not earn any bonus factors. This might be all the pieces from a parking storage to purchasing a pack of stamps.

With the Freedom Limitless card, you earn 5% money again on journey booked via Final Rewards, 3% again on eating (together with takeout and eligible supply companies), 3% again at drugstores and limitless 1.5% money again on all of these “different” purchases. Plus, the cardboard would not have an annual payment. Moreover, if in case you have a premium bank card with Chase, you’ll be able to flip your cash-back earnings into Final Rewards factors to make use of with journey companions.

Learn our full overview of the Chase Freedom Limitless.


Citi Status® Card

Sadly, this card is not open to new candidates. That is too dangerous because it has some unimaginable perks and earns factors rapidly. This consists of 5 factors per greenback at eating places, airways and journey businesses. That is a 9% return on spending (primarily based on our newest valuations) and these are classes the place Brian spends some huge cash.

Cardholders additionally earn 3 factors per greenback at resorts and cruise strains, and advantages embody getting a fourth evening free when reserving a lodge by way of Citi’s journey platform plus as much as $250 per yr in journey credit. That is on prime of credit to your International Entry or TSA PreCheck utility payment and cellphone insurance coverage that applies routinely in the event you’re paying your month-to-month invoice with this card.

Learn our full overview of the Citi Status.

The knowledge for the Citi Status has been collected independently by The Factors Man. The cardboard particulars on this web page haven’t been reviewed or supplied by the cardboard issuer.

Ink Enterprise Most well-liked Credit score Card

This card offers an excellent return on spending for enterprise bills that include operating a enterprise like TPG.

Cardholders earn 3 factors per greenback on the primary $150,000 in annual spending throughout journey, transport purchases, promoting with social media websites and serps and on web, cable and cellphone companies. Paying for promoting and for the web to maintain the web site operating are each requirements — and incomes plenty of factors on these bills is a bonus.

Regardless of being a enterprise card, this card earns the identical Final Rewards factors as the opposite Chase playing cards talked about above, which means it is easy to amass them rapidly and redeem them totally free or nearly-free journey at outsized worth.

Learn our full overview of the Ink Enterprise Most well-liked card.

The Platinum Card® from American Categorical

It is true that lots of the advantages on the Amex Platinum Card mirror these of the Enterprise Centurion Card mentioned above. Advantages on this card embody lounge entry at quite a few airports, as much as $200 in annual lodge credit, month-to-month credit to make use of with Uber and Uber Eats and elite standing with each the Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors packages.

Nonetheless, the explanation this card sits in Brian’s pockets each day hits nearer to dwelling: For simply $175 per yr, you’ll be able to add as much as three approved customers to the account (see charges and costs). This implies Brian’s mother and father can every get their very own Platinum Card, providing them lodge elite standing and airport lounge entry when touring on their very own. Enrollment is required upfront for a few of these advantages.

Learn our full overview of the Amex Platinum Card.

Chase debit card

Sooner or later, everybody wants money. This might be for purchasing Pad Thai from a avenue vendor in Bangkok or simply giving a tip throughout a lodge keep, however you will want some cash in your pocket on these events.

Whereas Brian has a Sapphire Banking account with Chase, there are just a few guidelines it’s best to search for in selecting a financial institution in the event you’re a traveler. First, ensure you will not pay charges when utilizing ATMs that are not owned by your financial institution. Subsequent, ensure you will not pay additional charges for withdrawing cash out of the country. A fantastic ATM/debit card will not cost you charges for accessing your individual cash.


Backside line

Once you first hear about it, it might probably sound too good to be true: “I exploit factors and miles totally free holidays.” After studying a bit extra, it might probably appear overwhelming — particularly when you think about the entire totally different bank cards in The Factors Man’s pockets and the myriad of the way he makes use of them on totally different purchases to rack up additional frequent flyer miles.

Nonetheless, The Factors Man has the entire info you might want to get began along with your factors and miles pursuits. In the event you’re new to factors and miles, head over to our newbie’s information to be taught extra.

Extra reporting by Liz Hund.

For charges and costs of the Amex Platinum Card, click on right here.

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