Track your Applications and Bonuses

If you happen to get into churning credit cards or even if you have a handful of credit cards, you should somehow manage to keep track of them to avoid unnecessary annual fees. Also it’s important to keep track of the status of each of your sign up bonuses after you’re approved for the cards.

Everyone seems to have their own method and many have their own spreadsheet of sorts. If you don’t have a method to track your cards and bonuses here is a sample copy of the spreadsheet that I use.

To use this spreadsheet effectively, you do all your data entry on the first tab, which is the “Apps and Activity” tab. I have pre-populated this tab with a few sample accounts to show you the fields that I track.  In the bonus columns, I use fill color to identify where I am with a specific bonus for a card.  This is a manual process, but it makes it easy for me to keep track of the many bonuses which I could be working towards at any one time.  If it’s:

  • Blank – I haven’t started on that bonus yet
  • Yellow – I started working towards that spending requirement
  • Pink – I’ve reached the spending requirement but haven’t received the points
  • Green – I’ve received the points for reaching that bonus spending

Bonus Tracking

On the “Dashboard of CC” tab I have built a table that helps identify:

  • Number of cards by bank by person
  • Last declined date by bank (if any)
  • Last application date by bank
  • Annual fee summary by date – this helps you see what annual fees you have with which card and when they are coming up

In addition to this on the second tab you can define the churn interval per member and it will calculate your next churn date based on the last application date and the churn interval.

Once you have put all your information on the first tab, you can then go to the second tab, click any cell located inside the actual tables, right-click, and click Refresh to update the entire tab with the new information that you have entered. Do this step every time you enter or change any information on the first tab so your second tab shows you the most up to date information. I have written step by step instructions on the second tab to remind you how to use it effectively.

This spreadsheet is what keeps me on track with my applications and bonuses.  I update it instantly as I apply for cards and at least once a week I update it on the bonus statuses.

Hopefully this spreadsheet will help you reach that next FREE trip by tracking your bonuses and churns effectively.

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