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Current Credit Card Strategy

I have been asked this question fairly often, so I think that I am due for writing a post about my current credit card strategy.

First off, I would like to go on record saying that my main goal has always been to bring my credit card bills down to zero. Any time I can find ways (not an easy feat) to reduce my costs, that is my highest priority. The goal is to keep my overall total monthly credit card bills to under $1,000 per month for a family of 3 and a business, which has been working out (minus a one time home renovation bill)!

Currently, I kept my credit card portfolio very lean. I have broken up my portfolio into two lists: daily using and specialized spending.

Daily Spending

My primary card is the Capital One World Elite Aspire Travel MasterCard. Thank you Capital One for grandfathering me to the old version, so long as it stays is way, I will keep this card forever. I have had this card for over 5 years now and going strong. I earn 2 points for every $1 spent, which comes out to 2% cash back that can only be used on travel purchases. Most spending goes on this card by default, unless there is a more specialized card to use instead, as mentioned below.

I use my Rogers Platinum MasterCard, which earns 1.75% cash back, on my Rogers bill (to get the annual fee waived), as well as foreign purchases, which earns 4% cash back.

My wife puts all her spending on the TD Aeroplan Infinite Visa, but we target the 1.5 mile multiplier bonus mostly, i.e. drug store, gas and grocery purchases.

She also has her own batch of other credit cards, but she primarily uses the TD and a supplementary card from my Capital One account for her spending.

Specialized Credit Cards

Now onto my 3 other active credit cards for specialized spending.

I signed up for the MBNA Best Western MasterCard primarily for the sign up bonus and the 5x the points on Best Western purchases.

I just took advantage of the first year fee waived promotion for the RBC Platinum Business Visa to be used for business spending.

Lastly, I have the RBC Esso Extra Visa that is used once every 90 days to waive my chequing fee. I plan on switching this to another more useful RBC card soon.

Why not other cards?

If you were wondering why I do not have so and so card, the answer is very simple. My priorities have changed in life, so for the time being, my portfolio remains very straightforward.

I will be looking to shake things up in the medium term, which is giving me a chance to take a wait, watch and see approach before deciding what to do next.


  1. Thanks Matt, for sharing.
    I am surprise how streamline your portfolio is. I was expecting at least one Amex in your portfolio….

    Lean is great…specially with all the devaluations taking place…
    Do you take advantage of the sign up bonus (amex gold card, etc)

    1. Just finished cancelling all my AMEX cards. Taking a break from AMEX, for now, waiting to see if they may change the one-in-a-lifetime sign up bonus rules.

  2. BTW, I am not sure if this one-in-a-lifetime rule is really accurate. An agent over the phone told me if I haven’t had the card for the past 4 years, I will receive the bonus again.

  3. You say your goal is to keep credit card spending <1K per month, yet a wallet w fee-based cards. Why not just one of the $ back freebie cards given the pints can be illusory …. Never enough for decent award?

    1. The only fee I have been paying is the Capital One card, as I am grandfathered to the previous version, I am still getting my anniversary bonus, so the fee is minimal.

      Other annual fee cards have a first year fee waived promotion and probably won’t make it to the anniversary 🙂

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