I have four active credit cards.
#1 is my Amazon.com Visa card, which I acquired solely because they gave me $35 in credit. Given my history with Amazon (I think they'd go under without my persistent shopping), I knew I would use that.
Anyway, I made it my primary credit card on Amazon, and I only use it for that purpose. I like that, because it enables me at a glance to see just how much money I blew on Amazon in any given month. It's always something. If nothing else, we order a good deal of gluten-free food from Amazon—and it's a bargain. For example, we order a case of large bags of Mesa Sunrise (a great, healthy, gluten-free cereal) every single month. Maryanne eats it for breakfast. Cathy eats it for breakfast. The bunny eats it for breakfast. We run it through the blender to make gluten-free bird food, so the birds eat it for breakfast. The dog eats it for breakfast. Okay, fine. The dog only eats the part the rest of us spill. Everybody eats it except for the ferret, and that's only because she won't eat anything but her ferret food.
I pay this card in full every month. It was where I drew the line. If I can't even pay my AMAZON bill in full every month, what am I doing with my life??
So this card has bonus points. Last December, I decided to check into that. It turns out that one of the things I can exchange these points for is CASH. And I was up to 4 x $50 checks!! So that's precisely what I ordered.
This morning I went and looked at my points again, and I had enough for another $50 check. So I ordered it! I had other options, of course. For example, I could have ordered a $50 BP card. But, um...
This is a great system. I think it's going to work out for me. I hope so. I'd hate to have to go to Plan B, which is move out of my house after my kids are “launched” and live in my car until my credit card debt is paid off... Let's just say that I've been paying a lot of attention to all those tent cities that have been springing up in this economy...