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Adventures in Hitting Minimum Spend: Going from the Emergency Room to a Free Trip to Hawaii (Kinda)

If you’re like me (and, Dear God, I hope you’re not), you may get this odd feeling while you’re trying to hit minimum spends after a credit card churn where you’re actually kinda (sorta) maybe a little bit happy when you have to spend some money because at least it’s getting you closer to earning the signup bonus.

Were we, perhaps, slightly more generous than usual this year at my kids’ school fundraising auction because I was trying to hit the minimum spend for the Chase Ink Bold card? Perhaps. Or maybe we were just being nice. Either way.

So we can just establish that during my minimum spend periods, I’m perhaps not as upset by having to buy stuff as during other times.

But that really doesn’t excuse the ever-so-slight twinge of happiness (that’s not the right word – gratification?) when I received an $1,100 bill from a recent visit to an emergency room. I have a nut allergy, and last month (in a story for another blog) I mistakenly ate something with nuts, which caused me to have to go to an emergency room. I’m was fine after a few hours (obviously, as it’s me typing this and not my wife following my untimely demise), and I hadn’t thought about it much since.

Until yesterday, when the bill came and my first thought was, “Fantastic, this will let me hit the spend on my United Explorer card in just one purchase! 50,000 miles!” Which is when I realized that I’m completely nuts (as it were).

So you all can run around from Walmart to CVS to Office Depot with your fancy Vanilla Reloads. I’ll take a butter pecan and see you on the beach.

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  1. You are by far the funniest travel blogger. Thanks for brightening my morning.

  2. About a year ago I was pretty happy about paying upfront for my daughter’s braces, which included a 5% discount, since they let me spread it around on three different cards which took care of three different minimum spends. My son pointed out that most people would be less than thrilled with forking out over $5,000 all at once, but I don’t think he reads your blog.

    • My parents are doing something similar with my brother, gotta love doctor’s who let you pay with credit cards.

      Hope your are feeling better Jared.

  3. The folks at the local grocery store think I am some kind of philanthropist as I make sure to include at least $200 in gift cards to or the grocery store itself with each purchase. Four tomatoes and a dozen eggs = $205.46.

  4. I unfortunately also get a twinge of happiness when I have to spend big money during minimum spend period. Lately I have been meeting minimum spend entirely with manufactured spend to avoid this desire to overspend. My bank even called me to ask if I was using my checking account for business purposes as I cycled through 40k in a month.

  5. Marcus at Street Smart Traveler

    Love this line:

    “So you all can run around from Walmart to CVS to Office Depot with your fancy Vanilla Reloads. I’ll take a butter pecan and see you on the beach.”

    I’m similar. Whenever there’s a big purchase to be made, I whip out my frequent flyer credit card and try to pay with that. My family had to get a new TV recently, so I made sure to put that on a points-earning credit card.

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