Recently, I wrote about how we are planning a trip to Disney World for our family later in the year. I have been pretty happy about some things that have happened that are allowing us to reduce our budget by a pretty nice amount!
- Waiting – When we first looked at tickets early in January, the tickets were $342 per person. Since there are four of us that set our budget at $1,368. We know people that travel regularly, and they told us that anything under $350 was a good deal. Happily, the ticket prices declined several times. We finally pulled the trigger at $268 per person, inclusive of all fees. Total Savings: $296
- Credit Card #1 – We don’t typically go much for reward based credit cards, but when I saw an offer while looking up flights, I couldn’t resist. By signing up for the Delta Sky Miles American Express Card, and using it to pay for our tickets, we will get a $50 statement credit, 30,000 Sky miles (which is basically one free flight for the future), and we will each get one checked bag for free. We had budgeted $200 for luggage ($25 per person per leg of the trip), which we can now knock off the list. We just need to cancel the card after the trip, so that the $95 annual fee (waived for the first year) doesn’t kick in. It’s already on my Google Calendar! Total Savings: $250+
- Potential Credit Card #2 – My wife got an offer for a Disney based Master Card or Visa (I can’t remember which) that is no-cost, and once we make $500 in purchases, we will get a Disney gift card for $200. We can simply transfer our grocery purchases for a couple of months to get to this amount. We’d sacrifice 1% in cash back rewards, but the trade-off seems well within our favor. We know we will buy souvenirs and clothing and other items, so this seems like a great way to save on some budgeted spending. Savings: $200
So far, we are already at savings of $746 from our original budget, without downgrading anything!
The Only Concern
My only concern with this strategy is taking out two additional credit cards. I think we’re OK, but I’d be interested in your thoughts. Here’s my reasoning:
- We are each taking out one card and not listing the other person on the card. So, our credit report will each show one new card and one rise in available credit.
- I plan on requesting a lowering of the credit limit on the American Express Card.
- My wife will cancel the Disney based card as soon as we make the $500 in purchases and collect the $200 gift card.
- We are not planning any re-financing or taking out of any new loans within one year, and within one year both cards should be closed.
- At present, we each have a Master Card and we share another American Express Card, so the number of cards outstanding and our total credit limit seems well capable of handling these additions.
Readers, what do you think of our savings so far? Any considerations or concerns in taking out two cards to collect the associated rewards?