How One Man Earned 10 Million Credit Card Points

How One Man Earned 10 Million Credit Card Points


How One Man Earned 10 Million Credit Card Points - Hi I'm Chris Hutchins. I'm the founder and CEO of Grove and I'm a pretty crazy credit card points optimizer. Right now I'm at like 9. 97 million points across everything. I started getting crazy about credit card points in college. I got my first credit card, I think with the United credit card, and I was like, "Man every time I spend a dollar I get a mile. And if I get enough credit card points I could fly somewhere for free.

"And I've loved traveling my whole life. And so I think travel, like love for travel is what drove this. I spent a lot of time just paying for everything for everyone. If there was a bachelor party I'd buy like all the tickets for all five people and I put them all on a card that got you know 5X points on flights
and then I'd book with all the hotels for everyone and I'd put them on a card that earns like 3X points on travel.

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So I'd earn all these points. For a while, I would buy all of my groceries by going to Office Max and buying Whole Foods gift cards at Office Max because I had an office supply store credit card that earned 5X points and so I'd go buy my Whole Foods gift cards, then I'd go to Whole Foods and pay with gift cards. And it got to the point that you're like Best Buy is across the street from OfficeMax
in San Francisco.

So it was like, oh if you wanted to buy something Best Buy you're better off going to OfficeMax
first, buy a Best Buy gift card, get 5X points and then go back across the other side street and then go
buy something at Best Buy. Yeah I think our honeymoon and our wedding videographer were probably the best use of points we've ever had in our lives.

When we were getting married, we thought about our honeymoon and we were like, "We want
to take the most amazing honeymoon and we wanna spend no money. "We had decided we wanted
to go to the Seychelles. I think Prince William went there for his honeymoon and so like all of a sudden it like became like the hot place. We found that you know, the best way to get there was on Air France but not actually using Air France miles but using Delta miles.

So we managed to get all of our Am Ex points transferred over to Delta and we noticed
that you know there was a promotion at the time where it's like transfer Delta miles to someone else and they double. So we transfer them to her, my wife, and then transferred them back to me. And then all of a sudden we had enough to go there. We told our videographer we were
going to the Seychelles and she had said, "Man. There's nothing I want more than go there with my husband.

"So not only did we end up buying ourselves tickets to the Seychelles for our honeymoon, but
we actually bought our videographer tickets to the Seychelles for her and her husband and then got our videography for free. There's this whole world called churning where people are like,"How can I maximize the spend on my credit cards?"And there been people that have gone to crazy lengths.

There was a promotion a long time ago where you could earn points by buying pudding and there's
this one guy who bought pudding cups and bought like millions of pudding cups because you could earn more points than the pudding cups cost. There's a Reddit community for churning where people talk you know in really deep levels of like what are crazy ways to earn points.

The deeper you go down this rabbit hole of credit card points, the more time it ends up taking. Now I probably have about 16 total credit cards. Surprisingly, I carry one and usually use all the other ones,I like plan my day. I'm like how I'm gonna go to the grocery store.

I wanna make sure I grab that card. When I'm traveling I usually probably bring like seven. Personally, I don't spend that much money. I'm like kind of a frugal person but I take every opportunity to maximize points and try to make sure that I'm spending everything I can that I could put on a credit card on a credit card.

I like try never to use cash because it's like free money. I think the upside of owning a business is that you have a lot of business expenses and the downside is you have no time to take vacation. So one trip I really want to take is to Australia and New Zealand, primarily because I went to Australia on a free trip without my wife and so I've been getting flak for that ever since it happened and she's
really wanted to go.

It's like a great place to go with points because it's super far away and you need a lot of time. As soon as you start to realize what can happen, it just becomes somewhat crazy of an obsession because no one likes to spend money. Not when you can get it for free.