How to Keep Track of Your Credit Cards | Our Favorite Tools for Staying on Top of Cards & Points


Hi there, it’s Ernest from Trip Astute. In
this video, I’m going to show you how I track all my credit card accounts, and
share the tools that I use to keep it all organized. (light chiming music) Those of you that are
points and miles collectors know that it can quickly become a challenge to keep track
of all your cards. This is especially true when trying to evaluate whether you
want to keep a card with an annual fee, or when planning out which new cards you
want to apply for. Today, I wanted to take a step back and share some easy and
quick ways to keep track of all your credit cards. Also, I have a freebie that I
want to share, but I’ll get to that later. So, let me run through the tools that I
use to keep track of all my cards. Number 1: Google Sheets. When it comes to
keeping track of all my credit card accounts, I use Google Sheets to log all my
current and past accounts. The spreadsheet that I use includes basic
information like account status, card name, type, and issuer. However, I also log
information like whether I plan to keep the card, the annual fee, whether it’s a
personal or business account, the opening and closing dates, and any annual renewal
benefits. This gives me a nice snapshot of all my accounts and I can easily see
what cards I’ve used and the benefits associated with each one. Also, I love
that I can quickly calculate my total annual fees for the year and plan
accordingly. Number 2: You Need a Budget. There are plenty of tools out there that
you can use to keep track of your budget and spending. I’ve actually been using
You Need a Budget since 2009 and it’s been a great tool for me to use,
especially with this hobby. The budgeting software is like a digital envelope
system. What I mean by that is that it’s like the traditional method of budgeting
where you set aside cash into an envelope for that specific budget. So, I
might set aside $300 for groceries and if anything is left over, it carries over
to the next month. Or if I overspend, I might move money from one envelope to
another. The reason this works great for the points and miles hobby is that I
always know how much I’m spending. And it shifts the way I think about spending on
my credit card. Instead of worrying whether I can spend
the money on the card, I’m more focused on whether I have money to spend in that
budget. As long as there’s money in the budget, then I know that I’ll be able to
pay the credit card in full. There’s a lot more to You Need a Budget and I should
probably do a video on it in the future. Keep in mind though that I’m using the
old version and have not upgraded to their new version, but I’m hoping to do
so soon. Also, You Need a Budget isn’t the only software out there, and there
are plenty of other apps and tools that you can use to keep track of your
spending and accounts. Number 3: Credit Karma. We recently did a video on how to
check your Chase 5/24 status using Credit Karma. Definitely check it out if
you need to see whether you opened or closed an account. I generally check my
credit score weekly, and I use Credit Karma to keep track of my credit score
and health. It’s also a good way of knowing whether your account history is
correct and if there’s anything that might need to be corrected in your
credit record. Number 4: Todoist. There are a ton of different free and paid
reminders services and apps out there. I just happen to use Todoist for my
normal work, so I use it to help manage my credit cards as well. While I’ve set
up auto pay on all my credit card accounts, I do set up reminders for
things like signing up for quarterly bonus categories, evaluating and
potentially canceling credit cards with annual fees, and due dates for meeting
minimum spend requirements. With life being so busy, it just helps to have
something remind me when I have to do something. What tools do you use to keep
track of your credit cards? I’m always looking for new tips and services, so let
me know if you have one that works well for you. I’ve included the template of my
Google Sheet in the video description below. Though let us know if you have
any questions on anything that we covered in this video. If you enjoyed
this video or found it useful, please hit the “like” button and consider subscribing.
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giveaways. Until next time, travel safe and travel smart.

9 comments on “How to Keep Track of Your Credit Cards | Our Favorite Tools for Staying on Top of Cards & Points”

  1. Jose Perez says:

    Ernest thank you !! the spread sheet in 100% value added . I will definitely use going forward, stay amazing buddy ! 

    Jose P.

  2. Darvin Ray says:

    I use MS excel and a very old program MS money. I like to project my earning and spendings one year in advance, and i have yet to find a tool that can do that, so I'm stuck using MS money for now.

  3. Jorge Acevedo says:

    Thank you Ernest

  4. trez2020 says:

    Ernest, do you reconcile all your credit card and bank account spending at the end of the month or does YNAB do that for you? Thanks for the spreadsheet! I SO NEED IT!!!!

  5. takeoffmyshoes says:

    I still haven't gotten the link to get the google spread sheets after a week does it take a while to send out the links for it.

  6. LEB52 says:

    Thanks Ernest.  I use mint, mostly because once I started into a budget and final tracker I didn't want to change.

  7. Mark Santucci says:

    When my statement comes in it tells me how much cash back I have as I have the Discover More and American express blue cash card the basic not the preferred and I have 1 travel card the Venture 1 card.

    my credit score comes in with the Discover statement.

  8. mcomeslast says:

    Credit karma rocks. I love the setup you use where you put your quarterly card reminders on a business card. I’m assuming you make that in word and then scale it down? I so need a note like that. Thanks!

  9. CJ Alexander says:

    doesn't work anymore 🙁

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