Mileage earning Debit Cards and Bank Accounts

In the past year we have seen a number of mileage earning options disappear. 

First it was Chase ending their gravy train promotion of 25,000 Continental Miles with the opening of a bank account and using their Continental debit card. 

Then later this year Chase announced that it was ending the Continental Debit Card programme, along with the United Mileage Plus Debit Card programme.

More recently Citibank has decided to end their AAdvantage Debit Card programme.

The underlying reasons for the discontinuation are not the focus of this discussion, that can be addressed another time.  The topic I am trying to get across is that while credit cards will likely continue to earn miles for years to come, what about people who don’t have credit for various reasons (bad credit, no credit history at all, newcomers to the country, etc…)?  The debit cards and bank account bonuses provided a means for mileage earning which has now disappeared.  Yes there are mileage shopping malls and dining programmes and surveys for miles but the cards were arguably one of the most convenient ways to earn the miles we all wanted.  I am curious about thoughts others have on this and if they see other possibilities to take the place of debit cards sometime in the future?

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One Response to Mileage earning Debit Cards and Bank Accounts

  1. I guess I’m just a creature of habit, but even though I am a Citi AAdvantage credit card customer, I prefer to use my debit card for most of my day-to-day transactions.

    For me, my checking account is a single transaction point for both incoming and outgoing payments. If I started using my credit card for all my purchases, it would be another account that I’ve have to follow more closely. I’m also a long-time Quicken user and to switch to using my credit cards for purchases just introduces more complexity that I’m willing to endure (even for the miles).

    I’ll miss my AAdvantage debit card and I’m irritated with Citibank for charging me an annual fee in advance for the card, only to change their mind about offering the feature and then giving me prorated refund. If they charged me for a year, the should have stuck to their agreement. If they wanted to end the program at the end of the year, I would have been okay with that. Imagine how they’d respond if after I signed a mortgage agreement, I decided I didn’t like the house and shouldn’t have to pay for it.

    No wonder the banks (and Citibank especially) have such a bad reputation.

    I’ll miss the miles…but I’ve switched an at least I’ll Alaska Airline miles with my BoA debit card.

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