BP #47 – Free Halo 4; Aw Yiss


Free Halo 4 and Two Years of XBox LIVE Gold Membership

Last Tuesday I got my free Halo 4 in the mail, as well as two years of Xbox LIVE Gold Membership. If purchased at full retail, this would all cost about $180 plus tax.

Free Halo 4 and two XBox Live Memberships

How did I get all this free stuff? A credit card, of course! They were all freebies from American Express for using their Gold Card; part of one of my trumpeted credit card bonuses for 2012. Not only did I get Halo 4 and XBox Live Memberships, but I got 15,000 points from AMEX as a welcome bonus. I used them (and an additional bonus) to get $200 in gift cards. The Gold Card carries a fee of $180 but this is waived for the first year.

Aw Yiss

If you’re interested in getting a free copy of Halo 4 and other great bonuses for yourself or a loved one, the deal is still available as of my writing this. It requires that you get an American Express Gold Card and spend at least $500. I haven’t cancelled my American Express Gold Card yet but, obviously, I will before I pay an annual fee. For those who are concerned about the effects of such activities on my credit rating, I subsequently qualified for a mortgage with no trouble at all.

I’ve been kind of busy, but I did get a chance to play it for a few hours before I headed to Edmonton. It’s an awesome game. Best free Christmas present to myself ever. Sure, maybe that’s because of my demographic — a 20-something male — but I still find this bonus unbelievable. Live the good life. Be a credit winner rather than a loser.

Catherine Holly Wood

Cat loves sitting


Because of my travels and the holiday season, this week’s BP is again truncated. Merry Christmas!

Dude's like Scarface




Little elf has big substance abuse problems

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9 Comments… Share your views

  1. “For those who are concerned about the effects of such activities on my credit rating, I subsequently qualified for a mortgage with no trouble at all.”

    I recently ordered my credit score from Equifax because I needed proof that I had good credit to avoid paying a $350 deposit for hydro when I move. The report did cite average age of accounts, and credit applications as affecting my score, but I still have a good credit rating. I think the effect these activities have on your score must be pretty minor. I would imagine the most heavily-weighted consideration is payment history.

    Once I get my debt all squared away, and I can trust myself to use credit cards wisely, I am definitely going to follow in your footsteps by taking advantage of promo offers. I love free stuff!

    • Yes, exactly. I have no late payments on my credit history. I can only imagine that being late or having something go to collections would be massively more devastating to a person’s credit. Meanwhile a lot of those folks would probably be horrified by my choice to actively open and close credit cards.

    • From what I remember the reasons given are mostly why your score isn’t perfect so they aren’t necessarily a cause for concern. The last time I got a credit score it said “the amount owed on your revolving or non-revolving accounts is too high” based on a $1,745 month-end balance across two credit cards with a combined limit of $10,000. On any given month now (if we’ve spent more than average) it might say the same thing even though the credit union mentioned a score in the 820s when we refinanced this year.

      Aside from the obvious importance of not missing payments, the age of your accounts and the percentage of your credit that you are using both seem to be major factors. In other words getting a new card with a high limit and then maxing it out the next month would be bad for your score unless you have other accounts that improve the average.

      I’ve never seen a credit report that tells you why your score is so high. Maybe Adam has :)

  2. Now that the pesky mortgage is out of the way, nothing is stopping you from opening unlimited CC accounts in 2013, eh? Are you going to do it App-O-Rama style and do like 20 at a time, 6 months apart, or slowly and deliberately?

    • hahahahah well the most important thing is to maximize the bonuses, so it’s important not to rush into applications. I don’t want to get a piddly bonus from a credit card, and then see them launch an amazing promotion for a card I’ve already got.

  3. After my last year score (851) I’m afraid to look this year, even though I check every January. If it dips into the low 800s, still a good score, I’ll probably worry about it even though I would qualify for a great mortgage rate either way.

    Maybe I’ll just order the report to make sure there’s no fraud or late payments reported…

    • Definitely get the free reports every year to make sure there aren’t any errors or fraud. As for your score, don’t even worry, you are in an echelon that is unimaginable to the average Canadian.

    • A score of 851 is absolutely amazing, Adam! I wouldn’t worry, if I were you. As Joe said, most Canadians have scores that are far lower. I’m just happy to be trustworthy enough for the hydro company, lol.

    • I just looked back at some of my past reports, and an Equifax score of 850 appears to be around the 95th percentile. 800 is only the 70th percentile.

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