- FoundersCard Membership: Is it worth it?
- Details about FoundersCard benefits (Cathy Pacific, Avis, hotel discounts)
Update: You can lock in a FoundersCard membership for $295 a year through May 13th, 2016 when you sign-up with my link. This is $100 less than the usual rate!
So you guys know I’m been working toward FIRE (financial independence, retire early) lately. And part of that means ruthlessly cutting out extraneous spend.
So far, I’ve gotten rid of my gym membership, canceled credit cards that no longer serve me, and have cut back on my eating out (more trips to Costco!).
FoundersCard is $395 a year, which is a little “ouch.” I’m nearly due to the pay the annual membership dues again to keep the card for another year and I looked at it with an eye to cut it.
But, I’m going to keep it for another year.
The AT&T Benefit
This benefit alone makes up exactly 1/3 of the annual fee for me.
I save ~$11 per month automatically.
$11 per month is $132 per year, which already brings the annual fee down to $263.
By far the most practical benefit. Set it and forget it. It gets applied automatically each month. Great if you have AT&T as a cell provider.
Free TripIt Pro for a year
If you have the Barclaycard Arrival Plus, you already get this for free.
FoundersCard has a lot of the same ancillary benefits as a lot of premium credit cards. Like 10% British Airways flights, free Hilton HHonors Gold status, and free Avis First membership – benefits of the Chase British Airways Visa, Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve, and American Express Platinum Card, respectively.
I’m thinking about dumping the Barclaycard Arrival Plus, but I really do like TripIt Pro. So I can keep it for free.
This’ll save me $49 the first year and give me a 20% discount afterward.
Re: the Barclay card… I dunno, I’m really assessing it. Wondering if it’s worth it. More thoughts in a future post.
Anyway, following the math from above, this brings my annual fee down to $214.
Free Hilton Gold Status
The last time I stayed at Hilton was at the Hilton London Tower Bridge when I went to see the Tori Amos musical “The Light Princess.” (I really should review that… the hotel, not the musical. The musical was fabulous.)
I was upgraded to a junior suite and given free breakfast and internet. And lounge access! Yup.
Needless to say, I drank my ass off at the club lounge, and started each day with a hearty breakfast (why does free food taste so much better?).
I want to value this at $200 a year if you stay at Hilton hotels often. But I’ll go with $150.
That brings my annual fee down to $64. (I don’t have any Hilton credit cards. I only have status through FoundersCard.)
K, so $64 isn’t that much when you consider the events (though I’ve never attended – the timing has always been terrible) and other perks that will definitely add up to more than that.
10% off British Airways flights
Free Cathay Pacific Silver status
That can get you lounge access to Cathay Pacific business class lounges but only until the end of 2015 (HT: reader David!).
Doesn’t that get you extra miles when you fly on Delta?
Free AA Platinum Challenge
Waived Zipcar application fee and 50% off yearly membership
I love love love this. I use it all the time, so maybe I should’ve added it above. But whatever. You get free application fee (usually $25) and yearly membership for $35 a year instead of $70 a year.
And they’ll start you off with $15 in driving credit and give you 20% off weekday rentals. It all adds up!
You’ll also get:
- $18 worth of free razors from Dollar Shave Club
- A free subscription to Entrepreneur magazine (I read it on the train)
- Preferred pricing on Apple products
- UPS discounts
- Free Hertz #1 Club Gold membership and 15% off rentals
- Lots of other stuff
ALL the rest
Here’s everything. If you want to know more about a specific perk, ask me in the comments below. Because when you use my link to sign up for $395 a year, you can’t see the website. You can only see a sign-up page.
FoundersCard is geared toward travelers and entrepreneurs.
I was looking for a reason to dump them because I’m aggressively cutting expenses right now to pay down my student loans. But in the end, I decided to keep it because I get more value from the discounts and travel perks than what the membership costs.
If you wanna sign up, you’ll be locked in at $395 per year for life, which is good to know that it’ll never go up.
They have lots of interesting startups that are part of their offerings. And I’ve managed to find ways to maximize the membership beyond the annual fee. Perks are always being added.
In particular, I like that the AA benefit changes quarterly (in the past they’ve offered 5% off fares).
Oh and I forgot to mention: you get free Caesars Total Rewards Diamond status. Good if you are into Caesars hotels or take advantage of their partnership with SPG. (This shouldn’t be in the bottom line but I’m leaving it here anyway.)
Feel free to ask questions!
- Capital One Venture X Rewards—Earn 90,000 Venture miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening, plus a $300 annual statement credit for travel booked through Capital One
- Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card—Earn 100,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $15,000 on purchases in the first 3 months and 3X bonus points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year
- Amex Blue Business Plus—Earn 15,00 Membership Rewards points once you spend after you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first 3 months of Card Membership and 2X bonus points on up to $50,000 in spending per year with NO annual fee
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