We sit down and chat with MagnifyMoney co-founder Brian who gives us some insight about why he wanted to start MagnifyMoney and a few tips on his out-of-office hobby: reward travel.
Why did you start MagnifyMoney?
It’s rare that everything comes together to let you build a team with a close friend and supportive advisers, so when the chance came I didn’t dwell long. My old job involved calling out some big companies on things that didn’t make sense in order to help investors. Now we get to do it on behalf of consumers.
What is your first money-related memory?
Well, I did always insist on handling ATM transactions for my mom as a kid — but really the first memory happened one summer in the 80s when Almond Delight cereal had a cool promotion. Instead of putting a free action figure inside of each box, Almond Delight put plastic wrapped money in the boxes, usually replicas of old money no longer worth anything.
But 1 in 43 of those boxes had real money in them and I learned the hard way that there wasn’t much to be made stocking up on cereal boxes. Fast forward 20 years and I ended up in brand management for one of America’s biggest cereal companies.
If you could only use one credit card in your wallet for the rest of the year, which one would you pick?
My United MileagePlus Select Visa. It earns 2x points on groceries, 3x on United purchases, and I get miles toward United ‘Premier’ status each year. For all of the bad press United gets, its miles are still incredibly flexible if you know their system. And this card is no longer issued, so I don’t want to lose it.
We hear you like to capitalize on reward travel, what’s the best trip you’ve taken on points?
My favorite was flying to Japan, Germany, and Turkey on one award ticket over the course of 12 days. A little jet lagged, but spending time in each for the price of one flight was great. There’s a whole subculture of people who do much more than that frequently, but I usually put my efforts into getting where I need to go as comfortably as possible for as little as possible.
Do you have a trip you’re planning on taking next using rewards?
I’m looking forward to going to Sicily with my Delta SkyMiles on Alitalia, saving lots on airfare.
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