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Do Small Investments Add Up? A Johnson & Johnson Case Study

One of the concerns that many people have when it comes to investing is the concern that they don’t have enough to build up any amount that’s worth the hassle. Why would anyone want to invest $50 or $100 a year? Is that even worth it? Do small investments add up?

The answer to this question would be, yes! It is worth it. While you’re probably not going to get wealthy by investing $100 a year, you can start to build up a nice holding if you choose a solid company. You could even do better if you pick out the next Amazon (AMZN) or Apple (AAPL).

To show some steady growth that’s around 11 percent per year when accounting for dividend reinvestment, this case study will look at how a small investment in Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) would have paid off over a 20-year period.

Methodology

This case study, as noted, will focus on a small investment in Johnson & Johnson. Our hypothetical investor, let’s call him Bob, purchased one share of JNJ stock on the first trading day of the year starting back in 1997. He then proceeded to purchase exactly one share of JNJ on the first trading day of the year in every year since.

To get the purchase price of each share, I went to the Johnson & Johnson investor relations page. I then looked for the highest price on the first trading day of the year. Therefore, Bob was pretty unlucky in the regard that he invested at the worst time of the day. I did not account for any transaction charges in this analysis. That would undoubtedly add some cost unless Bob chose to work with a direct purchase agency like Computershare, but even direct purchases would have some minimal expenses.

This means that Bob made 21 separate transactions over a 20-year period, counting 2017. Johnson & Johnson stock split back in June 2001, so he, in effect, bought two shares for the first five years.

I then looked at the dividends that JNJ paid out over the past 20 years. Counting the dividend that’s anticipated in September 2017, Bob would have received a cumulative $34.36 in dividend income on the first share of stock that he bought. This would obviously go down on each subsequent share, as the length of time that he was invested in the later shares was less.

Finally, I looked at the value of each share if Bob decided to reinvest his dividends into more shares. The DRIP value came from the calculator that’s available at Don’t Quit Your Day Job. Here are the totals that my calculations came up with.

Case Study Results: Small Investments Add Up

If Bob had bought only one share a year between January 1997 and January 2017, he would now have 26 shares because of the split in 2001. The annualized dividends per share on his original purchase would have grown from $0.425 per share to the current level of $3.36 per share.

The 26 shares that he would now hold without dividend reinvestment would throw off $87.36 in income each year without accounting for any additional dividend growth going forward. This is more income than the share price he would have paid in all but seven of the years in which he bought shares, and it would be more than his average annual investment of $74.56.

Bob’s investment of $1,565.76 in Johnson & Johnson would now be worth $3,466.40, which is a nice return in and of itself. If he had decided to roll over all of his dividends into more shares, he would now hold 36.3255 shares. This means that he would have added more than 10 shares of a great company by doing nothing more than choosing not to spend his dividend income.

Dividend Reinvestment Ramps Up Returns on Small Investments

The value of his holdings in JNJ would be up to $4,842.55. This would effectively mean that his investments would have cumulatively tripled over time. Additionally, his holdings under the DRIP scenario would now throw off $122.05 in annual income.

The total return with dividend reinvestment included shows an 11.01 percent CAGR based upon the calculations from the Don’t Quit Your Day Job calculator. This is important to realize in light of the fact that the cost of a share of JNJ went up by just above 10 percent between January 2002 and January 2012.

In spite of this nearly sideways trading range for a decade, the long-term return on JNJ is still quite good over a 20-year period.

What About A Big Initial Investment?

This case study focused upon how much a single share a year would have added up to. What if Bob had instead had $1565.76 to invest back in 1997 and reinvested dividends? He would now have an investment that would be worth $13,479.25. This would equal to 100.9833 shares of stock which would now be providing $339.30 in dividend income each year based upon the current payout of $3.36 a share.

This is without any additional investments throughout the 20-year period, which shows that buying early and then reinvesting allows for a much greater level of compounding

Conclusion

You might think that an investment in one share each year is pretty pointless. These are small investments, but hopefully, this case study shows that this is not the case. A little more than $3,400 is not a huge sum of money, but it’s more than double what Bob actually invested. It’s definitely more than he would have had had he not decided to invest at all.

Also, it’s important to note that you could multiply this by any number you want to include. You could multiply the total by 5 if you to look at 5 shares a year, or 10 if you wanted to look at 10 shares a year. The numbers show that a small investment in a boring large-cap company can build up over time (when I was growing up, JNJ was known for Band-Aids and baby powder–pretty boring stuff).

The study also shows the importance of starting early, as a bigger investment early on allowed for much higher returns, even if no additional investments were made in subsequent years. Also, it’s important to note that there are no “typical” investments. If Bob had invested all of his money in Enron, he’d have nothing to show for his efforts. Therefore, it’s important to diversify and choose companies with solid long-term growth in revenue and income.  Then, even small investments will add up over time.

Be Sure To Follow And Share

If you’d like to follow my progress each month, be sure to go to the top of the page and sign up for updates. You can also follow me on Twitter.  I’m now above 300 followers, and I’d like to get more than 400 by the end of summer. You can help!

Also, if you could share this latest update below via Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media platform, it would be much appreciated. I want to inspire others to improve their finances and show them some easy ways that they can do so. Just click on the “Share This” link at the bottom of this post!

Disclaimer: This site has affiliate links. If you decide to sign up with one of these affiliate links, I may be compensated. I appreciate any support you might provide.

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August Team Challenge on Swagbucks–Luau Theme

The following is a sponsored post.

Put on your lei, enjoy some Slack-key guitar, and get ready to eat some Kalua Pork, because Swagbucks is holding a Luau Team Challenge to help you earn free gift cards! For those of you who don’t know what Swagbucks is, it’s a website where you can earn cash back on everyday tasks you do online like shopping, answering surveys, discovering deals, and watching videos. You can even earn for searching the web!

If you’ve never tried Swagbucks before because you didn’t know where to begin, their Team Challenges are a great way to learn the ropes! The challenge, begins Monday, August 14th at 8am PT, but you can pre-register starting on Friday, August 11th!

Here’s how you can join the challenge and the site:

1. Click here to join the challenge and be assigned to a team.

2. Starting August 14th at 8am PDT, in addition to earning SB you’ll contribute points to your teams total as you complete different activities on Swagbucks.

3. Check back on the page often to see the scores and what you’ve contribute so far.

All members who participate and contribute at least 600 points to their team’s total will receive a SB bonus in the form of a SB Swag Up Rebate on their next gift card!

Not only that, but if you sign up under me this month and earn 300 SB before September 1st, you’ll get a 300 SB bonus!

Members of the 1st place team will receive a 100 SB Swag Up Rebate, members of the 2nd place team will receive a 50 SB Swag Up Rebate, and members of the 3rd place team will receive a 30 SB Swag Up Rebate. Your SB Swag Up Rebate will be made available on Friday, August 18th at 2pm PT and will expire on Thursday, August 31st at 11:59pm PT.

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5 Reasons Why You Need An Emergency Fund

This site uses affiliate links. I may be compensated should you sign up with one of these links. I appreciate any support that you might provide in this manner. 

5 reasons why you need an emergency fund
Photo via Pixabay, CCO, edited by author.

 

You need an emergency fund. A recent study showed that a majority of Americans,  57 percent in fact, cannot handle an unexpected $500 expense. That’s a pretty sobering statistic.

This means that nearly 3 in 5 Americans lack a savings account with at least $500 in it. If you’ve already saved this much, you’re actually ahead of the masses.

Keep in mind that the median household income is about $53,000 and the 60th percentile for income is around$66,500. This means that people who earn more than $60,000 quite possibly have less than $500 easily accessible for an emergency.

Reason #1 Why You Need an Emergency Fund

An emergency fund can take care of unexpected expenses.

Unexpected expenses happen. No one really likes a busted radiator or a leaky pipe. However, these problems are likely to happen at some point in our lives. If you’ve not had one of these issues arise yet, you’re likely to experience them in the near future.

The problem with unexpected expenses is the fact that they’re…well…unexpected. You can’t figure on your sewer pipe collapsing today. It’s actually happened to me, and since it was outside the walls of my house, insurance didn’t take care of most of the expense. Had I not had some money stashed away, this could have been an even bigger problem.

If you have an emergency fund, you’ll be more likely to be able to handle these problems when they arise. Many financial experts, like Dave Ramsey recommend that you start with an emergency fund of $500 to $1,000.

Reason #2 Why You Need An Emergency Fund

An emergency fund can keep you out of debt.

I hate debt. Unfortunately, I’ve been in debt to some degree or another for a while. Of course, most of this is related to purchasing a house. I don’t want to go into debt for everyday purchases like food.

When the radiator busts, you need to fix it or have your car blow up. You probably need a car to get to work. You also need to eat. The physical necessity of food does not go away just because your refrigerator decides to die.

If you have $500 or $1,000 saved up for emergencies, you don’t have to go into debt to get a serviceable refrigerator or fix a radiator while also eating. Which logically brings us to the third reason why you need an emergency fund.

Reason #3 Why You Need An Emergency Fund

An emergency fund can minimize stress.

Have you been in a situation where you had a financial need and a lack of cash to pay for it? I know I have. This typically leads to debt. If you look up to reason #2 above, you’ll see that I HATE debt. I want it gone.

If I can easily take care of a $500 or $1,000 expense with some funds that I’ve set aside t o deal with the unexpected, I’ll probably have less stress in my life. The reasons for this are related to the stress that financial catastrophes bring.

People who are living paycheck-to-paycheck are more likely to have marital problems. They are more likely to have short tempers with their kids.

If you have an emergency fund built up, the little unexpected expense can roll off you like water off a duck’s back.

Reason #4 Why You Need An Emergency Fund

An emergency fund can help you through a job loss.

The fourth reason why you need an emergency fund is the fact that it can help you through a job loss. Dave Ramsey calls the $1,000 emergency fund a baby emergency fund.

After you’ve built up the $1,000 emergency fund, most financial gurus recommend that you save up between 3 and 6 months of expenses. Why? Job losses happen, and they’re one of the biggest financial catastrophes that most people can experience.

Usually, some unemployment insurance will kick in, but it will be far from enough to meet your expenses in most instances. This is where the 3- or 6-month e-fund can bridge the gap between jobs, which will help with reason 3 above–cutting down on stress!

I would point out that there is an outlier when it comes to amount you need. Suze Orman actually recommends having 8 months of expenses squirreled away in an emergency fund. Regardless of whether you stick with 3 months or 6 months or 8 months, if you have a nice emergency fund set up and you lose your job, you’ll be happy to have the money!

Reason #5 Why You Need An Emergency Fund

An emergency fund can help you build up financial confidence!

I can remember the first time I went golfing. Hitting the links used to be one of my favorite hobbies. Today, I rarely play, but the first time I went to hit the ball, I completely missed it! When I finally hit the ball, I actually hit what is referred to as a worm burner. The ball scooted a few yards along the ground before settling in the rough. Not good.

On that first time out, however, I was able to hit one really good shot. It was enough to get me to come back. I played quite a bit in college and into my mid-20s, and I got pretty good and got to where I could usually beat all of my friends. I even broke into the 70s for a couple of rounds.

So…I say that to say this–a little bit of success can usually lead to enough confidence to lead to bigger successes. Once you’ve saved up $500 for an emergency, you now know how to succeed on a small level.

You can then use that knowledge to build up the next $500 in savings. You can then build up to a month, then two, and so on. If you never get started saving toward an emergency fund, you may never build the discipline and the confidence to achieve financial success, much less financial freedom.

If You’re Ready To Start An Emergency Fund

Looking to start an emergency fund? It’s probably a good idea to start a budget (AKA a spending plan). It’s also a good idea to start looking for additional ways to make some money.

If you’re looking to build up some additional income, you might want to check out these ways to make money online without spending a penny. Even $20 a month could add up to nearly $250 a year. This could go a long way toward building your up your e-fund.

Do you have any other reasons why you might want an emergency fund? Let me know in the comments!

If you’d like to follow my progress each month, be sure to go to the top of the page and sign up for updates. You can also follow me on Twitter.  I’m now above 300 followers, and I’d like to get more than 400 by the end of summer. You can help!

Also, if you could share this latest update below via Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media platform, it would be much appreciated. I want to inspire others to improve their finances and show them some easy ways that they can do so. Just click on the “Share This” link at the bottom of this post!

Disclaimer: This site has affiliate links. If you decide to sign up with one of these affiliate links, I may be compensated. I appreciate any support you might provide.

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Back To School Sale On Swagbucks

The following is a sponsored post:

Through September 8th you’ll get double cash back (in the form of SB points) or more when you shop for Back to School essentials at your favorite retailers through Swagbucks. They also have offers where you can earn SB points towards free gift cards for trying school-related products and services. Then you can take all the SB points you earn and use them to get gift cards and PayPal cash!

Click here to see all of the deals they’re running, and if you sign up through me during this sale you’ll get $10 for making your first purchase! That’s in addition to the normal SB you get for your purchases.

I’ve personally cashed out more than $1,800 on Swagbucks (most of it as PayPal cash), and I think that it’s a great way to make money pretty easily. If you’re looking to shop online in the next few weeks, it’s worth going through their portal to get some cash back from top retailers.

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Online Side Hustle Income From July 2017

The following post includes affiliate links. Should you sign up using one of my links, I may be compensated. You’ll earn the same benefits without my links, but I appreciate any support that you choose to give.  The month of July is now past, and I spent some time in Europe during the month. I also spent some time trying to earn some online side hustle income and had some decent success in spite of doing very little work during my time in Europe.

Why Earn Side Hustle Income?

online side hustle income
How I earned $300+ in online side hustle income in July!

You might be wondering whether starting some side hustles would be worth the effort. Why start a side hustle? Currently, you might have enough to pay your bills and save a bit. That’s great, but you can still earn money from hustling on the side. Some of the money might even be pretty passive.

I’m currently using my side hustle income to pay down some debt and invest for the future. I could probably survive with only my current income, but my life would be very bare-bones, and it would take me many years to pay off debt with little extra saving for retirement. Instead, with my side hustle income, I can use the extra money to improve my finances more quickly than I otherwise could.

I decided several years ago that earning money online was preferable to earning it from a second job. I worked two jobs for a while back in my single days, and I was hardly ever home. With a wife and kids, that’s not a great idea.

I can make some money online after the kids go to sleep. I can also earn some of it while watching TV with them or a football game by myself. There are tons of ways that you can earn money online in your spare time. Some of them pay a few cents with little thought; others can pay between $20 and $30 an hour.

Online Side Hustle Income For July 2017

Here are the ways that I earned money online in July:

This income added up to $327.19 for the month. This was about $15 more than I earned in June, and I was on the road for much of the month so I’m pretty happy with it. My freelance writing comes from some writing on Textbroker and some articles I’ve written for Seeking Alpha. I could ramp this up a bit if I needed to.

I must also inform you that my income from Swagbucks includes some money that I’d let accumulate in this account during May and June. Otherwise, my June income would have been about $50 more and this report would be $50 less. Swagbucks is my favorite online survey site that I use for searching the web, watching videos and answering surveys. I’ve done a review of Swabucks here, and I definitely recommend it.

I noted my new strategy for using my online side hustle income in June. By the end of July, I’d paid an additional $105 toward my debt. from what I’d reported in June. I’m hoping to put some more toward this debt to get it paid off in short order. After the $89 annual fee posted and a $5 payment I made today, it’s now sitting at $8,404.

Blogging Can Help With Side Hustle Income!

Some of the income that I’m able to make comes via this blog. Some is referral income, and some is from advertising that builds up over time. If you’re looking to start earning additional income from affiliates and referrals, a blog of your own is the way to go.

There are some free blogging platforms, but I was never able make much money from a free Blogger blog. Getting a self-hosted blog can really help with your reach. One of the top blog platforms is WordPress, and WordPress recommends Bluehost as a hosting agency. You can sign up to start your own blog with Bluehost here.

Some Reviews You Might Find Helpful

If you’re looking to make some income on the side with sites that allow you to make a few bucks (or a few hundred bucks) each month, here are some reviews that I’ve posted on this site that might help you.

  1. EarnHoney Review
  2. Swagbucks Review
  3. GiftHulk Review
  4. CashCrate Review

Obviously, I was able to make a few hundred dollars in July. This helped me toward my ultimate goals of paying off debt and investing for the future. I’m hoping that as my income goes up over time that I’ll be able to build up some passive income and become even more successful.

How did you earn extra money online during July? Do you have any other options that worked? Let me know in the comments.

Keep Up With My Progress

If you’d like to follow my progress each month, be sure to go to the top of the page and sign up for updates. You can also follow me on Twitter.  I’m now above 300 followers, and I’d like to get more than 400 by the end of summer. You can help!

Also, if you could share this latest update below via Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media platform, it would be much appreciated. I want to inspire others to improve their finances and show them some easy ways that they can do so. Just click on the “Share This” link at the bottom of this post!

Disclaimer: This site has affiliate links. If you decide to sign up with one of these affiliate links, I may be compensated. I appreciate any support you might provide.

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Ramp Up Your Earnings On Swagbucks


The following is a sponsored post. It contains affiliate links, and I may receive compensation should you sign up with my links.

If you’re looking to ramp up you earnings on Swagbucks this month, SWAGO provides the perfect opportunity to do so. Swagbucks is hosting another round of Shopping Swago! What is SWAGO you ask? It’s a bingo-inspired promotion run by Swagbucks, a website that rewards you with points (called SB) for completing everyday online activities. You can redeem those SB for free gift cards. If you’ve never used Swagbucks, participating in SWAGO is a great introduction to the site and an easy way to earn a good amount of points quickly.

Click here to get started!

Here’s what you need to know to get your 200 SB Bonus (and don’t worry, you don’t have to make a purchase to complete a pattern):

  • Shop Swago will begin on Monday, August 7th at 9am PT/12pm ET, make sure you hit “Join” otherwise you won’t get credit for completing the action items. Each square on your Swago Board will contain an action item to complete.
  • Once you complete the action item in a particular square the square will change color signifying the action item is complete.
  • You have a limited amount of time to mark off as many squares as possible so use your time wisely.
  • Be mindful of the patterns and their corresponding bonuses located on the right of your Swago Board. The patterns will vary in difficulty and bonus value.
  • Once you’ve achieved a pattern the corresponding “Submit” button will light up. You can have multiple patterns available for submission, however, you can only submit ONE pattern so choose wisely.
  • The game ends Thursday, August 10th at 12pm PDT/3pm EDT. So make sure to hit “Submit” on the pattern you wish to submit. If you don’t hit “Submit” before the game ends you won’t receive your SB bonus.Also, if you sign up through me this month, you’ll get a $10 rebate when you make your first purchase via Swagbucks Shopping! You can activate it in the “Swag Ups” area of “My Account”
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Sign Up With Swagbucks In August And Earn A Bonus


The following is a sponsored post:

It may almost be the end of Summer (I’m personally bummed about it), but you can still earn big bonuses at Swagbucks, a rewards site where you earn points (called SB) for things you’re probably doing online already, like searching, watching videos, discovering deals, and taking surveys. Then you take those points and exchange them for gift cards to places like Amazon, Starbucks, Walmart, Target, or PayPal cash. Why not get paid to search the web? You’re already doing it anyway.

When you sign up through me this month, you can earn a $3 bonus! Here’s how:

1. Sign up using this link

2. Earn 300 SB total before 9/1/17. You’ll get a $3 (300 SB) bonus for it!

3. That’s it. It’s super easy, and Swagbucks is for real. I use it myself, and I’ve earned more than $1,800 via Swagbucks.

Every month, I earn at least enough to cash out for $25 via PayPal. I’ve also used the site for Amazon.com and Wal-Mart gift cards. It’s super easy to use. Most of my SBs come from searching, answering a few surveys and watching a few videos until I reach the bonus level. Swagbucks is my favorite site for earning money.

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July 2017 Passive Dividend Income

Passive Dividend Income Builds Up Slowly But Surely
My dividends continue to build slowly, but surely.

 

Disclaimer: This site includes affiliate links. Should you choose to sign up for any program with my referral links, I may be compensated. July is now winding down, and with it, summer. I’m always kind of sad to see this season waning although I like the weather in the fall more. With the end of another month, it’s time to review the passive dividend income that came my way in July.

July 2017 marks the end of two years since I started tracking my dividend income. I own shares of several different companies and funds that pay me one a monthly or quarterly basis. These companies sell their wares around the world, 24 hours a day. Therefore, a portion of their profits accrue to my account.

I love getting this income. I was in Europe last month visiting Prague and other cities. While I was there, my broker sent me an email that told me I’d received a dividend.

Whether I’m asleep or working hard, companies that I own pay me. The same goes for what I’m wearing. It doesn’t matter to the companies that I own. I earn some money in pajamas. I earn some money while I’m dressed in business casual for work. Right now, my passive dividend income is pretty small. I’m expecting that it will grow over time to be a nice snowball with its own mass that increases largely on its own.

Passive Dividend Income For July 2017

Today, I have to periodically add capital to get the snowball started. Without further ado, here is where my income for July 2017 came from:

Traditional IRA:

Realty Income Corp (O)                                                          $5.29
General Electric (GE)                                                              $9.60

401k

JP Morgan Equity Income R5 (OIERX)                           $0.44

TOTAL DIVIDENDS FOR APRIL 2017:                           $15.33

The first month of each quarter tends to the smallest for me in terms of dividend income. October is likely to see a smaller payout for me in terms of dividend income, as I just sold my stake in General Electric (GE) in the last week.

Year-to-Year Comparison

My $15.33 in dividend income that I received in July brings my total for 2017 to $221.97. At this time in 2016, I’d earned $69.77 in dividends. Therefore, I’ve increased dividend income to this point in the year by 218%. My dividend income in July 2016 was only $8.50, so my year-to-year increase for July was just above 80%, which wasn’t quite as good as my year-to-date cumulative increase.

With my sale of GE, the estimated dividend income that I expect to receive from my IRA dropped to $427.57. I track my dividend income in terms of the number of hours of freedom that it will buy me. This income should buy me about 21.5 hours of freedom each year, which is just less than 2 hours a month. I estimate that every $20 of dividend income would replace one hour of working income when accounting for taxes and work-related expenses.

I’m happy with the progress that I’ve made over the past couple of years. I’ve added this income to my Monthly Dividend Income page. How was your dividend income for July? Let me know if the comments.

Disclaimers And The Like

If you’d like to keep up with my progress, be sure to sign up for updates in the email signup box near the top of the page or via the popup that asks you to sign up. You can also follow me on Twitter.

Disclaimer: I am not a professional financial advisor. I intend this information for informational and educational purposes only. Perform due diligence before investing in any equities. See my disclosures page for more information. I’m long O and OIERX.

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How To Get To Prague With Miles And Five Great Things To Do Once There

How to get to Prague with miles and five things to do when there!
How To Get To Prague–It’s Actually Pretty Easy

 

Disclaimer: This site contains affiliate and referral links. Should you choose to sign up with these links, I may be compensated. I appreciate any support you choose to give.  Late last year, I discussed how I’d snagged some great (and cheap) tickets to Europe for this summer thanks to frequent flyer miles.  My main goal was to take my wife to Prague, Czech Republic. I’m now going to discuss how to get to Prague and then give five recommendations for sites to visit once there.

Prague is one of my all-time favorite cities, and there was quite a bit of availability on United Airlines for this summer when I booked the flight in October. The link above gives the general process I used to book the flight (and a trip to Lisbon with lengthy layovers in Munich and Geneva).

How To Get To Prague With Miles

To make a long story short, I used the 100,000 point signup bonus from my wife’s Chase Sapphire Reserve card along with some Ultimate Rewards points that I already had to book two one-way tickets from Cleveland to Prague and then two one-way tickets from Lisbon to Cleveland. I purchased a flight for cash on CSA Czech Airlines to get from Prague to Lisbon.

In addition to the two main cities, we had an 11-hour daytime layover scheduled for Munich, and a 15-hour overnight layover scheduled for Geneva, Switzerland. The layover in Munich actually turned into an overnight stay after Lufthansa canceled our flight.

Credit Card Signup Options

The big 100,000 signup bonus for the Sapphire Reserve is no longer available. You can still get 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points for signing up and meeting the minimum spending requirement. This minimum spend is currently $4,000 over three months, but there’s a hefty $450 annual fee.

If you’re looking for other options, the Chase Sapphire Preferred comes with less bells and whistles. It does, however, come with the same signup bonus for the same minimum spend. The $95 annual fee is actually waived the first year, so this might be a bit more palatable for those who want to avoid the fee. You can sign up for the Chase Sapphire Preferred here.

The signup bonus for each of these cards will come close to allowing you to snag a round trip ticket on United. It will totally get a low-level round trip ticket via Flying Blue. This program is a venture of Air France and KLM. Using Flying Blue, you’d only need 50,000 miles. This latter program is a partner of Delta. Both United’s Mileage Plus Program and Air France/KLM Flying Blue are transfer partners for Chase. You’ll get one point per mile that you transfer to these frequent flyer programs.

These are just a couple of the options that are available when thinking about how to get to Prague on miles. You might also look at co-branded cards for the airline you’d like to fly, as well as American Express cards that offer Membership Rewards.

Five Things To Do Once In Prague

Now that  you’ve figured out how to get to Prague, you might wonder about the great sites and activities the city has to offer. If you’re into traditional European architecture, you’re in for a treat. If you’re into history, Prague has you covered. I cannot stress that I really enjoy spending time in Prague. Here are five things you might want to check out on a visit.

1. The Astronomical Clock/Old Town Square

Prague has the oldest astronomical clock that’s still in operation. It’s located on the facade of the Old Town Hall building. Unfortunately, on my most recent trip, this was about the only part of the facade that was visible. The city had the rest of it covered up while they performed renovations.

The Astronomical Clock chimes every hour, and there are doors that open while the Twelve Apostles (or at least an artist’s rendition of them) rotate through the open doors for visitors to see. There is also a skeleton, representing Death, who rings a bell while this presentation goes on.

Additionally, there are museums and art galleries to visit in the Old Town Square, as well as a monument to Jan Hus, one of the biggest heroes in the history of the Czech Republic. The Church of Our Lady before Tyn is also a prominent feature of the Old Town Square.

The astronomical clock on the facade of the Old Town Hall in Prague

 

The Church of Our Lady before Tyn

 

2. Take a Walk Over the Charles Bridge

The Charles Bridge is one of the more iconic sites in Prague. There can be hundreds of people walking it at any given time. The Bridge is the site for many street vendors and artists. It provides great views of the Prague Castle, as well as of the Vlatava River.

On the Old Town side of the Bridge, there is a Museum of Medieval Torture that is quite interesting.  This museum has lots of instruments of torture, as well as woodcuts that depict exactly how they were used, sometimes in graphic detail. Those bringing kids along should be forewarned.

 An old gate on the Charles Bridge

3. Visit The Prague Castle

A visit to Prague would not be complete without a trip to the castle. There are several sites within the walls of the castle that are worth viewing. The first image in this article at the top of the page depicts the front of St. Vitus Cathedral, which dominates the hill that sits opposite Old Town.

In addition to visiting St. Vitus, there is another church that’s open for viewing. This is the Basilica of St. George. One of the more interesting parts of this church is a reliquary that holds actual bones.

The Basilica of St. George in Prague

 

 A reliquary with human remains at the Basilica of St. George, Prague

 

In addition to these churches, one of the more interesting things to visit within the Prague Castle is the Golden Lane. I had not visited this on my previous trip to Prague, but I’m glad I got to this time. There’s a hall with quite a bit of medieval armor and some weaponry. I was even able to try my hand at shooting a medieval crossbow and hit the bullseye on two of three shots. This was a well-spent $2 or so.

If you’ve not already visited the Museum of Medieval Torture at the Charles Bridge, you can check out some instruments of torture on the Golden Lane. There’s a torture chamber set up, as well as a dungeon. One of the more interesting parts of the Golden Lane was the apartments and businesses that are set up for viewing as they were in the nineteenth century. They are really, really small. Some of the rooms on the Golden Lane are pretty hard to access from spiral staircases made of stone. Some of the steps are really narrow.

Medieval weapons from the Golden Lane in Prague

 

 A tavern on the Golden Lane–All of it!

 

4. The Jewish Quarter

There was, as there was in many European cities, a Jewish Ghetto in Prague. This is definitely a spot most will want to visit. There are multiple synagogues that are open to the public. One has the name of each of those lost during the Holocaust painted onto the wall. One of the buildings has an interesting display that describes Jewish funeral practices.

These funeral practices would likely end with a burial in the Jewish cemetery. This portion of the ghetto was the only place that Jews could bury their dead for centuries, and the oldest grave goes back to the 15th century. This portion of Prague gives some understanding of how European Jews lived.

 

5. The Museum Of Communism

This particular attraction was a bit difficult to find. What I’d read before arriving said that this museum was above the McDonald’s just a few meters from the Mustek Metro station off of Wenceslas Square. It turns out that there were two McDonald’s within a few meters of the Mustek station.

We went to the wrong one first.

Then we found the right McDonald’s and promptly learned that the museum had moved that very day. It was a 10-minute walk from the old site to the new address at Republiky Square , but it was worth the trek. 

One of the darkest periods in Czech history was the Communist era. The Museum of Communism seeks to commemorate this chapter in the history of the Czech people. There are displays in both Czech and English, as well as subtitled videos of those who went through the Communist period, that describe the horrors that people endured.

Vaclav Havel, the playwright turned dissident turned first democratically elected Czech president is given a prominent place toward the end of this exhibition. For those interested in history, it is definitely well worth the visit.

Vaclav Havel commemorated at the Museum of Communism, Prague

 

There you have it: tips on how to get to Prague using frequent flyer miles and some spots that you might want to visit once you’ve arrived. The city is amazing, so much so that this was my second trip. If you have any questions, be sure to let me know in the comments. I’d love to answer any that I can.

If you’d like to follow my progress each month, be sure to go to the top of the page and sign up for updates. You can also follow me on Twitter.  I’m now above 300 followers, and I’d like to get more than 400 by the end of summer. You can help!

Also, if you could share this latest update below via Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media platform, it would be much appreciated. I want to inspire others to improve their finances and show them some easy ways that they can do so. Just click on the “Share This” link at the bottom of this post!

Disclaimer: This site has affiliate links. If you decide to sign up with one of these affiliate links, I may be compensated. I appreciate any support you might provide.

 

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