The Ultimate Spreadsheet To Track Credit Card Churning

For those like me that love to collect credit card rewards and  travel everywhere for free, keeping track can become difficult and cumbersome. Among the bonus requirements, reward structures, annual fees, and application deadlines, there are many things to pay attention to. At any given time, I have about 15-20 active credit cards for just myself. Each year, I will open 5-10 new cards and subsequently also cancel 5-10 credit cards since I do not want to pay the annual fee. This practice is called “churning” and can become stressful and difficult to manage. I’ve created a spreadsheet in Excel that will solve all your problems!


Why use a spreadsheet to track Credit Cards?

Unless you have a legitimate business, most of us don’t have enough regular day to day spend to acquire any meaningful amount of bonuses.

Even with a lucrative card like the Chase Sapphire where you earn 3x on dining and travel, to get $1,000 worth of rewards, you’d have to spend $25,000. That’s a lot of money for the average person. However, the sign on bonus is a cool 100,000 points which is worth $1,500. The requirement to get these points is to spend only $4,000 within 3 months. A much better return on your money! Of course the Sapphire Reserve has a ton of other benefits as well but for the most part, I sign up for a credit card and will usually discard after I’ve collected the bonus.

The above example is just 1 credit card. I’m always applying for new credit cards to get the bonus and therefore, my spreadsheet tracks everything from credit limits, credit score impact variables, time to next annual fee, and more.


Credit Card Rewards and churning Excel spreadsheet

The spreadsheet I created focuses specifically on credit card bonuses and churning. As I’ve written before, it’s not about spending money on the credit card, as much as it is about pocketing the sign on bonuses. credit card churning and rewards tracking spreadsheet

It’s simple, yet effective. It will help you avoid paying excessive annual fees, remind you when your bonus period expires, and track canceled cards. There’s numerous columns in this spreadsheet that captures everything you need to know about the card you just signed up for. To download it, click the button below!

Download Credit Card Spreadsheet

The spreadsheet is in Google Sheets because if I update it in the future, it will be easy to access. It’s easy to download it and use with Microsoft Excel as well.

To download offline, click the red button above, then click file > download as > Microsoft Excel


Using the Credit Card churning spreadsheet

As someone that works with spreadsheets regularly, I’ve included some functionality like conditional formatting and formulas that an Excel novice might not understand. I will explain everything necessary for those wanting to get the full use out of the spreadsheet. For the most part, anyone with any excel experience should just follow my inventory and copy/delete rows accordingly to populate your inventory accordingly.

  • Bank: The credit card provider
  • Card Name: The name of the credit card
  • Type: Whether it is a personal or business card. Business cards do not affect your personal credit report
  • Card Type: Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover etc.
  • Opened: Date card was first opened
  • Credit Limit: Credit limit you were approved for. This factors heavily into your total credit limit.
  • Inquiry?: Credit inquiries stay on your credit report for two years. This affects your credit score, and business cards are not included
    • Uses the Opened Column
  • Age: How long you’ve had the credit card for and factors into your credit score’s average age of credit calculation
    • Uses the Opened Column
  • Annual Fee: The annual fee associated with the credit card. Put $0 if there is no fee
  • First year waived?: Many cards waive their first year’s fee but some do not (Chase Sapphire Reserve, Delta AMEX Platinum, Chase Hyatt etc.)
  • Next fee date: Uses formulas to calculate when your next fee date is
    • Uses the Opened and Annual Fee column
  • Days until next fee date: Uses formulas to calculate how many days are left until your next fee
    • Uses the Next fee date and Annual Fee columns
  • Rewards Name: Name of the card’s rewards network
  • Bonus: Sign-on bonus of the card you applied for
  • Minimum Spend: How much you must spend to get the bonus above
  • Time Frame: How long you have to spend the minimum amount required (in days)
  • Estimated Value: This is just an estimated rewards amount I calculated based on how I would use the rewards. Feel free to change
  • Days Until Bonus Expires: Uses formulas to computer how many days are left for you to hit your minimum spend
    • Uses the bonus and time frame columns
  • Bonus Received: When you received your bonus. There is conditional formatting here that will turn the cell green when you input a date.
  • Current Rewards Balance: Your current rewards balance of the credit card
  • Rewards Detail: Details of the rewards structure (excluding the bonus)
  • Best way to redeem: The most ideal way of using the rewards earned.
  • Keep card past 1y: For the credit card churners, this column is a placeholder for you to decide if you want to keep the card after 1y. This is based on whether you think an annual card is worth keeping.


Do NOT edit the cells in gray so to preserve the formula integrity. 


What do the other worksheets do?

The main sheet is named “Current Inventory” which is your active inventory of credit cards. I also added a few more worksheets.

Potential Cards:
Anything I plan on getting in the foreseeable future. All fields are the same as the ones in the main sheet.

Canceled Cards:
It’s important to track canceled cards. Not only will this be a good gauge for my credit score, but many credit card bonuses reset after 24 months. That means, I will know when in the future, I can re-apply for the same card and get the bonus again.

Credit Score:
Straight forward. Track your credit score by using the credit score tools that every bank now provides for free.

A list of all active credit cards out there courtesy of the wonderful people at Reddit.


I hope this helps you out as you work your way to endless rewards and free travel! If you have any questions about the spreadsheet, please leave a comment below!

Showing 17 comments
  • Paul Newman

    Johnny Great Info! I am a married 62 year old veterinary surgeon with excellent credit and FICO score. Recently forced to semi retire from multiple back surgeries and living full time in RV. We want to be able to fly from wherever we are in USA back to Nashville as work comes up. Then back to our rig. Two Quick questions:
    1. What is the difference to creditors of FICO score versus Credit Scores from the three agencies. I use Credit Karma for Credit scores and Bank Of America offers free FICO. I also check actual report at AnnualFreeCreditReport or Equifax if something fishy. Any other free sources that do not affect your credit report?
    2. When I try to download your spreadsheet for CC tracking on my IPhone 8 it just opens the non-editable sheet without the option to download to MS Excel which is on my phone as well. Please advise.

    • Johnny

      Hi Paul, I’ll admit I’m not an expert with the rating agencies but I so know that the scores you get from credit karma and Whay you’d get from a credit card provider are the same. For example, credit karma has your transunionn and equifax score. Chase largely uses transunion when they pill your credit score for decision making so they will have a service that tells you your transunion score. All the same stuff. They scores should be very close in number.

      As for your iPhone, Im not sure about thay since I don’t use one. Perhaps download the Google sheets app and see if that helps. Otherwise you should be editing this on a computer anyway because editing spreadsheets on a phone is a huge pain. Thanks!

  • Jeffrey Myers

    What a great spreadsheet. I love it! … saved a ton or work.

    • Johnny

      Thanks Jeff! Glad you like it and happy churning!

  • Steve

    Johnny, thanks so much for creating such a useful tool and sharing it. This is my first year of collecting credit card bonuses and after a year I am starting to get overwhelmed since between my wife and I we have opened 12 cards this year. I was just getting ready to start creating a spreadsheet but decided to google to see if anyone had a template and found yours as the first result – it looks so comprehensive so I am looking no further! Blessings & Happy Travels!

    • Johnny

      12 cards already! I like it. Best part of being married is there’s 2 sign on bonuses per card ๐Ÿ™‚

      Also, glad you like the spreadsheet. Let me know if you have any questions on it!

  • Joe

    Hi Johnny, thanks for the blog and the spreadsheet! I’m 23 and just getting into card churning and building my credit, currently have five cards, most recently both Chase Freedom cards. Due to necessary one-time expenses I’m going to be able to hit the minimum spend for both to collect the bonuses. My question is, since I will have little use for the Freedom Unlimited after collecting the bonus (I have the Citi Double Cash card), should I cancel it or product change it to a Slate after about six months? The main reason Im thinking of product changing it is to age the account and not have a <1 year closed account stuck on my report for however long until it falls off. If I product change it, can I apply for another Freedom Unlimited in 2 years and collect the bonus again (with the original F.U., now Slate still open), or do I have to cancel it in order to do this?

    • Johnny

      Hey Joe, good to hear about your new endeavor!

      If you product change to Slate, you should be able to re-acquire the Freedom unlimited bonuses after 2 years. Personally, I wouldn’t bother product changing your non-fee cards. If you really want the Slate card for their 0%APR intro, then just apply for that card as a new card. The bonuses for the Freedom and the Freedom Unlimited aren’t that great to begin with so waiting 2 years just to get the Freedom unlimit’s sign on bonus again seems less fruitful than it’s worth. I also wouldn’t cancel the cards altogether because no fee cards are great to build up your average age of credit which is a key component of your score. If anything, I would wait until you can get the Chase Sapphire Reserve card because that’s where the real rewards start accumulating!

  • Jacob

    Thanks for the spreadsheet! Great work. One question: My sheet says I have 4 inquiries for Chase 5/24, but I’ve only applied for 2 credit cards in the last year and all my other fields are empty. And when I clear out all the cells, it still has a 2 listed even when I have no data in the worksheet. Just curious. Thanks!

    • Jacob

      Nevermind. I figured it out.. I didn’t clear out the cancelled cards. Sorry

      • Johnny

        Glad you figured it out! Happy credit card tracking ๐Ÿ™‚

  • James

    I was just working on something like this for myself but really like the one you have! For the Chase 5/24 piece of this spreadsheet, are you factoring in cards you’ve closed as well as the ones you currently hav eopened?

    • Johnny

      Hi James, yes it definitely does. It counts the number of personal cards from the “canceled cards” tab that was opened in the last 2 years.

  • Jeff

    Johnny, where on Reddit do you get the list of active credit cards? Is it regularly updated?

  • Evan

    Nice sheet, I’m starting to use it. I fixed the formula for calculation of days until next annual fee so it takes into account the day of year. For cell K4 it should be the following: =IF(I4=0,””,IF(DATE(YEAR($B$1),MONTH(E4),DAY(E4))<$B$1,DATE(YEAR($B$1)+1,MONTH(E4),DAY(E4)),DATE(YEAR($B$1),MONTH(E4),DAY(E4))))

    • Johnny

      Hi Evan, thanks for the comment. I don’t think the days of the year matter because the formula is just saying if you opened the card this year, the annual fee will hit next year and if you didn’t open the card this year (meaning you opened it years past), the annual fee will hit this year regardless.

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