Rewards are why people stick with credit cards. Just imagine using a credit card with no perks at all. It is definitely a boring cash-in and cash-out cycle.
Credit card companies use reward techniques to entice more applicants, thus gaining more customers and more partnerships. People who have excellent credit can expect initial rewards bonuses worth hundreds of dollars and earning rates in popular categories. Examples of these categories include gas, groceries, travel, and dining.
Obviously, not only those who have good credit earn these rewards. Credit card companies reward almost anyone across the credit card spectrum. It is just a matter of knowing your way around the rewards landscape to better subsidize your spending as efficiently as possible.
Credit card rewards are categorized into three basic currencies: cash back, miles, and points.
• Cash back is returning a percentage of your purchase which will apply onto your credit card statement.
• Miles are points earned when tied to a specific airline or generic miles that can be applied towards any travel-related expenses.
• Points are earned when tied to a hotel or may be redeemable towards merchandise.
Ways to maximize credit card reward points:
• Never carry a balance. You must pay everything at the due date. If you carry a balance, what you're paying in interest could arguably pay for whatever you're receiving in rewards, and the credit cards with rewards usually have higher interest rates.
• Missing payments will make you lose out on rewards and lower your credit score.
• If your purpose is only to get the rewards, it is not a good enough reason to spend. Like tax benefits, it is always better to consider the reason for your spending and the rewards will follow.
• Having many credit cards can make it difficult to monitor your rewards for each card. You may be surprised that one reward category may not apply for other cards, which means your reward points are going to be diluted.
• Better to read the fine print for each reward you are most likely to pursue. For example, for airline rewards, the condition is to travel on blackout dates or vice versa. This could ruin your chances for vacation. It would be best to inquire about the conditions of these rewards in advance.
• Look for ways to get more rewards like checking on specific dates where they are providing these rewards or you can get more points when you shop at a particular store.
• If offered, shop through the credit card’s online portal to get more points from their commission.
• Get email alerts for shops that offer more points, so you won’t miss out on any sales or promotions.
• Subscribe to a credit card that has the reward of your choice. For example, if you are more into travel, then apply for a credit card that is tied to an airline, so every time you shop, you get free seats.
Rewards are exciting because they serve as a relief in spending. You must apply for a credit card that suits the rewards you want in accordance with your spending capability.