Tips to make the most of credit card rewards without getting carried away

Advertising Disclosure is an independent, advertising-supported web site. receives compensation from many credit card issuers whose offers appear on our site. Compensation from our advertising partners impacts how and where their products appear on our site, including, for example, the order in which they may appear within review lists. has not reviewed all available credit card offers in the marketplace.
Credit Card Applications » Research » Guides » Travel with Credit Cards » Tips to make the most of credit card rewards without getting carried away

Tips to make the most of credit card rewards without getting carried away

Updated: December 26, 2012

Add to Favorites:
There are several tips that you can pick to make the most of your credit card rewards without really hurting your own finances. A lot of times, rewards are nothing but marketing strategies devised by the credit card companies to make you spend more than you intend to. There are always terms and conditions and numerous other caveats which don’t allow you to take full toll of the rewards. Here are some tips that will help you deal with rewards carefully. Don’t shop for rewards If you have budgeted to shop for $100 stick to it. If a credit card offers you $25 discount if you shop in excess of $200, don’t fall for it. This is because you are spending an additional $75 without your realizing it, just to avail the discount. In many different ways, we all end up doing the same mistake of trying to make the discount count. Often we end up spending far more than we need to and more than easily blow up whatever saving we get from the discount. So the idea is to make use of the rewards as a benefit, but never to shop for it. Take note of your credit limit Sometimes to make discounts for milestone expenses count, we go out of the way to purchase things around in a supermarket or a mall. But you have to make sure you don’t cross your credit limit. If you do, you end up paying overdraft fees unnecessarily, which eats into your savings anyway. Similarly, if you make too many purchases and end up not being able to repay the money before due date, you have to pay late fees. It also affects your credit history. So your credit card rewards end up getting wasted. Keep track of expiration dates Although there are loyalty points to redeem they might be expiring pretty soon. So when you are making plans around redeeming your reward points, make sure you know when they expire. It is also a good idea to read the fine print and check if there is any cap on the number of points that you can redeem within a month. Often you shop to redeem points and then realize you can use only certain number of points. To avoid embarrassment you end up paying the rest of the money which isn’t really a smart use of the credit card rewards at all. Check the cash back mode Cash back cards might not always give you cash back. Sometimes, you have to redeem that cash by sending a request explicitly to the credit card company. Only then will you receive a check for your cash. It might be possible that you will be offered a deduction on your next month’s credit card bill. These are nuances you need to be aware of instead of getting really excited about getting some cash back after the expenses. If you don’t read the fine print you might end up not benefiting at all from the rewards.

Add to Favorites:
Get the latest news, articles and expert advice delivered to your inbox. It's FREE.

Other Travel with Credit Cards Research:

Related Research:

5 Reasons to Get the Capital One Venture Miles Rewards Card

By Herbert Moore, Posted: January 18, 2017

If you’re looking for a great travel rewards credit card—one that offers unlimited earning opportunities, flexible redemption, and lots of perks—look no further. This card from Capital One has you covered. Continue reading

Credit Card Tips For Holiday Shopping 2016

By Herbert Moore, Posted: November 23, 2016

November and December are the busiest months as gift shopping reaches its peak. People rush around looking for the best gifts and the best deals leaving a lot of money in the shops. Holiday season may force you to go over the household ... Continue reading

Credit Cards to Save More on Holiday Shopping

By Herbert Moore, Posted: November 22, 2016

Discounts and special offers are available all year round. Werther you are a bargain hunter or an impulse buyer, make sure you check online discounts and special offers. Also, if you are a cardholder, see if your credit card opens the door ... Continue reading