There is no denying the advantages credit cards can bring to your life and finance. Not only you get to buy various types of products and services without carrying cash and make payments later, these cards also offer a host of benefits to users. The credit card agencies or banks offering them, try to lure users with various types of rewards. These can be in many forms including cash back, discounts at certain retail outlets and points that can be redeemed in various ways, etc. Choosing the most apt credit card can be tedious and users are often puzzled regarding the best ways to maximize the redemption opportunities for these cards.
6 Handy Tips That Can Help You Make The Best Use of Redemption Options In Credit Cards:
1. Lifestyle and Priorities
Not every credit card user has the same priorities in life and they can have lifestyle differences as well. This needs to be considered when you buy a credit card, say industry experts. For example, if you rarely use flights for travel or other transport needs, it is useless to opt for a credit card that has flyer miles as rewards. Similarly, if you are not fond of eating out much, do not use a credit card that has discounts and points on restaurant deals. Sometimes, you may receive calls and offers from the credit card company regarding upgrade to a new card with more facilities. Before saying yes, weigh the pros and cons of the new cards well.
2. Avoiding Spending Overt
While credit cards offer cash backs and discounts on purchases made online and regular outlets, not all cards have same schemes. If you find a credit card has terms and conditions for rewards that may make you exceed your budget often- evade it. Instead, opt for a card that offers regular cash back schemes- even if it is minimal.
3. Considering The Running Costs
Some credit cards can be used for free as long as you fulfill a yearly limit on spending. However, you will also find some other cards that impose an annual usage fee on users. The difference between cards in terms of interest rate also needs to be considered. Nowadays, you can use specific websites to compare the offerings of various leading credit cards side by side.
4. Keeping a Tab on Time
It is necessary to keep in mind that your reward points accrued through credit card usage will not be stored forever. The time limit for reward point storage can again vary from one credit card to another. You need to keep a tab on the expiry date for the gathered reward points. In most cases, you can store reward points for 12 months or 18 months. The saving grace is that you are likely to get a reminder through SMS or email before expiry of these accrued reward points. As soon as you get that, utilize the gathered points.
5. Keeping Track of Changes
You may have signed up for a credit card with facilities that you found suitable a couple of years back. It is only natural that the bank or issuing entity will change reward and cash back terms over time. Of course, they inform the users about such policy changes. But, most users are too busy to go through the email with details. It is prudent that you take time to read emails sent by your credit card company. If you find the changed terms, do not suit your needs anymore, discarding it and changing to another is not hard.
6. Utilizing The Shopping Portals
You may buy a lot of things online and the conveniences need no elaboration. However, you should make use of credit cards when making such purchases in the web. Instead of browsing the shop website directly, make use of the shopping portal of the bank from which you have taken the credit card. Top shopping portals often have associations with specific banks and credit cards used by them. This makes you eligible for getting additional discounts or rewards. Your credit card may not be associated with all popular online shops, but checking before you shop does not hurt.