With the financial world in a jumble people can still rely on credit card rewards to earn them benefits just for being responsible credit users. In light of much financial stress, though, you should know that there may be more ways to benefit from your rewards credit card.
If you have chosen to open a credit card account because you appreciate and enjoy the idea of earning rewards just for shopping, then you may also want to make sure that you are maximizing your point-earning potential. Maybe you have the best possible rewards card on the market today, but that doesn’t mean that you are necessarily using it at its most optimum possibilities. To make sure that you are getting the absolute most out of your rewards credit card, here are four ways that you can earn more rewards:
Upgrade Or Trade In Your Existing Card
If you are still using a basic credit card for emergencies or periodic charges but you really want to take advantage of credit card rewards, then it might be time for you to upgrade your existing card to a gold or platinum status card. These cards will give you a higher credit limit but will also let you earn points faster as well as provide with more ways to earn points and perhaps even more ways to redeem them. The more features a card possesses, the more options you have for enjoying benefits. Of course, always carefully read the contract and compare your options before you dive into a new account.
Charge Budget Monthly Expenses To Your Credit Card
With a higher credit limit another thing you might want to consider is start charging your budgeted monthly expenses to your credit card. This is money you are going to spend anyway, but if you do it this way you will earn rewards points just for responsibly paying your bills. Consider, then:
- Your phone bill
- Your cable/satellite bill
- Your car insurance
- Your car payment
- Daycare expenses
- Gas and auto care
Obviously, there are many other options for this and each person is different. What matters is that you find something that you are going to spend money on anyway and then charge it to your card instead of paying with cash or a check. When you pay it off at the end of the month it will be like it never happened and you will have magically earned rewards points. If you do this every month over the course of a year, you may be surprised (and likely very pleased) at how quickly your rewards points have accumulated.
Another way that you can earn points faster is to add another authorized user to the account. If you own two vehicles in your household, for example, both drivers can keep a card on hand to purchase gas. By combining your purchasing power you also combine your point-earning power and can, hopefully, reach your rewards goal faster and with less individual effort. This is ideal for couples who might have a unified goal of taking a tropical vacation within the next year.
Consolidate And Use Fewer Cards
While upgrading one credit account can be helpful, having too many cards is usually detrimental. This is because multiple cards carry multiple payments as well as multiple penalties. Also, if you have more than one rewards card and you use both of them, you are splitting your rewards points between them. That means that even though you may have more than enough points between the two cards for airfare or a hotel stay or a cash rebate, since they are not on the same card you actually get nothing. Consolidating your debt or paying off your accounts and downsizing to a single card will help you in many ways:
- One payment to make every month
- One fee to worry about if you miss the payment
- One due date track every month
- All purchases earn points in the same system
There is one more benefit to consolidating credit and it is that the peace of mind that comes along with this reduction in stress and anxiety allows you to make more sound decisions about your finances and look towards the future.
By understanding your credit card rewards program, you can maximize the ways you earn points. Of course, by doing this, you will be able to enjoy your rewards in less time and more often; that is something every consumer can appreciate.