Everyone probably agrees that credit cards are convenient and secure but many people are not aware of some of the extended benefits that credit cards offer. Here are 5 of those benefits.
There are so many reasons why credit cards are good to have in your wallet that most people would agree that it is important to have, at least one or two cards at any given times. Although this agreement would probably be unanimous across all consumer demographics, it is also true, perhaps, that not all consumers would agree on which benefits are the best. As a matter of fact, here are 5 benefits that many credit card holders overlook or know very little about, but should.
First of all, just about every credit card in circulation carries some kind of Price Protection promise. This benefit ensures that you will get the best possible price on the merchandise you buy using your credit card if it is advertised at a lower price after the sale. Basically, if you find the item at a better price within the time limit you can apply for a refund of the difference. The time limit and dollar amount vary from card to card but the benefit is still the same. The Chase Freedom Card, for example, offers a refund of up to $500 within 90 days of purchase, with eligible rebates capped at $3,500 for the year.
Secondly, and if you find Price Protection to be quite motivating, many credit cards also offer Product Protection. This is another form of consumer insurance that will replace or reimburse for a purchase good if it is stolen or damaged within a certain time frame of purchase. For some cards, then, you could receive up to $1,000 for every item that is stolen or damaged within 90 days of purchase (with, perhaps, a limit of $50,000 per calendar year). Of course, it helps to have your receipt handy if this happens, but it’s always a good idea to keep credit card receipts for your personal tax records.
Thirdly, many consumers are not quite aware that their credit card might provide a manufacturer’s warranty extension at no additional cost. This is particularly useful to cardholders who are already apt to purchase an extended warranty because it will basically accomplish the same thing without requiring you to make an additional purchase. Of course, terms and conditions will vary between the different providers.
The right to dispute any charge on your statement is another benefit that is available with many credit cards but not used very often. Perhaps it is the process by which you must file your claim that discourages so many cardholders but those who do find a fraudulent or mysterious charge have the right and freedom to report it and have it investigated.
This benefit requires that disputes be submitted in writing and that time be allowed for proper investigation. While the investigation is open the dispute will not negatively affect your credit score, which is part of the reason why you might want to remove fraudulent charges in the first place.
Various travel rewards and incentives is another category of benefits that many cardholders do not take full advantage of. These benefits could include anything from rental car discounts, insurance policy discounts, baggage delay or loss protection, free hotel room upgrades, exclusive concierge services and more. Some cards may only a few of these and some may offer all of them and more.
At the end of the day you need to know what benefits your card provides and how you can best take advantage of them.