Credit Card Rewards: 3 Tips to Rack Up Points & Freebies

By: Lindsey Granger Posted: 12:11 PM, Aug 1, 2018

Credit card rewards are easier to take advantage of than you think. When was the last time you looked at how many points you have on your card? If you aren’t taking advantage of those points, you could be throwing money away.  The List spoke with Julian Mark Kheel from The Points Guy, who’s explaining why you should be enrolled in a credit card rewards and points program now. 

1. Use Your Rewards Card for Everything 

The big thing that people are missing out on when it comes to rewards cards is not using them. People go out and make every-day purchases and use cash or a debit card, and they’re not earning any rewards for doing that. According to CNBC, Americans collectively miss out on about $22 billion dollars worth of free travel expenses per year by not using reward cards. Julian says to use the card for every-day purchases and before you know it, you’ll rack up enough points to buy things you want. 

With that said, make sure you’re only buying things you really need. Purchase items you would’ve spent money on anyway, then pay your bill in full every month to avoid racking up interest charges. 

2. Know the Hidden Perks

Rewards cards come with a lot of perks just for every-day purchases. One of those perks is called retail protection. This means if you buy something on the card and the item is stolen or damaged in the first 90 days, you can get reimbursed by the credit card company.

Credit card points aren’t just redeemable for travel – there’s a multitude of perks to enjoy! You can also use them for cash back, meaning literally you can just redeem your points and get cash back into your wallet or purse. You can also give points to friends, and even use them for charitable donations.

3. Redeem Your Credit Card Rewards Regularly 

And finally, make sure to redeem your points regularly. If you aren’t redeeming your points on a regular basis, then you’re really not earning anything back from your purchases. An unused point is worth nothing. A recent survey by Bankrate shows that 31 percent of credit card holders in the U.S. have never redeemed their credit card rewards. Don’t just save them for a rainy day or for retirement. Use them now, especially now in the summer when the price for travel might be high. Keep that cash, burn your points!

Overall, credit cards don’t have to be synonymous of high interest and debt. If you play your cards right, you could be looking at tons of perks that bring you some serious benefits.

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