Apply For a Credit Card That Pays You BackJanuary 5, 2011 - 8:53 am
Most people today carry at least one piece of plastic in their wallet and many carry multiple cards. If you are looking to apply for a credit card, why not choose one that rewards you? If you are going to be using credit cards to make purchases, you might as well get something in return. Choosing a rewards credit card can be more difficult than you might think. Here is what you need to know so that you can choose the perfect cad for you.
Different Cards Offer Different Types of Rewards
It wouldn’t make sense for you to apply for a rewards credit card that offered airline miles if you never fly anywhere and it also wouldn’t make sense to apply for a rewards credit card for a clothing store that you never shop in. Take the time to look around and see what types of reward cards will best suit your needs.
Rewards cards can offer you rewards in a variety of ways including cash back, free travel, gift cards from their partners, specialty gifts and more. Don’t just apply for the first one you come across, instead pick one that you will actually want to redeem the rewards.
Check For Fees
While many credit cards carry no annual fee, some do, especially airline reward cards. If there is an annual fee you will need to weigh the cost of the fee against how much in rewards you think you will earn annually. Only then can you decide if the fee will be worth it.
Check For Limits
Some reward cards only allow you to earn so much in rewards annually. Your best bet is to go with a card that has unlimited rewards. It is also a good idea to see if there are blackout periods for rewards (mainly on travel cards) and take note that some cards make you earn a minimum amount of point before you can redeem. Choose a card that will fit your spending habits.
Some cards only offer rewards that expire and some don’t. Always check the card’s expiration date policy and be sure to redeem your rewards on time. If you are someone who has difficulty remembering to redeem your rewards you may want to steer clear of cards that use expiration dates on their programs.
Minimum Spending Policy To Earn Rewards
While many rewards cards let you earn rewards with every purchase, no matter what you spend, others make you spend a certain amount before they will offer you rewards. This type of card might not be a wise choice as it very often will encourage you to spend more than you need to.
How Much Will you Earn Back
While the general rule of thumb is around 1%, some do offer more and some offer less. Check around to see where you can get the best deal. Some cards offer a certain percentage back on all purchases, then higher percentages on specific items. Still other cards rotate bonus points on certain purchases monthly or quarterly.