How to Get the Most Points on Your Credit Card

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Credit cards are a convenient way to pay for goods and services, and many cards also give you rewards for using them. Rewards, often called points, may provide you cash back or credits on things like travel or merchandise. If you receive rewards for using your credit card, you want to get the maximum amount you can. Here are some ways to get the most points on your credit card.

Use the card as much as possible
The easiest and best way to maximize the credit card rewards you get is to use your card as much as possible. If you use your card for all the spending you can, then it will maximize those rewards. For example, if you spend $3,000 a month on things you could pay for with a credit card, doing so would mean an extra $30 each month with a card that offers 1 percent cash back. Over the course of a year, that’s an extra $360. Of course, if you utilize this strategy, you must pay your credit card bill in full every month. If you fail to do so, the interest charges for carrying a balance will easily offset the rewards that you earn.

Use your card strategically
Some cards give you more rewards in certain categories. For example, a card that is branded through a convenience store company might give you 5 percent off on gas. Many department and discount stores have their own branded cards that give you as much as 5 percent back when you use it in their stores. General credit cards might give you extra rewards in certain categories, such as spending on travel. Some cards have limits on the amount of spending on which you can earn the higher rewards. Making sure to use the right card in each situation will help to ensure that you get the most credit card rewards possible.

Take advantage of special offers
Another way to help ensure you get the maximum rewards on your credit card is to utilize any special offers that come your way. One of the most common ways to get more rewards is to sign up for a new card that is offering points for signing up. New cards often also will offer extra rewards on purchases for the first six months or a year as an enticement to get you to sign up for the card. Existing credit cards also often offer special promotions that give extra rewards for a certain period of time to existing cardholders to try to boost usage and spending.

Redeem on time
Having credit card rewards is no good if you don’t redeem them. While some cards may automatically send you a check when you reach certain thresholds, other cards make you redeem rewards. In many cases those rewards expire after a certain amount of time, and if you fail to redeem them, then you lose them.

Credit card rewards are a good benefit, for both the card issuer and the card holder. Making sure you follow these tips will help you get the maximum amount of rewards to which you are entitled.

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