Tips On Getting More From Your Credit Card Rewards Program
Do you own a reward credit card or are you planning on applying for one? Many people own one or more reward credit cards on their account but not all of them are reaping the rewards they deserve. In this article, let's discuss some tips on how you can get more from your credit card rewards program and how to make sure that you'll be redeeming those well-deserved rewards:
Use your discount privileges. Most reward credit cards include discount privileges that are exclusive only to their card holders. Are you aware of the discount privileges your credit card provides? If not, then take the time to review the terms of your card or check online and make sure that you are maximizing the full potential of your credit card. For instance, some credit cards provide printable coupon codes online that you can use in purchasing from selected merchants. Usually, all you need to do is register online in order to access these printable discount coupons and get big savings.
Pay your balance in full each month. Reward credit cards usually come with higher interest rates than regular credit cards so you'll want to make sure that you're not carrying a balance over to the next billing cycle. Why would you pay for additional cost on the interest rates when you can avoid it by paying on time? If you need to pay for the interest rate each time, you may actually be paying more than what you earn from your reward credit card.
Stay true to your card's terms and conditions. Did you know that not paying your bills on time, delaying on your payments or exceeding your credit limit can disqualify you from redeeming your rewards? Yes, most reward credit cards impose this rule on their card holders. If you're not sure, take out your copy of your credit card's terms and conditions and review the stipulations on this matter. To be sure that you'll be eligible to claim your hard-earned points, always stay true to your credit card's conditions.
Use your reward credit card wisely. To collect points and earn your rewards quickly, obviously you need to use your credit card. Nevertheless, this doesn't mean you need to go out of your way to make unnecessary purchases which can result to credit card debt. Remember, it is crucial for you to pay off your monthly balance regularly to avoid the interest and penalty fees. Exercise caution when using your reward credit card and don't charge purchases on it just to collect your rewards.
Pay your utilities using your reward credit card. One way to rack up those points without making unnecessary purchases is to use your reward credit card in paying your monthly utilities. These include your electricity, cable, telephone, gasoline, and other services you're subscribed to. You can also work as a family in collecting points on your reward credit card. If your family members need to make purchases, tell them to charge on your card and pay you the cash instead. This way, you can accumulate more points on your account without breaking your budget.
Successful Credit Cards For A Successful You
There are tons of competing credit card companies around. For the consumer in you and me, separating the wheat from them tares among these companies will be quite an enormous task. What should one look for anyway when considering what credit card company to avail of?
As with most smart consumers, the key to finding the best credit card company is to stick with the best. Among the hundreds of credit card companies that exist, only about 10 to 20 can be considered truly successful. Identifying these companies will narrow down your choices to the select few credit cards that are worth applying for.
Here are some of the characteristics of successful credit card companies.
1) No Annual Fee - Some credit card companies are confident enough in their status that they do not need to collect annual fees. When you consider applying for a card, make sure you consider those that do not have annual fees first. Remember, if these companies that require annual fees are not content to make money off of the interest on your purchases, then they are not financially reliable to bank on. If the card you are looking at has annual fees, steer clear of them unless they offer some fantastic feature that you just can't miss.
2) Extended Interest Days- Upon purchase of an item using your credit card, you will not be charged interest unless you are unable to pay before the set interest day deadline. The most successful credit card companies offer longer periods of grace. This means that you do no have to pay interest until that day comes. Often enough, the standard for this period is 25 days.
To avoid having to pay interest, you have to pay within 25 days after your billing statement. For large purchases that require numerous months to pay, you can swallow the interest for its sake.
3) Low Annual Percentage Rate - Some credit card companies offer low annual percentage rates. These companies can attract more customers because they have the financial clout to wag such a deal in front of consumers. Consumers will benefit from lower APR. Companies that offer lower APRs hint of larger consumer bases that make such offers possible.
If you plan to pay your balance on credit cards in full, the APR may not be much of a factor in your selection of a credit card.
4) Consult Feedbacks and Industry Profiles - most successful credit card companies are featured in business journals and other media. This will also give you an idea of who's who in the credit card business.
Discover Credit Cards A Look At The Top 3
Although Visa and MasterCard might be the forerunners of the credit card industry, Discover card has been increasing in popularity over the last decade or so. Except for student credit cards, most Discover cards have a comparatively low APR, and they never have an annual fee. They have also been commended for customer service and for fraud prevention. With more than 50 million cardholders and more than 4 million merchant locations, Discover is proving their critics wrong. When they first opened in the early 90's, their competition scoffed and it didn't look as though they would make it in the credit card industry. They were hoping to brand a new trend in credit cards, and they have succeeded after years of marketing and communication.
Here are three popular Discover credit cards:
The Miles Card from Discover Card
The Miles Card is one of the most versatile frequent flier credit cards in that it allows you to earn miles as well as gift certificates or cash back. Customers earn one mile for every dollar spent, and can choose how they want to redeem their points.
Discover recently increased the bonus miles card holders can earn with the Miles Card to 12,000. On both purchases and balance transfers, the introductory rate is 0%. There are no blackout dates and miles can be redeemed both online and over the phone. In addition, you can redeem your points for flights on any airline. Discover might not offer some of the fringe benefits that accompany Visa and MasterCard credit cards, but they make up for it in rewards.
Discover Platinum Gas Card
With gas prices rising nearly every day, many consumers are turning to gas rebate cards to offset the amount they're spending at the pump. Gas rebate cards, such as the Discover Platinum Gas Card, offer cash back rewards for every dollar you spend at gas stations.
The Discover gas rebate card is singularly unique because of its double-reward program. Typically, customers earn 5% cash back on all purchases at gas stations, but if you redeem your cash back rewards with select merchants, you receive double the original amount. Discover offers a 0% introductory APR of 0%, which applies to both purchases and balance transfers.
Customers also enjoy 0% fraud liability and free online Bill Pay. This card does require excellent credit, however, and they do have a minimum spending limit to receive the full 5% cash back. This card has a $50,000 credit limit.
Discover Gold Card
The Discover Gold card is one of the oldest Discover credit cards, and is still popular today. Like the platinum card, the Gold card allows customers to earn up to 5% cash back on purchases at select merchants and the cash back doubles if used within the Discover Merchant Network.
Customers can choose between three unique card faces and enjoy 0% fraud liability. Stores within the Discover Merchant Network include Red Lobster, Sharper Image and the Sunglass Hut. As with most Discover cards, there is a 0% introductory APR on balance transfers for the Gold card.
The Gold card requires a good credit rating and there is a minimum spending limit in order to receive the full 5% cash back rewards. The card offers up to $25,000 in auto rental insurance coverage and up to $500,000 in travel accidental death insurance.
Discover Card is the newest credit card company, but it is growing in popularity as they continue to offer excellent customer service and valuable rewards programs. Take a look at our top three Discover cards and choose the one that works for you.
Comparing Business Credit Cards
When talking about business credit cards, you probably often hear that it is better to shop around and compare the different business credit card products. Perhaps you have been wondering what comparing business credit cards really entail. The task of comparing business credit cards involves an examination of all the factors and features and not only the offered rate of interest or the nature of rewards.
The reason that there are so many types of business credit cards on the market - even from within the stable of the same business credit card issuer - is that each of these addresses a different set of needs. Your particular business needs will therefore dictate the type of business credit card you should be applying for.
There are a number of established business credit card brands, each with a distinctive package of benefits that may be markedly similar in some ways, yet discernibly different in terms of their features.
Those who do a lot of traveling may be attracted to American express business credit cards. Bear in mind that you must have good credit ratings when applying for this business credit card brand as their standards for business credit card approvals favor only those with good to excellent credit. In exchange, you gain access to a fine range of travel benefits from a company that has catered for the needs of travelers for decades.
The more generally available business credit cards are Visa and MasterCard, because of the fact that these are issued by a plethora of member banks. These banks are seriously competing for your business, so you are likely to benefit from variations in rates and several rewards programs. The other business credit card brands
7 Ways To Protect And Improve Your Credit Rating
Your credit score accounts for the amount of interest you have to pay for a loan or a credit card. Increasing your score in just a few points will make a big difference in the interest rate you will pay for a purchase. If your credit score is high enough, you'll have no problem qualifying for a lender's best rates and terms on auto financing, home loans and small business loans. The following are a few tips about how you can protect and improve your credit rating.
1 - Order Your Credit Report.
Your credit score is based on your credit report, so you should begin by ordering your reports and reviewing each one for accuracy. You can get your reports from a service such as MyFico.com, or order from Equifax, Experian and Trans Union separately online or by phone.
2 - Check Your Credit Report Information for Inaccuracies.
Check the identifying information for name, social security number, birth date and incorrect address. Make certain that old negatives and paid-off debts are deleted. Check for accounts and delinquencies that are not yours, late payments, charge offs, lawsuits, judgments or paid tax liens older than seven years old. Also, paid liens or judgments that are listed as unpaid, duplicate collections, bankruptcies that are older than ten years and any negative information that is not yours.
3 - Always Pay Your Bills on Time.
Payment history makes up more than a third of the typical credit score. If you paid bills late in the past, you can improve your credit score by starting to pay your bills on time. Lenders are looking for any sign that you might default, and a late payment is a good indicator that you are in financial difficulty.
4 - Keep Credit Cards Balances Low.
Carrying smaller balances is the best way to increase your credit score. The score measures how much of your limit you use on each credit card or other line of credit, and how much of your combined credit limits you are using on all your cards. Within 60 days, paying down credit card balances can increase your credit score by as much as 20 points.
5 - Try Not to Open In-Store Credit Cards.
Although your first credit accounts can serve to build and improve your credit history, there comes a point when each subsequent credit application can reduce your score. New credit cards reduce the age of your credit history, and a department store credit card isn't good evidence of credit worthiness. Every time you apply for a retailer's credit card your credit store gets dinged.
6 - Be Conservative When Applying For Credit.
Having at least one credit card that's more than 2 years old can help your score by 15 percent. Make sure that your credit report is checked only when necessary. Or, if you are shopping for a home, try to apply for loans within a two-week period. By keeping the loan process within a two-week period, all of the credit report lookups are seen as one single request.
7 - Don't Close Credit Cards or Other Revolving Accounts.
Shutting down unused accounts that have outstanding balances without paying off the debt changes your "utilization ratio," which is the amount of your total debt divided by your total available credit. It will reduce the gap between the credit you are using and the total credit available to you, and that can hurt your credit score.
Managing Your Credit Card Online
The Internet is growing in importance in all fields of commerce, and this is being reflected by the way in which credit card companies are now dealing with their customers. You can achieve more and more of the transactions and business of life online and it is fast becoming the preferred means of conducting trade and transactions of all types.
There are very few credit card providers operating these days who will not allow you to interact with the company through the internet. You can start right from the beginning with your first application online and then once you are approved you will also be able to manage your credit card account online also. This means that you will have full access to all of the information in your account and will in many cases be able to up date and amend the information.
Check online at any time...
Also, you will be able to check how much you owe on the card and more importantly, where you have spent the money. You will have full access to your monthly or weekly statements and can see where and when each transaction was made, what was purchased and how much it cost. You will also be able to see how much of your balance you have left to spend.
As well as all of this information you will be able to pay money into your credit card account or pay off your credit card bill if you want to. You can also transfer money out of your credit card account, change your pin and do everything necessary to manage your account. You can do this faster and with a lot less hassle than if you were forced to get in contact with your credit card company by more traditional means such as telephone or mail. The amount of time and effort that this saves is a huge benefit to both credit card companies and customers alike.
The main advantage...
One of the main advantages to managing your credit card online will be that you always know how much you owe on the card. This will give you the benefit of allowing for you to plan for repayments and budget more effectively. This will make it easy to keep on top of all payments and avoid getting into credit card problems before they happen and thus avoid penalties and other charges.
In most cases you will have to register to manage your credit card on line. This will probably mean filling out some online forms and probably over the phone as well. You will have to remember your login identification and password. However, the benefits and convenience of being able to manage your credit card online far outweigh the time and effort that it takes to set up the system.
Which Low Interest Credit Card Is Right For Me
The best low interest credit card is one that charges a low interest rate and does not have any hidden costs. Very often, card users tend to be indiscriminate with their cards during the introductory period and are in for a shock when the rates jump at the end of the period. A low interest credit card should continue to function at a low interest rate even after the introductory period is over. Therefore, while going for a low rate credit card, one should not get too enamored by the introductory offer but should also read the fine print.
By transferring balances to a low interest credit card, credit card users can save money, particularly those who are in the habit of carrying balances forward every month. One should confirm that along with the low balance transfer rate, the balance transfer fee too is not high. Credit card companies are not above trying to make up for the low rate charged by hiking the transfer fee. However, there are low rate credit cards that will altogether waive the balance transfer fee and offer a low balance transfer rate for as long as the balance lasts. Low interest credit cards are therefore a good way of settling credit card debts. This is because a major portion of the amount paid is applied to the principal thereby reducing debts more quickly.
Before signing up for a new low interest credit card one should be careful that there are no extra fees being charged, especially if one has a good credit history. An individual's credit history has a bearing on the quality of credit card that he qualifies for. The best low interest rate credit card will charge a low rate of interest and have low annual fees; several purported low interest rate credit cards have an annual fee as high as $ 60. This can offset any savings that may accrue from the low rate of interest.
Apart from offering a low interest rate, several card companies also run rewards and cash back programs in which card holders accumulate points that can redeemed in a variety of ways.
Researching online is a good way to ascertain the best low interest rate credit card that will suit an individual's requirements. There are several sites that offer exhaustive comparisons between low interest rate credit cards; the interest rate may vary from 9%-15% and the cards will offer an assortment of features for a prospective card user to choose from. These may include grace periods, annual fees, insurance against missed payments and identity thefts, discounts given at chosen retailers and auto rental insurance, and emergency services. Thus, it is up to the individual to select a low interest rate credit card that offers him the best package; sometimes even if the interest rate is not the lowest, as other features more than make up for it.
Ultimately, it can be said that a good low interest rate credit card is one that lives up to its name and at the same time offers a host of other services at a low cost.
5 Things You Should Know About 0 Apr Credit Card Offers
If you have received one of these offers in the mail, you know how tempting they can be. They claim that you will pay no interest on any purchases or balance transfers in the first period of owning your card. But there are some things about these offers you need to know before you sign on the dotted line and let them pull your credit report
1.The 0 APR offer is for a limited time.
Most credit card companies that offer the 0 percent interest rate deal only offer it for a limited time. This means that you will pay 0 APR for six months, nine months, or up to a year. You need to check the fine print for this information and be careful to notice it when the time is up.
2.The 0 APR offer might not apply to everything you put on the card.
Many cards offer 0 APR on all balance transfers and any purchases made during the introductory 0 percent interest period. But some only offer the 0 APR on balance transfers, and you pay a very high interest rate on any purchases.
3.The 0 APR offer might be null and void if you are not on time with your payment.
Most of these credit card offers are contingent on your being an exemplary member. This means that you have to pay your minimum payment on time every month during the introductory period or else you automatically lose your nice 0 APR and move up to a rate that usually ranges from nineteen to twenty-one percent interest.
4.The 0 APR offer might carry a ridiculously high interest rate after the introductory period is over.
Again, the rate of interest for these cards after the 0 APR is over usually runs from nineteen to twenty-one percent.
5.The 0 APR credit card will not repair your credit.
Remember that consolidating your cards or transferring your loan balance will help you pay off the balance without interest, but it will not remove the damage already done to your credit.
How Fast Is Your Credit Card Processing
Are you ready to swipe your credit card for the very first time? Really? Or are you already on your way to your second credit card? By the way, do you know it takes ages for you to get your credit card processed?
Well, for starters let's look into the credit card processing stage of your application and why does it take you ages to have that other card.
The first thing that your bank looks into in the stage of credit card processing is the account that you have in other credit card companies. Normally this part of the credit card processing stage
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