How to get the Best Travel Bonuses from a Credit Card
10th October 2017
Equipped with a credit card? Then you could be in for some great rewards if ever you travel – but only, of course, if you know how to acquire and make the most of those perks. With some credit card users managing to rack up enough credit rewards to travel entirely without cost, there’s no doubt that you, too, will be able to find the best credit card travel bonuses. Our tips and tricks should get you started – so keep reading, and get reward-hunting!
- Improve your credit so that you qualify for the best bonuses
Unfortunately, you won’t be winging your way to cheaper travel if you haven’t got a decent credit history, so clear up any overdue payments and remember to pay off your monthly repayments in full in order to avoid interest and a dodgy credit record.
- Start paying for everything on the credit card you intend to travel with
This one’s a bit of a no-brainer, but we’ll mention it anyway: in order to earn decent rewards on purchases, you need to actually make enough purchases, so put your travel-intended credit card to use as often as you can (in place, that is, of cash, Eftpos, or internet banking). Whether it’s the groceries or your petrol bill, every new purchase helps!
- Choose which type of card you prefer
As travel-reward aficionados will know, it’s possible to opt for either a general credit card (which pays rewards on all travel-related buys) or a brand-specific credit card (which may be affiliated with a specific airline or hotel and thus will pay higher rewards only for purchases related to those brands). Obviously, which card you opt for will depend on your travel-purchase habits: do you want the freedom to buy anywhere and anything, or do you already have a favourite airline and hotel chain?
- Watch out for hidden conditions, and search for the perks
With a little digging, you’ll easily be able to discover the benefits and conditions of each credit card. Check the fine print: some won’t let you earn rewards after a specific amount, while others might expire before you expect them to. On a more positive note, many credit cards offer quiet advantages including extra baggage on flights and no transaction fees abroad. Getting your microscope out now will literally pay off when you jet off in the future!
- Signing up matters
In the case of both specialised travel-reward cards and general credit cards, significant bonuses are often offered with initial sign-up. Whether thousands of air-point miles or another specialised perk, these sign-up bonuses are sure to draw you in, and it’ll depend on your travel goals and habits which one you ultimately choose.
The other thing to consider is when you’re signing up. In quiet periods for travel (the winter months, for instance), credit card companies will often extend even better and bigger sign-up deals, and thus it’s worth making sure that you survey the myriad of different options out there rather than settling for the first deal you see. There are even online calculators which will help you to determine the best sign-up deals available at your particular time of searching so it couldn’t be much easier for you to weigh up the pros and cons of each individual card.
Lastly, check the sign-up terms: many credit cards will require you to spend a minimum amount (say $4000 in four months) before you earn the all-important sign-up bonus that you expected at the start. Keep an eye out for credit cards which offer smaller spending requirements, and you’ll be good to go!
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