Looking for more from your credit card? A rewards card might be for you!
What are Rewards Credit Cards?
Rewards credit cards provide additional benefits for making purchases, such as cash back, airline miles or points that are redeemable for purchases. The rewards you get are dependent on the financial institution, so it’s important to check out what offerings yours has.
Things to Look For When Comparing Rewards Cards
Types of Rewards
If you’re interested in a rewards card, first look at the rewards themselves. For example, if a card primarily rewards points redeemable for flights, but you’re not much of a traveler, this isn’t the best choice for you. On the other hand, if you frequently use your credit card on big purchases, cash back is a benefit that may be better suited.
When Do Rewards Points Expire?
If your potential card offers point-based rewards, try to find out when those points expire. If you don’t make purchases regularly enough to gain enough points to redeem for rewards, you’re better off looking for a different option.
Some rewards credit cards have an annual fee, and they should generally be avoided. Make sure you look at the fine print before committing to one of these!
APR refers to Annual Percentage Rate, and it’s the interest you pay for borrowing money. This is very important if you plan on carrying balances on your cards. While making big purchases with a rewards card can yield many perks, keeping balances on your card means you’ll pay interest, especially if you're unable to succesfully pay down debt.
If you’re always able to pay your credit card bill before interest comes due, this is less of an issue, but one to still keep your eye on.
Maximizing Your Rewards
If you already have a rewards card, here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your card.
Use Your Card as Much as Possible, but Don’t Break Your Budget
To earn points, you need to spend money. The best purchases you can make with your card are ones you already planned to make in the first place, like grocery store trips, gas, utilities and other monthly expenses. Just make sure you stay within your budget. Spending thousands of dollars for a few more points is not a smart strategy. Using your rewards card to pay small things, like subscriptions every month, is another way to get a few extra points each month.
Pay Your Credit Card Balance in Full
We touched on this above, but paying as much of your credit card balance as possible each month will save you money on interest. This doesn’t mean people who are unable to pay off their entire credit card bill one month won’t benefit from having a rewards card, however! Ultimately, if your balances are small, your interest will be as well.
Use Your Points!
If you have a point-based rewards card, you should always know what is available to redeem as well as when your points expire! Points have value, so always be aware of your balance and what you can use it on.
Florida Credit Union Rewards Cards
Florida Credit Union offers two rewards credit cards, the Platinum Reward and Wave Cash Back cards. The Platinum Reward card earns points redeemable for rewards through our FCU Rewards HQ program, has a low, fixed rate, no annual fee and a credit limit range from $1,000 to $50,000.
The Wave Cash Back card also earns points redeemable for rewards through the FCU Rewards HQ program, as well as cash back. With no annual fee, a variable interest rate, and a credit limit range from $5,000 to $50,000, it’s another great option for Florida Credit Union members.
Find out more about these and our other credit cards, as well as apply in minutes, on our website!