Home / Articles / Weekly Tip: Don't lose those hard-earned rewards points

Weekly Tips

Weekly Tip: Don't lose those hard-earned rewards points

You worked hard to get good credit, which in turn means you’ve worked hard for that high rewards credit card. You’ve also worked really hard to get those points/miles/cash back that come with your rewards credit card. So why on earth would you let them out of your grasp? Thanks to Jason Steele of Credit.com, here are some tips for keeping a hold of those precious points.

First off, and this should be an obvious one, is watch for that expiration date. Everything that’s worth anything to anyone usually has an expiration date, and credit card rewards are no different. This is especially true with airline miles, with some expiring after an 18-month period. Thankfully these days a lot of travel cards where the points come from the card issuer and not the airline, and they advertise rewards where the points don’t expire.

Another obvious one is inactivity. Make sure you are using all of your credit cards in a rotation not only to keep your points programs active, but also to keep your credit utilization ratio in check. Credit bureaus also like it when you show you can handle multiple lines of credit at the same time, so this is a great way to keep your lines of credit active not only for your points programs but your credit score as well.

One tricky way that you may lose points without even knowing is if the card issuer changes their rewards policy. You’ll usually get an email explaining the changes, but a lot of times people just delete this email thinking it’s spam. All of a sudden you may go to redeem all the points you’ve saved up and that 10-speed bike you want is now worth 10 times as many points. This is a good reason not to hoard points if you want to get the full value of your rewards.

on Mon, 2013-09-16 16:58