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Don't Forfeit Your Credit Card's Rewards Miles

Banks are sending a clear message to those who enjoy racking up airline miles and hotel points for credit card purchases—pay your bill on time, or forfeit those coveted rewards.

Effective January 2010, American Express customers who use rewards cards such as the Delta SkyMiles credit card or the Starwood Preferred Guest credit card will find that late payments not only trigger the normal chain reaction of fees and interest rate hikes, but also the loss of loyalty points earned during the month. And if you desire to regain those rewards after paying your bill in full, you'll be hit with a new reinstatement fee of $29.

As credit card companies search for ways to boost fee revenue before major restrictions set forth in the CARD Act of 2009 take effect next February, consumers should expect to see more fees like this from other credit issuers as well. It's yet another reason to ensure you never miss an on-time payment by managing credit card accounts online, setting up email billing alerts, and scheduling automatic payments.

on Sun, 2009-11-29 16:00