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Determining what type of rewards credit card program is right for you

An example of a free flight from Southwest airlines

If you have a checking account, a mailbox, or the internet, you will see that credit cards are upping the ante with rewards. Cash back rewards, airline miles rewards, gift card rewards, hotel rewards, and the list goes on. Which card should you choose and how can you make sure you maximize the rewards you can earn on the card.

When choosing a rewards card, lets limit the choices down. Do you travel a lot? If yes, keep in mind a travel card, if not, stay away. Do you drive all the time? Then a gas rebate credit card works for you. How about grocery shopping, if you shop a lot, cash back rewards might be your fit. Just use some common sense when selecting the type of rewards bank card.

Maximizing your rewards

The best way to earn the most rewards the fastest is to pay for everything with the card. Pay your bills, buy your groceries, order Subway/McDonalds/Burger King etc, fill up your tank etc with your rewards card. Most importantly, make sure you pay off your full balance at the end of the billing cycle. Paying finance charges on balances will offset any rewards you are trying to earn.

What to watch out for with Rewards Cards

Many rewards cards try and get you with annual fees, and higher interest rates. Always be aware of the full disclosures for the rewards credit cards before you apply, there are several rewards programs that have a low APR and no annual fee.

If you follow the simple guidelines above, you can enjoy a free roundtrip ticket, a hotel stay, a relaxing cruise or extra cash back, all from your favorite rewards Visa, Mastercard, Discover or American Express card.

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