5 Common Credit Card Perks

Credit & Debt, Living & Spending
on May 27, 2013

When you’re deciding upon a brand new credit card, it can be difficult to sort out the many options available. Some cards offer travel miles. Others offer cash back. Some offer cool online tools for tracking your purchasing habits, to help you with saving money. Here are five of the coolest perks available when you get your next credit card.

Cash Back
A number of credit cards now offer cash back. Most cash back programs offer a certain percentage, usually between one and three percent, on all purchases. Then they will offers a higher percentage for specific purchases, such as fuel for your car.

Other cards use a reward point system, usually award one point for every $1 spent. Then you can apply the points toward rewards. Some programs allow you to apply the awards points toward cash back, any interesting approach to saving money. Most allow you to select particular rewards you can work toward, such as travel miles or specific items.

Airline Miles
One of the oldest perks around the world of credit cards is the airline miles program. Simply put, the more money you spend, the more miles you receive. The miles can then be applied toward free trips. Or you can upgrade your ticket from economy class to first class at no additional cost to you. A number of airlines also offer credit card rewards programs. Just be careful to make sure your airline miles can be used with a carrier you will be able to frequent. Nobody wants to accumulate a million airline miles just to find out they can’t use them!

Savings Tools
A more interesting modern perk of many credit cards are the online savings tools available. These are web apps that allow you to keep track of your spending, your rewards and plan toward your goals. This can be extremely handy when you’re saving money. These apps also often allow you to handle account changes. And they offer more direct customer service through chat systems online. With the advent of mobile devices, it is easier than ever to manage your credit card directly from your smartphone.

You won’t think of it as a perk until the day you need it. But, buyer protection programs mean you’re not on the hook for fraud, identity theft or misuse of your credit card. Almost all credit cards offer dispute protection. When you purchase an item, if the seller fails to deliver the item or fails to fully satisfy your customer service expectations, your credit card company will charge back the purchase from the seller and return the money to your account.

Some cards have unexpected additional protection. A number of credit cards also provide extended warranties for some of the merchandise you purchase. A few cards also offer added benefits, such as travel insurance for any airline tickets you buy with the card. Talk to your credit card company. The number of additional perks they offer may surprise you.

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