Airmiles Credit Cards - Just Another Reward Scheme?


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There are many incentives for taking out a new credit card. Long term low interest rates are attractive. So too are 0% balance transfer and purchase rates, but these only last a short time. However, there are other rewards that last for the life of the credit card and that are attractive to most credit card purchasers. One of these is the air miles scheme.

What Are Air Miles?

The Air Miles scheme is a loyalty scheme that allows customers to collect points for everyday purchases from a number of high street and online retailers. Points can also be collected on travel, hotel bookings, currency exchange and travel insurance. Air Miles can be spent on travel to different destinations. Different points totals are needed for different destinations, depending on the distance from the starting point, the time of year and what deals are available. For example, going to Paris requires about 400 air miles, while travelling to Sydney requires about 4,000.

How Can I Earn Air Miles With My Credit Card?

Earning air miles with a credit card is very simple. First of all, sign up for a credit card that offers air miles as a reward. There are several of these offered by different credit card companies. Credit card companies that offer air miles credit cards include Nat West, Royal Bank of Scotland, Cooperative Bank, Morgan Stanley and American Express. Some credit card companies offer their own air miles schemes, such as the one done in conjunction with British Airways.

Some credit card companies require you to sign up separately with the air miles scheme. The advantage of this is that you can earn air miles with other retailers even if you are using a different credit card. Once you've signed up, all you have to do is spend as usual to earn air miles.

Additional Travel Rewards

Many of the credit card companies that offer air miles also offer other travel related rewards. These include travel insurance and other rewards to be applied to travel. Some companies do not offer an air miles scheme, but offer an equivalent travel points scheme. This works on a similar basis to the air miles scheme.

Are There Other Incentives For My Air Miles Credit Card?

Since many air miles credit cards are issued by banks that issue other credit cards, the same advantages may apply to new card holders. Some air miles cards offer 0% on balance transfers and purchases for up to nine months. Others offer a low rate of interest on transferred balances for the life of the balance transfer. These offers will appeal to people who want to earn travel incentives and clear debt at the same time.

It's worth paying attention to the interest rate on the credit card. Some credit cards offer competitive interest rates which will appeal to most credit card users. However, others have high interest rates and some have balance transfer fees. Balance transfer fees are fees charged by credit card companies when people transfer balances to take advantage of preferential rates. The balance transfer fee makes credit card jumping less attractive and helps credit card companies to make some of the interest they would otherwise have lost. There are still credit cards without a balance transfer fee, so it's worth shopping around for these.

Joe Kenny writes for, with the latest 0% balance transfers , and more credit info in the credit card guide .
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