Credit Cards that offer travel rewards programs are reasonably flexible. They may provide airline miles and points that would be redeemed for accommodations. Points are earned whenever the card is used. If the card is used for travel-related spending (purchasing airline tickets or hotel accommodations) higher points are often awarded. Points can be redeemed for airline tickets, hotel accommodations, car rental, and even special priority treatment and upgrades while traveling.
The rewards are usually linked to a certain brand or spending pattern. When choosing a travel rewards program one should be chosen that has no blacked out travel dates or hotel stays. Also look for limits for how many points can be earned annually and look to see if there is a time limit in which to use them.
Consumers who choose a travel rewards credit card should perform prior research to find the best offers available. It is also important not to utilize rewards program cards until able to pay off all monthly balances. Many top rewards cards have higher APRs than non-rewards options. For this reason, customers may actually lose money in monthly finance charges if a monthly balance is carried.
Information to seek when researching a Credit Card Travel Reward Card:
1. Does the issuer offer a bonus for enrolling in the program? Many top companies provide incentives of up to 5,000 bonus points just for applying.
2. Read the fine print carefully to find out how many points are necessary for a flight, hotel room or rental car.
3. Be sure you understand the expiration dates for accrued points so they aren't lost if unredeemed.
4. Find out any applicable blackout dates and find out how far in advance reservations must be made.
5. Be aware of any award caps and monthly or annual point limits.
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