Hi! I’ve had good luck with these types of deals, but I’ve been careful to be sure to read the fine print and to send myself alerts and reminder emails to be sure to follow the rules! Coupon shopping and deal making these days are like playing a really hard video game – so many obstacles and pitfalls and rules and potential punishments! In some ways I miss the 1970’s and 1980’s when you cut coupons out of magazines and were excited when the store would double a 75 cent coupon!
Best wishes to you for getting GREAT deals, and thanks for writing!
Credit card signup bonuses are not a scam. The offers are legitimate, but you shouldn't overlook more important elements, like APR, annual fee, etc.
Also, obviously, you shouldn't care about the intro offer if you're not sure you're going to spend that much. If you get a $300 limit, and the reward is for $3,000 spent in 3 months, you might have a hard time reaching it.
The best travel credit card signup bonus is 50,000 miles (worth $500 in travel) for spending $3,000 in the first 3 months with the Capital One Venture card. Or, you can earn 100,000 miles by spending $20,000 within the first 12 months. The Venture card also gives 2 miles for every dollar spent, with no limit on how many miles you can earn. You can easily redeem your miles for any travel-related expenses using Capital One’s Purchase Eraser.… read full answer
Venture has a $95 annual fee, so you need to decide if the rewards are worth it before paying to start earning them. As with all of the best travel credit cards, Venture has no foreign transaction fees.
In general, the best travel cards are those that reward you extra for every travel purchase and have no foreign transaction fees. Add on huge signup bonuses, and there’s even more reason to apply if you have the good-to-excellent credit needed for approval. Earning the best travel credit card signup bonuses requires paying an annual fee ranging from $0-$99. But the bonuses you’ll get are worth several times more.
Best Travel Credit Card Signup Bonuses:
Capital One Venture Rewards Card: 50,000 miles once cardholders spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. $95 annual fee. Or 100,000 miles by spending $20,000 within the first 12 months.
Chase Sapphire Preferred Card: 80,000 points once cardholders spend $4,000 in the first 3 months. $95 annual fee.
Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select Card: 50,000 miles once cardholders spend $2,500 in the first 3 months. $0 annual fee the first year, $99 after.
Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card: 70,000 miles once cardholders spend $2,000 in the first 3 months. $0 annual fee the first year, $99 after.
Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card: 25,000 points once cardholders spend $1,000 in the first 90 days. $0 annual fee.
Most of the signup bonuses can be redeemed at a 1:1 rate, so 1 reward point/mile is equal to 1 cent. The exception is Chase Sapphire Preferred, whose points are worth 1.25 cents each when redeemed for travel.
It’s better to pay off your credit card than to keep a balance. It's best to pay a credit card balance in full because credit card companies charge interest when you don’t pay your bill in full every month. Depending on your credit score, which dictates your credit card options, you can expect to pay an extra … read full answer9% to 25%+ on a balance that you keep for a year. For example, if you spent $100 on a card with a 15% purchase APR, you would owe $115 at the end of a year. A good APR is anything below 18%, as that’s roughly the average for new card offers. And even that’s not very low. Plus, most credit cards have a grace period, which means if you pay off your full balance every month before the due date, you won’t have to pay interest. But you lose the grace period if you don’t pay in full one month, and you’ll have to pay your entire balance for two consecutive billing cycles to get it back.
Some people think you need to carry a balance in order to see positive information on your credit report, but that’s simply not true. You don’t even need to use your credit card to build credit. Simply keeping an account open and in good standing is enough to affect your score for the better. Using your card regularly helps because having a credit utilization ratio between 1% and 10% is slightly better for your credit score than 0%. But credit utilization is based on your statement balance, and your monthly statement comes before the due date. So you can still pay your bill in full every month while doing right by your credit score. In fact, you should pay in full whenever possible.
Of course, it’s a different story if you’re using a 0% credit card. During the 0% APR introductory period, your balance – whether from a purchase or balance transfer – won’t accrue interest as long as you pay the minimum amount required by the due date each month. But if you don’t pay in full by the end of the 0% period, interest will come into play.
Here’s why it’s better to pay off your card than to carry a balance:
If you pay your bill in full each month, you won’t be charged any interest. However, if you don’t pay in full one month, you’ll lose your grace period, and your purchases will begin accruing daily interest right away. You can get your grace period back by paying in full for two consecutive billing cycles.
You don’t need to carry a balance for a credit card to help your credit score. What matters most for credit building is meeting due dates and keeping credit utilization below 30%.
Paying your bills on time doesn’t require you to pay your balance in full each month. You just have to make the minimum payment listed on your statement. But if you take on too much debt, you may find it hard to make your monthly payments.
Carrying a balance makes it harder to keep your credit utilization low, since your everyday spending will be added on top of the amount you’re carrying from month to month. It’s best to use less than 30% of the credit made available to you.
So, to recap, it’s better to pay off your credit card than to carry a balance because it builds your credit history just as well without subjecting you to interest charges. And remember, not carrying a balance does not mean you have to stop using your credit card. There is a middle ground. A balance will be listed on your credit card statement whenever you make purchases, but if you pay that amount by the due date, you won’t really be carrying a balance.
Rewards credit cards are worth it if they will save you more than they cost you, all things considered. The best rewards credit cards are worth more than $1,000 in savings for the average person over the first two years of use, after annual fees. But you need good or excellent credit to get the most worthwhile rewards cards. Things aren’t as clear-cut for people with lower scores. In addition, rewards credit cards are only worth it for purchases that you can afford to pay off fully by the due date each month. Credit card interest rates are much higher than credit card rewards rates, so it’s best to use a low interest card for balances that you’ll carry from month to month.… read full answer
When determining if a rewards credit card is worth it or not, you have to weigh the worth of the rewards against the cost of the card. If the card has no annual fee and you plan to pay the bill in full every month, it’s pretty easy to decide the card is worth it. However, you’ll often get the best rewards and biggest signup bonuses from cards that do have annual fees. In that case, you just have to crunch the numbers to make sure you’ll get your money’s worth.
Regardless of which rewards card you choose, be sure to understand how you can earn rewards most efficiently. Some cards have higher rewards rates for specific categories, and some give a flat rewards rate that you earn on all purchases. The fastest way to earn credit card rewards is through signup bonuses. Many of the top rewards cards come with signup bonuses that you can get for meeting a minimum spending requirement in the first three months. The signup bonuses are usually worth several hundred dollars, enough to cover the cards’ annual fees for years. And you can get them for spending money you were already planning on spending.
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