A Personal Finance Blog for Malaysian: 7 Ways to Maximize Your Credit Card's Benefits

Sunday, August 12, 2012

7 Ways to Maximize Your Credit Card's Benefits


Most people don’t take full advantage of the benefits that credit cards offer. This may be because they don’t realize the benefits the card offers, or they just don’t understand how to use them. Just as you use debit cards to do your daily business such as renting a car, buying an airline ticket or buying items online, you can use a credit card the same way by paying the credit card off on a monthly basis and reaping the benefits. Below are seven great ways to maximize your credit card’s benefits.

1. Everyday Purchases
When you go out shopping and make a purchase from a place like Best Buy or Home Depot, they will probably ask you if you want to buy an extended warranty. The manufactures warranties on most products is one year, but the right credit card has an offer to add one additional year of warranty onto the end of the manufacturers warranty if you use their card to purchase the item. What is the advantage? Two full years of free warranty instead of one for no cost at all.

2. Purchase Protection
You may be surprised at what purchase protection on a credit card will do for you. Say for instance you go down to Lowe’s and purchase a gas grill. You get it put in the truck to take home and the wind catches hold of it and blows it out of the truck, onto the ground and smashes it beyond use. Of course you think that you can’t return it as it was your fault. But, with purchase protection on your credit card you used, you can take the item back and have it replaced for free. The credit card will reimburse your money completely.

3. Insurance
When you go out on a family trip or need to rent a car for a short time away, you are going to be asked if you want rental insurance. If you use your own credit card, this is part of the free benefits that are offered. You are covered with insurance on the rental car as long as you use your credit card to pay for the car. No cost!

4. Cash Back Points
Cash back points are fantastic for credit card holders. These points can be built up over time and you can either get cash back, or you can buy products from companies with the points you have. It’s a good feeling to walk to the mailbox and see a nice, fat check payable to you just because you used your credit card. This works even if you pay off the balance monthly.

5. Fraud Protection
Another reward and benefit that credit cards offer instead of paying cash is that it is much more safe and secure. If you happen to be robbed with cash on you, you lose. If you have nothing but credit cards, they can be cancelled and the charges swiped (if any) will be fraud protected and cost you nothing.

6. Free Things
Instead of having to compete with other credit card companies for low interest rates, many credit cards offer lots of free things instead. This can be rebates off of purchases you make such as 1% off or getting 5% off gas cost for using your card at grocery stores.

7. Credit Rating
Your credit rating can increase and improve every time you use your credit card. When you show that you can charge and make payments on time, your rating will go up. The more your rating goes up, the better credit you have and the more chances you have of getting mortgage loans, car loans or other loans you will need in the future.

These are just seven of the benefits of using credit cards and their perks. There are plenty more rewards and offers out there if you search and find the credit card that will work best to benefit you.

Contributor ~ Evelyn Morris writes about finance, consumer advocacy & more at healthinsurancequotes.org.