The basic function of credit cards is to give you access to a limited amount of credit, which you can spend and then pay back when your monthly bills comes in. However, if you compare credit cards available at the moment, you’ll find that many offer so much more than this. So, if you only have a standard credit card and you want to get more from your spending, you might want to read on.
Common credit card perks
The following are just a few of the perks, benefits and bonuses offered by rewards credit cards currently on the market:
• Cashback. This is one of the most widely available credit card perks, and it can also be considered one of the best. It works by giving you a pre-agreed percentage in cashback on your spending. The amount you will get may vary from retailer to retailer, so you might get 1% on groceries and 2% on fuel, for example. Cashback is a great perk, as you can earn money back simply by doing your normal spending, which automatically makes all of your purchases cheaper.
• Loyalty points. Rather than giving you cashback, some rewards cards allow you to collect loyalty points on your spending. These points can then be used at certain stores, and most of the big credit card companies have hundreds to choose from. This is essentially the same as cashback, expect that you have slightly less freedom in where to use your rewards.
• Travel rewards. Credit cards offering travel rewards usually give you points every time you spend, which can then be turned into everything from frequent flyer miles to complimentary hotel nights and upgrades.
• Discounts at certain retailers. Some credit cards offer you a percentage discount for using your credit card at a particular retailer, or a chain of stores owned by the same retailer. These discounts can be quite impressive, but you should go for these credit card perks if you actually shop at the store regularly and can use the discount.
• Support for a charity or favorite organization. For those who want to give a little something back, there are credit cards which help you to support your favorite charity, organization or school as you spend. For example, when you make a purchase on your credit card, a percentage of what you spend might be put towards supporting your children’s school, a chosen charity or a local sports team.