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Ways To Salvage Your Credit Card Rewards

February 6, 2013 by CreditCardsCo™

Earning credit card rewards is very exciting, which is why you want to be able to hang on to them and use them. When you are able to hang on to them, you can use them when you have a need.

It can be frustrating to keep track of the points and miles that you receive from your rewards card. This is especially true when a cardholder has a number of cards with terms and conditions that differ from one another. For instance, one reward miles card may state that existing miles will lapse if the cardholder does not earn at least one mile within a specific amount of time, while another card's term may state that the miles will expire after five years if unused. Then there are the cards with miles or points that never expire, but not all of the miles may be needed. If miles go unused, they could be lost rather than put to use in another way.

In order to help the consumer maximize their rewards programs, there are a number of websites that are popping up to help keep track of points and miles. These tools enable individuals to track bonus offers and reward balances frequently. There are some programs that allow individuals to track up to 100 rewards accounts, whether they are credit card accounts or rewards through companies that track online shopping.

Benefits Of Point Tracking

The pros and cons of programs that track credit card rewards vary based upon the preferences of the individual. When using an online program to track rewards so that they can be salvaged, the typical routine is to log into their account and track their air miles and points so that they know when they are going to expire, if they expire.

These programs also enable the users to view their daily point earning opportunities and reward offers. Some credit card rewards programs allow their cardholders to earn on certain transactions at certain times. This can be very difficult to keep track of, but an online tracking tool can make it much easier. It is also possible to receive alerts when an account has been idle for a long period of time.

To make these point management programs work properly, username and password information must be supplied for each registered account. Although sensitive data is sent to the management program, it is generally safe. Still, it is ideal to keep track of accounts for suspicious activity. The management sites are safe, but anything and everything personal that is carried out on a computer is at risk no matter what online or offline program is being used.

Point Exchange Programs

Point exchange programs enable individuals to exchange their points between credit cards and the site's own rewards programs. This can help salvage those points that will expire soon by simply transferring them from one account type to another. Nonetheless, the values may be different when exchanging. For instance, $7 in air miles could transfer into $6 of points.

There are also some sites that allow transfer of rewards between members. It is possible that there may be a trade fee that is set by the loyalty program. The amount of the fee can vary. Nonetheless, there are programs that allow individuals to set up their own trades with the trade fee already included so that everyone knows what to expect out of the transaction. The transaction is carried out online, so it is very easy.

Types Of Redeems

Depending upon the program being used, points can be used to redeem gift cards, discounts on merchandise, subscriptions, or money can be transferred to the member's PayPal account. For example, an individual may be able to redeem 3,000 air miles for a $25 cash deposit into their PayPal account. While 3,000 air miles can come in handy when traveling, it can be worth it to have at least some of the cash rather than losing the miles completely.

When redeeming for gift cards, discounts, and merchandise, members of rewards management websites are presented with lists of items they can redeem points and miles for. For instance, specific gift cards may be listed with each gift card being worth a specific number of points. Perhaps the gift card for a popular department store is worth $25, which can be received for 2,500 points. Another scenario is when merchandise is reduced a certain percentage if points are used in the purchase. Sometimes merchandise can be totally paid for by points. There are many scenarios so that the points can be salvaged rather than lost. In other words, there is something for everyone looking for a break when it comes to expiring points or when they want easier access to the perks that their points give them.

Buying Rewards

It is also possible to buy points. The ability to buy points is available when members are in need of more points to qualify for specific rewards before the rewards they have accrued have expired. There is a premium involved. Points have a typical valuation of around a penny when earned, but buying points may mean paying several cents per point.

Overall, having reward points that are difficult to manage or ready to expire can be salvaged through the websites that contain programs designed for reward program management. If you don't want to lose what you have earned, rewards program management does make sense. What this can do is allow you to save money in a number of ways, which is why you signed on for a rewards card in the first place.

Final Word

Because you signed up for rewards credit cards because of the benefits, you definitely want to be able to take care of them. Through online programs that allow you to manage all of your rewards programs at once, you can ensure you use points and miles before the expire, exchange them if you need to, or redeem them for other things that you need.

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