Reward points are one of the most important aspects of Credit Cards. Some of the most popular Credit Cards are so popular because of the really brilliant rewards plans they offer. They are what makes the Credit Cards special and different from each other because, at their very basic, functional level, all Credit Cards are nothing more than payment instruments.
Citibank, for example, offers a number of Credit Cards. You can get rewards focused Citibank Credit Cards, as well as shopping, focused, and cash bank Credit Cards from them. Among the best Citi cards, however, is Citibank Indian Oil Credit Card, where all reward points are earned in the form of fuel, and you can redeem card reward points for fuel on a one-to-one basis where one reward point is equal to one rupee of fuel.
HDFC Bank also offers some of the Best Credit Cards among Indian banks. They have a tie-up card with IndiGo Airlines as 6E Rewards – IndiGo HDFC Bank Credit Card, which is best for the people who fly frequently. Similar to Citibank, HDFC also offers an Indian Oil Co-Branded Card where you can redeem reward points to purchase fuel. The premiere card collection includes Diners Club Black Card, which is among the very few ultra-premium Credit Cards currently available in India. Rewards on this card are unparalleled.
Similarly, SBI Credit Cards also come with really attractive options, especially SBI Card Prime and Club Vistara SBI Card. Their IRCTC co-branded Credit Card is also an excellent choice for frequent domestic travellers. With this card you get, up to 10% value back as reward points for railway ticket purchases and 1.8% transaction charges waiver on railway ticket bookings on irctc.co.in. You also get 350 bonus reward points on activation.
Making most of the rewards program
To get the most out of Credit Card reward points, the best way is to accumulate as many reward points as possible. Let us look at some easy ways which can help multiply your Credit Card rewards or even increase them as much as possible.
- Charge things on your card even if you have cash in hand: The easy and simple way to maximize your Credit Card reward points is to charge all your cards as much as you can. If you can replace your cash payments by card payments to the maximum possible extent, you can get a lot more points than otherwise. However, you should plan transactions so that different types of spends could be segmented to different cards. This is actually a double benefit. You charge your card for reward points and earn extra amount saved in your account.
- Tap the benefits of shopping online: Leave behind the old ways of shopping and adapt to the bold new world of online shopping. Online transactions earn accelerated reward points. They also come with the built-in convenience of not having to step out of home and having to spend extra on petrol to go to the mall or market. Groceries are especially a great candidate for online shopping.
- Shop online during sale times: Many times, when online retail portals hold sales, they tie-up with specific Credit Card providers. If you use the Credit Card from these preferred providers, you will be able to get the extra reward points as well as the extra discount on sale offered by the online merchant.
- Put your travel expenses on Credit Card: Buy Airlines Tickets on Credit Cards, book hotels on Credit Cards. If you have been using travellers’ cheques or foreign exchange sellers to arrange for money on international travel, try to charge as many of your international expenses on Credit Card as possible. Charging international transactions on Credit Card is not only cheaper because of less currency conversion charges and no money changer commission, the Credit Card companies also provide extra reward points for international transactions.
- Pay your card in full always: A number of Credit Card companies tend to revoke reward points on transactions for which payments are not made in full. Similarly, a number of them have also started to revoke Credit Card reward points if the transaction is converted to EMI. It is best to pay your Credit Card bill in full always in order to ensure that you get the maximum number of reward points and do not lose points which you have already earned.
- Ensure that you are following proper transaction channels: Many cards will offer extra reward points if you do your spending in a particular manner. HDFC Bank Diners Club offers 10 times reward points on Flipkart and 5 times reward points on Amazon India as long as you are shopping through their SmartBuy portal. Regular points are offered if you do not go through SmartBuy but directly. Always read the terms and conditions of your Credit Card to ensure that you are fulfilling all conditions for accelerated reward points.
- Ensure that you are using the right Credit Card: A number of times you will find that while one card offers a great reward point for some time after you have acquired it, card issuing company later devalues the card benefits. It is best to not stick with a Credit Card. Use the card with best reward program most frequently and use other cards only when necessary. Always keep track of reward points schemes being run by the card issuing bank. Once you feel that your Credit Card has been devalued too much, start looking for a new card and see if you can cancel your old card.
- Upgrade your cards as frequently as possible: Just like basic Credit Cards have basic rewards plan, premium and super premium Credit Cards have better rewards schemes on them. It is strongly recommended that you upgrade your card as frequently as possible. Check with your bank at least once every 6 months to find out if you are eligible for a Credit Card upgrade. If you think upgrade on card is worth your while, do not delay it and jump on it immediately.
Always keep in mind that reward points may come with a lot of terms and conditions, so you must read all of them before making any transaction. In some cases, the reward points also expire after some time, so keep track of them and redeem those points as frequently as possible.
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