If you have signed up for an airline credit card, you are probably trying to figure out how to get the most of its reward system. More than likely, you are paying an annual fee for your airline credit card, plus a higher interest rate than what you would pay for a card without rewards. Therefore, it makes financial sense to want to be sure you are getting something in return for the investment. The best way to ensure that you use your airline credit cards to their fullest is to earn those free tickets sooner rather than later.
Choose the Card Wisely
When selecting an airline credit card, keep in mind that there are several to choose from. Some airline miles credit cards are formed in partnership with specific airlines, which means your rewards will be restricted to just that airline. Others are more generic and allow you to collect miles for a variety of airlines. These cards work by purchasing a discounted ticket for you on the airline of your choice based on the cash value of every mile you earn. If you don’t want to be restricted to just one airline, this type of airline credit card is a good option for you. You can often earn a ticket quicker this way since ticket prices vary among competing airlines.
You also need to pay attention to how many dollars you need to spend in order to earn free tickets. This requires looking at two components: how many miles each dollar you spend is worth and how many miles it takes to earn a ticket. If you earn 5 miles per dollar, but it takes 100,000 miles to earn a ticket, it is better to go with a card that only rewards 1 mile per dollar but provides a ticket after accumulating 10,000 miles.
Take Advantage of the Incentives
Airline miles credit cards generally have a number of special incentives built into the program. For example, you might earn more miles for purchases made with certain partners. Or, you might earn bonus miles for making purchases through the airline that has partnered with the card if the card is a partnership between an airline and a credit card company. Learn as much as you can about how you can earn extra miles with your card – and take advantage of it.
Many airline miles credit cards offer similar incentives. For example, several provide incentives for making car rentals or hotel reservations with their business partners. Or, some packaged vacation deals can be created in partnership with the credit card company or airline. If you purchase these packages with the credit card, you might receive a significant number of bonus miles.
Fly Often and Use Your Card
The fastest way to earn your free airline ticket is to fly often and to be sure you charge the tickets to your airline credit card. Doing so can help you accumulate thousands of airline miles in just one year. If you travel for business, make sure to charge the expense to your airline credit card to increase your miles earned.
On the other hand, you can still pump up your earned airline miles even if you do not travel for business. You can charge all of your gasoline, groceries, and other expenses to your airline credit card. You can even set up your regular monthly bills to be charged to your credit card. Paying all of the bills at one time at the end of the month when you pay off your credit card balance isn’t just convenient, it is also a smart way to earn rewards for money you will spend anyway. Make the bills work for you and help you earn more miles.
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