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Knowing the Value of Credit Card Rewards Programs

Use your credit card wisely by understanding how rewards programs work.

By: Denisse Shawntel Tan | October 07, 2017
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Cardholders can make the most out of their cards with the available rewards.

Credit cards offer not only a convenient way of paying, but also the opportunity to score great deals through accumulated points. Almost all of the major banks in the country have extensive rewards programs which offer many perks. Some banks even have specific points dedicated to a certain type of product or purchase.

In general, reward programs serve as a treat for shoppers for all the purchases they make using credit cards. Reward points can be accumulated through purchasing of goods and availing of services. The points also possess monetary value which can be used to attain gifts, goodies, and benefits. Some banks even allow the points to be redeemed to cash back into the credit card owner’s account.

Reward points can be redeemed in exchange for vouchers, gift certificates, cash back, and gifts from the rewards catalog of the bank. Card users are advised to be updated of the available promos and offers which can bring them bigger points.

However, there are things to remember about credit card points. One is that points are non-transferable and that the credit card holder’s account should be in good standing to obtain the rewards. Additionally, each bank has specific conditions for the rewards program. Some banks have certain rewards exclusive to specific cards only.

It is helpful for customers to conduct research and compare the different kinds of credit card points and determine which is the best fit for their financial status and lifestyle. Other things to keep in mind are the annual fees, interest rates, and the like.

Each bank has certain purchase amounts needed to attain one point. For example, Banco De Oro (BDO) credit card holders get one credit card point for every PhP50 charged to a single currency card. On the other hand, BDO Titanium, Platinum, Visa Platinum or Diamond UnionPay card holders gain one point for every PhP40 charged to the card.

Bigger points can be attained through promotional offers and purchase of items in certain categories. Points also have a long expiration date. Some do not have expiration dates at all. To be sure, credit card holders can ask customer service personnel from the bank about the total number of accumulated points and when they expire.

Customers should also be aware that not all points are redeemable any time. Some points are only useable at certain periods, such as festivals and other occasions as determined by the bank.

Besides dining out, online shopping, and grocery shopping, rewards can be also earned through transactions at gas stations. In return, points earned at gas stations can be used to get discounts on lubricants and free fuel.

Air travel also counts as a way to get points. Purchasing air tickets can give credited points. In return, the credited points gained can be used to pay for future travel-related charges like hotel and taxi bookings, concierge service, and the like. Some banks can also double the rewards if the purchase was made through an airline partner. Other banks also consider overseas purchases as eligible under their rewards programs.

Before redeeming, customers can check or calculate their points depending on how much they spend. Several banks like BDO and Citi Bank offer online rewards points calculator at their websites. This allows customers to see how their points could add up annually based on their monthly spend.

Based on Citi Bank’s calculator for example, a person who spends PhP5,000 monthly could have an estimated total of 3,920 points*. Citi Bank also has a cash back rewards calculator available on their website. According to the calculator, a person who spends an average of PhP5,000 per month could possibly have PhP120** annual cash rebates per year.

To claim their rewards, card holders can check the rewards catalog of their bank to see which items are redeemable with their existing points. The rewards catalog can be seen at the website of the bank. Redemption can also be done over the phone if it’s required to call for authenticating the caller’s identity.

It is also important to ask about which medium of redemption is best for the type of card or the offer as some redemption need booking or notice. Another possible way to redeem is at the outlet of a merchant if they are listed as a valid redemption site by the bank.

Consumers with multiple credit cards have to consider the credit card points available rather than the benefits which come with using the card. In such cases, it is best to dispose of the card with the least number of points and benefits.

* Values are not fixed and are for illustrative purposes only. Some terms and conditions may apply.
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About Denisse Shawntel Tan
Denisse Tan is currently a work in progress: she’s an aspiring writer, artist, and fashion designer! She’s trying to figure out how to manage her time in achieving all of her goals while also taking in life as humanly possible. Aside from art, she’s a big fan of the color pink, disco music, Bratz dolls, and Genshin Impact. By age 35, she plans to travel to New York City 🗽.
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Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of Yoorekka are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, Yoorekka does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.
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