Unexpected Ways to Earn Credit Card Rewards

Wednesday, May 17th, 2017
Updated: May 17th, 2017
The content is accurate at the time of publication and is subject to change.

If you have a rewards credit card, you’re probably familiar with the benefits of earning cash back, points, or miles. Most credit cards give a set percentage of cash back, like 1% of all purchases, or a set number of points per dollar spent in particular categories.

Double and triple points can boost your rewards balance, while rotating categories of 5% back often let cardmembers earn up to $75 cash back per quarter. However, there are a few unexpected ways to earn more rewards that many people may not be aware of. Read on to find out which rewards-earning opportunities you could be missing out on.

Online malls – Almost every credit card issuer offers an online shopping mall that gives points back or cash back at a higher rate than the base earning rate. For example, while Discover card may give a maximum of 5% cash back at certain retailers based on rotating categories, their online retail site gives up to 20% back on purchases. Chase and Citi also have rewards malls or shopping sites that offer bigger points-earning opportunities. Hundreds of retailers participate in these credit card malls, so whatever you need, you are likely to be able to find it through your credit card issuer’s retail site.

Car rentals—Renting a car on your next vacation is another great way to earn more points or cash back. Many credit card issuers give double or triple points for every dollar spent on car rentals at certain places. Often there are special promotions that will give more than the usual amount of cash back, points, or miles during peak times like summer vacation or winter holidays. If you’re planning on renting a car, be sure you check with your credit card issuer to see if you can get extra rewards from renting from Hertz, Alamo, Enterprise, Dollar or other car rental companies.

Magazine subscriptions—If you like getting magazines in your mailbox, you can earn points or miles when you get your subscription online through your credit card issuer. Just do a search for magazine subscription services that offer credit card rewards, or call your card issuer and ask if they participate in any magazine partnerships that will earn you extra rewards. There are many of these type of subscription services, so don’t miss out on the chance to get credit card rewards next time you renew your favorite magazine subscriptions.

Promo searches—There are hundreds of promotions at any given time, if you simply keep your eyes open and search for them. The more credit cards you have in your wallet, the greater the chances of finding a great offer that lets you earn bonus points or miles, or up to 5% cash back on your purchase. The best thing to do is frequently search for promos that apply to your favorite credit card. Applying for new cards that offer sign-up bonuses is another great way to reap rewards.

When you look for them, you’ll find more ways to earn credit card rewards than you ever imagined. They key is to be aware and take advantage of all the offers you can.

All rates and fees, and other terms and conditions of the products mentioned in this article/post are actual as of the last update date but are subject to change. See the current products' Terms & Conditions on the issuing banks' websites.

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