6 Ways To Get Bigger Credit Card Bonuses
With offers of 50,000 points or more, credit card signup bonuses can be very attractive. Savvy consumers use these bonuses for vacation funded by rewards that would otherwise be out of reach. The process is simple: you apply for a credit card, qualify for spending, and receive a substantial welcome bonus. But the size of this bonus and how often you can repeat these steps depends on several factors.
With some banks restricting this very lucrative practice, it’s more important than ever to make sure you get the highest possible offer when you apply for a credit card. Here’s a look at six easy ways to get bigger credit card signup bonuses:
1. Understand the rules of each issuer
When it comes to credit card signup bonuses, it is important to know the rules governing approvals with each issuer in order to receive the best possible offer. Most major banks have rules in place restricting credit card approvals. Some issuers, notably Chase with their 5/24 rule, limit the number of apps you can have in a certain time period, while Amex has a unique rule that only allows you to claim a welcome offer on a credit card. . once, even if you apply for the same card several years later.
As you can imagine, these are pretty big incentives to make sure you plan your applications well to get the highest possible bonuses.
2. Subscribe to receive offers from an issuer
Receiving marketing emails is a huge problem for most people, but in this case, it could be to your advantage. Sign up to receive offers from issuers and loyalty programs that interest you and you could be targeted for some pretty amazing sign up bonuses.
It’s not uncommon for people to receive significantly higher welcome bonuses via posted emails and flyers, sometimes even double the public offers.
3. Use Bankrate’s CardMatch â¢ tool
If the idea of ââreceiving more emails and flyers doesn’t sound appealing, you can opt for Bankrate’s CardMatch tool. Just fill out a quick form and you’ll be matched with the best credit card deal for you. The good thing is that you will receive a personalized card recommendation based on your needs and potentially also offers that are significantly superior to the public offer.
For example, when the American Express Platinum CardÂ® welcome bonus was 60,000 points, people reported being targeted for bonuses of 100,000 points (or more) through CardMatch.
4. Pretend to book a trip
This trick mainly works for hotel and airline credit cards. As you go through the steps to book a hotel stay or plane ticket, you may notice an ad upon departure that promises to reduce the cost of your reservation if you sign up for a card. co-branded credit.
When booking a hotel stay, you will often notice a welcome offer on the departure page offering credit on the statement of several hundred dollars in addition to bonus points. These offers can be ideal for people looking for instant savings, as it often takes time to meet bonus spending requirements.
Before you apply for any of these offers, be sure to compare it to the public offer, in order to get the biggest bonus possible.
5. Browse the web
Sometimes a little sleuthing can pay off a lot. Sites like Reddit and Flyertalk regularly list credit card signup bonuses that exceed those that are publicly available. A quick Google search for the name of the card and the “unprecedented signup bonus” might bring up offers you wouldn’t come across otherwise.
Eagle-eyed community members frequently update the FlyerTalk and Reddit threads. Keep an eye out for these forums and you might stumble upon an offer that covers your next Hawaii vacation. (Just be aware that if you apply with a link intended for someone else, you may lose the signup bonus.)
6. Get recommended
Sometimes credit card companies register the best deals for existing customers and their friends or for internal referral channels. Referral bonuses reduce marketing costs and encourage existing customers to advertise their preferred credit card. If you want to sign up for a specific card, ask an existing cardholder to send you a recommendation. You can compare this bonus to the public offer and possibly come out a winner. Even if you don’t end up with a higher bid, you are helping a friend earn a referral bonus.
The bottom line
When it comes to credit card signup bonuses, you don’t just have to take what’s given to you. Maximize your bonus potential by doing your research, making the most of online forums and friends, and researching targeted offers from issuers, Bankrate’s CardMatch tool, or going through the verification steps with a hotel or an airline. Also, keep in mind that credit card signup offers change often, so if you’re interested in a particular card but aren’t blown away by its current offer, it may be worth considering. ‘wait for a better offer.