“How can I get the most rewards from a credit card?”

Whether you’re looking for a rewards credit card that pays you back in cash, travel miles, gift cards or points, there are several ways to ensure you get the most for your money.

Earn rewards at the places you already spend

You naturally want a rewards credit card that gives you the highest rewards in the categories where you spend. If you drive often, you may benefit most from a gas rewards credit card like the Discover® it Chrome. Likewise, if you fly a few times a year, you’ll potentially benefit from a travel rewards credit card like the Discover it® Miles.

Your best choice for a rewards credit card is one that gives you rewards, travel credit or points on your everyday purchases—and gives you the highest and the best rewards in the categories where you already spend. Ideally, you want a credit card that gives you top rewards, redemption options you really want, and offers a great all-around value.

Want to earn even more rewards?

Consider paying your cable or phone payments, car insurance and other recurring bills using your rewards credit card to earn rewards on your everyday purchases and payments.

Get the best value when you redeem rewards, too.

In addition to earning top rewards, you also want to be smart about redeeming your credit card rewards:

  • See if there is an expiration date, limits or restrictions for using your rewards. If your rewards expire, make sure you will be able to accrue enough rewards to redeem before these rewards expire. (This might mean concentrating your purchases on one card, rather than across several cards.)
  • Some rewards credit cards provide extra rewards when you redeem for gift cards from retail partners. For instance, a $20 reward could get you a $25, $30 or $40 gift card from a retailer you use.
  • Find out the redemption levels or reward increments. For instance, can you redeem once you’ve reached a certain amount or are your rewards sent to you at year-end?

Some tips to get the best value from a rewards card.

  • A low interest rate and no annual fee can improve the value of your rewards credit card. Look for rewards cards with no fees for same-day payments online or by phone, no rewards redemption fees, and services that help you avoid over limit and late fees.
  • Keep finance charges low by carrying as low a balance as possible.
  • Limit the number of rewards credit cards you have —build bigger reward balances across one or two rewards cards.
  • Consider the APR offer and duration. Ideally you’d like to find a low or 0% APR offer with a longer intro period. If you’re looking to transfer a balance from a card with a high APR, check out the balance transfer rate. Find out the length of the intro APR, and what the APR will be after the intro period is over.

Legal Disclaimer: This site is for educational purposes and is not a substitute for professional advice. The material on this site is not intended to provide legal, investment, or financial advice and does not indicate the availability of any Discover product or service. It does not guarantee that Discover offers or endorses a product or service. For specific advice about your unique circumstances, you may wish to consult a qualified professional.