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Credit Card Rebates - Finding the Right Card

Aug 17, 2007
There are many rebate credit cards available that offer rebate options that sound too good to be true. With so many credit card rebates to consider it can be mind-boggling trying to figure out which one to pick, if any. Understanding what each rebate credit card has to offer, APR, annual fee and overall terms and conditions will make things a lot clearer and will help you tremendously in your attempt at finding the right card for you.

Compare Rebate Offers Carefully

The rebate programs offered by various rebate credit card companies vary widely. Rebates, in the form of cash back, rewards you with anywhere from 0.25% up to 1%, a full 1% and a full 2%. The percentage you get back usually depends on the amount you purchase. For example, one card may give you 0.5% when you spend up to $2000, whereas you earn 2% when you spend $6000 or more. The thing to look out for when selecting a rebate credit card is terms for those offering only "up to 1%," as compared to credit card rebates that offer "a full 1%", for example.

Consider Your Spending Habits

Rebates are credited to you based on your spending. The more you buy, the more you get back in cash. However, depending on the card, this may not always apply to every purchase you make. In other words, one card may allow you to use your card at any establishment, whereas another card may require you to make purchases at a particular store. Be sure to pick a rebate credit card that you can use at your favorite stores.

Try To Find A Card With A Low APR and No Annual Fee

Rebate credit cards tend to have higher APRs and annual fees as compared to other cards. Cards with high interest rates and annual fees can quickly zap you of your entire rebate. Another thing to keep in mind, if you carry a balance on your credit card from month to month, then the cash back won't really amount to much. Using a card under these circumstances defeats the purpose of getting that type of card in the first place. Rebates are best for those who spend a lot on their card but pay off their balances.

Unless you spend huge amounts of money on your card and the rebate offers are high, chances are you won't get much in return - net return. Scout around for cards that have very low APRs and no annual fees. That way, all the fun of racking up those great rebates won't be spoiled.

Steer Clear Of Shady Terms And Conditions

You've heard this stated many a time, "read the fine print." The "fine print" serves a good purpose on behalf of the rebate credit cards company. Although usually very text-heavy, I don't think the companies use fine print merely to save space. Often times, small type is placed where it is not very noticeable. It often contains specifics that are important for you to know but not necessarily what a company wants you to fully understand.

Pay attention to those teeny-tiny footnotes. They sometimes point at exclusions or restrictions to what the company is claiming to offer. For example, a rebate offer of "2% on all purchases" might actually mean 2% on all purchases made from a list of affiliated retailers. These retailers may not have the products you are interested in or the products may have a high mark-up.

Also, look for wording that may be a little deceptive. A rebate credit card may claim to give you "5% APR" but reading the fine print it you'll interpret is as really meaning 5% on balance transfers only or 5% for limited time.

Once you know exactly what to look for, you will find it easy to select the best rebate credit cards. Comparison shop on the internet and take advantage of all that credit card rebates have to offer.
About the Author
For more on credit card rebates, Robert Alan recommends that you visit CreditCardAssist.com
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