You already know you can earn cashback/points from your credit card. However, did you know that sometimes you can stretch this further and get even more from your purchase (without spending more!)?
It's simple. The main idea is to go through as many "layers" as possible with your purchase. That way, you can effectively collect multiple "rewards" along the way for your single purchase.
Here are the steps:
- Signup Bonus - See if you are about to make big (or many) purchases, and if it would make more sense to open a new card to help hit that minimum spend requirement.
- Credit Card Spend Multiplier - You already know this one. Basically, use the right credit card for the right purchases (e.g. a travel card for travel-related expenses)
- Offers - Look for offers in your bank's app or website (e.g. Amex Offers, Chase Offers) to see if there are any specific promotions from merchants you were going to buy from anyways. Remember, you need to activate these before making the purchases, or it doesn't count.
- Cashback Portals - This one is incredibly easy. Simply go to a cashback site like Rakuten, click through to the merchant (e.g. Apple) from the site, and make your purchase! Remember to turn off Adblock and ensure the purchase is made in the same session/tab that you opened it in!
Here are some examples of the extra cashback you can get on purchases you were already going to make anyways through cashback portals:
- 12x on Nike via United MileagePlus Shopping
- 4x on Apple via AAdvantage Shopping
- 12x on Lululemon via AAdvantage Shopping
Personally, I value these miles at 1-2 cents per point (cpp), so you are looking at an extra 8%-24% return on your spend which is incredible! Keep in mind these rates vary on a daily basis and between shopping portals. I always head over to casbackmonitor.com to check the best rates before making a purchase! You can also "favorite" your favorite stores and will receive emails when rates are higher.
Here is a short tutorial on how to do this. In this example, we'll be shopping at Macy's via the United Shopping Portal to earn an additional 8x back:
Still confused? Here is an example:
Say I want to buy a MacBook Pro 16" for $3000. Since Apple is usually not a bonus category, the best return on a Chase system would be 1.5x. For the purpose of this exercise, I will use the minimum value of $0.01/point, but just be aware your points can be worth many times more if used correctly.
To push this even further, we can do the following to essentially get 3 (or more) rewards for the price of 1:
- Sign up bonus from new Freedom Unlimited Card ($200)
- Go through Shop Through Chase or shopping portal like Rakuten to get extra 2% ($60)
- Since Apple is not usually a bonus category, you will get 1.5% back on your purchase ($45)
So once we add it all up, you've saved over $300! (Now laugh at those who still pay in cash or debit card LOL)
Sign up for Rakuten today using my link and get $20 after your first purchase!
1. Sign up here
2. On the Rakuten site, click on a retailer of interest and make a purchase over $20
3. Get $20 back + your shopping rewards (e.g. 2% back on Apple)
For a more in-depth guide for using Rakuten, check out this post I wrote!
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This site is for informational purposes only. Contents and opinions expressed are the author's alone and your experience may vary. The author is not a financial/investment/tax/legal professional of any kind. CreditFred strives to provide the most accurate and up-to-date information possible, but the strategies and tips provided should not be replicated before you conduct your own research and, if needed, consult with a financial professional.