Top 7 Travel Credit Card Rewards Mistakes to Avoid

With inflation rising and hoped for travel plans put on hold, it's no surprise many Americans are looking for travel hacks and rewards programs to fill in the gaps and get them on the road – or in the air again.

But if you're not careful, some supposed money-savers can cost you in the long run.

The good news is, if you learn from these seven mistakes, you will be better off than 99% of people using rewards.

Buying Miles

I rarely see a good deal on buying miles straight from the airlines with a bonus. The math doesn’t work out, and most of the time, you'll probably pay more for the miles than your “free flight” is worth.

I saw a Nespresso machine in a miles catalog for 30,000 points. Instead of buying it with miles, I used 12,500 points to get a $125 gift card to the exact same store. Then I bought the same machine on sale for $125!

Redeem Miles For Stuff In A Catalog

Trusting “Great” Offers In The Mail

Most people miss out on tens of thousands of miles simply because they don’t do a quick Google search or check a reputable site that posts the best offers available.

Make sure you always keep your oldest cards open. I recommend your first credit card be an “anchor card” that you keep forever. Get a solid “no annual fee” card or a card that can eventually be “downgraded” to a no annual fee card.

Closing Old Accounts

Did you know that couples have separate credit profiles and separate credit scores? This means couples can double up on all the best cards. Each person can apply separately with their social security number.

Ignoring Your Significant Other

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