Cash Reward Credit Cards - FREE MONEY!

Mar 29, 2001

The Bottom Line FREE CASH for doing nothing additional... ever!

The concept of credit cards in general is pretty good. You apply to a company and the extend you a line of credit. The size of the line of your line of credit is based on a number of things, one of which is your income. But cards were free and all was well.

Then companies said we can give you some benefits with our card, but we'll charge you for them. Many people jumped at it. Sure they had to pay money for their card (sometimes up to $100 annually), but they thought they were getting wonderful things for their money (travel insurance, warranty extensions, etc.) so they were happy. Fees started to go up, and people were getting upset. The companies had to come up with new ways to entice customers.

Some of them decided that they will still charge customers for their cards, but they will give back a small percentage of their expenditures, otherwise known as a Cash Reward or Rebate. This got people's attention. It wasn't much, but it sure was more than they were getting before, so they moved on to them. I believe it was Discover that started the cash back routine when they came on the scene, and it has stuck ever since.

Now, the industry has matured to the point that you can get a credit card with NO ANNUAL FEE and still get a cash reward. Prime examples of this are the American Express Cash Reward card and the FleetBoston Titanium Visa card.

Both of these are free cards. There are no strings attached. The only limitation on them is the amount of the reward you can get. With the Fleet Visa, you are limited to $500, which is about $30,500 worth of annual purchases. There is no limit to the cash reward on the American Express Rewards card.

Both cards ramp up to their maximum payouts. The American Express card pays, at maximum 1.5% of purchases, whereas the Fleet Visa pays 2% of purchases. By ramp up, I mean that the First few thousand dollars on both of these cards are not paying the full payout, but increase in value the more you spend. You reach the maximum percent return on the Visa when you have reached $8000 in expenditures, and American Express at $5000 in expenditures. Everything over these two values is giving you the maximum cash reward for that card.

There are other issues, such as balance transfers and annual percent interest rates. I do not carry a monthly balance, hence this is not an important issue to me.

Check out these cards. You are missing an opportunity to get what is basically FREE MONEY! You do nothing additional to get this cash, just spending like you normally do.

How can anyone argue with free cash!

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About Me: Engineer that loves Disney, computers, photography and anything that merges those hobbies!