Receive More Cash Back Without Overspending

By April Lewis-Parks

Cash back is one of the best benefits offered by your plastic, but if you spend more just to obtain additional rewards, you could find yourself deep in credit card debt. Fortunately, there are strategies you can use to get the most out of your card without extra spending.

Strategy No. 1 – Charge all routine expenses

If you had previously used cash to pay for groceries, gas and other regular expenses each week, you might want to consider swiping your card instead to earn cash back on your purchases. Of course, you will need to be sure to pay this balance off at the end of each month, or else the interest accrued may cancel out your rewards. You may even have the option to link certain utility accounts to your credit card, which can get you guaranteed cash back each month.

Strategy No. 2 – Pay for friends

When out to eat with your friends, using three different credit cards as well as cash can be confusing for the waitress. If you want to boost your cash back, you might want to consider charging the entire meal to your plastic and take cash from your friends. This strategy won’t do you any good if you go take that cash and blow it at the bar, so you should tuck it away in your wallet and use it to pay off your balance when you get home.

Strategy No. 3 – Match a card with spending habits

If you have a large family, who buys $200 worth of groceries every week, it would be wise to apply for a credit card that offers a high percentage of cash back for these types of purchases. There are certainly these options available, so you shouldn’t just obtain any card – be sure you look long and hard at the features to match them with where you spend the most.

Strategy No. 4 – Only use one card

With so many offers available, and coming in the mail every day, it would be easy to apply for each and every one of them. However, if you want to be able to get the most rewards, it would be smart to stick with just one cash back card. When choosing a card, you should utilize the previous strategy of matching it with your spending habits.

April Lewis-Parks has more than 15 years of experience in the financial sector, she is a certified financial counselor, and a consumer affairs advocate. As the director of education and public relations for Consolidated Credit she is dedicated to generating awareness about personal finance issues and acts as their consumer affairs advocate. As host the of MissMoneyBee.com, she promotes financial education and offers timely and informative personal finance articles to educate the public. April’s promotional efforts can be seen in past issues of the New York Times, Washington Post, Newsday, Consumer Reports, the Business Journals, Money Magazine, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Family Circle, among others. Connect with April on Google+ .