Loyalty Rewards Programs – A Must Do

Loyalty Rewards Programs – A Must Do

Loyalty Rewards

Rewards programs are great and essential to saving you money! I leverage a number of rewards programs whether for travel, cash back, store credit, or other points. Businesses are competing for your business and will want to keep you shopping with them. Before you commit to a rewards program, keep these in mind before signing up.

Will The Business Be Around?

A number of businesses are closing during this pandemic because of the economic impacts. If a business files for bankruptcy, your rewards could be in jeopardy. Companies like Hertz, GNC,  and Le Pain Quotidien filed for bankruptcy.

Will You Be A Return Customer?

If you have stores that you normally shop at, find out if they have a rewards program. The more you shop, the more you could benefit from it. If you are not going to be a return customer, see if there’s any benefit you can redeem right away since you may not be a return customer.

Do The Points Expire?

Some rewards programs points expire if there is no activity on the account. If the points expire from inactivity, don’t forget about them. If you are a return customer, you won’t have to worry about this.

One thing I’ve learned is that your points won’t grow significantly without help. What I mean is that if you get 1 point for every $1 you spend, to get to 25,000 points you’ll have to spend $25,000. That’s a lot of money to spend. One way is to find ways to double points or triple them. Another way is to open their credit cards where they typically have a bonus incentive. For example, airlines will have promotions that give you 50K miles for opening their credit card and spending a certain amount of money. It definitely beats spending $50,000 on your own.

I’m enrolled in many rewards programs and here are my favorite ones.

Southwest Airlines Rewards

If you travel often by air and located near an airport that Southwest services, I highly recommend Southwest. Southwest Airlines  is a little different than the other airlines where there aren’t assigned seats. Reasons I like Southwest are

  • When you redeem a flight using points, you cancel a flight with no penalty even up to the day of
  • Points do not expire
  • Ticket prices are typically less than competitors in my experience
  • If you accrue 125,000 qualifying points, you achieve companion pass where when you buy a ticket, a companion gets a free ticket. It’s like buy one get one. 125,000 points may seem a lot but Southwest has multiple types of credit cards that you can open to get to that amount easier. I opened 2 Southwest credit cards when they had promotions and I was able to achieve companion pass status. Everywhere I flew with Southwest, I was able to bring a companion with me and only pay the taxes.
  • Part of the Chase bank line of credit cards
  • It does have an annual fee but if you’re able to get companion pass status, it’s all worth it.

United Airlines Rewards

United Airlines is an airline I like to use to travel to Europe and Asia. Reasons I like United are

  • Points do not expire
  • You can redeem a flight and go to multiple cities with a stop over instead of a layover
  • United Airlines credit card gives you a boost towards free flights and gives you 2 lounge passes each year
  • Part of the Chase bank line of credit cards
  • It does have an annual fee but if you’re able to hit multiple countries with one ticket redemption, I think it’s worth it…along with the lounge passes.

Marriott Rewards

Marriott is a rewards program hotel I have because I traveled for work and stayed at the Marriott line. It was a no brainer to accrue points. Reasons I like Marriott are

  • Marriott is global
  • Points do expire after 24 consecutive months of inactivity
  • Marriott credit card gives you one free night annually
  • Part of the Chase bank line of credit cards
  • The Marriott credit card gives you 6X the points at groceries. This is the card I usually use when I do grocery shopping.

Chase Rewards

Chase rewards program is one of my favorite and the one I use the most. Chase rewards can be redeemed for travel, cash, and purchases. Chase offers multiple credit cards that can add up to many Chase points. Depending on the card, you can accrue bonus points. Reasons I like Chase are

  • Points don’t expire as long as your account is open
  • You can transfer points to other Chase participants like United, Marriott, IHG, Hyatt, or Southwest
  • If you don’t want the travel points, you can cash the points out
  • If you don’t want the travel points or cash points, you can shop through their program to buy items from Apple and other businesses.
  • Credit cards give bonus points on certain categories like restaurants and travel
  • Chase Sapphire or Chase Freedom are couple of the cards they offer and I have also
  • Certain cards have annual fees. Depending on your spending habits it may be worth it

Costco Rewards

I’m a member of Costco and have been for a long time. What’s great about the rewards I get is that it covers my annual membership cost. I also price compare everything with Costco. Other reasons I like Costco rewards are

  • Competitive pricing
  • Offers home and auto insurance
  • Offers auto buying program
  • Costco travel agency has great deals
  • Return policy is better than competitors
  • If you are a member, you can get a referral bonus for anyone you refer
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Not only does rewards help you in the long run financially, but also look for the deals. I’ve been using loyalty rewards programs to save money. As you can see my favorite rewards programs are travel related which is what I’m interested in. Whichever loyalty programs you are interested in, try to find the maximum benefits from them. These aren’t the only loyalty programs I’m enrolled in, just the top ones I use. I have gas rewards, office store rewards, restaurant rewards, electronics store rewards, and others. Maintaining multiple rewards accounts may become a headache but in the long run, it’ll help you out financially. If you are interested in following my journey, email subscribe to get alerts of latest posts or follow me on Facebook.

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