4 Ways Credit Cards Can Save You Money on Purchases

May 17, 2019

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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available – Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card, SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

There may be some money sitting in your wallet that you didn’t even know was there. OK, it isn’t money in the form of crisp dollar bills, but it’s the chance to save money — which is almost as good as earning or finding it. While many rewards credit cards come with well-advertised benefits such as lounge access, avoiding checked bag fees, built-in cellphone insurance, etc., there also are often lesser-known benefits that give you the instant gratification of knowing there will be money back in your wallet.

Related: The 7 Best Starter Travel Credit Cards

These various statement credit offers help you save money on purchases ranging from a stay at a Hilton property to ordering a cup of coffee at Starbucks. While some of the offers are minimal, you might be surprised with how the savings can add up over the course of the year. My family saves at least hundreds of dollars every year thanks to these offers.

Four different credit card savings programs include: Chase Offers, Amex Offers, BankAmeriDeals and Citi Easy Deals. While each program works differently, they have the same end goal: to save you money (and train you to use that bank’s cards).

In This Post

Chase Offers

Chase Offers is a relatively new concept and is available only on select Chase consumer cards. Offers are tailored to the individual user and are based on your typical spending habits. As of press time, all users are able to see their eligible offers through the Chase Mobile or Chase Pay app, but select individuals can also view their offers online within their Chase account.

If you’re using the Chase app, scroll to the bottom to see the Chase Offers for one of your eligible cards. Click “See all offers” and you’ll be able to toggle between the offers for all of your Chase credit cards.

Make sure to save an offer by selecting the “Add to card” link. There you will see the exact terms of the offer, the maximum amount you’ll receive back in a statement credit and the expiration date. Once you’re ready to make a purchase at a participating merchant, be sure to use the Chase credit card that you enrolled in the offer. You’ll see the statement credit hit your account within seven to 14 business days. Based on personal experience, though, it should come back much quicker.

Check terms and conditions for each individual offer. Some are a one-time use, while others allow you to continue to earn cash back until a maximum is met.

At this time, only Chase consumer credit and debit cards are eligible, although not all Chase Offers have been rolled out to all Chase users for all of their cards.

The information for the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Amex Offers

Of all the programs, Amex Offers has been around the longest, although it has continued to evolve over time. Amex Offers were originally introduced with offers available solely via social media, but now you can only access the offers through your online Amex account. These are targeted offers where you can typically only take advantage of the deal once per account. Even if you see the offer on multiple Amex cards, once you save the offer on one card, it will often disappear on the others.

There are three different type of offers you’ll see in your Amex Offers account:

  • Spend $X, get $Y back
  • Spend $X, get Y number of bonus points
  • Get additional points for each dollar you spend at a select merchant

For example, a past offer has been to spend $300 or more at Kimpton Hotels and get a $60 statement credit.

The most common offers includes statement credits, although with Membership Rewards cards, you will more often than not see the bonus-point offers mixed in as well.

Once you sign in to your Amex account and scroll down to the bottom, you’ll see all of your Amex Offers in the “Amex Offers & Benefits” section. Add all of your offers to your card and remember to use that particular card for your upcoming purchase. American Express says that you’ll receive the statement credit or bonus points within 90 days, but I’ve usually seen mine in a week, tops.

There are typically many travel promotions in the Amex Offers list, along with retailers and even services (such as cellphone or streaming services). Some require hundreds in spending, while others require much smaller amounts. With all Amex Offers, as long as the charge hits your credit card by the expiration date, you’ll receive the credit or bonus points. This means if you have a future hotel stay that is offering statement credits, simply booking your stay by that expiration date will not trigger the statement credit. However, a prepaid stay where the hotel bills you in advance may work.

BankAmeriDeals

Bank of America runs deals called BankAmeriDeals that are similar to Chase Offers. As long as you have a Bank of America credit or debit card, you are eligible. With BankAmeriDeals, you sign in to your account online or through the mobile app and activate your desired offers. To add the offer to your account, click the “+” symbol on the upper right corner of each offer. Once you make your purchase with your linked credit card, you’ll see the cash back within 30 days.

In addition to the cash back you receive from taking advantage of an offer, you can also earn BankAmeriDeals coins. Every time you redeem an offer, you earn one coin. For the first four coins you receive, you earn a $5 bonus. You’ll continue to be bumped up to the next level and earn a dollar more than the last bonus every time you earn four additional coins.

Every time a new offer pops up, you can also opt to receive deal alerts. This is a great way to be notified of new offers and a reminder to activate a particular offer.

Most eligible Bank of America credit and debit cards participate in the BankAmeriDeals, including:

Citi Easy Deals

Citi Easy Deals work quite differently than most of the other offers described above. There are three tiers to the deals you receive, which are directly tied to the amount you spend on your credit card. Fortunately, the required spending levels are not very high:

  • Base Tier: available to all Citi card members
  • Enhanced Tier: available to those who spend $100 or more in a calendar year
  • Plus Tier — available to those who spend $500 or more in a calendar year

You have to meet the spending amount on a yearly basis. Once you do, you bump up to the next tier level at the beginning of your next billing period. You then keep that tier level for the remainder of the year plus the following calendar year. Assuming you spend $500 or more on your credit card in a calendar year, that gives you access to local offers as well as savings on gift cards, magazines, merchandise, travel and daily deals.

Instead of receiving a statement credit, like many of the other credit card offers, you instead receive an instant discount. For example, there are opportunities to purchase gift cards at a discount, such as a a $50 Best Buy gift card for only $30. With these deals, yo have to act fast, as they’re only available for a limited time.

Credit Cards That Participate in Citi Easy Deals

Bottom Line

While these offers might not save you money on every single purchase you make every single day, there are decent opportunities to rack up savings over the year and potentially have that pay for your annual fee, if not more. New offers can pop up daily, so I always make it part of my morning routine to check if any new offers have appeared. I have earned well over $1,000 of free money through the years simply by taking advantage of these offers. Earning free cash just by holding certain cards is definitely a win in my book.

Jennifer Yellin covers family travel deals for TPG and blogs at Deals We Like. Follow her family’s adventures on Twitter and Instagram.

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