HOUSTON – The pandemic has forced many of us to rethink our finances and that includes credit cards. If you use a rewards card to earn points or get cash back, you should know many of the cards have changed policies.
Now is a good time to take a look at each card to figure out which will help you the most during this new normal. Very few people are racking up frequent flier miles right now. That is why many travel rewards cards are giving you points and miles in the places you’re spending the most money right now.
“So they’re doing things like giving you enhanced rewards at the grocery store, or maybe they’re giving you credits for streaming plans and cell phone plans,” explained Tedd Rossman of CreditCards.com.
We found a few examples on The Points Guy.
- Delta Skymiles is offering four times the miles at grocery stores through July.
- The Hilton Honors American Express card is offering 12 times the points at grocery stores right now.
- Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders will get a $100 credit for renewing cards in July.
Card companies are also giving you more time to use perks you’ve already earned instead of letting them expire.
“So if you had elite status, probably got another year of that. Or if you had a free hotel stay that you haven’t used yet, chances are that deadlines have been extended another year,” Rossman said.
Don’t forget that everything is negotiable, even annual fees that can range from $100 to as much as $600.
“We found a couple of years ago, even in a much more normal climate that about 70% of the time when people ask, they got that annual fee lower fee or waived,” said Rossman.
If you are worried more about paying bills than perks, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Your card may let you skip a payment or two without dinging your credit or they may lower your interest rate if you ask.