Now that cash back rebates are standard on so many consumer credit cards, card issuers and their affiliates are starting to up the ante on the prizes you can win by swiping your plastic frequently enough.
While you used to only get a small amount of cash back with your card when Discover introduced the program in 1986, the newest generation of reward credit cards offer today’s consumers everything from gift certificates to plane tickets.
While these fantastic rewards might only be a gimmick on the part of the card issuer, they’re still really cool. Here are a few worth checking out:
- A Major League Baseball Jersey and Tickets. If you’re a die-hard fan of America’s pastime, then you need to look into the Bank of America MLB Extra Bases MasterCard. You’ll get a free jersey of your favorite team with your first purchase, and subsequent purchases will earn you a point for every dollar spent. Once you hit 2,500 points, you can redeem them for VIP tickets, memorabilia and more at the official MLB online store.
- A Cruise to Anywhere. Whenever you swipe your SeaMiles Visa card, you’ll rack up “sea miles” for every dollar spent. These miles function just like their frequent flyer counterparts. You can redeem them to get discounts off your next cruise, and if you’ve accumulated enough of them, you can get a free cruise. What separates the SeaMiles card from a standard cruise line credit card is that the miles you earn can be redeemed with any cruise company, for any destination. That’s good, because for most of us there’s simply no reason to mix business and pleasure with our sea captains. Thanks, Visa.
- A Taylor Guitar. Serious guitarists and luthiers everywhere know that Taylor makes just about the finest acoustic guitars that money can buy. Their flagship 100 Series guitars are lauded the world over for their craftsmanship and exquisite sound, and if you manage to earn 104,700 points with Citi’s ThankYou card rewards program, you aspiring musicians can have one to call your very own.
These are only a few of the awesome rewards that credit card companies are using to lure in new members. While it might make you shudder to think just how much you’ll need to spend to earn a reward like a cruise or a Taylor guitar that retails for thousands of dollars, these credit card rewards certainly do give your average consumer something to aspire to. Who knows – if you stick with a credit card long enough, you might one day be able to redeem your bonus points for something really worthwhile!