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When it comes to credit cards, most people think of it as just a way to pay for items. Some may talk about the dangers of credit cards and how they can destroy you financially.
But you don’t hear many people talking about how to make money with credit cards. Which is disappointing because there are so many ways to make easy money with credit cards.
In this article, I give you 12 ideas that you can start with.
How much you will earn depends on how much effort you want to put into this side gig. Some people can make hundreds of dollars a year, while others can make thousands.
# 1. Signup Bonuses
Credit card sign up rewards are where the real money is.
You can earn a few hundred dollars in sign-up rewards with a cashback card or up to 100,000 points for travel rewards cards. Most sign up bonuses make you spend a certain amount of money in a certain period of time.
A common one would look like this: Spend $1,000 in the first three months to earn $150 cashback.
These rewards are added to the cash or points you earn with your card. So if you earn 2% cash back on purchases, you’ll earn $20 on the $1,000 you spent, plus a $150 sign-up bonus.
The advantage of signing up for Rewards is that it is for new Cardmembers only. But each credit card issuer identifies a new cardholder differently.
Some say you can’t be a cardholder for two years. Therefore, many people open a credit card to take advantage of the bonus, and then close the account. Then in two years, they repeat the process.
It’s a quick way to earn many points or cashback.
# 2. Cash Back Credit Cards
Cash back credit cards offer a cash reward every time you pay with your card. In most cases, you earn between 1% and 2%.
Although it doesn’t sound like much, the amount of cash back does add up if you use your card for everyday purchases.
For example, you spend $1,000 per month and earn 1% cashback. You earn $10 each month or $120 annually simply by paying with your credit card.
Using a 2% cash back card increases your earnings to $220 per year.
# 3. Travel rewards credit cards
Instead of using a cash back credit card, you can opt for a travel rewards credit card. This type of credit card offers points for every dollar you spend.
You may earn 1 point for every dollar you spend. If you spend $1,000 per month, you will earn 1,000 points, or 12,000 per year.
You can redeem these points for all sorts of things, like data credits or free gifts. But the most popular way to use points is for travel.
Depending on the card you choose, you can redeem your points for a discounted or free rate, hotel stays, car rentals, and more.
You can even convert the points you earn into your loyalty programs.
Related: Find out how to travel cheap
#4. Take advantage of bonus points
While both cash back and travel rewards cards are great, what makes them even better are the additional rewards. These rewards are on top of your usual cash back or points earned.
For example, the American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card offers cash back rewards of 6% cash back at grocery stores and 3% cash back at gas stations.
Going back to the example above of spending $1,000 per month, let’s say that $500 is at the grocery store. Now you earn $35 cashback per month or $420 per year.
Travel cards offer additional rewards, too. You can earn 2x or more points when you spend money on travel or other services.
#5 Use your credit cards strategically
This point is on the back of the point above. If you really want to make extra money with credit card rewards, you need to have more than one credit card and use it strategically.
This will help you maximize your points.
For example, I have the American Express card I mentioned above. I only use it to buy groceries and gas.
Then I use another credit card that offers 2% cash back on all purchases. I use this card for all my other expenses.
Finally, I have a 3rd card with 5% rotating classes.
I will use this card several times a year to spend in categories where I get 5% cash back.
This is usually on holidays. By using my cards this way, I increase the money I earn.
Every year I earn an average of $1,500 in cash from my credit cards.
I pay my bills on time so I never pay interest or late fees. And only one card has an annual fee.
In the end, I walk away with about $1,400 in extra cash.
Take some time and assess your spending habits. Then decide if you want cash back or rewards.
Once you know this, you can find the right credit card.
Start slowly and apply for a new credit card account over time.
This way, you limit the risk of spending too much and only making minimal payments, or worse yet, missing a due date and paying late fees.
#6. Shop online
This is a great way to get your winnings back.
When you make online purchases using a portal like Swagbucks or Rakuten, you earn cash because you shop on their site.
And since you paid with your credit card, you can also get a refund here. Let’s look at how this works.
I need to buy something from Best Buy. I head over to Rakuten and see that they offer 2% cash back on purchases made at Best Buy.
Click on the link and go to the Best Buy website. I buy $100 of computer ink.
Rakuten puts $2 into my account for the cashback I earned by shopping through them.
My credit card also gives me $2 because I get 2% cash back on my purchases. In total, I made $4.
Had I not used Rakuten, I would have only charged $2 on my credit card.
The great news is that many retailers are on Swagbucks And Rakuten is offering up to 25% cashback.
Related: Here are the best ways to get free gift cards
#7. Monetize your rewards
Here’s another idea on the back to increase your credit card cash.
When you earn your cash, you should invest the money you earn. In this way, he can accumulate in larger sums of money.
It is up to you to invest your money in the stock market or invest in a safer investment.
But let’s look at some examples. Let’s say you earn $1,000 a year in cashback and invest it at 5% annually.
After 20 years, you have close to $35,000! Where can you get a safe 5% return on your money?
Look no further worthy bonds.
I’ve been using them for three years and have had nothing but positive experiences with them.
If you want to earn more, look into the stock market. Here you can earn 8% per annum on your money.
After 20 years, you end up with nearly $50,000!
By making it a point to save and invest your money, you end up with a lot of money that will open doors for you in the future.
#8. Transfer Points
If you’re interested in travel points, are there any backpacking opportunities here?
The most important thing is to transfer your points to loyalty programs, such as frequent flyer programs or hotel rewards.
Sometimes, you can convert points at a ratio of 1:1.5 or 1:2.
This means if you have 1,000 points with your credit card and you transfer it at a 1:2 ratio, you will get 2,000 points.
The catch is not all loyalty programs allow transfers. And a lot of them transfer at a 1:1 ratio, so you’re not out front.
However, if reward points matter to you, you need to look into conversion rates.
#9. Use nuts
Here’s another way to make money with credit cards.
Acorn tree fruit It is a small investment app that allows you to invest small amounts of money, including your backup fees.
It works by rounding your purchases up to the next dollar and investing the difference.
So if you spend $5.15, Acorns will take $0.85 from your linked checking account and invest it for you.
Since you spent with your credit card, if you get 2% cash back on your credit card purchases, you earn $0.10. This is something to keep in mind because tours build up over time.
Many people tell me they have $750 or more in their Acorns account after one year of submissions alone. Add in the cash you earn, and you’ll be making good money.
#10. Zero percent balance transfer offers
It is difficult to implement this idea today due to low interest rates. But it is still an option for many to consider.
You may have heard it called stoozing or credit card balancing, which is another way to make money with balance transfer cards.
Savvy cardholders have used this trick for years to make free money.
Here how it works. You get an offer to transfer the 0% balance on your credit card.
You take the comfort check, get it for $5,000 and deposit it in a high-yield savings account or other investment where your capital is safe.
Each month you withdraw money from this account to pay the minimum balance on your credit card. Repeat this until the month before the 0% promotion ends.
At this time, you withdraw the money to pay off the balance in full and keep the interest you earned as earnings.
If you do this over the course of 18 months and earn 5% of your money, you’ll make about $300. Keep doing this over and over again, and you can make good money.
There are two things you should keep in mind.
First, you have to earn a safe return where you don’t risk losing money. Usually, this is an online bank account.
But you can also use Worthy Bonds.
Second, you need to factor in any balance transfer fees.
This is usually 3-5% of the transfer amount, so you need to earn more than that to make money.
Credit card companies once offered balance transfers without these fees, but not anymore. However, you can ask for lower fees, as this has worked for some people with a good credit score.
Related: Learn the pros and cons of balance transfers
No. 11. Sell your rewards
This is the line with what you are allowed to do. But a lot of people do, so I wanted to include it.
If you have many points for which you have no plans, you can sell these points to others.
The catch here is that many credit cards say you can’t sell your rewards for cash, so use this card at your own risk. Before you do anything, read the fine print in the terms and conditions to make sure.
It works by booking travel for others using your points. Then the other person pays you to do it.
They usually charge less than the cost of travel, so you both benefit. The exception is that the credit card company will allow you to gift your points to friends and family.
No. 12. Use expired credit cards
This final idea does not include spending or the risk of getting into credit card debt. Instead, you take expired credit cards and cut them up to get things out of them.
One of the most common things to make expired credit cards is is jewelry. People cut old credit cards into small pieces and turn them into necklaces and earrings.
Others make artwork out of them. The amount of money you can earn varies, but people charge $5 or more depending on the item.
If this interests you, consider asking friends and family about their old credit cards so you have a resource to start with.