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Speaking of credit card rebates...
Old 11-04-2007, 02:40 PM   #1
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Speaking of credit card rebates...

What's the best deal you are aware of for credit card rebates or point systems? The one caveat - the credit card must have no annual fee. In other words, for us non-revolvers, a little bit of money for free.


I spent a little bit of time researching this about 2 years ago. Most of the decent rebate programs came with fees. The best I could find at the time with no fee was Amazon, which gives me 1% in Amazon credit for all purchases, but 3% in Amazon credit for purchases on Amazon.com.

For me it seemed as good as cash (at least in modest quantities) since I'm likely to spend a few hundred bucks a year on their site as it is.


Does anyone know of a better deal? (with no fees!)
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Old 11-04-2007, 02:49 PM   #2
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Discover has a standard 1% kickback. Each quarter they have 5% kick back on different things. For example in the first qtr they had cruises, travel related stuff. In the summer they had a kick back for gas and auto repairs. In the spring I seem to recall that Home Depot, Lowes etc was part of the 5% deal. They currently have 5% bonus on restaurants.

It all depends on your particular spending habits if it is worth it. For example, if you never buy from Amazon, what good is 3%?
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Old 11-04-2007, 03:04 PM   #3
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Pentagon Federal Credit Union

https://www.penfed.org/productsAndRa...ewardCards.asp

5% on gas at the pump and 1.25% on all other purchases
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Old 11-04-2007, 03:15 PM   #4
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Pentagon Federal Credit Union

https://www.penfed.org/productsAndRa...ewardCards.asp

5% on gas at the pump and 1.25% on all other purchases

Ditto this.

It's nice because:

1. There are no fees on the card or the program.
2. There are no minimums or tiers.
3. The cash back shows up automatically as a credit on your monthly bill. Buy $100 in gas one month, send 'em a check for $95.

Only drawback is you can't easily set them up for autopay. I've got them set up in my checking billpay which works well enough for me.

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Old 11-04-2007, 03:24 PM   #5
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Discover has a standard 1% kickback.



But doesn't it have an annual fee?


Also, their international coverage was traditionally pretty spotty.
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Old 11-04-2007, 03:25 PM   #6
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Pentagon Federal Credit Union

https://www.penfed.org/productsAndRa...ewardCards.asp

5% on gas at the pump and 1.25% on all other purchases

Sounds like a good deal, although I don't buy gasoline so its less attractive to me.

Do you have to be active or ex-military to get one?
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Old 11-04-2007, 03:34 PM   #7
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I have a Chase card that gives 5% back for gas, groceries and drug stores and 1% on everything else... but not available anymore...

BUT, a co-worker has the Freedom card and it just started to give 3% cash back on the highest three purchasing categories you spend during the month and 1% on everything else... SO, use it big for travel then all travel is 3% that month, use it for gas, then that is one... I am thinking of getting one of these for all my other purchases besides the 5% above..
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Old 11-04-2007, 03:50 PM   #8
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Costco American Express - 1% everything including Costco, 2% travel related, 3% restaurants. You do have to pay to be a Costco member - $50/ year, IIRC.
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Old 11-04-2007, 04:04 PM   #9
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I have that Chase Freedom card that gives 3% on the 3 highest categories, too. But there's a limit of $600/month for the 3%, after that it's 1%. I use it for groceries so I always use up the $600. But that card also will give you $250 back when your rewards reach $200, so that's a bit of a bonus.

5% rebate cards used to be more common, but everyone has cut their rate back.
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Old 11-04-2007, 04:37 PM   #10
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Do you have to be active or ex-military to get one?
That works. Or if you're a relative of a military or ex-military. Failing either of those, there's an organization you can join for $20 which will then let you join PenFed. Personally my dad was USAF a long time ago, so that is how I qualified.

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Old 11-04-2007, 05:25 PM   #11
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there is still a 5% (grocery, drug store & gasoline) cash rebate card available ... check fatwallett.com.
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Old 11-04-2007, 05:26 PM   #12
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Ditto this.

It's nice because:

1. There are no fees on the card or the program.
2. There are no minimums or tiers.
3. The cash back shows up automatically as a credit on your monthly bill. Buy $100 in gas one month, send 'em a check for $95.
Ditto. Loving.

Quote:

Only drawback is you can't easily set them up for autopay. I've got them set up in my checking billpay which works well enough for me.
Actually you can. I do it. You have to print out some form and write
in by hand. Somebody gave the particulars here early this year.
Search, or call them.

No only do they auto-pay, they do it at the very last day, effectively
floating you the money for the maximum possible time. There is one
minor downside of this, which is that it effectively halves your credit
line, since it must absorb the current month's spending as well as
last month's. Except you hopefully have some 10's of thousand of
dollars on deposit with their 6+% CDs, so raising credit line as
needed should be no problemo.
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Old 11-04-2007, 05:35 PM   #13
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Quote:
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But doesn't it have an annual fee?


Also, their international coverage was traditionally pretty spotty.

Discover has never had an annual fee.
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Old 11-04-2007, 05:53 PM   #14
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I'll nominate American Express Blue - also no annual fee!
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Old 11-04-2007, 06:32 PM   #15
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I'll nominate American Express Blue - also no annual fee!
This is what I have used for a couple of years. ytd $384 cash back on $21K spent. (1.83%)
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Old 11-04-2007, 11:46 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Maurice View Post
The best I could find at the time with no fee was Amazon, which gives me 1% in Amazon credit for all purchases, but 3% in Amazon credit for purchases on Amazon.com.

For me it seemed as good as cash (at least in modest quantities) since I'm likely to spend a few hundred bucks a year on their site as it is.
That's the one I use for EVERYTHING, and pay off each month! I usually spend a few hundred bucks a year at Amazon, so it works out quite well for me.
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Old 11-05-2007, 01:38 AM   #17
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I have a Chase card that gives 5% back for gas, groceries and drug stores and 1% on everything else... but not available anymore...
TP, I think Chase is slowing converting all the 5% back cards to Freedom card (3%). My friend got converted to Freedom about 6 months back and I just got converted a few months back. Enjoy it while you can.

One note for Freedom card holders. If you wait till you have accumulated $200 before cashing in your rebate, you get another $50, for a total of $250. This effectively makes the rebate 3.75% assuming that all your purchases are in the 3% category.
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Old 11-05-2007, 08:32 AM   #18
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I have a FIDO card that pays 1.5% on all purchases into kid's 529 account. Parents have their own card paying into the other kid's account. No fee. I have have to even em up now and then.
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GM Card
Old 11-05-2007, 12:04 PM   #19
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GM Card

For anyone who is saving for a NEW Chevrolet, Cadillac or other GM product the GM card is 5% of everything but is only good on purchase of GM. I saved $2500 on my last new Avalanche but now they have lowered the amount you can redeem to $1500. I won't need a new vehicle for a very long time so I am shopping around for a new card as well but that $2500 off was really a nice rebate.
We took the Avalanche 4X4 on our trip last month to Colorado and it performed as good as our old Jeep on the backroads and mountains so the Jeep is now for sale. The Avalanche was lots more comfortable too. So even though we bought a NEW vehicle, we got rid of 2 old ones.
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Old 11-05-2007, 12:24 PM   #20
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For anyone who is saving for a NEW Chevrolet, Cadillac or other GM product the GM card is 5% of everything but is only good on purchase of GM. I saved $2500 on my last new Avalanche but now they have lowered the amount you can redeem to $1500.
I've always wondered about that GM card. I'm curious whether a person could obtain comparable savings by simply walking in off the street and driving a hard bargain, or taking advantage of the rebate programs. A part of me fears that the GM program is loaded with fine print that says something like, "... up to $1500 can be applied to the purchase of any new GM, at full sticker price, cannot be combined with any other rebates or promotions, does not apply to Corvette, etc. etc." It seems to me that such conditions would render any savings from the GM card moot, or that one might even be able to get a better deal without spending $50,000 on a credit card first.

Do they require you to disclose your intentions to use the card before sitting down to hammer out a deal? Or can you sit down and bargain them down to a couple hundred above invoice, get them to throw in an extended warranty for free, and then mention, "oh, by the way, I'm using the points on my GM card, and I have a trade-in." It seems to me that dealers would hate that.
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