Return of the Rewards Cards

It wasn’t that long ago, as the economy was crashing down around us, that people started noticing a drop in the number of credit cards that were offering the 0% transfer rates, and a drop in the number/quality of the rewards associated with rewards cards.  Higher default rates and changing regulations seem to have been the culprits, making it harder for credit card companies to offer the great rates and rewards while still maintaining their (already bloated) margins.

But, as the economy levels off (if not starts a recovery), there have been an increase in cards offering the great transfer rates, and now, there’s been an increase in rewards cards too.

Just the other day, Chase announced the British Airways card, with a pretty good rewards system. Then, today, I got an email announcing the Hyatt card. It too, has some pretty good rewards.


 

The thing I don’t really like about cards like these is that you get locked into an airline or hotel chain. Also, they both charge an annual fee. I think in a pinch, you might be able to call Chase and be able to get that fee waived once or twice, or at least get your value out of it in flights and stays. Aside from that, the rewards are pretty good. The British Airways card has a potential for 100,000 Avios (BA’s points) which should be able to get you a couple of trips overseas or quite a few domestic trips on their partner airlines. The Hyatt, with it’s 2 night free stay bonus, is pretty good as well. And in both cases, the points accumulate at a good rate.

As always, responsible credit card use is a must. You’ll pay way more than what the rewards are if you don’t pay the balance off, and lose money on the whole deal. It’s just not worth it. If you do pay your balance off, however, it’s something to look at.

I might even have to think about that Hyatt card, as the Financial Bloggers Conference this year is at the Denver Hyatt, and while the even rate is pretty good, it’s not as good as two nights free!

Editors Note: As with any financial offer, credit card or otherwise, YOU are responsible for reading the full terms and disclosures in order to understand what it is that you’re applying for.  Don’t read them, don’t come crying to me.

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