We all know that credit cards allow us to buy things and pay for them later. If you sign up for some credit cards, you get to earn free travel or even cash back. But there are more benefits to credit cards than just the features I highlighted. Unfortunately, many overlook these valuable benefits. Here are some of the often overlooked benefits of credit cards (and a few things to consider in areas other than credit cards too).
If you book your trip and use your credit card, you might have some travel insurance protection built in. While it is unlikely you would get back the entire balance you paid, you could get a good amount of it back. No one likes it when a trip is canceled. At least with a card that offers travel insurance, you can get some of your money back.
Another great benefit that many cards offer is extended warranties. The credit card will offer an additional year of warranty coverage on items you buy. This is a great way to ensure that you are covered should your item malfunction. Plus, it saves you from not getting suckered into buying the extended warranty that the store sells.
Longer Return Period
Some credit cards extend the time you can return an item. If a retailer has a return policy of 30 days, you might be able to return the item within 60 days based on the credit card you have. This varies by card issuer, but is good to know. Many times we forgo a purchase simply because of the return policy. By knowing your credit cards return policy, you might not have to worry.
Theft Or Loss Coverage
This is probably the best benefit that most people overlook. Some credit cards offer to replace a lost or stolen item if you bought it with that credit card. You will have to file a claim and return whatever you have left of the item to qualify, but that is a small step for getting a new item after losing it or having it stolen.
Some credit cards will help you out when traveling by getting you in contact with needed resources. Let’s say you get into an accident and need to find an attorney or you need medical care. You can call up your credit card and they will help you get in touch with the right people to assist you.
You might not need Triple A if you have the right credit card. They will change your spare tire, jump your battery, tow your car or provide you with some gas in the event you need any of this assistance.
Bonus: Non-Credit Card Benefits You Overlook
The great thing is that you can find ìhiddenî benefits in all walks of life. Talk to your company about any discounts you get as an employee. At a firm I used to work for, we received a 10% discount on our monthly cell phone bills. A friend of mine has a card from his employer that gets him 10% meals at any of the restaurants in town because his employer has a deal with the restaurants.
Additionally, find out what perks your health insurance might provide. Mine allows for a reimbursement for gym memberships and I get a $25 credit every year to buy a new bike helmet. I also get a free annual screening at a nutritionist.
Credit cards offer great benefits that many of us overlook. We also overlook other areas where we might get benefits, such as through our employer or health insurance. Make sure you read the terms and conditions with your credit card so that you know what benefits you have so that you can take advantage of them. Also, be sure to inquire with your human resources personnel at work to see if there are any benefits to you that you are unaware of there.