How to get extreme savings from your retail credit cards
Creative ways to work your reward points and win big
Reality TV ruins everything (my opinion), but I'm happy to say that extreme couponing is not a thing of the past. I've found you can still realize savings through retail credit cards. Of course, there's the initial discount for qualifying for the card, which is huge. But did you know that you can also combine rewards points, sales and other discounts to save big?
Here's an example. I have a Gap credit card which gives me reward points for all my purchases:
Accumulate 1000 points and you get a $10 gift card for your next Gap Inc. purchase. Here's my secret - I build up all my points until they are offering a purchase discount of 30-40%. (Another cardholder benefit: the % discount offered to card holders is higher than what you'll get if you just go to the website) then I fill my cart with all the items I've been coveting (sales items also apply). Oh, and did I mention if you reach Gap Silver status, shipping is free? Retail nirvana has been achieved!
Gap isn't the only retail credit card company that does this. One caveat: Store credit cards typically have high APRs so be prepared to pay the entire bill when you get it.
Here is a list of the cards I've had the most success with:
Who doesn't love Marshalls, TJ Maxx and HomeGoods? I know I'm addicted. Get their credit card and you immediately receive 10% off your first purchase. I used this when I was making a major purchase since there is no dollar limit. After that you receive 5 points for every dollar spent at TJ Maxx properties and 1 point per dollar everywhere else. 1000 points = $10 gift card.
Target offers 5% off all purchases and lets you use coupons too!
The Best Buy credit card can only be used at the store, but that doesn't mean you lose out on the savings. You get 5% back in rewards on Best Buy purchases and a $5 reward card for every 250 points. They also offer exclusive discounts and access to special sales and member-only shopping events.
Even though Amazon doesn't typically offer discounts, they do price match. When you sign up for the credit card, you get a $70 Amazon.com gift card. You then earn 3% at amazon.com, 2% at gas stations, restaurants and 1% back on all other purchases. 100 points = $1 which you can use at any time, so the rewards add up fast!
Do you use another credit card where you get great rewards? Let us know in the comments!