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Sites such as The Points Guy and Nerd Wallet provide point-value estimates, but if the math makes your eyes glaze over, get a cash-back card instead and bank that money for your next trip. Consider: A secured card The right card, used wisely, can help pave the way to a higher credit score—which in turn can lead to lower rates on other borrowing.
To rebuild your credit, try a secured card, Blyskal says.
Consider: A card with great rewards and few restrictions Similar to a frequent-flier program, a rewards credit card gives you points that you can redeem for free plane tickets, lodging or upgrades.
Some, tied to a particular airline or hotel chain, give you extras like free checked baggage or bonus points when you patronize that company. “What matters most in a travel card is flexibility,” Schulz says.
Caveat: The value of reward points isn’t fixed, says Jeff Blyskal, senior editor of Consumer Reports, so it’s hard to know the real cash value of the points you accumulate.
Finally, these deals aren’t worth paying double-digit interest rates on carried balances, so prioritize debt repayment over getting cash back.
You frequent hotels, airports, auto- rental companies and restaurants.
And while you might not want to deal with points or rewards, “a simple cash-back card could be worthwhile,” he says.
If you do have to spend a chunk of money suddenly, you might as well get some money back.The higher the percentage returned, the more likely it will be restricted to a particular type of spending, such as gas or groceries.