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credit card usage tips

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Experian reports that credit card debt dropped by nine percent for Americans in 2020, and is at an all-time low since 2017. That may come as no surprise, with the pandemic causing so many Americans to cut back on or even eliminate non-essential expenses – either by choice, or through government-mandated stay-at-home orders, and non-essential businesses shutting down. The airline industry has seen its figures plummet, with the number of travelers every day this year being a mere fraction of what they were on the same day last year. Many retail and entertainment businesses shut down for months, or are still shut down. So, consumerism took a hit, and as such, people didn’t use their credit cards much.

That might be a bit of a shame. At least for those who know how to use their credit cards responsibly, when they do use them. Credit cards can offer chances to earn and save that a regular debit card simply doesn’t. While having a credit card can create problems for those with shopping addictions, cash flow issues, or impulse control problems, it can be a great asset for those who know how to use it right. Credit cards don’t just give you a way to borrow money, but also to earn and keep more of it. Here are some helpful credit card hacks to save and earn more.

credit card usage tips

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Cashback on gift cards, plus coupon codes

Most credit cards offer some cashback, even if it’s just one percent. The trick is learning how to make the most of that benefit, and a great way to do so is by purchasing gift cards to your preferred vendors on platforms where you’re getting cashback. Here’s an example: one of my credit cards offers five percent cashback this time of year on Amazon. I recently needed to book a $300 hotel stay on Instead of paying directly with my card on, I bought a $300 gift card on Amazon, thereby receiving 5 percent cash back ($15 on that purchase) for shopping at Amazon. Then I used that gift card to book my stay and combined it with a promo code for

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