hidden credit card perks

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This blog post is a compilation of all the blogs, articles, and personal information that I have gathered over the years in dealing with credit card companies. It must be stated that before you attempt to cash in on any of these tips, make sure to set aside about twenty minutes to talk to a customer service representative for your respective credit card company and verify that your card carries these particular benefits. Some of these may be general knowledge, however, there may be some tidbits that will be a pleasant surprise. My only request: If you decide to get an amex gold card, please contact me so I can send you a referral.

-EXTENDED WARRANTY: Most major credit cards (gold and platinum mastercards, visa signature, and american express) extend the manufacturers’ warranty up to 1 year. This means that you can stop wasting money buying extra warranties at Best Buy. The track pad went out on my MBP one month after my apple warranty expired, I called amex and they footed the bill for the repair. The next month my cd drive started making noises, I gave them a ring and they refunded me the full purchase price of my computer from a year earlier. JUST ASK!

-TRAVEL INSURANCE: Before booking your next vacation, call your credit card company and ask them if they offer free travel insurance (most do). So if you get ill before your next trip, your credit card company will reimburse any cancellation fees that may be incurred by the airlines/hotels, assuming of course that the trip was booked with your credit card. This means you can stop paying for that pesky travel insurance.

-TRAVEL ASSISTANCE: If your passport is lost or stolen while traveling, your credit card company (visa, mastercard, and amex) can provide referrals to medical care, legal aid, and help in replacing your passport (at your expense).

-FIRST CHECKED BAG: I can only speak for amex platinum on this one, but if you are flying delta, even if you didn’t pay for the tickets with your amex card, you are entitled to your first bag free (both ways) for up to nine people. That’s a savings of up to $50 per person on a round-trip ticket or $450 for a group of nine.

-LUGGAGE PROTECTION: If your luggage was lost or damaged by an airline, and you paid for your ticket with a visa signature card (maybe amex), you can be reimbursed for up to $3,000.

-RENTAL INSURANCE: Stop paying for collision damage waiver (CDW) insurance so long as you pay with your visa, mastercard, amex, or discover card.

-CONCIERGE SERVICES: For signature and platinum members, visa and amex offer a 24 hour concierge service to help you get tickets to sold-out events, book travel, and make dinner reservations.

-PURCHASE PROTECTION: If your belongings are stolen from your hotel room, mastercard and amex will reimburse you if you paid for the room with a gold or platinum card.

-Also, most credit card companies offer free accidental damage reimbursement within 90 days of the original purchase. So if you drop your new iPad, visa signature cardholders can have it repaired or replaced at a cost of up to $500 within 90 days from the date of purchase. Citibank and amex offer protection up to $1,000.

-WILDCARD: I have heard rumors of some credit card companies that offer 10,000 bonus miles just for graduating from college, but you have to ask.

If you take nothing else away from this post, understand this, IT NEVER HURTS TO ASK. People tell me that they don’t have the time to call and/or file the necessary paperwork, that’s bull stuff. It took me a total of three hours to file all the necessary paperwork during the laptop incident, I ended up with a check for $1,100, as well as being able to keep my MBP (which I am typing on right now).

Hope this helps.

Grace be with you,

Your friendly neighborhood Spiderman.