Ever wonder what exactly qualifies as 'travel' in the world of credit card rewards? Travel expenses can earn you valuable rewards, cashback, or points, but the term can be confusing to some. In this article, we will clarify what is considered travel for credit cards and give you the information needed to maximize those travel-related rewards.
What Is Considered Travel For Credit Cards Table of Contents
What is Travel in the Context of Credit Card rewards?
Travel, for most credit card reward programs, refers to specific purchases or spending categories that are associated with traveling. These categories may include the following:
- Car rentals
- Taxis and rideshare services
- Public transportation
- Tourist attractions and activities
- Cruise lines
- Travel agencies and websites
- Vacation rental platforms
How Do Credit Card Companies Define Travel?
Each credit card issuer may have a different definition of what they consider travel. The best way to know what your specific card considers as travel spending is to check your card issuer's rewards program terms and conditions or consult their customer service team. The key factor to look for is the merchant category codes (MCC) used by the card issuers to categorize travel purchases.
Merchant Category Codes (MCC) Explained
Merchant category codes are four-digit numbers assigned to businesses by the major payment networks (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover) to categorize their services and products. When you make a purchase, the MCC is used to determine whether or not it will be considered a travel purchase for rewards purposes.
For example, if a hotel has an MCC of 7011 and a car rental agency has an MCC of 7512, your credit card company will know that these are travel-related expenses and reward you accordingly.
Maximizing Travel Rewards
To make the most out of your travel rewards, consider these tips:
- Select a credit card that offers the best rewards in the travel categories you spend the most on.
- Make sure you understand your card's travel definitions and restrictions.
- Keep track of promotional offers or limited-time reward bonuses on travel spending.
- Book your travel using the card's travel partners or through their travel portal for extra rewards.
- Combine travel rewards with other reward programs, such as airline frequent flyer programs or hotel loyalty programs.
What Is Considered Travel For Credit Cards Example:
Imagine you have a credit card that offers 3x rewards points on all travel-related purchases. You're planning a weekend getaway and will be incurring the following expenses:
- Airfare: $250
- Hotel: $200
- Car Rental: $100
- Taxi to the airport: $50
- Admission to an attraction: $20
By using your travel rewards credit card for these purchases, you'll earn 3x points on the total spending of $620, which means you'll receive 1860 points towards future travel redemptions, statement credits, or other rewards, depending on your card's redemption options.
Now that you have a better understanding of what is considered travel for credit cards, you're well on your way to making the most of those valuable travel rewards! Keep this information in mind as you plan your next trip to ensure you're earning the most possible rewards on your credit card. Don't forget to share this article with fellow travelers and explore the other informative guides on Flik Eco for more personal finance and investing tips tailored to the needs of millennials.