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As inflation pushes up the costs of goods and services, you might be experiencing June gloom if you’re spending on gifts for graduations or Father’s Day, Pride celebrations, vacations or anything else that isn’t normally in your budget.
But credit cards may offer ways for you to save on these purchases. Here’s how you can make the most of them this month.
When buying gifts, give yourself a little something
For those special occasion gift purchases, turn to a credit card that earns 2% or more on your purchases.
A card like the $0-annual-fee Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card, for instance, earns an unlimited 2% cash back on everything you buy. That can add up, especially if you've got a credit card that can do even better than 2% back.
Consider cards that earn bonus cash back in specific categories. The $0-annual-fee Discover it® Cash Back is one of them. From April through June 2022, it's offering 5% cash back at gas stations and Target on up to $1,500 spent in the quarter. (Activation is required.) All other purchases earn 1% back.
The $0-annual-fee Chase Freedom Flex℠ is offering 5% cash back on purchases at Amazon.com and on select streaming services on up to $1,500 spent in that same quarter, when you activate. It also earns 5% back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3% back on purchases at restaurants and drugstores, and 1% back on everything else.
» MORE: What to buy and skip in June
Earn rewards on Pride celebrations
If you’re hosting a gathering at home or heading out to a Pride parade, one of the credit cards in your wallet may help cover the costs.
The $0-annual-fee Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card, for example, earns 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and grocery stores, and 1% on all other purchases. The dining category includes purchases at restaurants, cafes, bars, lounges, fast-food chains and bakeries.
A card like this is well-equipped for any kind of celebration that may come up because it earns rewards whether you're going out or staying in.
Plan your next vacation
If you’ve got your eye on an offseason vacation later in the year, now's a good time to apply for the right credit card.
Snag a sign-up bonus
The sign-up offers on some travel credit cards might just pay for your next trip, or at least a chunk of it. As long as you can meet the minimum spending requirement with planned purchases in your budget, it can make a lot of sense.
The $95-annual-fee Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, for instance, has a hefty sign-up offer: Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
It also earns 5 points per $1 spent on all travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3 points per $1 spent on dining (including eligible delivery services and takeout), 3 points per $1 spent on select streaming services, 3 points per $1 spent on online grocery purchases (not including Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs), 2 points per $1 spent on travel not purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, and 1 point per $1 spent on other purchases. There's an annual credit, up to $50, on hotel stays purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, and you'll earn bonus points equal to 10% of total purchases made the previous year.
Transfer points or miles for more value
If you already have a travel credit card, consider whether it's possible to transfer points or miles to other hotels or airlines at a decent rate to get a better deal.
Assuming your credit card issuer allows it, transferring points or miles is worth exploring if it can make rewards go further.