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Shop Thoughtfully for Dad’s Gift and Earn Rewards, Too

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Shop for dad

Father’s Day is all about showing your appreciation for dear ol’ dad — but there’s no rule against treating yourself to rewards, too. The right credit card can help you do both. And heck, that’s just the kind of initiative that would put a smile on your old man’s face, right? 

This year, Father’s Day shoppers expect to spend an average of nearly $135 for the June 18 occasion, according to the National Retail Federation’s annual survey. Think about how your dad’s interests may match the rewards cards in your wallet.

For handy dads

Total consumer spending on home improvement supplies for Father’s Day is expected to hit about $885 million, according to the NRF survey. If your dad’s a do-it-yourselfer and could use a new grill, grinder or grout gun, consider the Discover it® - Cashback Match™. It offers 5% cash back at home improvement stores and wholesale clubs through June 2017 (on up to $1,500 per quarter in spending, then 1%). 

Remember to activate the category online in order to qualify. 

For foodie fathers

Father’s Day shoppers plan to spend the most money, about $3.3 billion total, on a “special outing such as dinner or brunch,” the NRF says.

If food is your present for pops, and if you have one of these cards, you’re in luck:  

Visit your bonus mall

Nearly 40% of Father’s Day shoppers plan to visit department stores to buy gifts, and almost 34% plan to buy presents online, the NRF survey notes. Get the best of both worlds by visiting credit card bonus mallswhich offer the chance to earn more cash back or points on purchases made through those portals.

If you have a credit card with Chase, Citi or Discover, here’s what you could earn: 

  • Chase Ultimate Rewards®: Earn extra points for every dollar you spend at hundreds of stores online. This mall is offering a Father’s Day special through June 18, featuring extra points back on retailers such as Omaha Steaks (16 points per $1 spent), Nike (8 points per $1 spent) and more. 
  • Citi Bonus Cash Center: Earn an average of 5% cash back at more than 400 online stores
  • Discover Deals: Earn 5% or more in cash back at nearly 150 participating merchants online

See your supermarket

If your dad is hard to shop for, perhaps a gift card is the best choice. And if you shop strategically for that gift card — at a supermarket — you could reap extra rewards by using these cards.

And don’t forget to pick up the greeting card, too, before you check out.

Earn cash back anywhere

A flat-rate cash back credit card earns money on any purchase for your dad: a personalized gift, sporting events, movies, concerts and more.

The Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer offers 1% cash back on all purchases, then another 1% cash back when you pay them off. The Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® and the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® Card give you 1.5% cash back on everything.

Melissa Lambarena is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: mlambarena@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @LissaLambarena.