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The Best Ways to Use Your Credit Card This Valentine’s Day

Credit Card Basics, Credit Cards
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Valentine’s Day is upon us, and your sweetie has likely been dropping hints for weeks about the big night. But even with advanced warning, you might be scrambling to figure out how to make the holiday really special.

Luckily, your credit card probably has some pretty cool features to help you make this a Valentine’s Day to remember. So what are you waiting for? Take a look at the ideas below and make a plan, pronto!

1. Get flowers — even if you forgot them

Did you forget to buy flowers this Valentine’s Day? Don’t worry — you can still salvage the day. Even if you don’t have a super-premium credit card, Visa Signature and World MasterCards like the $0-annual-fee Barclaycard Arrival™ World MasterCard® come with concierge service. Call the concierge and ask for help with a last-minute flower delivery. They might just be able to pull through — it’s worked for us!

2. Book a last-minute trip

If your honey likes to travel, using your credit card’s concierge service to book a surprise trip would be a stellar way to woo her this Valentine’s Day.

For example, with The Platinum Card® from American Express, you have 24-hour access to the Platinum Card Concierge, a service that can help you put together a last-minute getaway in snapPlus, the card also provides a host of other impressive travel benefits to make your trip luxurious and hassle-free:

  • Complimentary gold status in the Hilton HHonorsTM and Starwood Preferred Guest hotel chains’ rewards programs
  • Complimentary access to airport lounge programs
  • Premium car rental program
  • Access to the 24/7 Global Assist Hotline
  • No foreign transaction fees

The only potential drawback to this card is its hefty annual fee: $550. But the card’s benefits can really come in handy in a pinch, so the fee might be a small price to pay for saving your skin when the stakes are high.

3. Plan a magnificent meal and get extra rewards

Everyone loves to indulge in a good meal, so you really can’t go wrong if you plan a fine dining experience for your beloved. Fortunately, your credit card can step in to help you make the event truly rewarding.

 If you’re thinking of going out to dinner on Valentine’s Day, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card card will give you double points when you pick up the tab. Since the Nerds value Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card’s points at 1.25 cents each when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards, this means you’re earning 2.50 cents for every dollar you spend on your big meal out.

Speaking of redeeming your points, if you play your cards right and things get serious, you can use them to take your date on a special trip. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card offers a 1-to-1 points transfer to popular frequent flyer programs, such as United MileagePlus, Southwest Airlines RapidRewards, and British Airways Executive Club. All-in-all, Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card offers some great perks for your Valentine’s Day night out.

If you plan on preparing a special meal at home for date, the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express will give you one of the best rewards values in the business. This is because Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express gives you 6% cash back on U.S. supermarket purchases up to $6,000 per year (then 1%). This card also boasts 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations and 1% back on all other purchases.

All this means that it won’t sting as much to purchase high-end ingredients and other accouterments for your meal when you know you’re getting some serious cash back by using this card.

» MORE: Why nearly every purchase should be on a credit card

4. Score deals on gifts through your card’s online rewards mall

If putting together plans for a trip or a meal doesn’t seem like enough, another great way to use your credit card this Valentine’s Day is to score a deal on a gift for your honey at your card’s online rewards mall.

For example, if you have the Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer card, you have access to a lot of great deals through Discover Deals, the rewards mall operated by Discover.

Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer also offers other benefits, including:

  • 5% cash back in rotating bonus categories, 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • $0 annual fee
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Free FICO score printed on every monthly bill
  • Discover will match ALL the cash back earned at the end of your first year, automatically.

The takeaway: Valentine’s Day is a high-pressure holiday, so don’t blow it. Use your credit card to book last minute trips, plan a special meal or get deals on great gifts. You can’t put a price on love, but you can put a price on a good date, so be smart about using your plastic to make the most of the holiday!

Love Fingers image via Shutterstock