Let’s face it, credit cards can be complicated. From choosing the right card, to understanding the terms and conditions, to remembering the ins and outs of redeeming rewards, many of us struggle to keep track of these details and it’s common to confuse the terms of one credit card with another.
Depending on the app you choose you can create a basic account by entering your email address or credit card type as well as information about your location and demographic bracket.
Some apps then recommend which credit card you should use to maximize your rewards and cash back features, as well as make recommendations about other credit cards you can apply for that will benefit your spending style. Other apps simply monitor your purchases to take advantage of your credit card’s price protection policy.
Many of these apps allow you to create an advanced account and take advantage of more cool features, including being able to compare interest rates, fees, merchant surcharges, your specific offers, your balance on each card and more! Keep in mind that most of the apps that have advanced accounts require the disclosure of your personal information, including email address, mobile information, credit card details and financial history.
Ultimately, all these apps are designed to help you save money and spend less. According to John Biggs of Tech Crunch, these apps can uncover thousands of dollars’ worth of benefits that users don’t take advantage of. Biggs notes that 85% of credit cards have unused features. Taking advantage of these rewards can have a positive impact on your overall financial health.
Plus, Huff Post reports that travel-related purchases are coming to some of these apps, which will soon include information about travel insurance that’s covered by your credit card, including:
Trip cancellation/flight delay benefits
Car rental insurance
Lost luggage benefits.
Extended Warranty Coverage
Some apps claim to extend the time available to return merchandise, provide extended warranties for your most used electronics (like laptops), and give you peace of mind on items like new cell phones with 90 days of coverage.
Price Drop Monitoring and Automatic Refunds
This is where most people see tangible savings from using credit card reward apps. Look for an app that will monitor price changes in products you’ve purchased and automatically secure refunds on the price difference if your card has a price protection policy in place.
This feature ensures that if the item you purchased drops within a certain period you will automatically get the refund (either in the form of a check or a refund onto your credit card). Not all apps have the same features, so it’s important to do some research before you decide which one is right for you.
Testimonials about Earny show that people have received anywhere from $10 to $500 back on their purchases either directly through retailers or through their credit card’s price protection policy.
Here’s how. According to Earny’s website, you give the app access to your email (it currently works with email providers like Gmail, Microsoft and Yahoo) so it can see copies of all your electronic receipts. The app then continuously monitors the prices of these purchases. When Earny finds a lower price, it will claim the difference on your behalf and notify you about your refund.
According to Earny’s website, the app lets users take advantage of price protection policies offered by major stores and credit card users. Some of the retailers that Earny says they monitor include:
The Gap Group including Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Athleta, and the factory stores
There are a few drawbacks when it comes to Earny’s technology, however. Apparently, it does not currently sync multiple mailboxes. Instead, Earny suggests that consumers sign up with one email account and then use only this email when shopping online.
Another drawback is that although it’s free to sign up and use, Earny will take 25% of your refund. According to Earny’s website, it shares some of this 25% with brand advocates through a referral program, which means that you could potentially earn money when your friends use Earny. Look at Earny’s website for more details on how this referral program works.
Life Hacker suggests that Reward Summit is a simple and effective app that makes credit card reward programs easy. The app apparently has a user-friendly interface and tracks your credit card reward programs, telling you which card will save you the most money whether you are at the grocery store, gas station or shopping online. Life Hacker also reports that Reward Summit offers a Chrome extension that syncs with the mobile app to offer recommendations automatically while you are making online purchases.
Like all credit card rewards apps, Reward Summit says they use your location to suggest the appropriate credit card to earn the most rewards, however, Life Hacker readers point out that the store list on this app is limited, especially in areas outside of major cities. Life Hacker users also note that Reward Summit is ad-heavy. The ads located in the center of the page are difficult to navigate away from.
Have you used a credit card reward tracking app and if so, what’s your experience been like so far?
Learn more about credit card reward tracking apps here: