Flashy signing bonuses are undeniably enticing, but consumers need to make sure they won’t require an entire paycheck (or two) to actually receive the bonuses. Issuers typically pair the extra rewards points or cash back with a spending threshold.
For instance, Citi’s Thank You Premier card
currently offers consumers the opportunity to earn 50,000 rewards points (at a $500 value), but they have to spend $2,500 in the first three months of the account being open to do so. While this may seem reasonable for big spenders, the average cardholder may have easier time earning the $100 Citi offers with its Dividend MasterCard. New cardholders only have to spend $500 in the first three months to qualify for that promotional offer
Whatever your spending habits may be, it’s important to make sure the offer isn’t going to force you to spend more than you can cover in the specified timeframe. Otherwise, the interest rates will eat your bonus … and possibly then some.
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