Travel Tip Tuesday
Credit cards often offer valuable travel rewards and perks. Being able to use those benefits can help to offset the cost of the card’s annual fee. But did you know that those benefits don’t always renew at the same time?
A calendar year is just what it sounds like and runs from the first day of a calendar year until the last. Benefits that renew every calendar year will therefore renew on Jan 1 each year.
Anniversary Year or Reward Year
Benefits that renew on your anniversary or rewards year will renew based on the date you opened your credit card. So If your card was opened on August 15th, your anniversary benefits will reset each year sometime in August. They may renew on the exact date, the last day of that month, or the day your statement cuts. It just depends on the program.
If having two different renewal types isn’t tricky enough to manage, some cards include both types of benefits. Ugh!
Let’s use the American Express Hilton Aspire card as an example. This card has a $450 annual fee so it is important to utilize as many of the included benefits as possible in order to help offset the fee.
Here are some of the cards’ top benefits and when they renew:
- $250 Airline Fee Credit – Calendar Year
- Annual Free Night – Anniversary Year
- $250 Resort Fee Credit – Anniversary Year
- Priority Pass Select Membership – Anniversary Year
- Diamond Status – Calendar Year
I just used our $250 Resort Credit in February. Since it renews on my anniversary it will be available at the end of March. If I had assumed that it ran on the calendar year, I could have missed out on the opportunity of being able to use it during the 9 months it will be available to me this year. But at the same time, my Airline Fee Credit for that same card won’t renew until January 1st of 2024.
It may not seem like a big deal, but you could inadvertently miss out on using valuable benefits if you aren’t sure when they roll over. So if you have any credit cards that include reward benefits, take a minute to make sure that you know when they will renew.