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Are You Stacking Coupons With Credit Card Rewards?

As I’m sure you know, most retailers don’t allow you to stack coupon codes – only one per order is typically allowed. However, you still might be able to score additional savings by strategically using the right credit card for payment. Depending on the card’s reward program, you might be able to shave off another 3% to 5% off your total.

Some of the top credit cards for cash rewards give you up to a 5% rebate on spending at clothing and department stores:

  • Option A – Rotating Reward Cards: Although their rewards calendars change each year, the Discover More, Chase Freedom, and Citi Dividend card have historically offered 5% cash back (or 5x points) on department and/or clothing stores for at least one quarter (so 3 months out of the year).
  • Option B – Regular Reward Cards: We all know there are credit cards that give higher cash back on categories like gas and grocery, but did you know that a few earn you extra rewards for department store spending? The best example of this is the American Express Blue Cash Preferred, which pays an unlimited 3% cash back at department stores year ‘round.

So let’s say for example you are using the Chase Freedom card. During the fourth quarter of this year, it’s paying 5% cash rewards at Kohl’s and Best Buy. Here’s a hypothetical example of how you could stack your savings using this credit card:

Step One: First and foremost, obviously you should use the best coupon codes for Kohl’s, which you will find right here on BeFrugal. When I looked there was a code for 15% off a $100 purchase, so let’s use that for this example.

Step Two: You can also earn cash back at over 1,600 stores with Cash Back from BeFrugal. Best of all, this is compatible with coupon codes (both qualify). They will send you a check or transfer the balance to your Paypal account. And yes, Kohls.com participates in the program and the extra cash rebate you will earn there is 3.2%. So if you used that 15% off on a $100 purchase, you would be at $85. The extra 3.2% rebate on that amount is $2.72.

Step Three: When you pay, it’s time to take advantage of that 5% cash back Chase Freedom promotion. On an $85 order, that would equal a rebate of $4.25.

Your Combined Savings: $15 from coupon code + $2.72 BeFrugal Cash Back + $4.25 from the Chase Freedom promotion = $21.97 savings. That’s 46% more than what you would have saved by using just the coupon code by itself.

The lesson here is that even though you can’t use multiple coupon codes, it’s still possible to save even more by using BeFrugal’s cash back along with the best cash back credit cards. Also, keep in mind this strategy extends past just clothing/department stores. The best credit cards often will give you extra cash rewards for purchase from airlines, hotels, office supply stores, and many other categories.

This is a guest post by Michael, the CEO of CreditCardForum.com. There you will find him blogging about which credit cards are best for 2012. In addition, the forum portion of his site serves as a venue where anyone can voice their opinions about credit card companies and their products. Connect with Michael on Twitter: @creditcardforum.

Image thanks to American Express.

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