Although sign up bonuses are the fastest way to earn credit card miles and points, they are far from the only way. Did you know that you can earn miles and points for almost every online purchase you make? If not, this post will teach you the basics of how to do that.
Earning miles and points shopping online usually occurs through shopping portals. Basically, you go through a shopping portal, earn a couple miles based on the amount of money you spend, and go about your day. While the numbers may not be significant, they add up! This technique also helps if your frequent flyer miles are about to expire.
Here’s the simplest way to go about earning miles and points shopping online!
Sign up for online shopping portals
Most of the airline shopping portals allow you to login with your frequent flyer information, but you may also want to sign up for some of the cashback portals. The drawback to earning cash instead of miles and points shopping online is that it may take awhile to see your cash. However, you often can get a higher % rebate with cash than with miles and points.
Two of the big cashback portals to consider signing up for are TopCashBack and Ebates. There are definitely others, but I like to limit myself to two just to keep book keeping simple. I’d rather lose a little bit of rebates here and there than go insane trying to track everything. Others like to squeeze every last ounce of value out of their online purchases so decide what works best for you.
Before you buy anything, check online
This mostly serves as good shopping practice. Before you buy anything, price compare between stores and various shopping outlets online. Find where the best prices are and bear that in mind for the next step.
It’s also good to get into the habit of buying things online, although this of course isn’t mandatory. But for the most part, prices run cheaper online so in many cases not only are you earning miles but you’re saving some cash too!
Before you buy online, go to cashbackmonitor.com
Once you know what you want to buy and where you want to buy it, go to the website cashbackmonitor. There are other similar sites but this is the site I prefer to use. Once at the website, search for the name of the online retailer you plan to purchase from. After selecting the correct retailer (if multiple showed up), you will see all of that retailer’s current portal bonuses.
Now comes the fun part: choose what miles, points, or cash back you want to earn! If you click on the link right on cashbackmonitor it will automatically take you to the shopping portal. Just log in and you’ll earn a couple miles and points shopping online for a purchase you were going to make anyway.
Make sure your purchase tracks through the portal
One word of warning. There are times when shopping portals don’t track and you don’t get your deserved miles and points shopping online – that’s annoying. You can file a complaint to get them but it’s tedious. Here are some steps I take to prevent this.
First, I clear my card and log out of the merchant I am buying from before I click through on cashbackmonitor. Sometimes the computer confuses what cookies have been loaded when things are in your cart already. Second, instead of directly clicking on the cashbackmonitor link, I right click and open in a new incognito window. Again, this is to ensure the cookies track correctly.
Finally, you might want to consider turning off any adblockers you have before you are making the purchases, since those can interfere as well.
Earning miles and points shopping online isn’t going to burst your mileage and points banks at the seams, but this is a simple way to earn a few miles and points. The shopping portals often run big bonuses during the holiday season which can start adding up.
Also, if you really get into it, you’ll find that you might be able to stack portal bonuses with coupons and start saving some serious cash. Most importantly, earning miles and points for almost everything you do just puts you in a good mindset to save towards the ultimate goal – family travel!
Do you have any tips or advice for earning miles and points shopping online? Let us hear it in the comments!