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When the Visa US Bank Altitude credit card was announced, I was excited to sign-up for its mobile pay rewards. Some points and miles euthanasists viewed it as a contender against the highly popular premium credit cards. In recent months, banks have taken notice of the popularity of premium cards and they’ve rolled out new travel credit cards with similar perks. It didn’t take long for US Bank to launch a new travel credit card for people on the go. By “people on the go” they were focusing people who use mobile pay in their daily transactions. The Visa US Bank Altitude is one of the first travel credit cards that allows you to earn 3 points per dollar spent via mobile pay.
What is mobile pay?
If you bought a smartphone in the last two years, your phone already has it installed. Android Pay, Apple Pay, and Samsung Pay allow you to pay using a virtual credit card on your phone. In some terminal screens, an Apple and/or Android pay logo will appear to inform you the type of payment this is accepted.
I’ve have noticed from clerks at checkout saying they don’t accept mobile pay, however, I’ve always had success using Samsung Pay. The reason is Samsung Pay uses Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST) technology. It fools the terminal into thinking a real card with a magnetic strip is being swiped instead of a virtual card, this feature is also called LoopPay.
5 places to maximize points on your US Bank Altitude Credit Card
1. Gas Stations
Many credit cards offer 2 points per dollar spent at gas stations. Instead of inserting your card in the terminal at the pump, go inside to the cashier and pay inside to get even more points.
I use my Samsung Pay to earn 3 points Altitude points per dollar spent at the pump. It might be a little more exercise for you to walk inside but you will be gaining 11,520 Altitude points per year based on filling your gas tank twice a week at $40.
2. Grocery stores
Typically, I go to the supermarket at least once a week. Instead of just earning 1 or 2 points per dollar spent on certain credit cards, you can earn 3 points Altitude points per dollar spent.
I don’t earn that much since my bill is usually around $60. However, for a family of a four, it will be a good way to maximize a family expense. If you spend $150 a week on groceries that adds up to 21,600 Altitude points a year!
3. Department Stores
There are plenty of cash-back websites that team up with department stores to save you money. However, if you’re like me and want to build up your Altitude miles, using it instead makes sense.I’m not a shopaholic but if you find yourself always at the mall looking for great deals on the weekend, this is a
I’m not a shopaholic but if you find yourself always at the mall looking for great deals on the weekend. Using the US Bank Altitude card is a no-brainer.
I know I will be using this a lot during the holiday season. This feature will be great to use around the holiday season. If you spend $200 a month on clothes and/or shoes, that’s 7.200 Altitude points a year!
Restaurants can be tricky as most have different methods of payment. As a rule of thumb, if you have to sit down and have a waiter, earning 3 points Altitude points per dollar spent is probably not going to work.
But, that doesn’t mean you can’t use it at all at restaurants.
My recommendation is to use your US Bank Altitude credit card at fast food restaurants to maximize your points. Instead of going through the drive-thru, head inside and use the terminal with your phone.
If you eat 3 times a week at fast food restaurants with an average of $10 per meal, you’ll rack up 4,320 Altitude points a year.
If you need medications for any sickness and/or injury, then it’s a good idea to use your US Bank Altitude Reserve Infinite card to pay for your prescriptions.
But if you’re healthy like me and just love eating Rite-Aid (formerly Thrifty) ice-cream then it’s a double win! Notice the logo stickers on the terminals indicating what types of mobile pay are accepted.
The Bald Thoughts
Although there are so many travel credit card options that may offer higher points when using the co-branded card, the US Bank Altitude card is a great universal card when you don’t want to carry a lot of credit cards in your wallet.
If you have a Samsung phone and use Samsung Pay for your transactions you can double dip in earning rewards through the Samsung Rewards portal.
For example, you can redeem 4,800 Samsung points for a $20 Best Buy gift card. The more you use your Samsung Pay, the more bonus points you get per transaction making it easier to hit a free gift card. With a potential of 45,000 miles a year with a 50,000 point bonus (valued at $750) after spending $4,500 in the first 90 days, you’ll rack up and easy 95,000 Altitude miles within a year to use for your next dream vacation. Don’t forget it also comes with an annual $325 travel credit.
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