No, this is not a get-rich-quick scheme, and you probably can’t do it more than a couple times a year. But, it does work and I have done it about four times to date.
Every few months or so I get offers from credit card companies to open up a new card with them. Citi Cards often offers me a free $100 gift card for opening up a new card. If you are not receiving offers like this check out creditcards.com and click the “rewards cards” link.
There will most likely be a card or two offering at least a $50 gift card for opening an account. The only catch I have found is that normally you have to make at least one purchase on the card.
The other added benefit here is that you will get a 0% intro rate and probably 0% on balance transfers as well. This is a perfect opportunity to make the most of your debt .
If you are not disciplined enough to pay your card balance off each month, PLEASE DON’T TRY THIS. There is a reason that the credit companies make these offers. Most people don’t pay off their balances on time and nullify any reward that they received by paying finance charges each month.
I also am not recommending that you take advantage of the credit card companies by opening 15 different cards (which they probably wouldn’t allow anyway).
When you need a new card, this is (in my opinion) the best option. If you are going to get a new one, why not get rewarded for it? However, I personally don’t feel good about opening accounts just to get free gift cards. That just seems a bit tacky.