Can You Earn Rewards without a Credit Card?

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Last updated on April 6th, 2023

While credit cards are the most prominent way to earn rewards on purchases, they aren’t the only way to save when shopping, dining, or paying bills. Here are some simple ways to earn rewards without using a credit card:

How to Earn Rewards without a Credit Card

Earning rewards points or cash back usually requires a credit card – but that isn’t always the case. There are several ways to earn miles, rewards points, or even cash back without impacting your credit – here’s how:

Earn Rewards or Cash Back Through Debit and Checking Accounts

Not every debit card earns rewards – but some do. High yield checking accounts some banks provide cash back to encourage account holders to use their debit card for purchases instead of letting their money lay dormant.  Examples of cash back debit cards include the Discover Cashback Checking account and the Redneck Bank Redneck Rewards Checkin’ Account (yes, it’s a real thing).

Some regional banks also offer co-branded debit cards that can help you earn airline miles. Bank of Hawaii, for example, offers the Bankoh Hawaiian Airlines® Visa® Debit Card, while SunTrust Bank offers the Delta SkyMiles® Debit Card. These debit cards offer airline miles at a reduced rate versus an airline credit card but still provide valuable points without a credit check.

Dining Programs

If you are looking to earn frequent flyer miles, dining programs are a great place to start. Like American Airlines, Delta, and others, most major carriers offer a dining program that allows loyalty members to earn miles when they make purchases with partners and use the registered card on file. This means that even if you use a debit card, you can earn miles just for dining out.

Keep in mind that any miles earned through a dining program may not post immediately to your frequent flyer account. Some programs may take up to 30 days to post miles. Additionally, you can only earn miles with the card you register with – and since some programs use the same platform, you might not be able to use the same card again for another dining program.

Shopping Portals

Online shopping portals are an excellent resource for earning rewards – even without a credit card. Many retailers offer rebate coupons or cash back deals that can be tricky to keep track of – or even locate.

Aggregator sites make saving (and earning) rewards easy as they offer a one-stop shop. Using these sites, you can find the deals you want, with the merchants you prefer, and save time and money.

BestCards Membership is one such online deals platform. The BestCards portal allows members to combine their favorite debit card with coupons from top brands, payment networks, and more. Not only that but select deals through BestCards can earn you money through special rebates.

Members can even earn additional rewards when they sign-up new members through referrals – and those users make eligible purchases through BestCards, helping you earn even more cash back! The portal also allows users to save for use offers later, view their deals history with comprehensive reporting, and more.

And while Membership doesn’t require a credit card (it’s free to join), users can maximize their savings even more with a rewards card – offering up to three ways to save (credit card rewards, payment network savings, and merchant coupons)!

Related Article: Are Credit Cards Safer Than Debit Cards?

Featured image by Markus Winkler / Burst
About: Cory
Cory Santos

Cory is's "Jack of all trades" and resident credit expert, covering all facets of the credit card space. Cory holds academic degrees in both the U.S. and U.K. In addition to credit cards, Cory finds that jogging, cats, and memes are essential parts of a balanced day.

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BestCards is an independent, Florida-based credit card comparison platform. Many of the card offers that appear on this site are from companies from which BestCards receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). BestCards does not include all card companies or all card offers available in the marketplace.