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Earn Barclaycard rewards miles, even without a Barclaycard

by Peter Andrew

It's commonplace for credit card companies to tempt new customers -- and build loyalty among existing ones -- with enhanced opportunities to earn rewards. But here's something that may be entirely new: a card issuer handing out rewards to anyone -- cardholders and non-cardholders alike.

Rewards without the rewards credit cards

The offer comes from Barclaycard, the U.S. payments business of British bank Barclays. "Participation Miles" can be earned by anyone who registers with the Barclaycard Travel Community website, and then participates by creating a profile (500 miles) and sharing travel experiences in a post with an image (200 miles each). Extra rewards (10 miles) can be received every time other community members give kudos ("like" in Facebook-speak) to a posting.

Holders of Barclaycard products can link their cards to the community site, and have their extra miles automatically credited to their rewards accounts. Those without that plastic can earn a $5 Amazon.com e-certificate, valid only in the U.S., each time they accumulate 2,500 miles.

A 'destination' site?

To generate Web traffic, the company has engaged a number of specialist travel bloggers to beef up the site's content. Each of these covers a topic such as eating out, traveling with kids, camping and photography.

It's also added the Barclaycard Travel Cost Index, a potentially valuable feature. This uses aggregate spending data gathered from customer accounts to gauge various costs (hotels, transport, entertainment, restaurants and so forth) in 550 cities across the globe. That sort of information could be useful for those planning vacation budgets.

Published 01/01/14

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