Deciding how to use your credit card rewards can be a challenge. Typically there are various redemption options to choose from: You can turn your points into cash or gift cards, for example, or use them to make specific purchases or donations.
Experts tend to agree, however, about which option offers the most bang for your buck: transferring your points to one of your issuer's travel partners and then finding a great deal on a flight or hotel stay.
"The most lucrative redemption is transferring your credit card points to an airline or hotel partner," CreditCards.com industry analyst Ted Rossman tells CNBC Make It. "If you're willing to put in some legwork to identify sweet spots in the value charts, this is how you can maximize value."
And to really get the most out of your points, sometimes it helps to think big. Co-branded rewards programs entice consumers by making luxury travel less expensive. In many cases, says Daniel Gillaspia, founder of the credit card blog UponArriving, "the maximum value will be with premium redemption, like business class and first class."