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I'm looking at a certain credit card that has an introductory offer. To qualify for that offer, the conditions are stated as:

Vorausgesetzt, Sie machen mit der Karte innerhalb der ersten 6 Monate nach Kartenerhalt einen Umsatz von mindestens 3.000 Euro (unter Ausschluss von Bargeldauszahlungstransaktionen und nach Abzug von etwaigen Gutschriften von Vertragspartnern), führen das Kartenkonto einwandfrei (u.a. kein Zahlungsverzug) und Sie kündigen den Kartenvertrag nicht innerhalb der ersten 12 Monate, erhalten Sie ein Startguthaben in Höhe von 72 Euro auf Ihr Kartenkonto.

(Translated)

Provided that you use the card within the first 6 months after receipt of the card to make transactions totalling at least EUR 3,000 (excluding cash payment transactions and after deducting any credits from contractual partners), manage the card account properly (including no default in payment) and you do not terminate the card contract within the first 12 months, you will receive a starting credit of 72 euros on your card account.

I have certain expenses I'm expecting to foot in the next 3 months that will cost me just over 3000 EUR, which I have already budgeted for and set aside the amount. I figured that if I signup for a credit card and pay for these expences through the card, then I will get 72 EUR to spend, which is not bad. (I am already considering getting a credit card because I fly frequently enough so this ties in with that nicely)

Trouble is, I don't know what cash payment transactions means! Isn't everything a cash payment transaction? My next few expenses that I've budged for is:

  • €1600 with an online retailer to buy electronic appliances
  • €700 for a flight ticket
  • €1500 at a POS (at, say, a store similar to John Lewis)

Will these count towards €3000? If I use the card to pay for every day groceries and pay with android / google pay, will that count towards it?

Also, what does deducting any credits from contractual partners mean? I can't find any info about this on the card's website itself.

Note: I'm in Germany but don't speak German (yet) so I could be missing something from the website in translation. Unfortunately they don't provide the site in English for this location. If I switch to English, it switches to UK (which is where I'm from)

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  • different territory but so similar as possibly be a dupe: money.stackexchange.com/questions/153815/…
    – AakashM
    Commented Jun 13, 2023 at 8:52
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    I don't know if it's an artifact of translation, but my reading of "Provided that you use the card within the first 6 months after receipt of the card to make a transaction of at least EUR 3,000" suggests the 3,000 must be spent in a single transaction, not accumulated over multiple ones.
    – TripeHound
    Commented Jun 13, 2023 at 10:34
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    @TripeHound "einen Umsatz von mindestens 3.000 Euro" means that the sum of all transactions must be over 3000 €.
    – glglgl
    Commented Jun 13, 2023 at 14:31
  • @glglgl Thanks for clarifying that. Would "to make transactions totalling at least EUR 3,000" be a better translation? If so, I can edit in to the question.
    – TripeHound
    Commented Jun 13, 2023 at 15:45
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    The translation is not great. "Bargeldauszahlung" means "cash withdrawal" (at an ATM or at the bank), so that is what is excluded.
    – wimi
    Commented Jun 18, 2023 at 10:50

3 Answers 3

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Using the card in a shop (online or offline) to buy stuff is "regularly" using the card. This also should be the case for flight tickets.

Using the card in an ATM where it gives you cash is a cash transaction.

The transaction types are identified with codes which the vendor attaches to the payment record.

So the cases you mentionned should be safe for this.

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    This. Basically, if you get to keep the money yourself, it's probably a "cash transaction". If it's going directly to someone else, it isn't.
    – Bobson
    Commented Jun 13, 2023 at 14:00
  • Note that some online funds transfer systems are also considered cash transactions.
    – keshlam
    Commented Jun 13, 2023 at 14:56
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    Buying casino chips is also considered cash (of course using casino chips to gamble is a whole other kind of personal-finance bad). Commented Jun 14, 2023 at 0:20
  • Hi, that makes sense, thanks. What about deducting any credits from contractual partners? Commented Jun 14, 2023 at 8:42
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    @LocustHorde AFAIK this relates to money you get back du to a refund or something, but I am not sure.
    – glglgl
    Commented Jun 14, 2023 at 10:09
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Also, what does deducting any credits from contractual partners mean? I can't find any info about this on the card's website itself.

Here is a couple of examples:

  • If the card is linked to an airline, and they have a deal where if you buy a ticket for more than €499 then you get a €50 bonus. That would mean that the ticket would count €50 less towards the €3000.
  • Or it could be linked to a hotel chain, and if you use it in London, you get a free night someplace else. The amount credited towards the €3000 would be reduced by the free night.

Beside going to a bank teller or ATM for cash there in an additional way you could have a cash transaction. It would be if the credit card was used to buy a gift card. They don't want you to be able to get the credit card, then buy yourself €3000 in gift cards, qualify for the €72 bonus, and then use the gift cards someplace. Most credit cards treat gift card purchases as cash transactions, and start charging interest immediately.

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  • Actually, American Express calls "paying with reward points" "Gutschriften". If a hotel gives you a free night shouldn't matter for the credit card company. Otherwise, buying at 2-for-1-sales should not count at all.
    – Solarflare
    Commented Jun 15, 2023 at 13:49
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Also, what does deducting any credits from contractual partners mean? I can't find any info about this on the card's website itself.

Since it isn't clarified yet: "Gutschriften von Vertragspartnern" (credits from contractual partners) means (in American Express terms) paying with reward points, which you can do with some "contractual partners".

See e.g. "paying in supermarkets", note the term "Gutschrift" in their description:

  • Die Gutschrift erhalten Sie i.d.R. innerhalb von 48 Std. auf Ihrem Kartenkonto.

You receive the credit within 48 hours in your account.

Technically, the supermarket charges you the full amount, and American Express then gives you back a credit over the amount of reward points. So if you pay at the supermarket for 100€, and 30€ of those with reward points, only 70€ count towards your destination of 3.000€ (e.g. the credit is substracted).

This should (if you use it at all) only have a small effect on your total amount.

Refunds (e.g. after a retoure) are actually only implicity excluded here ("Umsatz" includes refunds), but are explicity excluded in their terms and conditions, so they don't count either (obviously).

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