Credit cards can be dangerous if you do not control your spending on them. You could end up with a lot of debt and find yourself in difficulty paying it off. However, used responsibly, they can save you money, and even if you are in debt with them, there are ways of reducing the balances apart from making payments.
Everyone Wants Your Business
What you have to remember is that everyone wants your business. All the card providers want you to have their credit card and so they have offers for transferring any balances you have. These are often 6 months interest-free, which can be a great way of reducing the amount you owe. However, there are some that offer zero interest for as much as 21 months, and that can be a huge saving. Just 12 months interest-free on a balance of $3,000 will save you nearly $400 dollars in interest charges.
These offers used to be for balance transfers only, but now some of the cards offer the deal on purchases for the same period. If you need to buy a large item, pay a medical bill or maybe want to book a vacation, zero interest on a credit card a good way to do it without having to borrow from elsewhere. If you can clear the balance you have used before the interest-free period is up, those is great, but if you cannot, just move it to another card with a similar offer.
Use Cash Back Cards
If you paid for all your expenses on a cash back credit card and then cleared the balance once a month, you stand to make quite a few hundred dollars from the deal. Just as an example, if your bills and expenses come to around £3000 dollars a month, over the year on a 1% cash back deal you would earn $360. The amount of the percentage given can vary on the type of purchase being made, but these cards are certainly worth considering.
You may be wondering at this time whether you should be looking for a cash back deal or a zero interest one. To find out which is the best card for you, check out Cardguru. There you will find all the help and advice you need to make the correct choice.
There can also be the option to redeem your cash rewards for gift cards. This can make you even more dollars, as you generally will get a $25 dollar gift card for spending $20 of the cash you have earned. The card providers achieve this by partnering with businesses to offer the gift cards, so you need to make sure it is with a store that you want to purchase something from. That could be a physical store or an online one.
Look At Sign Up Bonuses
Some credit card providers offer a bonus when you sign for one of their cards. This can range from a cash incentive to some air miles or free stays in a hotel. They are worth considering, especially if the sign up bonus is something you would use.
Collect The Points
Some cards offer incentives in the form of points. You collect them and then use them to pay for flights, car rental or a stay at a hotel. The choice of options of the way they are spent is a bit limited with some cards, but with others, you can spend them on whatever you want.
Check Out Retailer Cards
Retailer credit cards tend to charge the highest interest rates of all. However, the stores also hold events where there are special offers for cardholders only. If you do not use the card until them and pay the balance before you are charged any interest, you could save yourself quite a lot of money.
Look For The Hidden Benefits
There are some benefits of using credit cards instead of money that are not always very apparent. They are often hidden away in the small print, but are there never the less. Foreign transaction fees, for example, are typically about 3% and many card providers and banks charge these when you are vacating abroad. Some credit cards waive these fees, and if you are away for a few weeks, that can be quite a saving. Then there can be extended warranty benefits, price protection offers, and insurance deals that can beat most insurance brokers.
All of the benefits are only any good if you pay your balance of in total each month. Carrying the balance forward and paying interest will more than wipe out any of them.