The advantages of credit cards
Credit cards are the no-fuss cash alternative. They’re also a helpful tool when it comes to emergencies. But the advantages of credit cards go far beyond mere convenience.
Getting the most from your credit card
Use it to stay on top of things.
- Your credit card can help you keep track of your expenses. Save your receipts and check them against your monthly statement. Notify your credit card company right away if you spot any errors.
- If your credit card is missing or if you notice suspicious charges, call the number on your statement or the back of your card. In most cases, you won’t be held responsible for any charges if your card or account number has been stolen.
- If you have online access to your account and your credit card issuer offers optional security alerts, sign up to be automatically notified of any unusual activity on your account.
- Check with your credit card issuer about damage protection. Some credit cards provide protection if you buy merchandise that turns out to be defective.
- Many credit card companies offer payment due date reminders. Sign up for these reminders to avoid being charged a late fee.
Use it to build your credit history
One of the main advantages of having a credit card is that it can have a positive effect on your credit score when you use it wisely. By using your credit card regularly and making your monthly payments on time, you can build a solid credit history that says to potential lenders "You can trust me."
Use it to save money
When you consistently pay your bill on time, you can improve your credit score. With a higher credit score, you may qualify for low-interest rates on mortgages, cars and other big-ticket items down the road, which could save you money.
Use it to get rewards
Depending on your card, you can earn a variety of rewards, including:
- Cash back on everyday purchases, including gas and groceries
- Airline miles that can be redeemed for trips or to purchase trips at a discount
Use it for peace of mind when traveling
Check to see if your card offers any of these credit card advantages for travelers:
- Trip cancellation and delay insurance
- Lost luggage insurance
- Travel and emergency assistance
Follow these tips and you can find just the right credit card to match your lifestyle and interests.