How To Compare Credit Cards
With so many credit card providers now offering potential customers the option of a card, knowing how to compare credit cards is somewhat of an art-form. The following are a few useful comparisons to look for when comparing credit cards:
Do you get an introductory rate?
Lots of providers now offer their new customers a special introductory interest rate when you apply for their card. These special rates can vary from 3 to 6 months and can be as low as 0% during this period (although it unlikely you’ll be offered this rate on cash withdrawals. When comparing credit card companies, make sure you take careful note of whether you’ll get this benefit.
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Transferring your existing credit card balance from one card provider to another is extremely popular these days. If you are thinking of doing this, then make sure in any comparison you make that you check to see whether or not your new card provider will give you some sort of interest rate holiday on the balance transfer, or at worst a reduced interest over a specified period of time.
Annual membership fees
The introduction of annual fees has been one way that service providers can reduce their overall APR. However, although not exactly a hidden fee, this type of fee can make your credit card usage expensive – depending on what type of card you have and how often you use it.
Interest free period
You’ll be amazes when you survey the different card available to difference there can be in the interest free period – the time between you purchasing the goods or services and when interest will start to accrue on such. At its extremes this period can vary as dramatically as between 25 and 90 days, so always look at this.
Traditionally the APR was the most common method of comparing credit cards. However, with so many additional issues regarding credit cards today, such as introductory rates and membership fees, while an APR check is vital, is no longer a deal breaker. What is important today is that your cost of funding should be minimal, which does not necessarily mean your APR need to be.
Cash back and Rewards
Nearly all cards offer either cash back or rewards to loyal customers. When looking at card providers, check to see which type of loyalty program is going to suit your needs – for example, what’s the point of getting air-miles if you never fly!
Minimum monthly repayment
Different card providers require their customers to make different percentage monthly repayments on their cards so when you compare credit cards make sure you find out what your minimum monthly repayment, as a percentage of your outstanding balance, you are going to be asked to pay.
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