Credit cards are one of life’s greatest conveniences but can also be dangerous if used unwisely. Sky-high interest rates, late fees, cash advance fees, annual charges, penalties and other pitfalls can all be very unpleasant surprises on your credit card statements.
We’ve put together a quick list of things you should look for when searching for credit cards. Depending on your credit score, there are great options for cards that have low fees, reasonable interest rates and generous points and rewards systems.
- What is the annual fee and is there a fee for additional cards on the account (many no-fee cards are available)?
- What is the interest rate for purchases?
- What is the interest rate for cash advances?
- How long is the grace period for payment?
- What are the penalties for late payment and more importantly, does late payment change the interest rate on outstanding balances?
- What additional benefits are available to cardholders (common benefits include warranty extensions, travel protection and overnight card replacements)?
- Does the card have a points program and do they offer a block of points up front for signup?
- How can the points be used – airline miles, travel, gift cards?
Do your research and choose the right card for you and you won’t regret it.