It’s important to understand the benefits and drawbacks of the different types of credit card available, as well as what they should and shouldn’t be used for. Thankfully, gone are the days of walking into your local high-street bank to apply for a credit card; this is no longer the only option. The internet allows consumers more power than ever before to compare online credit card offers and obtain the best deal for their particular situation, without ever having to leave the house. With the number of people doing their banking online rising exponentially, it’s worth using the internet as a tool to shop for the best credit card deals.
Those looking to shift debt onto a cheaper card will be looking for a balance or money transfer credit card. These essentially allow debt to be moved from one card to another, which is typically associated with an interest-free period, thereby reducing the cost of the debt long-term.
It pays to shop around online for different credit card offers online, as card providers are in constant competition to provide the longest interest-free period and transfer fee. It’s important to remember that the point of these cards is to consolidate debt, so using them for purchases on top of any consolidation could lead to unexpected interest charges.
However, consumers who are looking for a credit card to use for everyday spending, or a one-off purchase, do have an alternative option. Many credit card providers offer these types of cards with a set interest-free period on purchases, or at least very low interest rate. If done properly, this can make the cost of borrowing on a credit card cheaper than taking out a loan.
There are also other lesser-known types of card available, which specialize in reward schemes such as cash back for example, or cards that can be used for spending overseas without the usual, pricey exchange rates.
Consumers with poor credit scores may feel locked out of the best deals, and it is true to an extent that the offers will not be as good for those who have a bad credit history. That being said, there are credit cards available for these consumers. Although they’ll usually carry a higher interest rate, these cards can also help to rebuild your credit rating when repaid in full and on time.
One of the biggest advantages to shopping around for online credit card deals is the convenience of being able to do so from the comfort of your own home, on a computer or mobile device. Providing no supporting information or documentation is needed, the majority of applications can be completed from start to finish over the internet, with the credit card and PIN number being sent through the post. This is an ideal way of working for the banks as well, as they are under more pressure to go paper free.
When venturing into the market for a credit card for the first time, it can seem daunting how many options and different card providers are available. However, a quick internet search for credit card comparison websites will rapidly return a long list of finance comparison websites who can help to compare the best deals currently available for each type of credit card. There are also many forums online where it’s likely the same key questions have been asked and answered before.
Whatever you choose, it’s important to understand your own needs before applying for a credit card, as well as understand what you should and shouldn’t use the card for, in order to avoid any unexpected interest charges.