Everything comes with their advantages and disadvantages especially financial services and tools. Similarly, a financial tool like credit cards has both advantages and disadvantages, and it is also extremely essential for you to understand how it works and all the details about it before applying for one. A credit card can help you short out your finances, build up your credit score, enjoy free miles & leisures but also they can be risky and expensive, which can eventually trap you rather than helping you settle the financial problems.
If you are currently in the deciding stage then here are some of the essential advantages and disadvantages of credit cards which will help you choose accordingly.
Pros of Credit Cards
Power, Ease, and Protection of Purchase
Credit cards have certain powers that generally aren’t offered by other types of cards. With the help of this card, you can make any large purchase even without carrying a huge amount of cash. Several companies don’t accept different options of payment but mostly they accept credit cards such as car rentals, hotels, and Airlines. Credit cards also offer added protection in case something you have bought with it is stolen, lost or damaged.
Even though the receipt is lost your credit card statement can work as proof and even some companies also vouch for you in need. There are also some credit card companies that still offer insurances for larger purchases.
Safer than Cash
You cannot easily receive the stolen amount but a credit card can be quickly canceled or blocked in case you lose it. Several Institutions of finance have security options in place to help protect your card in case of fraudulent transactions, theft or if there is any suspicious activity related to your card. If you encounter such situations then you should immediately contact the bank and report your issue as quickly as possible.
Several credit cards provide magnificent reward programs but you must first review them to see if they are suitable for you or not. It’s useless to overspend on unnecessary things to gain points or rewards. First, it is important to choose a proper program that will be beneficial for you, then you can utilize the earned reward points on grocery shopping, petrol or gas, flights and at several other places. You can also utilize these reward points to pay the annual fees of your credit card as some financial institutions allow this option.
Convenient and tractability
Credit cards are convenient in many places especially during an emergency while you are in need of a huge amount of money which you may not possess at that time. You can take the help of your credit card without having to go through the hassle of withdrawing a loan from the bank. Unexpected circumstances can be easily solved with credit cards. You can also keep track of your expenditure with the help of the electronic record tracking your expenditure.
It is extremely essential for you to have a positive credit history which will help you in not only applying for loans but also other credit cards, rental applications, and even jobs. Financial Institutions are pretty keen about this issue if you have a regular and positive credit history then it will be faster for you to get financial help from them. You should wisely pay the credit amount as per schedule either monthly or yearly to develop a positive credit history.
These were some of the advantages of credit cards, now here are a few of the disadvantages of credit cards that are generally overlooked by most people.
Cons of Credit Cards
A blow to your Budget
A credit card can be a delicious temptation for most people that is why it is dangerous in the wrong hands. This temptation encourages you to spend way more money than you actually have. Several Financial Institutions offers credit cards where you don’t have to pay off your debts per month rather it’s on an annual schedule that is why even though you have less than $100 in your account you can easily spend $1,000 without any hindrance. But this can easily increase with time and you may not be able to pay off within the required period, later the company will keep charging you interest for the money you borrowed.
A credit card can be also termed as an easy learning process with higher interest. Technically you are borrowing from Financial Institutions for a shorter period of time and they will charge you more interest due to the benefits they provide. If you overspend then your interests will keep increasing and your card can get maxed out with overflowing debt. Your credit score can easily drop and with such a negative credit history you cannot apply for any other loan or credit cards from other Financial Institutions.
Credit card companies have separate fees for different transactions and interests isn’t one of them,
- Annual fee
This can be termed as privilege fees which you have to pay for having the credit card. This fee is generally put on those credit cards with magnificent reward programs.
- Balance Transfer
Including the interest, you also have to pay a balance transfer fee if you are transferring an amount from one card to another. Generally, this fees is about 3% of the transaction amount. But in case of larger amounts, the fees may increase considerably.
- Cash advance
Cash advance fees for different companies on credit cards are different and specially depends on the amount.
- Foreign Transaction
If you are transferring any amount to a foreign country for visiting a foreign country and using this card for transactions then you have to pay an additional foreign transaction fee.
Credit cards have an elaborate history of frauds as several Financial Institutions have been scamming people for decades. Many of them charge a huge amount of interest per annum with additional maintenance fees. That is why it is necessary for you to apply for credit cards at trusted financial institutions where if you pay the borrowed amount within the time there won’t be any added interest left.
Credit cards come with additional responsibilities and you have to pay charges accordingly including interest. Several credit card companies also have other additional payments such as over-limit fees and return payment fees. These cards should be owned by people with a stable income or a sturdy business. However, they can help a lot in building your credit score also. Use wisely and you’ll be able to make most out of your credit cards.