How to cut through the credit card clutter
(NC) Most credit card holders are not taking full advantage of their credit cards.
Yes, 89% of Canadians carry at least one credit card in their wallet, according to a survey by American Express Canada – and just over half (52%) of card holders carry between two and three on a regular basis. But, only 15% say they actually researched their options before signing up for a card and most (60%) admit to initially signing up for a credit card just because it was given to them through their bank.
Discounts here, bonus points there, and non-stop offers popping up everywhere. To be sure to get your share, it may be time for wallet makeover, like this:
Take inventory of your plastic. Empty your wallet and make a list of what you have, then put aside any card you haven't used in the past year. Ask yourself why you have it. Are you collecting any rewards for your purchases with it? Is this the best card for your individual spending needs? Does it have a competitive earn rate? If you answer no to any or all of these, it's time to reconsider.
Don't carry more than you use. Just because credit cards are small, doesn't meancredit card hoarding is any more acceptable than any other type of hoarding. Holding onto something you don't need weighs you down and in this case, complicates your spending. We've all reached for one card before and used another by mistake. Cut the confusion by only keeping what you need.
Reserve certain cards for certain purchases: A great element of financial planning is staying consistent with how you pay for certain things—and always try to make the transactions work to give you additional benefits. The most valuable cards, for example, allow you to collect points toward future spending, like the American Express Gold Rewards Card, where you can earn double points on everyday purchases like gas and groceries.
More information on this topic is available at www.amex.ca.
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