Choosing the right credit card for you

The choice of a credit card should not be an overwhelming or daunting task but you should factor in things like your income, other balances and loans, spending habits, lifestyle, and whether you pay the minimum only or the full amount.

If you have a poor credit, you can probably qualify for a secured credit card from one of the Canadian banks here. It’s never easy getting out of debt, but if you are disciplined with your money you can succeed here.

Rewards Cards

If you are a frequent traveler or love the idea of getting rewards, then you may look into airmiles and rewards cards. They are usually offered to consumers with good and excellent credit and steady, high income. Bonus points can be redeemed for certificates and gift cards, merchandise, concert tickets, free nights and hotel upgrades, and a lot more. Issuers also feature perks such as concierge service, flight upgrades, no expiry dates, and others. Customers get more rewards points by shopping at participating retailers.

Gas Credit Cards

This is another option if you drive often and want to save on gas. Gas cards are offered to individual customers and business owners and allow users to earn attractive rebates. Issuers offer convenient monthly statements that help consumers to track spending and fuel costs. Some cards offer additional benefits such as cash rewards, no annual fee, and others.

Secured Cards

Secured cards are available from major banks, unions, and other institutions as a way to reestablish or establish credit and make bookings and purchases. Persons with limited credit exposure are considered risky borrowers and are asked to make a deposit to get a card. The deposit is then used to determine the limit offered. Basically, the amount deposited serves as a form of collateral.

Prepaid Cards

This is actually not a credit card but works more like a debit card whereby financial institutions open revolving accounts for consumers. Users are free to make payments to merchants and establishments up to the available limit. The limit is equal to the amount loaded by the holder. There are several benefits for users, one being that applicants are not required to deposit $200, $500, or $1,000 to open an account, which is the case with secured cards. Prepaid cards are available to minors as well and help teach financial responsibility. On the downside, issuers usually charge different fees, and payments are not reported to the bureaus.

Department Store Cards

Department stores also offer cards to help attract new customers and increase their sales volume. Whether this product is a good deal depends on the rebates, discounts, and promos available. One of the main advantages is that this is a good way to build credit because issuers report payments. A further benefit is the fact that frequent shoppers are offered a way to save on purchases through exclusive shopping days, sales, and continuing discounts. There are several downsides to using a department store card, one being that holders are usually charged higher interest rates. The credit limit is usually also lower while the fact that stores offer generous discounts means that many consumers are tempted to overspend.

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