One way of deciding which credit card to choose is to look at the rewards offered by the credit cards. Before anything, it is but common sense that the consumer gets to know the mechanics of credit cards – such as how rewards add up and how they may be claimed. A good consideration would also be the conditions and any “catch” the credit card may have.
Indeed, credit cards have made themselves more attractive by adding these “bonuses” – perks and privileges. What factors then should a consumer consider when evaluating credit card rewards?
One of the very important things you need to check on is the organization or company providing the credit card. Research on the company’s reputation and what programs it offers. Of course, the reward programs vary from company to company.
Another thing you must keep a look out for are the fees charged by the companies. The ideal credit card for you, of course, would be that without any annual fee charge. Some credit cards charge over $50.00 or more. There are, however, some catches to such cards without annual fees. The general trend is that companies without annual fees require the consumer to have good to excellent credit standing. Remember to check as well on the other fees that may be charged, such as late payment fees.
Check on the benefits or the specific types of rewards that the credit card companies offer. The general classifications of rewards a consumer may avail of are merchant-specific programs in certain merchants; gift and merchandise checks; travel privileges which include airline tickets, car rentals and hotels, cash back; and experiences – which allow you certain privileges in meeting celebrities and the like. Do not be too glamorized by these benefits, because technically, such benefits are only 1% of the fees the bank charges.
Another thing to consider is the interest rates. Your choice would certainly depend on your purposes of getting a credit card. If you have any balances to be carried over, the best choice would be a credit card with low interest rates. If your credit is rather healthy and you intend to pay your bills in full, then you should not have any trouble opting for a card with higher interest rates.
As you may know, credit cards offer introductory rates of 0% – or what we are called “teaser rates”. It would be useful to read the fine print of such cards, since companies have ways of increasing the charges without the consumer knowing it.