A credit card can be the best and worst thing in your wallet depending upon your own money management abilities, self control and understanding of credit. Despite the misconception that tends to revolve around credit cards, these little pieces of plastic are not free money. Rather, each time you swipe your card you are borrowing money from a credit lender, and are expected to pay off your debt in full.
While the words ‘debt’ and ‘credit lender’ do have the tendency of making the little hairs on the back of your neck stand up, we assure you these are not horrible things. In fact, using credit is the only way you can build a good up your credit score, which ultimately is the only way to get a decent loan for a car or house.
Achieving a good credit score is fairly easy if, again, you understand how to manage your money. Paying your bill on time and not exceeding your credit limit are imperative to maintaining a good relationship with your credit lender. These two acts will build your credit score, and guarantee you do not get slapped with any unexpected fees. On this site you will also discover insightful reviews, articles related to credit, and a side-by-side credit card comprison.
Convenience is one of the greatest features a credit card offers. Instead of lugging a fat wad of cash around with you, it is enormously easier to have a simple piece of plastic, not to mention safer. Most credit card companies, including Visa, Discover and Chase, watch over each individual account in hopes of identifying and preventing fraudulent charges. A good credit card will also not hold the card user responsible for unauthorized charges.
You want the best credit card that’s going to work for you and not charge you outstanding or unnecessary fees. Below are the criteria TopTenREVIEWS used to compare Credit Cards:
APR For Purchase
A good credit card is going to have a low Annual Percentage Rate (APR) and a long grace period. Even more, the Credit Card you choose should offer an introductory rate of 0% APR for a minimum of 6 months and have NO annual fees.
These are the features we’ve come to expect from a credit card. The first, Zero Liability, takes the blame off of the cardholder for unauthorized purchases. Free account alerts will warn the user if they are approaching their credit limit or bill pay period; and a credit education system is a complimentary teaching tool designed to educate new comers to the world of credit how to utilize their card in a safe and effective way.
These features are icing on the cake, but not required for a good credit card. The first two features, Travel accident insurance and rental car insurance, are available with all of our top rated products. Fraud protection is another feature you should look for. This will add an extra level of security to your account which will be under surveillance by the credit card company. Some of the best credit cards also offer a rewards system where you can get points, cash back or fly miles for using the card.
It is inevitable; every credit card comes with some fees and charges. The most popular are Late Fees and Over Credit Limit Fees. Both of these are avoidable with proper budgeting and awareness of your billing period. You will also encounter cash advance fees and international purchase fees.
Look for a low interest credit card that has established an effective customer support system. 24/7 customer service is what we’ve come to expect from the top credit cards. Whether through phone or email, you should be able to get help at all hours. We also require a good credit card to have an extensive FAQ section through which cardholders can find the answers to generic questions.
Credit cards come in many forms and fashions. A popular style many people tend to be flocking toward is a rewards card. This card does exactly what it suggests, rewards you for spending. There are also a number of Business Credit Cards which have benefits more suited to those in the fast paced business world. A Student Credit Card is another popular option for the young adult crowd interested in learning to use credit; and for those who have less-than-ideal credit, we’ve compiled a list of the top Credit Cards for Bad Credit. You can also get a prepaid credit card, which is a great investment for those who have a problem exceeding their credit limit.
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|Citi Simplicity® Card||Discover it®||Business Green Rewards Card from American Express OPEN|
|APR for Purchase|
|Intro Rate||0%||0%||N/A [You must pay your balance in full each month]|
|Intro Period||18 months||14 months||N/A [You must pay your balance in full each month]|
|Minimum APR Thereafter||12.99%-21.99% (Variable)||10.99% - 22.99% Variable*||None|
|Annual Fee||$0*||None||$0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95|
|Grace Period||23 days||25 days||20 days|
|24/7 Account Access|
|Free Account Alerts|
|Credit Status Required||Excellent||Excellent||Excellent|
|Lost or Stolen Card Reporting|
|Rental Car Insurance|
|Travel Accident Insurance|
|Emergency Card Replacement|
|Cash Back Rewards|
|Fly Mile Rewards|
|Emergency Cash Disbursement|
|Late Fees||$0||$35||$35 or 2.99%|
|Cash Advance APR||12.99-21.99% (Variable)||24.99% Variable*|
|Business Hour Phone Support|
|24/7 customer support|