Have you ever wondered why you get credit card offers in mail when you have not even made a request for it. If your name and address is in public information system than by now you must have received many credit cards offers. Each giving better offer than other competing credit card company.
With so much information to process will lead to confusion and wrong acceptance of credit cards. Choosing a right credit card is a daunting job, it needs careful analysis and close scrutiny of fine points written in small fonts. Special attention should be given to credit card rates, when new higher rates will apply. Give importance to reading terms and conditions of credit cards. You will get new understanding of how credit cards work. Before you start applying credit cards you need to know few important terms used in credit card. By knowing these terms will help you applying for a correct credit card.
As you know small plastic card known as credit card is in dimension of 85.60 X 53.98 mm. As the name suggest you get moneyon credit or you buy things in market on credit. The credit card differs from Debit card because when you make purchase by using your credit card it doesn’t remove money from your bank account. where as when you do purchase using Debit card it removes money from your bank account after every transaction you make.
When you make transaction using credit card the credit card company lends money to merchant where you did shopping. Usually you get one billing cycle money on credit without any interest being charged to you.
All is required from you is to pay full balance before due date to avoid interest charges. In case you have made big purchase which you can pay in full in one month, try paying off balance as soon you can to avoid more interest charges. In case you are not able to pay money back to credit card company please ensure you pay at least minimum balance required by due date. Usually this amount is little and it helps you to keep your account in good standing. Ideally this option should be avoided as it will pile interest amount on your borrowed amount and in no time your borrowed money will start swelling.
Credit card company issues credit card to user after his/her request for application has been approved.
Every credit card company will set credit limit for each customer based on his/her credit strength
The credit card user will make purchases by using issued credit card.
The credit card on average is in dimension of 85.60 x 53.98 mm
Every credit card has number written on it by which your account is identified.
Some of the known credit card companies: Chase – Bank of America – Citigroup – Wells Fargo – American express – discover etc. Practically every major bank issues its credit card to users.
When you make purchase at any merchant you sign a small receipt acknowledging you will pay same amount to your credit card company.
Few of the transactions can be done over phone, such as airlines and hotel booking, by giving your credit card number and expiration date etc. Please be care full when making such transactions. Ensure you do such transactions with trusted parties.
Almost all merchants or store owners have credit card verification system, while you swipe your card for payment it is checked in background for fraud or missing card status.The credit card payment terminal or Point of Sale (POS) system helps store owners to do verification with issuing credit card company’s system.
The security code of credit card is printed on back of credit card.
Each month credit card company will send monthly statement to credit card users. The statement will include details of transaction made by credit card user. The important details will be visible such as day of transaction, merchant’s name, amount paid etc. This information helps you to cross verify purchases made with amount charged on credit card.
The credit card statement also gives other information such as billing cycle, due date (payment date), total balance and minimum payment you can make.
The grace period is the number of days to make payment back to credit card company from the day he/she made purchase.
The credit card companies form associations and many bank become member of these credit card associations. The known associations are VISA, MASTERCARD,DISCOVER, AMERICAN EXPRESS etc.
Electronic transaction processing network, which allow electronic transaction to work through secure system. Following are few companies which are in this business. NDC Atlanta, Nova, Cardnet, Nabanco, Omaha, Paymentech, Vital, VisaNet and Concord EFSnet.
Secure credit card: Some credit card companies issues secure credit card after applicant has deposited 10% of credit limit into his/her account. This type of account is for new users with very little credit history to show.
Pre-Paid Credit Card: This is not really a credit card, because no amount is borrowed from lender. This type of credit card is used by students when their parents deposit required amount into account for their shopping. This type of credit card comes with VISA/MASTECARD logo thus is called pre-paid credit card
Security of credit card is dependent upon the number on credit card. Few merchants will allow certain types of sale by just getting credit card number. Ensure you don’t compromise security of credit card.
You can also withdraw money through credit card at ATM’s using your secure pin number
Annual percentage rate (APR): Learn what is APR and how it is calculated.The annual percentage rate is the interest you will be paying on borrowed money to lender.
The APR rate applicable to your account will differ from the rate which was given as introductory, partly because of few month introduction rate and other fees get added to final interest calculation.
In simple terms APR is monthly interest multiplied by 12 months will result in annual APR rate. This assumes there is no other fees involved.
Balance transfer: Why would you transfer debit amount in your credit card to other card. the reason could be better interest rate and terms. some of the credit card companies give introductory offers such as no interest on balance transfer for 6 months to 2 years.
These offers are good when you are paying high interest rate or you have high balance on credit cards and you are looking for cooling period to fix your debits.
How important is to protect your Credit Card
This small plastic card which you carry in your wallet is very precious more than your jewelry you wear on your body. The security of credit card should be taken very seriously. Once your credit card is stolen, your account information is known to others, it will take good time before you will get those charged removed from your account.
Meanwhile your credit rating will take hit if there is big charge on your credit card and you are not able to settle those charges. take every effort to safe guard security of your on-line identity and security of credit card.
Few security tips: Always keep your credit card in secure place when not using.
Never reveal your credit card numbers to others.
Try to avoid giving your credit card information on phone.
Any loss of credit card should be immediately informed to issuing credit card company.
If you are using on-line access to check your credit card account, please use secure methods to protect your identity and credit card etails.
Install “fire wall” and good virus and spyware scanner on your computer.
Change your on-line account passwords periodically.
Never use public computers to access on-line accounts.