Ever had someone scare you on the dangers of credit cards?
There’s no doubt that credit cards aren’t right for everyone. But that doesn’t mean you should swear off ever having a credit card altogether.
In fact, there are millions of Australians benefitting from credit cards, paying little to no interest, managing their money and even receiving rewards.
Let’s look at some key things to look out for if you want to make your credit card work for you.
Pay off your card each month
The number one trick for benefiting from a credit card is paying it off each month.
If you check the due date, and keep on top of your spending, you can essentially never pay a single dollar of interest. Lots of people use their credit card this way. It can mean you can buy what you need today (instead of after next weeks’ paycheck).
Credit cards can mean convenience and security. Just make sure you don’t spend beyond your means to avoid being faced with a hefty bill that you can’t pay off.
Choose a card with low interest rates and low fees
There are plenty of different credit cards on the market, so it’s important to do some groundwork before deciding on an option.
A great place to start is a low rate credit card. These types of credit cards are a fantastic option for everyday purchases. Plus if you do accidently spend too much one month, you can rest easy knowing your interest rate is low.
Another thing to look out for is high annual fees. This can make the convenience of the card not financially viable (especially if the fees are in the hundreds!), so be sure to check this before you apply.
Our low rate credit card has an annual fee of just $45 a year, making it a great option if you’re looking to keep costs down.
Decide what you want to get out of your credit card
One of the biggest benefits of owning a credit card is rewards.
Depending on the card, owning a credit card can include plenty of benefits from accumulating points that can be redeemed for vouchers, to earning frequent flyer points and getting bonus insurance and purchase protection.
When you choose a rewards-based card, your every day spending can come with some big benefits.
For example, our Platinum Rewards Card earns 1.5 Bendigo Bank Rewards® for every dollar spent1. Choosing a card that earns points isn’t for everyone. So it’s important to weigh up the fees with the benefits as well as your usual spending, to see if this option is worthwhile for you.
Yes, credit cards can be scary. But they can also offer a huge range of benefits. If you research carefully before signing up, and keep on top of your spending each month, you can most definitely make your credit card work for you.
1 Rewards points are earned on eligible transactions – see Bendigo Rewards terms and conditions for details or call 1300 236 344.
Bendigo Bank rewards is a registered trade mark owned by Bendigo and Adelaide Bank limited.