It has dawned to me that people have taken for granted the use of credit cards. One day, I was in a bank and the person standing in front of me was complaining to the bank employee. He insisted that he has received a pre-approved card and wants it to be returned and deactivated immediately. The bank employee simply explained that being a valued customer, the bank has chosen him to receive a pre-approved gold card. The bank employee further explains that the card was free from any annual fees for the first year. If he ever so decides that he doesn’t want to use the card, he can simply discontinue or have the credit card cut. But the guy insisted that he wants to return the card today and have it deactivated immediately. He explained that he had heard a lot of stories people drowning in credit card debts.
As I was standing behind him, I couldn’t help myself but be sad for this guys situation. He was given something wonderful but he thinks and focuses that a Credit card is something evil and it would probably bring him enormous debt that he wanted to disposed of it right away. I believe credit cards is the exact opposite. These so called “plastics” were made to make life simpler, convenient, and give us opportunity to spend in cases of emergency. Although some consider them to be a double edge sword, it’s actually our knowledge and discipline that needs to be checked when using it. A few tips on how to they should be used:
1. Use your Card to pay for something that you already have cash to pay for. Instead of carrying your cash every single day, you bring along with you your credit card for convenience. But never pay for something or a service without setting aside the cash to pay it off when your due date arrives. Once you start using a Credit Card expecting NOT to pay the full balance in it’s due date, that could be the start of accumulating credit card debt.
2. You can actually extend the number of days of your due date. When you will receive your billing statement which usually arrives 2 weeks before your due date to settle it, you can actually start using your credit card at that time. This would mean that those purchases you made right after you receive your billing statement for that month would mean that it would be included in your next cycle of billing. This would mean you have extended the number of days till your next billing due date.
3. Don’t completely think that these cards sole purpose if for purchasing things that we need. These cards can actually be used a source of funds for business. Let us say you have a friend from another country who is looking for a laptop. It so happen that laptops in the United States are typically much cheaper compared to the other countries. So you intend to buy one and sell it off with a small markup to your friend. Instead of putting out cash you can use your card to purchase it, travel and sell it to your friend, come back and probably that would just be in time for you to pay off your Credit Card bill. You can even purchase that item by amortizing it and paying in small amounts monthly while you sell your item and get paid with the full amount in cash.
There are really a lot of advantages of using credit cards that’s why I would certainly consider this to be the best financial product ever created. Just have discipline in using this wonderful product and not fall into a Credit Card debt.