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Credit card issuers are always competing with each other to roll out the best credit card offers and hopefully earn a spot in your wallet. This is great news for consumers, because as the banks duke it out trying to one-up each other with lower interest rates and more generous rewards programs, savvy cardholders can easily cash in on the best offers to save hundreds of dollars each year.
With all of the competitive card offers out there, if you have been using the same card for a number of years, here are a few reasons why it is time for a change.
1. You’re stuck under a steep interest rate
Credit card debt can be a scary thing. If you don’t use your cards responsibly, you could find yourself under a mountain of debt before you know it. To make matters worse, it can often seem as if paying your monthly bill has no impact on lowering the actual amount that you owe! If you’re hanging on to a credit card with a high balance and a steep interest rate, transferring that balance to a card with an introductory APR of 0% could save you hundreds, or even thousands of dollars.
The Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever is currently one of the best low interest credit cards on the market, especially for a balance transfer. This credit card currently offers an intro APR of 0%* for 21 months on Purchases* and 0%* for 21 months on Balance Transfers*. Transfering your high-interest credit card balance to one of these useful balance transfer credit cards can help you pay off your debt much quicker and save you a lot of money!
2. You pay your balance in full, but are only earning 1% back
For consumers who don’t carry a balance from month to month, rewards credit cards are a great way to save money on your everyday purchases. Whether you’re interested in travel rewards, or simply earning cash back, using a rewards credit card for all of your purchases can put hundreds of dollars back in your pocket each year. But if you’ve been holding the same rewards card for many years, chances are there’s a better offer available that could greatly increase your earnings.
The Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer is one of the best cash back credit cards on the market. It offers cardholders 1% cash back when you buy and 1% cash back as you pay for those purchases. That makes the Citi® Double Cash the only credit card that lets cardholders earn bonus cash back on every purchase! If you’re more interested in travel, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card gives you the chance to transfer the points you earn to various airline and hotel loyalty programs. In many cases, this can double, or even triple the value of your points, which often equates to a 3% or greater return on your spending.
3. You hate paying your annual fee
Many credit cards, particularly rewards-earning cards, will come with an annual fee that can range anywhere from $19 up to almost $500. Credit cards that have more expensive annual fees usually come with a long list of valuable perks and the ability to earn the most generous rewards.
But if you’re paying an annual fee and getting nothing in return, it’s time to switch to a new credit card with no annual fee. There are a number of cards that have no annual fee and can still earn you loads of rewards. For example, the Chase Freedom® is a cash back card that offers tons of cash back with no annual fee. Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate. Enjoy new 5% categories every 3 months. Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.
4. Blackout dates keep you from redeeming your rewards
Nothing is more frustrating than having tens of thousands of airline miles or hotel points and not being able to redeem them for the dates you want. Navigating the nuances and restrictions of many credit card loyalty programs is often not worth the trouble. But in recent years, credit card companies have recognized the need for more flexible travel rewards credit cards, and there are now a number of options on the market that can remove the travel rewards headache.
With the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card, you earn 2x “No Hassle Miles” on every dollar you spend, which can be redeemed to cover any airline ticket, any hotel stay, and a number of other travel expenses with no blackout dates. New cardholders earn a one-time bonus of 40,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months of account opening, equal to $400 in travel! Another great travel rewards credit card that offers no blackout dates is the Discover it® Miles. This card has no annual fee and earns unlimited 1.5x miles per dollar on all purchases, every day.
5. You don’t have a credit card yet
With so many excellent offers on the market, there has never been a better time to apply for a credit card to start building credit and racking up rewards. The key to responsible credit card use is to simply use it the same way you would use cash – never make purchases you can’t afford! By spending responsibly and paying off your bill in full each month, you will eventually be able to rake in hundreds of dollars in savings and you will also build your credit score while establishing a solid credit history.