I have a confession to make — I rely too much on my credit card(s). I buy pretty much everything with them. Whether it’s an Uber ride, gadgets, gas, groceries — you name it, I’ll buy it with a credit card. And that’s the way I like it. For starters, it’s much more convenient than using cash, and I get to benefit from some additional bells and whistles as part of the deal.
I also want to believe that I’m a responsible credit card user, and that’s why it works for me — rather than the other way round. Here are my 7 reasons why you too should be doing the same…
1. Credit cards are easy and convenient
This is arguably the single most important reason behind the success of credit card companies. Instead of carrying cash around, today most of us are just swiping cards to make payments. This is not only better, but also more secure — in an event you lose your credit card, you can just call the bank and block it. Try that with cash…
2. You don’t need to carry cash
Related to the previous point – credit cards are way more convenient than cash, which again — makes them much safer to carry around. But, if you do need cash — and from time to time we all need it — you can always go to a local ATM and get it. It’s that easy.
3. Credit cards help you build up a credit rating
Credit cards are more than a means of payment. By regularly using them, you are building up your credit rating. This, of course, presumes you are making regular, on-time payments on your balances. And if you could pay your credit card bill in full every month, that much the better. Soon enough, you will see your credit score going through the roof. And that, we think, is the way it should be. That’s how we roll these days.
4. Credit cards are great for accounting
There are many mobile apps out there that let you keep up with your expenses. But you could get the same capability from your credit card company. Simply go through your credit card statement and see where you money went that month, with some banks even automatically categorizing purchases for you. In comparison, something similar with cash-based purchases is rather hard — you will have to write down every single purchase you make within a month. That’s hard work when you think about it.
5. Credit cards help automate some payments
To be fair, this isn’t a feature exclusively available to credit card holders; some banks will let you make automated payments from a web portal. But with pretty much any credit card, that feature comes included, allowing you to automate regular payments such as phone bills, utilities, cable, and so on. This way you won’t forget to make a single payment that could not only ruin your credit score, but also make some key services unavailable.
6. Credit cards provide additional services and protections
Not to be overlooked, many credit cards come with additional bells and whistles that could make your life that much easier. For instance, you could get a complimentary travel insurance, purchase protection, extended warranty and price matching guarantee — all of which could be real money-savers when you do need them. Hopefully you won’t be needing these services, but it’s good to know they are available to you just in case.
7. Credit cards let you earn points or cash back
If you’re like me, you are not using your credit card to fund big purchases but to buy just about anything. Also, since I try (and so far succeed) to pay my credit card bills in full and on time, I get to earn points (that’s what my credit card offers). Once earned, I can transfer these points into airline miles and/or hotel points, which then allows me to travel for free. And that, arguably, is the most important reason why I love credit cards. At the end of each year, I have enough points to buy one or two airline tickets, depending on the place I want to visit — with my bank funding a portion of that trip. Love it! 🙂