There are so many credit card options available today, that choosing one can become almost overwhelming. How do you pick the right card? A number of important factors need to be considered when choosing a credit card that will best suit your needs. We’ll help you ask the right questions, so you can decide what credit card is right for you.
Want to see what credit cards are available when you bank with Union? Check out our personal credit card options and apply today.
How to Choose the Right Credit Card
There is single type of credit card that suits everyone. The needs of one consumer can be very different from that of another. For example, it wouldn’t make sense for someone who never travels to sign up for a credit card with airline miles as a reward.
When choosing your credit card, it’s important to know your credit score and what features you most care about. Take an honest look at your spending habits and your financial while moving through the credit card selection process.
Types of Credit Card Users
There is a credit card for every consumer. But there are key financial factors to help you figure out which card you need.
If You’re Looking for Your First Credit Card
Without a credit score, it can be difficult to get a standard credit card. Your credit score tells lenders how likely you are to pay back a loan. In order to get a card and establish some credit history, consider a secured card. A secured card works like a credit card, however there is a security deposit or fee needed for the card. The security deposit or fee is required for someone without a credit score because the lender is taking a risk lending you money. These are not meant to be long term cards, but are a great way to build credit for someone just starting out.
If You Travel Often
Airline cards are often an attractive option for many people. Who doesn’t want to travel for less? However, most people don’t know that typically the way you earn your reward with this type of card is by accumulating travel miles by spending with the airline. So if you aren’t already regularly traveling, you might not earn enough miles to make this card worth it.
If You Have Trouble Paying Your Card Down On Time
Look for cards with low interest or 0% balance transfer. Cards that offer a low interest rate upfront with a higher rate kicking in later can also be a good idea if you are able to spend that time paying down your debt. You’ll want to avoid rewards cards, as their higher interest rates will not be worth the rewards.
If You Pay Your Balance in Full
Spenders who are able to pay their balance in full every month should take a look at reward and cash back card options. Be sure to figure out where you’re spending the most money every month, so you can find a rewards card that matches your spending habits.
If You’re Paying Off Balances on Multiple Credit Cards
When you have debt on multiple credit cards and are interested in a new card, you may want to consider a credit card with a balance transfer offer. You can consolidate your debt to one card and focus on paying your debt.
Be sure to take a realistic and critical look at any rewards program you consider. Don’t just choose the rewards card that sounds the best, pick the one that fits your needs and spending habits best. Take a look at where you are spending most of your money and what you are spending it on and then get a card that matches.
For example, someone who has a long daily commute, a card with five percent cashback on gas would be ideal. But for someone who takes the bus and spends more money on groceries, they would have more to gain from three percent cash back on groceries.
It is also important to remember that rewards cards will often come with a fee. Rewards are great, but they don’t mean much if you aren’t using them enough to cancel out that fee. That also applies to their higher interest rate. If you are receiving a lot of points, but spending a lot on interest payments, then you’re not actually saving in the long run.
Look at the Fine Print
Never settle on a specific credit card without reading the fine print. Take the time to know what it is you are applying for. For example, if you don’t want a card with an annual fee or other hidden fees, make sure the credit card offer specifically says it is fee-free. Doing your due diligence now can save you a lot of trouble later.
Find the Right Card Today
Start looking for the credit card that’s right for you today. Union offers a wide variety of credit cards for every type of spender.
Union Credit Cards allow you to:
- Earn cash, points, and travel rewards for your everyday purchases
- Protect your account with the EMV smart chip
- Make mobile purchases for added convenience
Need more help deciding? Stop by one of our 14 local branch locations and talk to a Union Trusted Advisor. They’ll review your credit score with you and help you find the right card for you.