What you need to know about credit cards?

What you need to know about credit cards?

A credit card is available and convenient. It helps to stretch to salary, if you accidentally spend too much, to survive the New Year holidays with the indispensable purchase of a suitcase of gifts, to do without getting a loan for a large purchase.

However, the scheme “bought now – pay later” for many may be an insurmountable temptation. In order not to get into debt trap, you need to know all the pitfalls that banks, offering credit cards, are usually silent about.

Find out how much the annual credit card service costs . On average, for ordinary credit cards, this amount is 600–1 000 rubles per year. Please note that, as a rule, immediately after the activation of the card, annual maintenance is debited: 600 or 1 000 rubles you, without buying anything, will already have to the bank. By the way, when choosing a bank, you should focus not only on the interest rate. Count the organization’s ATMs – the more of them, the easier it is to pay. Pay attention to how many ATMs this bank has, in which you can not only withdraw money, but also deposit them into your account – after all, it is much more convenient to repay a loan through an ATM.

Do not buy into promises to issue a credit card “here and now”, especially if all you need from your documents is a passport. All risks of issuing a credit card to an unchecked client will result in an increased percentage and expensive card service. Do not want to overpay for speed – you have to wait. Verification of your data will take from two days to a week. Warn colleagues and accounting department: if they call from a bank with a check, they will have to confirm that you work for this company.

The loan limit is most often limited to your double salary. However, this figure is inaccurate, the bank itself decides how much money it is willing to give you. Among other unpleasant moments – the salary should be constant for at least 3 months and be at least 10-15 thousand rubles. The more papers confirming your solvency, you bring, the greater will be the loan amount. There are also age limits – most often from 21 to 60 years.

Grace period is 30–60 days. If you return the amount spent during this period, the bank does not charge interest for using the loan. But not everyone is completely honest with customers.

Example 1 –  honest – the grace period starts from the date of purchase. For example, you bought a fur coat on the 22nd, from this day count off 30-60 days – during this period you can return the money to the card without interest.

Example 2 –  tricky – the  grace period is officially 30-60 days, but in reality it is much less, since it depends not only on the date of purchase, but also on the date of discharge, which the bank once a month generates on your card. For example, they officially promised you 50 days of a grace period. You bought a fur coat on the 15th. The statement is formed on the 30th day of each month. That is, you have 15 days before the 30th. Remember this number. From the moment you receive the statement, the bank gives you an average of 20 days to repay the loan without interest. It turns out, 15 + 20 = 35 – this is the real grace period.

The important point is that in some banks you can use an interest-free loan only once during the agreed period. If you have bought something, but have not repaid the debt, and then once again used the card – you will have to unfasten the bank interest.

Do not have time to repay part of the loan – the interest charged on the amount vsvyu

If you did not repay the loan during the grace period, you will receive interest (on average, 22–28% per year). And there is one unpleasant moment. In many banks, interest at the end of the grace period is charged not on the balance of the debt, but on the entire amount. That is, if you, for example, bought a fur coat for 80 thousand rubles, quickly extinguished 79 thousand, and another thousand did not have time to repay on time – interest will start to “drip” on all 80 thousand.

Cash – at interest

When withdrawing cash at an ATM or a bank cash desk, the grace period is not valid, interest begins to accrue on the day the money is issued.

Little nothings of life

For a trip abroad it is better to issue a card in the currency of the country in which you are going. Of course, you can pay for purchases abroad with a ruble card. But you have to pay a conversion fee.

When making a contract

How to use plastic cards safely and what to do if you forget your PIN

In order not to fall into the bank trap, when you make a loan, carefully clarify all points of contention. Carefully read the contract, especially the part, which is set out in small print. Be sure to understand the timing of payments and the date of commencement of the grace period.

Feel free to ask questions you are interested in – even if they personally seem silly to you. Believe me: if this question came to you, it means that it probably came to another half of those who draw up a card!

Carefully fill out an application for a credit card – so that after the fact it does not appear checkmarks that you did not put.

Connect the SMS alert service to your mobile – this will give you the opportunity to monitor card transactions.


Adequately assess your financial capabilities. Having received a credit card, do not indulge in all serious. There is a golden rule: without an extreme need, never spend more than you can pay off from your nearest salary!

anatoly simons

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