Tips For Managing Your Credit Card

Credit cards – we learn to love em’ or hate em’. Many parents seem to always stress to us growing up how horrible and dangerous credit cards can be. They warn us about how easily caught up we can get in a pool of debt, and that we should just stick to debit cards instead. Sound familiar to anyone else? The risks of falling into debt are definitely true, but if you’re careful and know what you’re getting yourself into before committing yourself to a credit card, they aren’t as scary as they’re made out to be. Here are some basic tips on making sure you stay debt free while using a credit card.

  1. 1. Never Splurge

    I know, it’s so easy getting caught up in that cycle of “oh my god, this is so cute I need it right now”, but trust me if you constantly let yourself splurge, you’ll rack up that debt in no time. Be sure to set yourself some sort of budget when using your credit card so as to avoid this nightmare splurge cycle.

  2. 2. Always Think Ahead

    When you’re deciding whether or not to use your credit card, think ahead and be sure you know for a fact that you’ll have that money on hand when your payment date rolls around. I always keep track of my next pay day and make sure that I never spend more than I can afford by the next payment date. Doing this will save you from splurging too much at one time and drowning yourself in a pool of debt.

  3. 3. Always Pay On Time

    This goes without saying, but you’d be surprised how many people miss their payment date and this is one of the biggest culprits of credit card debt accumulation. Every time you miss a payment date, you’ll be charged interest fees (they vary depending on the credit card) because you couldn’t keep up with your payments. I’ve personally found it helpful to put the payment date in my calendar every single month and set a reminder on my phone, too. It also helps that I’m naturally a very timely person - especially when it comes to paying off my credit card - but if you’re a bit more forgetful, I would definitely recommend setting yourself reminders every month.

  4. 4. Check Your Transaction History

    If you have a credit card-or debit card, for that matter- you run the risk of credit card fraud. Always be sure to check your transaction history to ensure that any unauthorized purchases don’t go overlooked. If you ever notice something out of the ordinary, report it to your credit card company immediately.

Hopefully this list was helpful to you and relieved some of that fear of getting a credit card. Credit cards can be a wonderful and convenient thing to have. They’re really not as scary as they may seem, as long as you stay on top of your payments and be responsible with your spending.