Credit cards are issued by credit card providers. When you are accepted for one you will be given a credit limit which is a form of borrowing. This limit, set by the provider, is the total amount you have available to spend with the card. Please note that this credit limit is subject to change at any time. Credit cards are an easy way of financing purchases and they can be used to buy goods in shops, over the phone or online. You can also withdraw money from cash machines, known as a ‘cash advance’. The main advantage of a credit card is that you can make purchases without necessarily having the money to do so because you can spread the cost over a period of time. With most card you will be given a choice of ways to manage your account, either by phone, at a branch or online. Online banking is a really useful tool because you can get up to date balances, view transactions online and make payments easily. Some cards also come with free email and text alerts which are reminders of your balance and when payments are due. This will help you budget and manage your money.
You can use your credit card at home or aboard with worldwide acceptance. They are a more convenient, not to mention safer alternative to carrying around large amounts of cash. Additional security also comes with the chip and pin device as well as the benefit of protection when you make purchases. Purchase protection covers good paid for with the card against loss, theft or accidental damage. To apply for a credit card your application will be based on a number of aspects. In general you have to be at least 18 years old but you should always check the eligibility criteria. The most important aspect that providers will look at is your credit history. Generally, the better your credit history, the more likely you are to be accepted for a credit card and the more credit you will be given. You will also find that if you have a poor financial past you will be given higher interest rates.