8 Reasons I Hate Credit Cards

I can’t believe I said credit cards, plural. I mean who needs more than one credit card? New Zealand credit card users have 2.2 credits each. American users have 3.7 cards each! Actually I can think of a reason to have two credit cards, when my partner and I travel we take two cards (thats one each) from different providers in case a certain brand of card isn’t accepted or on the small chance there is a problem with transactions for one of the companies. People hacking the rewards/points often have multiple cards. I get it, the rewards are nice, its especially nice to be rewarded for your boring every day spending.

I use a credit card but I have a love/hate affair with credit cards. I love that they let me order things from oversea’s and collect airpoints. I hate that I sometimes forget purchases made on my credit card and have to pay more than I anticipated to get the balance back to zero.

  1. Credit cards are very dangerous. Its easy to view that line of credit as “money available to spend” and easier to forget that its not really your money. My online credit card always shows the available balance as $10,000! But that’s not right I don’t have $10,000! Its just $10,000 the bank is willing to lend me. This kind of psychological trickery really infuriates me. The balance should be ZERO.

    Evil credit cards
    Put it on the plastic, worry about it later.
  2. They get away with ridiculous interest rates. 21.95% interest WTF. Yep I’ve seen them that high. Why do we accept this kind of loan sharkery? Somehow this has become the norm. Interest rates around the 20% mark severely punish the inexperienced credit card user.
  3. No one tells the user that they are not supposed to carry a balance. You shouldn’t carry forward any credit card debt from month to month. If you are you should cut up the card NOW. You can’t get ahead paying 20% interest on debt each month.
  4. Minimum payment pfffft whatever. If you pay the minimum you may as well say ” I wanna stay in debt forever” cause paying the minimum don;t do jack towards the debt when the interest rate is 20%. But somehow seeing that minimum figure on the statement and then paying it actually makes us feel good, like we are fulfilling our obligations. More psychological trickery.
  5. The bastards will increase your limit without asking your permission enabling chronic spenders to get even further into debt. I once rang the company and asked them to reduce my limit and I was cooley informed that I better not ever ask for a limit raise as it may not be available to me in the future! Well thanks mate. I guess you don’t want financially responsible customers.
  6. I’ve yet to meet a person who was able to manage their credit card successfully from day one. Everyone I’ve been brave enough to talk to about it has at some point in their life carried a balance, had to pay interest, or let their spending get out of control. That learning curve has got a lot of young people into trouble over the years including me! Getting a credit card at 18 was probably one of the worst things to happen to me (financially that is!).
  7. The fee’s for accepting credit cards are high, much higher than using your regular eftpos/debit card. While the eftpos card transaction are charged at a flat rate per month (usually built into the equipment rental) retailers are paying 1.7% of the transaction in fees and its really hurting smaller retailers with slim margins. So who is really paying for your credit card rewards? Maybe the retailers are bearing that cost, maybe everything would just be a little bit cheaper if there were no credit cards.
  8. Transactions take a few day to show up in my online statement. I have a hard time understanding this as EFTPOS transactions show immediately and I can see where and when I spent my money. With the credit card the balance is updated instantly but the detailed transaction line showing when and where the purchase took place doesn’t show up for a couple of days. It really frustrates me as I like to track every expense and if I lost the receipt on the way home….(trust me this happens I am very disorganised) I have to try remember the exact details and then wait a few days before I can update my spending tracker.

12 thoughts on “8 Reasons I Hate Credit Cards”

  1. I agree with all of your points except with one caveat-they only apply if you don’t pay the balance in full each month.

    I have only once in my life forgotten to pay my credit card on time (but have paid my card twice in one pay period a couple of times.) The only time I’ve carried a balance is when I used my cards to help fund a house renovation and the card was interest free for 18 months.

    Credit cards can be used as a tool, but unfortunately so many people have never been taught how to properly use them as a tool. The allure of “free” money sucks them in to buying more than they can afford. I credit my mom for having me “pay” all the bills from her account starting at age 9 or 10. I had to make sure the checkbook was balanced and got a really good understanding of finances.

    1. Financial literacy is something that took me a long time to learn, if only there was some kind of test you had to take before they would give you a credit card! I’m sure I would have failed it when the bank handed me my very credit card at age 18 as part of their promotional Tertiary student package.
      These days I use it as a tool as well, but I still see a lot of young people getting themselves into trouble with credit.

  2. I love my credit card. If I have to spend money I may as well get rewards for it.

    I do wish we had better options here – would be nice to have fee free cards!

    I only have the one CC and it’s with my main bank. Have thought about moving to a different card with a different bank but juggling multiple cards sounds like a nightmare for me. And yep it is frustrating that transactions don’t show up instantly!

    1. Have you tried negotiating the fees? So many banks are offering free fees for a year if you switch, wouldn’t hurt to call your bank and ask them to match it for year at least. I currently have a 50% discount on my fees. I think I need to give them another call and see if I can get it down to zero!

  3. We use credit cards for all purchases because I feel like I might as well get rewards if I’m going to spend the money anyway.

    However, my favorite reason for people using cards is for the reward points, even if they carry a balance each month. I know a person who keeps using his card for the miles even though he complains that his cards are maxed out! Makes no sense!

  4. I used to hate when they raised my available funds, but now that I’m working on improving my credit score with the mind to buy a house in a year, I’m okay with a better credit utilization rate.

    1. Since I manage my cards properly now a higher limit doesn’t affect me, but interestingly it has affected the bank.
      Last year my credit card was stolen and the thieves managed to max it out within a few hours. ($3000 alone on online gambling!) The bank had to wear the cost of that. I had way more credit than I could ever need so the thieves were able to go on a massive spending spree. I wonder if that money was clawed back from the retailers and does it leave them out of pocket? Overall I’m guessing every time it happens its increasing their insurance costs and those costs probably get passed on to consumers with increased prices and fees.

  5. I almost got into an argument this weekend with my brother-in-law who was telling our nephew, who’s in his 20s, that he must get a credit card to establish credit. I told him he was incorrect. He was adamant you need one for a car loan or a mortgage. I told him no credit is fine – it’s bad credit that will hurt you. Thankfully, my nephew takes after his father (a different brother-in-law) who likes to pay his way in cash. But the old attitudes are so pervasive!…We may get a little into credit card hacking when we retire but it looks like a huge time sucker. I have to learn some basics and really see if it’s worth it.

    1. Your nephew is lucky to have a voice of reason in his life! It’s almost like young people need financial counselling before they undertake the responsibility of a credit card! As for hacking, it could be a fun challenge if you have the time. we don;t get anywhere the kinds of incentives and reward here in NZ. Its a very small market but I’ve managed to collect enough airports for it to be worth it.

  6. I used to hate credit cards. When I was younger I only paid the minimum amount necessary. Naturally, over time, my credit card debt got larger and larger. My parents borrowed me a large lump sum to pay every card off, and I took advantage of that. I closed most of the cards, but left one open. I don’t think I used it at all for over a year, I was so scared of going into CC debt again. Since I’ve been using credit cards again I have never carried a balance from month to month. In fact, I pay off both cards every other week when I get paid. That way the balance is never too large. Nowadays I just like racking up the points!

  7. 👋🏻 I have manage my credit card with ~4 times my annual income from day one. Of course, I did not get smart suddenly. I spend two three year living with minimal allowance that when I got a credit card at 20th. Consuming didn’t matter anymore.

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