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We value our editorial independence, basing our comparison results, content and reviews on objective analysis without bias. But we may receive compensation when you click links on our site. Learn more about how we make money from our partners.Finder.com’s free service makes comparing credit cards simple. To help you find the best credit card for you, we’ve organized our comparison by card type, card features and card provider. Whether you’re after a card with a low interest rate, a balance transfer or rewards, we make comparing easy.
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When helping you choose the best card for your situation, we compare a wide variety of features across available credit cards. These include annual fees, APRs, balance transfer fees, rewards programs, points or miles earned per dollar, redemption values, travel perks and numerous other factors consumers commonly look at in a credit card. We highlight the cards with standout performance in these areas for our readers.
A credit card is a revolving line of credit, allowing you to borrow money to make purchases without having to put up collateral (upfront cash). Based on your perceived ability to make repayments, credit card companies assign a credit limit, which is the maximum amount of money you can borrow.
Unlike a debit card that uses your own money to make purchases, when you use a credit card, it is the lender who pays the retailer. At the end of your billing cycle, you receive a statement and that tells you the total amount you owe the lender for that period. Credit card companies make money on fees and the interest that accrues on your revolving credit.
Interest is a fee you pay to a lender for the amount of money, or credit, you borrow. The amount of interest you pay for borrowing is set at a percentage rate determined by your credit score. Without interest, lenders wouldn’t have much incentive to lend money.
Each month, you’ll receive a statement that will detail the transactions you’ve made, the total outstanding balance you have and any interest you’re accruing.
Here are a few different types of interest:
When you pay your entire balance in full, you can usually take advantage of a grace period in the next billing cycle. If you don’t pay your entire balance in full, the remainder will start to collect interest.
While you’re only required to pay a minimum repayment each month — 2% to 3% of your total balance — it’s best to pay as much as you can.
There are many types of credit cards designed for different types of users. Credit card companies target these specific individuals by offering tailored rewards, sign-up bonuses and travel perks to entice users to spend with them.
These are the eight categories credit cards are broken down into:
0% APR or low interest credit cards come with little or no interest on purchases during promotional periods that can run as long as 21 months. That equals big savings on interest if you’re the type of person who carries a balance from month to month.
Credit cards made for users with bad credit are typically either secured credit cards or prepaid credit cards. Both types of cards require cash upfront in order to load funds for spending. People with bad credit scores usually find it difficult being approved for other cards, so they have to rely on “bad credit” credit cards.
These credit cards offer people the opportunity to transfer a balance from a credit card with a high interest rate to one with a lower interest rate. Balance transfer credit cards can help users save a good amount of money that they would’ve paid on interest.
Designed for business use, a business credit card comes with perks and rewards that are specific to small businesses needs. Using a business credit card is an effective way to keep your personal and business expenses separate.
A cash back credit card rewards your spending with cold hard cash. The amount of cash back you earn is set a percentage rate. There will either be a cap on on how much you can earn or be unlimited. Cash back can be redeemed as a statement credit towards your balance, in a credit card shopping portal, as a gift card or in a deposit to your bank account.
These cards let you earn points for your purchases. Sometimes all of your spending is rewarded, other times you’ll have to spend in a bonus category to earn rewards. Because there are different reward structures, you have flexibility with how you redeem your points.
A secured credit card works just like a regular credit card, however, you’re required to put down a security deposit that acts as your line of credit. Typically these cards are used by people trying to build their credit or repair their credit.
Made for the traveler, a travel credit card lets you earn miles on your purchases, and they often come with greater rewards for your travel related purchases. You can cover your airfare, book hotels and much more with your miles. You’ll find that some of these cards are branded by hotels or airlines and allow you to maximize your rewards when spending directly with them.
Consolidate an existing debt at a lower APR with a balance transfer card.
Rewards can be a worthwhile way to get something back from your spending. Whether you’re a frequent flyer, loyal customer or big grocery spender, you can find a rewards credit card to suit almost any lifestyle.
If you’re looking for a card that can lead to significant savings on interest, a 0% APR credit card could be the right choice for you.
A low interest credit card allows cardholders to repay their debts at a lower APR than your standard card. Depending on the card, the length of the low interest period may vary from an introductory period to the life of the card.
A no annual fee card doesn’t charge a yearly fee. Some cards have this as an ongoing deal; others will waive the standard fee for the first year of using the card.
That really depends on what you’re planning to use your credit card for. There’s no such thing as a single best credit card because each person’s situation can be completely different.
Here a few examples of common situations that can help guide you towards the right credit card.
How you plan to use your credit card…
Type of credit card to apply for…
|Refinance or consolidate other credit card debt||A credit card that has 0% APR on balance transfers.|
|Get rewards on all purchases||A credit card that has cash back or rewards for every purchase.|
|Build your credit||A credit card that reports activity to all three bureaus and offers free credit scores.|
|For business expenses||A business card the has rewards in line with your business spending.|
|Traveling in foreign countries||A travel card with no foreign transaction fee and travel based incentives.|
|Carry a balance from month to month||A credit card with 0% or low interest.|
|Reduce chances of being denied||A secured credit card.|
|Not often||A card with no annual fee with terms that are suitable for you.|
While applying for a credit card doesn’t have to be complicated, it can come with certain risks.
Getting a new credit card is exciting for sure, however, there are some important things you should know before you swipe your plastic.
Here’s a rule of thumb: The higher your credit score, the more likely you’ll be approved for a credit card.
The three major credit bureaus — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion — use proprietary factors and complex equations to determine your credit score. Lenders often use your score to decide whether to approve you for new credit cards.
When applying for a strong unsecured card, you’ll typically want a good to excellent credit score of 670 to 850. If your score falls below that range, you may be limited mostly to secured cards and cards for customers with bad credit — also known as subprime cards.
Here are a few important factors that affect your credit score and, in turn, your approval odds:
Getting a credit card can help you build a healthy credit profile which will come in handy down the line when you need to take out a personal loan, home loan or some other large form of finance.
Make sure the credit card you apply for is suitable to your needs and that you understand the terms and conditions to ensure you’ll borrow responsibly.
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