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What Do I Need to Know Before Applying for a Credit Card?

Signing up for a credit card is something you should do only after carefully considering your options. There are dozens of credit card offers available for you to choose from, so it is important that you take a close look at the details of the offers so that you can choose the one that suits your financial needs the best. Here are some questions that are frequently asked by consumers looking for a new credit card and their answers.

If I have bad credit, are there credit card offers available for me?

There are plenty of offers out there for individuals who have had credit problems in the past and want to rebuild their credit. You should keep in mind that these offers are often not as advantageous as those aimed at people with good credit. Your credit limit will be lower, the interest rate higher, plus you may be limited to choosing a secured card which requires you to pay a deposit in order to obtain the credit card.

Which credit card offers are the best for those who travel frequently?

There are many credit cards which offer features that are interesting for those who travel frequently. The best choices typically give you reward miles that you can redeem for travel related products, such as flights and hotel stays. Credit cards that are good for international travelers will also include features such as travel medical insurance, trip cancellation, interruption, baggage loss or flight delay insurance, as well as car rental collision and loss damage waiver.

Are introductory low interest rate offers worth it?

These offers can be useful for those who plan to make a large purchase and pay it off over time, or people who have a balance on a credit card with a higher interest rate that they want to transfer. However, it should be noted that introductory low interest rate offers are only valid for a limited time period, typically six to 12 months. After the offer expires, the regular interest rate will begin to apply. If you want to save money, it is always a good idea to pay off your balance before the offer ends.

Are there any hidden fees associated with credit cards that I should watch out for?

Most credit cards will charge you additional fees in certain cases, so it is always advisable to read the terms and conditions of each credit card offer carefully before applying. For example, some cards will charge you a higher interest rate for a certain period of time if you miss a payment. Most cards will also charge fees if you take out a cash advance at an ATM or use your card in a foreign currency.

Are the annual fees charged by some cards worth it?

This depends on what comes with the card and whether you’re going to take advantage of these features. For example, if you’re a frequent traveler and get a credit card that provides you with travel insurance every time you use it to book a trip, the annual fee may be worth it. But if you just need a basic credit card for everyday purchases and aren’t interested in any type of rewards program or additional features, it will be best to choose a card that doesn’t charge an annual fee.

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