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Old 12-16-2007, 04:50 AM   #21
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Good article on the pros and cons of credit cards and debit cards in the Jan 2008 Readers Digest. Virtually an echo of this thread. Several horror stories about using Debit Cards. Some of the advice NEVER let your Debit Card out of yours hands/sight, ALWAYS use your PIN with them, NEVER use them to make advance reservations, NEVER use them to rent cars; most of the "NEVERS" involve the HOLDS that merchants can put on Debit Cards which can cause you to overdraw your Checking Account when regular checks hit the account incuring the Bank Penalties. They must be good for Banks as the article mentioned some large (in the billion or billions) that banks make on these overdraw penalties each year.
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Old 12-16-2007, 04:58 AM   #22
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Credit cards are useful... But I am not sure they are worth the 3% fee (or whatever the merchant pays visa) we pay on every purchase we make... even if you pay cash.

Most companies put the expense in the general cost of the merchandise or service and pass it on to all of us.

Personally, I believe the credit card industry has caused inflated prices. I think it is time for a regulation that forces the charge to be stripped off if it is not a credit card purchase.

The only benefit of a credit card is consumer protection for fraud. Debit cards are not quite the same... but close.



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Old 12-16-2007, 09:40 AM   #23
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Most medium sized or larger merchants pay closer to 1% than 3%.
Your point is still valid of course, as that cost gets passed on to the consumer.
However, until a merchant can make more money by NOT accepting credit cards than by allowing them, everyone will continue to pay.
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Old 12-16-2007, 10:06 AM   #24
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I thought we were talking about the credit cards issued by companies like VISA, MASTER CARD, etc., and debit cards issued solely by Banks. IMHO and from past experience I dislike the Store Credit Cards, they tie one to a specific store (or in the case like Sears to the stores in their "chain"). Too complicated for me to keep up with them. Give me a VISA or a Master Card (but not both).
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Old 12-16-2007, 01:27 PM   #25
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I agree with the majority of posters. Nothing is completely safe. I could not do my job without having a credit card. Credit cards are relatively safe, but always, always check your bills. I have had my credit card scammed twice in 20 years and in both cases it was resolved to my satisfaction with minor hassle and no financial loss. I use one card only and pay it off in full every time. The time lag between the purchase and the bill payment date ensures that I have the use of the money for up to 6 weeks without interest. My choice of credit card gives me a steady flow of frequent flyer points which I use for personal long distance travel.
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Old 12-16-2007, 02:07 PM   #26
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I'll pile on. Credit cards are definitely worth the trouble. In addition to all the other stuff mentioned, there's some value to having an immediate line of credit available 24/7 for emergencies. If your car breaks down while you are out of town and you need to get it towed and the transmission repaired on a Saturday, a credit card is a great thing to have.

Because I travel frequently and charge a lot for business expenses, I've found it useful to have all the major credit card brands. There are frequently promotions at the hotels I use for using one particular type of card, while other cards give extra cash back at various times for various types of purchases. I earn a few extra nights in hotels every year this way, and my cash back benefits amount to several hundred bucks for doing almost nothing.

BTW, I'm not a big fan of the cards that give airline miles anymore. The number of seats actually available for using these miles has shrunk so you often have to buy the tickets a year in advance. Plus, the number of miles needed for this travel is increasing all the time, effectively reducing the value of the miles. I'd go for a card that gives you something you can use any time: cash.
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Old 12-16-2007, 04:08 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R Wood View Post
I thought we were talking about the credit cards issued by companies like VISA, MASTER CARD, etc., and debit cards issued solely by Banks.
I am not sure which post you were addressing, just in case it was mine...
I was discussing Visa in particular, and the rate the merchants pay VISA to process the charges. My apologies if I wasn't clear.

I agree completely with you, I hate those 'store' cards
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