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Did anybody here retire with no credit cards? How is it working out so far for you?
Old 08-11-2019, 01:17 PM   #1
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Did anybody here retire with no credit cards? How is it working out so far for you?

I am thinking about getting rid of my credit cards.
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Old 08-11-2019, 01:32 PM   #2
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I would never give up my credit card. It is just so convenient not to carry a load of cash. Also, we buy many things on line, and unless you use PayPal linked to you a bank account you cannot order anything.
I do pay off the balance every month, however.
YMMV
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Old 08-11-2019, 01:39 PM   #3
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I would never give up my credit card. It is just so convenient not to carry a load of cash. Also, we buy many things on line, and unless you use PayPal linked to you a bank account you cannot order anything.
I do pay off the balance every month, however.
YMMV
Other things that would more difficult:

- Renting a car. Almost impossible with out a CC

- Buying an airline ticket. Do they even take Paypal?

- Almost anything else you may want to reserve or pay for on line, like a hotel room. No card, no reservation.

DMIL got rid of her cards 18 years ago when DFIL passed. She has made out OK, but every once in a while we get a call to ask for a favor, where a CC is needed. We have no problem helping, but it means even for an 88 year old, sometimes you need a CC.
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Old 08-11-2019, 01:48 PM   #4
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I use CC to my advantage, I get about $600 cash back every year and don't even pay 1 cent interest.
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Old 08-11-2019, 01:56 PM   #5
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I use CC to my advantage, I get about $600 cash back every year and don't even pay 1 cent interest.
There is no reason to give up credit cards, unless you want to go to a cash basis. If I was working for cash, I may do that.
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Old 08-11-2019, 01:58 PM   #6
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The world is generally going the other way.
IIRC, you had some prior post against CC's, but can't remember why.
After some time for setup, one can bring in some reward bucks for minimal ongoing effort.
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:07 PM   #7
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I am thinking about getting rid of my credit cards.
I did.

Immediately after my 1998 divorce, which was a financial disaster, I cut up all my credit cards and swore to never have another. I retired in 2009, still with no credit cards. Many of the old truisms about why you need a credit card have not been true for decades, or at least since back in the 1990's when banks started offering free debit Mastercards with their checking accounts to use instead of an old fashioned ATM card. I had absolutely zero problems with using my bank's debit Mastercard instead of a credit card. Check to see if your bank offers a debit Mastercard, or debit Visa. These are not credit cards but have many of the same advantages.

Anyway, as years went by, people on the ER Forum persuaded me that credit cards aren't all bad. In 2014 I saw a post by FIREd where he was talking about his Amazon Visa credit card and I thought, "hey, with all my Amazon shopping, those rewards would be great to have!"

So during my 17th year of having no credit cards, in 2014 I got an Amazon Visa card. I really like it. I pay it off every month automatically. That is still my only credit card.
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:13 PM   #8
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Like Souschef and others have noted life would be difficult at best without credit cards. We buy a lot of stuff online, even from local stores like Home Depot, Lowes, Target, etc., that will ship stuff for free or minimal shipping costs if you're not in a hurry. With some stores if it is not in stock they will ship it to you sooner than they'll get it to a local store.

Like most on this forum we pay the credit cards off in full every month. Used that way I don't see anything wrong with it. The occasional reward cash back, travel points and such is just icing on the cake of a free loan.
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:13 PM   #9
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If you had no credit card you'd have to give up traveling any great distance. No hotels (maybe cash only dives), no rental cars, airlines = difficult, few options in a real emergency, would have to carry A LOT of cash, etc. We use a credit card and get air miles. Upcoming roundtrip from our home to San Diego first class for 2 = $22.40. We didn't spend a penny more than we would have because we pay off the card balance each month. That trip alone is worth approx. $3000.00. We make the card work for us.
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:15 PM   #10
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No. I use apps to be sure and pay balances each week. No chance of a late fee, plus I get $ back for Discover and USAA cards.
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:23 PM   #11
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While I don't see a good reason NOT to use credit cards and several excellent reasons to use them (cash back being one), life is not TOTALLY lost without a credit card. Most internet purchases can be done just fine with a debit card (or, as someone else said, a PayPal account linked to a bank account). I'd think you can also buy an airline ticket with a debit card (although I have not actually tried that). Car rentals may be more difficult, but even that may be possible. In any event, can you survive without a cc? Sure, millions of people do. But why would you want to?
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:27 PM   #12
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Modest hacking of credit cards has evolved into my other part time job in retirement (travel agent is the other one). Like others, we get a ton of free travel, upgrades, elite status and other perks, all at no cost.

I limit cards to 3-4 at a time. Only one is permanent (CSR). For the others, I cancel them once the big perks have been consumed, then look for the next good offer. We never carry a balance and current credit scores hover around 815.

One other thing that has been helpful over the years. When I have a dispute with a merchant over a major purchase, they don't have my money; and I have had CC companies ensure favorable resolution of disputes. I like that.
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:32 PM   #13
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Since I consider debit cards to be far more of a security risk than a CC, I never use them (except at an ATM) and I really did not consider them in my response.

Debit cards can handle many of the CC transactions on the internet. Not sure how they are handled renting a car. But I feel far safer using a CC than Debit card
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:32 PM   #14
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We never carry a balance and current credit scores hover around 815.
WOW, the last time I checked my credit score at the car dealer it was like 625.
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:35 PM   #15
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I'm pretty cautious about using debit cards because of the exposure to bank accounts that can have sizable deposits. We keep a checking account with a relatively small balance for use with unfamiliar ATMs.

I've been using a PayPal account linked to my Discover card quite a bit lately, particularly since Discover is offering a 5% rebate on PayPal purchases.
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:39 PM   #16
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My bank told me to stop using my debit card for buying things on the internet as they have had to close the card a few times for being compromised. If you rent a car with a debit card they put a huge hold on your account. I would never be without a CC.
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Old 08-11-2019, 02:43 PM   #17
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I am thinking about getting rid of my credit cards.
Why?

That could have a lot to do with the answers you get.

-ERD50
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Old 08-11-2019, 03:05 PM   #18
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Why?



That could have a lot to do with the answers you get.



-ERD50


+1000

As with most things, the answer will depend on why you wish to forego credit cards. The top reason I can think of is inablity to control spending and Im sure that does not apply to OP. The next reason I might consider is privacy and security. I definitely think debit cards can substitute for credit accounts but not worth the security risk. At the end of the day the financial system imposes a surcharge on cash. Id rather take a 2-5% discount and privacy is just a quaint notion unless youre going off grid.
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Old 08-11-2019, 06:18 PM   #19
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Modest hacking of credit cards has evolved into my other part time job in retirement (travel agent is the other one). Like others, we get a ton of free travel, upgrades, elite status and other perks, all at no cost.

I limit cards to 3-4 at a time. Only one is permanent (CSR). For the others, I cancel them once the big perks have been consumed, then look for the next good offer. We never carry a balance and current credit scores hover around 815.

One other thing that has been helpful over the years. When I have a dispute with a merchant over a major purchase, they don't have my money; and I have had CC companies ensure favorable resolution of disputes. I like that.
You should give a tutorial as to how to do this!
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Old 08-11-2019, 06:19 PM   #20
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I am thinking about getting rid of my credit cards.
Why? You don't like free money? Or free extended warranty coverage?
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