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If I were given a penny every time I am asked “so what’s the best credit card to sign up for?” I’d be a rich man!
Here’s the truth, everyone has different spending habits and different goals when it comes to credit cards.
Would it make sense for me to recommend a credit card that has a welcome bonus of 100,000 points (<–A LOT of points) after spending $25,000 (<–A LOT of spending) if there is no way you’ll possibly spend that amount of money in the first 3 months? No, it wouldn’t.
Would it make sense to recommend a Southwest Airlines credit card with the potential of earning the super-lucrative southwest companion pass if you’ve never flown and don’t plan on flying Southwest? No, it wouldn’t.
But here’s what I do know…human beings are creatures of habit. In fact, research has shown that nearly 40% of U.S. credit cardholders have never changed their primary credit card or go at least a decade without doing so.
If you looked around after reading that last sentence, don’t feel guilty. Nearly half of the people sitting around you are in the same boat.
THE MORE YOU KNOW
A recent study found that credit card sign-up bonuses have nearly tripled in the last 10 years. It’s not uncommon to see a 50,000+ point sign-up bonuses. And that’s enough for a free airline ticket.
Given that we just started the new year, it’s the perfect time to consider refreshing the credit cards in your wallet. Don’t be in that 40%!
Here are three reasons it’s a good idea to refresh your cards now:
1. You Could Go On A Free Dream Vacation
Let’s keep it 100…EVERYONE wants to go on a dream vacation (if you haven’t, today is a perfect day to begin)! It could be as close as your home state or as far as the other side of the world. Regardless, it could be done…with lounge access, free food, lie flat seats and amazing luxury hotels. There are unlimited options when it comes to redeeming your points for award vacations. Signing up for the right credit card can guarantee this happens sooner than later.
2. You Could Earn A LOT More In Credit Card Perks
As I mentioned previously, 40% of consumers have not changed their primary card in more than a decade. So, if you haven’t gotten a new card in a while, you’re definitely missing out on significant bonuses and rewards. The incentives that are being offered on new credit cards have gotten uber competitive in recent years as issuers are looking to garner consumers’ business.
For example, many travel credit cards, not only offer miles and points for travel purchases, they’ve added additional perks. For example, the Chase Ink Preferred offers reimbursement for a new phone if you break or lose your mobile phone. Tired of paying Delta to take a bag with you? Apply for the American Express Delta Gold Card and never paying for bags again. Ever wanted to reset and relax before a long flight? The American Express Platinum Card gives you access to Centurion Lounges and Priority Pass Lounges. Ever wanted to breeze though customs after a long international flight and not stand in line with the other 500 people on your plane…yup, the American Express Platinum Card reimburses you for the Global Entry and TSA fee too.
3. You Could Improve Your Credit Scores with a New Credit Card
Are you worried that your credit score will go down because the credit card application generated a hard inquiry on your credit report? That’s a myth (I wrote about it HERE). Take it from someone that currently has a few credit cards in his wallet.
Typically, a hard inquiry will decrease your score by a few points for a short amount of time. However, your score will rebound pretty quickly and should remain intact – if not increase significantly – if you haven’t applied for multiple new lines of credit at once.
Unsure which card is right for you? I recommend exploring American Express [READ MORE], Chase, Capital One [Read More], and Marriott [READ MORE]. They all offer some great cards. I would recommend browsing the Business cards also as they often have nice perks. If you don’t know if you are eligible for a business card, READ THIS.
If you’re trying to decide if one card is better than another, feel free to drop a comment below. I’m always available to help.
What card(s) are you considering? And why?