Credit Cards for Retired People – Understanding Your Optionss
Credit cards for retired people can be an easy way to accumulate rewards; provide convenience; used for emergencies; or to subsidize your monthly budget.
Credit cards for retired people should be replaced with a budget and a plan to eliminate debt and live without using credit cards.
- Make a list of all of your monthly expenses, except your credit card bills.
- If your income does not cover all of your monthly expenses, except for your credit card debt, you need financial assistance.
- Here are a few solutions to help subsidize your income:
- Work part-time
- Tap outside resources to help with specific expenses: food stamps to help with your food budget, seek out your senior centers, local government and churches for assistance, Cut your lifestyle by checking your monthly telephone and cable bills, you are looking for extras you can cut and possible billing errors
Your objective is to live on the income you receive and with any excess funds, begin to pay off your credit card debt.
With all of these resources, hopefully your income is more than your expenses, omitting the need for one of the credit cards for retired people. You want to get out of the habit of using credit cards.
Credit Card Offers
Many credit cards offer rewards, such as frequent flyer points, gift certificates or cash back as an incentive to use the card. Rewards are generally tied to purchasing an item or service on the card, which many or many not include balance transfers, cash advances or other special uses.
Depending on the type of card, rewards will generally cost the company issuing the credit card and the Networks: VISA and MasterCard have increased their fees to allow issues to fund their rewards. Some issuers discourage redemption by forcing the cardholder to call customer service for rewards.
On their servicing website, redeeming awards is usually a feature that is very well hidden by the issuers. With a fractured and competitive environment, rewards points cut dramatically into the company’s bottom line, and rewards points and related incentives must be carefully managed to ensure profitability.
A few of your credit cards for retired people options are:
- Citi Simplicity Card – 0% intro APR on balance transfers and purchases for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 12.99% based on your credit worthiness.
- Citi Platinum Select MasterCard – 0% intro APR on balance transfers and purchases for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 11.99%-21.99% based on your creditworthiness. Extra Cash from Citi offers discounts on gift cards, travel, and merchandise and identity theft solutions.
- Capital One Platinum Prestige Credit Card – 0% intro APR on balance transfers and purchases; no annual fee; zero fraud liability and road assistance.
- Citi Diamond Preferred Card – 0% intro APR on balance transfers and purchases for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 11.99%-21.99% based upon your creditworthiness.
You’ll have 24/7 access to personalized concierge service providing assistance in booking hotel, flights, concert tickets and more. You’ll have special access for Citi card members to purchase presale tickets, preferred seating, VIP packages and other entertainment experiences; and there isn’t any annual fee.
Balance Transfer Credit Cards
Balance transfer credit cards for retired people offers are designed to help people consolidate their credit card debt onto one card; thus saving money on interest charges. Some of the credit card offers even feature a low introductory 0% APR interest rate on credit card Balance transfers.
A couple of your Balance Transfer Credit Card Offers:
- Discover Open Road Card – 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months, then the variable standard purchase APR of10.99%-19.99%.
2% automatically at gas stations and restaurants all year long plus up to 20% cash back bonus at popular online retailers when you shop through their website.
- Chase Freedom VISA $100 Bonus Cash Back – this offer is for people with a good to excellent credit history which means that your credit history is clear of bankruptcy and seriously delinquent accounts.
You can earn $100 bonus cash back after you make $500 in purchases in your first three months.
0% intro APR for 12 months on balance transfers and six months on purchases 5% cash back on up to $1,500 spent at gas stations and on Amazon.com during a specific period of time.
Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases and up to an additional 10% cash back when you shop online through Chase
The primary benefit of a 0% APR credit card is the introductory 0% APR interest rate. This rate is available anywhere from 3 to 12 months from when the credit card account is opened. Depending on the card offer, it will be applied to new purchases, balance transfers or both.
The Fine Line
If you are determined to have one of the credit cards for retired people, you’ll find several types of card offers.
When applying for one of the credit cards for retired people, follow these tips:
- Read the fine print – you are looking for any hidden cost
- Know when your payment is due – to avoid any late charges
- Understand the promotional offers – to make sure you will be able to take advantage of the offers
When considering one of the credit cards for retired people, make sure you understand the credit card company’s definition of grace period. A credit card grace period is the time you have to pay the balance before interest is assessed on the outstanding balance.
Grace periods may vary, but usually range from 20-50 days depending on the type of credit card and the issuing bank. Usually if a customer is late paying the balance, finance charges will be calculated and the grace period does not apply.
Finance charges incurred depend on the grace period and balance; with most credit cards there is no grace period if there is any outstanding balance from the previous billing cycle or statement.
Credit Card Scams
Credit cards for retired people postulate opportunities for scams. Whether you use your card for dire emergencies, for the rewards or to subsidize your fixed income, be aware of these scams:
- Debt Consolidation – 99.999% of the debt consolidation businesses will take your money but do not pay of your debt. You should work through your credit card debt without resorting to a for profit business.
- Credit Card Fraud – Whenever you have a credit card, you are at risk of someone stealing your actual card or just your credit card number.
Monitor the activity in on your card and report to the credit card company as soon as you catch any suspicious activities.
- If you have applied for a credit card, watch your mailbox. You don’t want someone to intercept your mail and steal your card.
Remember, a credit card is different from a charge card. A charge card requires the balance to be paid in full each month. In contrast, credit cards allow for a continuing balance of debt, subject to interest being charged. A credit card also differs from a cash card, which can be used like currency by the owner of the card.
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