How to Compare Credit Cards ?

Aquib Nawab

Personal Finance

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1. Recommended Credit Score

Check the issuer's recommended credit score. Higher scores open more options. Monitor your score through NerdWallet, card issuers, or credit bureaus. Credit scores range from 300 to 850, with categories like excellent, good, fair, or poor.

Credits: Canva 

Credits: Canva 

2. Card Types

When comparing credit cards, decide on the card type that suits your needs. Consider rewards, interest savings, or credit-building. Choose a card that aligns with your specific goals, and compare within the same category for the best fit.

3. Annual Fee

Annual fees are key in comparing credit cards. They impact rewards value. Cards with fees often offer superior rewards, making the fee worthwhile. Consider if benefits outweigh the cost. No-fee options exist but may have fewer rewards.

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Credits: Canva

4. Bonus Offer

Credit card bonus offers reward spending within the initial months, often with cash, points, or miles. Compare bonus value and achievable spending. While bonuses matter, some cards without them can still provide long-term rewards.

5. Rewards Rate

Base rewards rate (typically 1.5% to 2%), bonus categories (higher rewards in specific places), and bonus rewards rate (e.g., 2X or 3X). Assess categories and rates together for the best fit. Note duration and spending limits for bonus rates.

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Credits: Canva

6. Intro APR

Many cards start at 0% interest initially, saving you money. When comparing, consider its duration of 0% APR, what it covers (purchases, transfers), balance transfer policy, and fees. Not all cards offer intro APRs.

7. Ongoing APR

Ongoing APR matters if you carry debt month-to-month. It's the regular rate(e.g., 14.99% to 22.99%), lower is better. Some cards offer variable rates tied to prime rates. Watch for penalty APRs and consider charge cards.

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Credits: Canva

8. Additional Features

In our card comparison, you can find more features to consider, such as foreign transaction fees, travel protection, minimum redemption, merchant acceptance, cardholder perks, ease of use, and point expiration.

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