In some of my past posts about building credit, some readers have mentioned that credit cards are not the only way to build credit. There are other ways to build credit, for example, student loans, mortgage payments, and auto loans, but credit cards are one of the more accessible routes.
For the alternative ways to build credit, the main issue is that you're likely paying interest. On the other hand, credit cards do have an interest rate, but you're not charged interest if you pay off your bills in full each month.
The goal of this website is to get "free" travel or money with your everyday spend, so I don't recommend paying interest on your credit card, or it defeats the purpose of earning rewards.
If you're starting at a point where you don't have student loans, a car, or own house, then credit cards would be the logical way to begin your credit journey. It wouldn't make sense to take out debt that you can't utilize.
With credit cards, the barrier to entry is lower because you can start with a secured credit card to build your credit history.
One common misconception is that credit cards are a vehicle for debt. This is a myth as long as you are financially responsible and pay your bills in full each month. If you have more credit cards, this does not mean that you incur more debt.
By having more cards, you're demonstrating that you are financially responsible and can handle multiple lines of credit. One typical scenario a lot of subscribers run into is that they don't have enough diverse credit to get a good interest rate on an auto loan or mortgage. I recommend having at least 3 credit cards to diversify your credit.
If you're looking for guidance on which cards to get next, feel free to fill out a free card consultation form.
The ideal time to start building your credit is when you’re a student because it will set you up for success in the long-term. Here’s an analysis of the best student credit cards on the market.
The Crystal Visa Infinite credit card by City National Bank is one of the few Visa Infinite cards on the market with access to the Visa Infinite Discount Travel Portal. Although the card has been on the market for a while, I haven’t reviewed it yet because it has a unique underwriting process, and there is not always a signup bonus available.
The cards in my wallet rotate each month depending on if there’s a new 5% cash back category or if I’m trying to hit the minimum spend on a new credit card. For the month of September, I have the Cash Card, Amex SPG Luxury card, Chase Sapphire Reserve, and my Costco card.
Best Western is a global budget-friendly hotel chain that has a status match program. If you have status at any other hotel loyalty program, you can status match to Best Western Elite.
The Discover It and Chase Freedom are cards that feature rotating 5X cash back categories each quarter you activate. Earn 5X on up to $1,500 in combined category purchases for each card.
Chase 5/24 has an unofficial rule that states that if you have opened 5 or more credit cards from ANY credit issuer in the past 24 months, you will not be eligible for select Chase cards. In the past year, Chase has added a handful of new cards, and application rules have also changed.
Increased bonuses of the month highlight keeper cards that have a higher than usual intro offer. This month features the IHG Rewards Club Premier, Amex Hilton Aspire, and the Amex SPG Business cards.
Priority Pass Select is a benefit that’s offered with select premium travel credit cards. Be aware that the benefit level may vary based on the credit cards you have.
If you're someone who flies JetBlue and is invested in their credit card ecosystem, there is a 2-card set up available to optimize for points. The Barclays JetBlue Plus + JetBlue Business 2-card setup is interesting because the 10% rebates stack, meaning you get a 20% rebate if you hold both cards.
After much anticipation, The Hyatt Regency Bali is currently taking reservations for 2019! It's a Category 1 hotel, so it will only cost 5,000 Hyatt points per night