I was reading an article recently that was talking about how great credit cards are, and how you can’t live life without them. It went on to explain how you need credit cards to rent a motel room, purchase goods or services online, pay for emergencies, etc. Although you can use a credit card for all of those things, at the end of the day do you really need a credit card? The answer may shock you. NO! Can you imagine living life without a credit card? It is possible. Let’s talk about how.
When it comes to reserving a motel room, renting a car or shopping online you can use your debit card for those transactions. I have had people tell me over the years that this is not true. The funny thing is, I have done all of those things and have never been declined. What I have found is that if you tell them you are going to pay with a debit card, some companies will tell you that they will not accept them (when in fact they will). All debit cards are backed by either Visa or Mastercard. Your debit card has two functions. One function is used like an ATM card whereas the other function is like a credit card. Like a credit card, a debit card has a sixteen digit account number, expiration date and the three or four digit number on the back of the card. Those are the three things you need when doing any of these transactions. This keeps you from going into more debt while having the convenience of a credit card (as long as you have the money in your account).
What about when unexpected things come up like car repairs? This is exactly why we teach to get $1,000 saved up as a starter emergency fund really really quickly. That way when emergencies come up, you can step up and pay cash for them.
At the end of the day it is not worth having ANY credit cards. There are other reasons people say you need a credit card (i.e. build your credit score). This also is false, and would take another newsletter in and of itself to explain.
I would make a date with your credit cards and a good pair of scissors. If you don’t believe me, ask yourself how much of a blessing have credit cards really been in your life? Most of my clients tell me they feel such an emotional freedom when they cut up their credit cards. What is holding you back? Cut up your credit cards today!