First of all, let’s talk about what is a credit card. A credit card can be a really helpful and convenient tool to have in your wallet to be easy and quickly made to the cardholder with many other advantages and benefits that we will talk about later and you will also learn how to use a credit card.
So, If you need to apply for Credit Card, you should have in mind that some requirements must be fulfilled first and as it is not 100% sure that you will be approved because the provider runs a search on your credit history to see if you are a suitable candidate.
We will talk about the credit card requirements and how to fulfill them. This way you won’t have any undesired surprises and will have the chance to correct every mistake before applying. Also, is really important to know how to activate your credit card and if you want to use the most out of your card, we will talk about the most common ways to redeem your credit card reward points.
Besides, the technology we have nowadays permits us to have everything on the palm of our hands. In your cell phone you can easily make credit card payments by app and check the credit card balance.
Of course, sometimes it can happen that you received your credit card, used it for a couple of months, but at the end changed all of your plans and now just feel you have to cancel it. No problem, we will talk about it.
Let’s jump to the steps you must take in order to increase the chances to have your request approved and then, enjoy all the credit card benefits.
- How to Apply for Credit Card
- Credit Card Benefits
- How To Check Credit Card Balance
- How To Increase Credit Card Limit
- How To Cancel Credit Card
How to Apply for Credit Card
Getting a credit card is not as simple as getting a debit card because you are basically asking the issuer, such as a bank or credit union, to take a chance on you, and to increase your chances you can take proactive steps to get closer to your goal: the approval.
Knowing this, your expectations must be realistic, applying for a credit card can be a hard task, but it’s definitely not an impossible one, so the steps you must take to apply for a credit card first are:
- Choose what type of card is more suitable for you
- Select a credit card issuer
- Check if you are pre-qualified by the issuer’s requirements
- Fill out an application
As soon as you have everything figured, selected and filled out, you will have to wait for the response of the credit card issuer, and if positive you can enjoy all of it’s benefits.
Credit Card Requirements
To fulfill the credit card requirements, the first thing you need to know is your credit score. In India it is called CIBIL Score, and it’s a three digit number ranging from 300 to 900 which signifies the creditworthiness of a person based on his credit history profile and past repayment record.
Higher the score, the more likely it is to get approved by the credit card issuer. You can find free online calculators to get an estimate CIBIL Score.
Once you know your CIBIL Score, you can go ahead and start searching for a credit card that is more suitable for your needs and can give more advantages. For example, if you are interested in saving on your daily expenses or are saving for a large purchase, you might consider a cash back credit card.
There are many types and issuers, but it’s all about looking at one that’s more suitable for what your plans and goals are.
Now, all you need to do is fill out an application and wait for the desirable yes or feared no.
How To Activate Credit Card
Each issuer has its own card activation process but they’re basically different in not so many ways. So, how to activate the credit card? The most common ones are just as simple as logging in to your online account or calling an activation line.
Credit Card Benefits
As mentioned before, having a credit card can come in handy. Many credit card issuers offer rewards and vantage packages, such as an enhanced product warranty at no cost, insurance protection, travel medical insurance, among other things.
Credit cards can also offer points and benefits of loyalty programs. Those points can be exchanged by products, services and discounts in different types of stores.
How To Redeem Credit Card Reward Points
To redeem your credit card’s reward points, you need first check it’s rules as it may vary on every issuer. The most common are:
- Paying your next purchase with a discount, based on how many points you have;
- Exchanging your points for a gift card;
- Redeem your credit card points for travel miles;
- Redeem for cash or statement credit.
How To Check Credit Card Balance
A really important thing to do is to know how to check credit card balance, particularly if you are about to make a large purchase or maybe you want to check how much you have spent on your last trip.
Thankfully, you don’t need to wait until the next credit card statement arrives to find out your credit card balance, you can easily check your balance via internet, phone, sms notification or smartphone app.
How To Get Credit Card Statement
So, you recently went shopping or did a big trip and now you’re wondering how to get a credit card statement, to know if you are still on the positive side of your economic resources.
By phone, you just need to know the issuer number that you have to dial and follow the steps that the voice on the other side of the line will tell you. Depending on the issuer, you will have to do security checks, to confirm your credit card number and your identity.
If you are more likely to check it online, go to your credit card issuer’s website, do the login to your account and there you will find your balance and current statement.
If you already have the app of your credit card issuer installed and set up on your cell phone, just open it and go to the credit section. If you still don’t have it, download it from the Apple App Store if you have an Iphone or Play Store if you have an Android phone.
You can also get notifications on your cell phone if you have previously set it up. This way, you can monitor your account activity and make sure you have control over it. Although this feature was designed mostly to prevent cases of fraud.
How To Pay Credit Card Bill
We know it’s a great advantage to have a credit card, and after you did all of the purchases and shopping, you will have to face the bills. So how to pay a credit card bill?
There are many ways to make a payment to your credit card, but the easiest and quickest one is by direct debit. When the due date arrives, the total amount you need to pay is automatically taken from your account and the payment is done. Although, this must be set up before with your credit card issuer.
Also, you can do it online by your card issuer’s website, just logging in to your account and authorizing the payment. The same can be done in the app on your cell phone.
If you prefer, you can make payments to your credit card over the phone, either by making a transfer from your current account via telephone banking, or by making a call to the phone service and making a debit card payment.
A good thing to do is to pay your bill not after the payment due date, avoiding undesirable taxes and lower your credit score. So, as you pay for it, the better. Also, you can pay the minimum amount due. You want to know what is minimum amount due in credit card? As the name suggests, it’s the minimum amount you have to pay on or before the due date to maintain your credit account. Typically the minimum amount due is calculated as 5% of the total of your balance.
Credit Card Payment By App
Another really easy and quick way to get your bills paid, is to make a credit card payment by app. As soon as you have your credit card issuer’s app downloaded, installed, and then set up (sometimes you also need to get it approved by the card issuer), you just need to open it and go to the payment section and select if you want to pay the total amount or the minimum.
How To Increase Credit Card Limit
Probably, you won’t have a huge amount of credit available as soon as you get your credit card, but after you learned all the steps to get it, we’re also gonna teach you how to increase the credit card limit.
There are many ways to do it, but if you got a credit card with a low limit and you paid all of the bills on or before the due date, you now probably have a better credit score, so you can simply apply for a new credit card with a higher limit.
Another way is to ask your card issuer’s for an increase. They will again need to pull your credit history to see if you are creditworthy. And don’t be greedy requesting an increase as it could be seen as a red flag. A good amount would be 10 to 25 percent of the total amount you already have.
How To Cancel Credit Card
Having a credit card is not an easy task and you must be careful with the way you use it. Credit cards are not the devil, but they can be very dangerous. If you have problems with compulsive spending it’s a good idea to get away from the tool that makes it so easy to get into trouble.
Even if you don’t have any problem with your credit, you may still want to close your account from time to time. Also, you may face a situation where you got your credit card robbed or lost and you need to resolve it right away.
So, how to cancel a credit card?
First, you need to pay off your balance. After that, contact your credit card company and ask for the closure of your account. The sales representative will try to change your mind but you need to be firm if you really want to cancel it. If the worst should happen and your card is lost or stolen, all credit card issuers offer a 24-hour service for customers to cancel their credit cards.