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Friday, September 11, 2009

Credit Card Use Costlier



No doubt you need credit cards in lots nowadays. One for one particular use, one for some other consideration and some for general use. You go on multiplying your accounts on account of no annual fee, less interest rates, freebies and all that. From the grocery stores to the online reservations you do it on ease without having to carry cash. To say more of such benefits is cliched.

But, particularly in India, costs of card use are increasing. Cash advance facility is almost passe due to prohibitive costs, minimum fee of Rs 300/ whatever amount you withdraw plus interest from the very date. Lifetime free cards are accepted norms, but use is the basic need.

Revolving credit is also proving too costly. Now almost every bank has increased the monthly interest rate to 3.1% or above instead of customary 2.95% with special reduced rate offers. Even in high profile co-branded cards the rate is upwards of 3%. And, some special APR cards have gone to 3%+ interest without notice.

On many purchases like fuel, railway reservations and all you need to pay an extra transaction charge.

So, now you must have a sizable savings account balance to use credit cards and to settle full dues in one go so as to avoid cumulative interest charges.

Isn't this against the trends of consumerism and the market economy?
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