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Transcript: Smart uses for credit cards

Anchor Intro: When someone asks you paper or plastic, plastic may be the way to go! Nope, we're not talking about what kind of bags you want for your groceries. We're talking about when to use credit cards instead of cash. Bankrate.com has some tips on the best times to pay with plastic.

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Voice over 1: Credit cards can really get you into trouble. But they can also be a huge help. You just need to know when to pull that puppy out.

Voice over 2: For example, there's protection in plastic when you make big purchases, like a TV.

Voice over 3: Because if it's damaged or defective, you can withhold payment while you and your credit card company work with the vendor to resolve the issue.

Voice over 4: ...which is why a credit card is virtually the only way you should ever shop online.

Voice over 5: Another thing some credit cards offer that no debit card does is extended warranties. So if you've got a card that offers it, take advantage, especially on expensive stuff.

Voice over 6: Some credit card statements also automatically categorize your purchases; that can help with budgeting.

SOT: "When it's categorized, it's a frightening thing when they see -- see $5K in restaurants, over the course of the last year!"

Voice over 7: And maybe the smartest use of credit cards is to help build a good credit rating.

Voice over 8: ...because a good credit score can get you lower rates when you borrow. Help you get a better mortgage, and maybe a better deal on auto, even life insurance.

Standup: So when you boil it down, credit cards are like lots of things in life. Useful when used according to common sense, dangerous when they're not. What's in your wallet? For Bankrate.com, I'm Kristin Arnold.

Bankrate.com's corrections policy
-- Posted: Oct. 31, 2008
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