credit cards

Match card and lifestyle: Introduction

Credit cards are one of the largest sources of debt in this country. Finding the best one to fit your needs will help you manage yours.

By learning how to shop for a credit card and what are the benefits -- and drawbacks -- of different ones, you'll be able to find the best deal. In this chapter, you can use our credit card search engine to begin your search. Then consider your lifestyle and your paying habits to figure out what type of card you need. Finally, we explain all of the fine print, as well as scams to beware of, so you can be sure you know what you're getting into.

What you can expect to learn from this chapter:
Finding the card for your lifestyle
 There are many different cards to choose from, and using our credit card search engine can help you find the best one for you.
Key questions to ask before signing up
 This list will guide you to choose the right card in the beginning -- so there are no surprises in the end.
How do you plan to pay?
 The balance on your card is calculated in different ways, and how you plan to pay that balance will determine what type of card you should get.
Read the fine print
 APR, payment allocation, grace period -- these are some of the very important things you will find buried in the fine print.
Cards on the Web
 You may be able to find a good deal on a card on the Internet, but you still need to answer specific questions. These are the ones to ask.
Beware the scams

We outline three of the most common ways people can get duped.

Chapter 1 quiz
 Do you know how to shop for a credit card? Test yourself.

-- Updated: Jan. 30, 2004


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