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Fact No. 7: Branch bill pay is smart

8 little-known facts about your credit card
Branch bill pay is smart

Try kicking it old school and paying your credit card bill at the bank branch. The biggest benefit? Your payment will be credited the same day, says John Ulzheimer, president of consumer education at SmartCredit.com.

In a similar fashion, you can pay the bill for your retailer credit cards in the store itself.

Ulzheimer calls this one of the "lesser known" provisions of the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act, or CARD Act, because "it's not as sexy as some of the other ones."

Showing up in person may be better than paying over the Internet because online payments are not immediate.

"They're just more convenient, and they save you the cost of a stamp," says Ulzheimer.

Even if you pay on the card issuer's website, most payments won't be applied for another two to three days, Ulzheimer says. It could take longer, a week or more, if you use your own bank's website and your bank isn't your credit card issuer.

It's also not mistake-proof, Ulzheimer notes.

"Just because you made your payment online doesn't mean the payment was actually made," he says. "You'd better double-check."

 

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