What do the best credit cards look like?
There has been so much change with credit cards lately, from the government restricting what the industry can do to new fees and interest rates rising, that it's a question everyone seems to be asking: What are the best credit cards? Or maybe the question should be -- are there any good credit cards left?
Yes. Despite what it may seem like, credit cards do want your business. Here are some signs that you've found one of the good ones.
No annual feeThis is getting to be rare among even good cards, but at least as of the time of this writing, Blue from American Express still has no annual fee, nor does Chase Freedom Visa or Chase Freedom MasterCard. You can find out if that's still the case at Bankrate's best credit card rate comparison site.
You're getting something backJust make sure that the rewards program is on par with what the best are offering. The best credit cards are offering 5 percent cash back rebates or points -- 3 points per dollar is among the best -- to go toward airline, hotel and travel rewards.
Zero percent interest on a balance transferA great credit card will have no interest on balance transfers for 12 months to (this is quite rare) 18 months.
A low interest rate in generalThe better credit cards will offer an introductory zero percent APR on purchases for at least six months. After that, the best cards right now are likely going to be close to a 8.99 percent to 9.99 percent APR.
Keep in mind that what's best for someone else may not be what's best for you. Some credit cards may seem like a good deal, until it comes to the interest rates for that cash advance, which may be important to you. Others are going to have solid terms if you're the type to pay off your balance every month, but not if you carry a balance. So think about how you manage your money -- and then look for the best credit card that fits your lifestyle.
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