Credit card debt is still one of the biggest problems the ‘modern‘ people face nowadays. They are so easy to obtain, we get lured in by great rewards and all media outlets keep on promoting luxury, so we’re clearly easy to persuade, unless we are really determined to not overspend and have already found a great money-life balance (which, let’s face it, it’s not easy, especially when you are younger.
While I don’t live in the US, we do have credit cards here in Romania, too, and banks are doing all they can to entice us to enroll for at least one of them.
Here are my top reasons to NOT get a credit card yet
1. I fear that I’ll make some credit card mistakes that would bring me back into debt.
While I do know more about personal finance than the ‘regular Joe‘ in my country and continue learning each day, I am not perfect. While in theory I have it all planned out great, life does happen and I know it won’t be long until my credit card would mean solving some ‘emergencies‘ or just indulging in some shopping.
2. Spending cash is ‘harder’ than swiping a credit card
‘Plastic’ money is easier to spend. It’s not just my case, it happens to many other people. When I have to open my wallet and see my money go, it’s easier to curb my spending, than when I swipe the card. I have noticed this with my PayPal account.
Let’s say that in the past years I have spent money on web related stuff, money I’d have never considered paying if it was my cash. PayPal money seems to be just ‘numbers’, when it’s actually my income from my web design business, money I’ve earned by working hard.
3. If I don’t have a credit card, getting in debt is harder for me
Having the possibility to pay more money than what’s in my account will lead to me getting back into debt. If I don’t have the option, it’s hard to think I’ll move my behind to the bank and ask for a loan. This way I’m automatically ‘forced’ to live within our means and not get into debt.
4. The fees and commissions are HUGE on credit cards
Since I don’t have a credit card myself, I do rely on what my friends are telling me and also what I’ve read in the personal finance blogosphere. Let’s say that the interest rates on some credit cards are absolutely INSANE. Why would I risk having to pay all this money, when I can just avoid yet another danger?
5. I don’t rely on rewards, I save money for the things I like
Some of these credit cards come with amazing rewards, making it easier for people to enroll (so that they don’t miss out on such great stuff). We don’t need travel rewards, we save money for this. I don’t need cash-back either. OK, it would be great to have these, but, again, if I make one single mistake, I’ll be paying too much money and any rewards won’t matter anymore.
6. We don’t have credit scores here, not to mention I don’t plan on getting any loans soon
In Romania we don’t have the credit score system that works in the US (and other countries). This means that I don’t have to worry about getting a credit card just to build my credit score.
These are my 6 reasons for staying away from credit cards. Of course, this might change in the future, the only reasons why I’d get a credit card would be to use some really amazing rewards or build credit score. I’d probably be crazy careful with this though, so that I don’t end up in credit card debt.
What are the reasons you dislike having credit cards (if you already have them). Have you considered not using them at all?