Presents the Comprehensive Credit Card Guide

Credit Card GuideCredit cards can be confusing, especially if you’re applying for your first card. You might be wondering: what are the different types of cards, and what exactly is a credit score? To learn more about credit cards and how to better manage your finances, we’ve compiled the following information about the types of credit cards offered at

Low Interest Credit Cards:

Low interest credit cards are credit cards that have low interest fees and are usually offered to those with excellent credit history. Interest is the amount you are charged while you have money out on “loan.” As of January 2012, the average interest rate is close to 17 percent. If you’ve never missed a payment and ensure your payments are made on time, you may be qualified for a low interest credit card. Banks, like Chase, Citi-Bank and Discover, all offer low interest credit cards for qualified customers.

Zero Percent APR:

APR stands for “annual percentage rate” and is defined as the rate of interest on loans or credit. Zero percent APR offers are usually introductory offers, and close attention should be paid to how long the zero percent APRs will last. While most last for up to one year, some cards have zero percent for much less time. Additionally, credit card issuers may penalize late payments by raising APRs as high as fifteen percent.

Cash Back:

Cash back credit cards are all the rage, but what exactly are they? The name says it all; cash back credit cards offer cash back. Sometimes, they offer cash back on specific classifications of purchases, like “entertainment” or “groceries,” and other times, on everything you charge to your card.  Fixed rate cash back credit cards are the simplest kinds and offer fixed rates of cash back on all purchases. Tiered rate cash back credit cards offer similar rates for all items with increased amounts of cash back offered on specific items. Other cash back credit cards have rotating categories, which offer five percent cash back on categories that rotate every few months.

Travel and Airline:

Credit cards, marketed as “travel and airline” rewards credit cards, reward you with miles and travel perks each time you swipe your card. Some cards, like the Chase Continental Airlines OnePass Plus Card, allow you to earn up to 40,000 miles per year! If you travel often, whether for business or pleasure, a travel and airline rewards card may be the ideal card for you.

Rewards Programs:

Credit cards with rewards programs can be categorized into cash back, travel, and airline cards. Rewards cards have no annual fee, and some even offer balance transfers and special introductory rates. In lieu of cash, some rewards cards even offer customers the option of choosing gift cards concurrent with their own personal interests and hobbies.

Business and Student Cards:

Business and student credit cards have specific groups in mind: those who own their own businesses and those who are current students. Business credit cards make it easy to separate personal expenditures from professional ones, and student credit cards usually have low credit limits to ensure those who are still learning about their finances do not make mistakes and overspend.

Pre-Paid and Secured :

These cards are ideal for those with poor credit ratings or who are new to using credit cards and wish to protect themselves from carelessly spending too much. Payments for pre-paid credit cards must be made in advance, and the financial backing for secured credit cards is taken directly from the customer’s bank account. These credit cards enable users to build up credit without negatively affecting their credit scores.

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