Payments are made via credit card for bills for purchases made or services availed of. The issuer of the credit card lends money to the consumer or the card holder by meeting the commitment for these bills on their behalf. In turn, the card holder pays the money bank to the lender according to the terms and conditions of the lender with or without interest as agreed by both. Credit card facility allows the card holder to repay the amount in easy installments with an interest towards the loan.
A membership fee is charged either annually or monthly depending on the type of the credit card. It is a certain percentage calculated sometimes on the allowed credit limit.
The issuer of the credit card is benefited if the card holder opts the monthly membership fees as more money is collected than the annual fees.
A fee is charged when the customer makes the payment; late that is after the agreed period for payment without fees.
Most of the credit cards have a limit on the amount of purchase which means the amount allowed for credit. When the person while making purchases exceeds the limit knowingly or unknowingly, is charged with the over limit fees.
When purchase is done in foreign currency, normally three percent of the amount is charged. Only a few credit card issuers do not charge any fee for this kind of a transaction.
While signing up for a credit card, it is very much necessary to go through the fees structure and policies of the card issuer. Due to a stiff competition in the industry, a lot of credit card issuing companies offer rewards and offers to make the consumer buy their card. Credit card issuers encourage the card holder by various incentives such as gift certificates, cash back offer which is based on the purchase made, (normally one percent is given back) frequent flier points for those who pay by credit cards for their air tickets, by encouraging the usage of credit cards.
The most common offer is being low interest credit cards or zero percent credit cards. But, unfortunately it is only for a given period of six months to one year after which the card issuing company charge exorbitant amount as interest. Also there are companies, which intimate the customer on expiry of the low interest period and charge a monthly or yearly fee for doing so.
A credit card with a trailing interest is said to be an unfair cost as to many it is of hidden nature. Card holders are left to their dismay to find out that even after paying their credit in full, they need to pay the interest.
A lot of credit card issuers charge their customers a hidden tax on all transactions made through credit cards, as they need to compensate for the cost of transaction fees. The credit card issuers know that if the consumer knows the cost on transactions and other card services, it will decrease the sales. Thus surcharging and hidden costs are not made known to the consumer.
To get the best credit card deal, one needs to go through the reward schemes, offers made and fees charged very carefully to enjoy the benefit of holding a credit card to the maximum.