If you’re like most people, you already have more than one credit card in your wallet. The average American has between three and four credit cards. Or maybe you only have one, and feel like there’s no reason to have another. But in fact, there are some compelling reasons to consider applying for another credit card, no matter how many—or how few—you already have.
Here are three reasons you need a new credit card (and a few suggestions for which ones to look at):
1- You’re carrying a balance on your credit card. If you’ve been rolling a balance over from month to month, unable to pay it off in full, you need to look for a credit card with a terrific balance transfer offer. Here’s why: every month, you’re accruing interest on the balance that carries over from the previous month. If you’ve got a high annual percentage rate (APR) on that card, you’re paying more over the long run than you need to. The lower the APR, the better—but why not pay no interest at all? With a balance transfer credit card, you can do that. Check out balance transfer credit cards with no balance transfer fee, or a low balance transfer fee, for maximum savings.
2- You’ve got a major purchase in your future. Are you renovating your kitchen? Planning a family vacation? Or maybe the holiday season is approaching, and you’re nervous about having enough cash to cover all the expenses that you know will come up. Apply for a credit card with a 0% APR introductory offer, and you can make those big purchases—a new refrigerator, a trip to the Magic Kingdom, holiday gifts for all your loved ones—without worrying about going deep into debt. You’ll be able to pay off those purchases over a few months, without paying a dime in interest. Many balance transfer credit cards also offer a period of no-interest purchases, often up to a year.
3- You’d like to earn some great rewards. Whether it’s airline frequent flyer miles, cash back, gift cards, hotel points, or general-purpose reward points, you can find a credit card (or two, or three) with a fantastic sign-on bonus that will give you exactly the rewards you want most. Just do a search for credit cards offering sign-on bonuses, and choose the one that has an offer you’re interested in. Then take a look at what you have to do to get the bonus. Usually, it’s spending a certain amount of money within the first three months you have the card. Co-branded airline credit cards often give sign-on bonuses worth free round-trip tickets to anywhere you’d like to go. Keep in mind that in general, the more you spend, the more you’ll get. If you’d be spending that money anyway, why not spend it with your credit card and pay it back right away, so you get the bonus points, miles, or cash back? It’s a win-win deal.