Platinum Credit CardsThe credit card industry has long used the names of precious metals to name their cards. One card company, Chase, even has a card named after a precious stone – sapphire. But do the names that credit card companies give to their credit cards really matter? And what can the name tell you about the value of a credit card?

In all reality, there is no official difference between a platinum card and a gold card. Credit card companies can name their credit cards however they like. Most commonly, the name refers to an individual company’s naming system. A gold card from American Express is vastly different than a gold card from Applied Bank.

When you want to compare a credit card, it isn’t the names that matter, but the terms. Look first at things like:

1. Annual fees – Do you need to pay a fee to open a new credit card account?

2. Credit limits – How much will the credit card company allow you to charge to your card?

3. Interest rates – How much will you pay in interest should you choose to carry a balance?

4. Rewards – What rewards does the credit card company offer? How can you redeem rewards, and how quickly do they accumulate in your account?

If you can answer these questions above, you’ll know much more about your credit card than you would if you simply looked at the name or color of the card. Remember, colors and their “prestige” vary from bank to bank. What might be an entry level color at one bank might be the highest level card at another.

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