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6 Smart Ways To Use A Credit Card

If you’re going to obtain a credit card, then you must know how to use it smartly, otherwise, you could end up getting yourself in debt and causing unnecessary stress.

Smart Ways To Use A Credit Card

In this article, we are going to look at the different types of credit cards and how to use them smartly.

How To Choose The Right Credit Card

Before you can begin smartly using your new credit card, you’re first going to need to obtain one.

Let’s take a look at the most popular credit cards…

Purchase Credit Cards

A purchase credit card allows you to spend money on shopping purchases and pay back 0% interest, as long as you keep up with your monthly payments.

For example, if you got a purchase credit card with a £1000 limit, you could essentially spend the whole £1000, and as long as you pay it back by the due date, you won’t pay any interest.

Purchase Credit Card

Reward Cards

Reward cards have become increasingly popular over recent years, which isn’t surprising considering they allow you to earn ‘points’ that can be exchanged for hotel rooms, shopping, and even flights.

Reward Card

Credit Builder Cards

If you’ve got a bad credit score, there is still the possibility you will be accepted for a credit builder card. Credit builder cards tend to have a higher API as they are normally given to people with poor credit.


If you make sure to pay off the required balance each month, you can begin building your credit score, until you can be accepted for credit cards with a lower rate.

6 Smart Ways To Use A Credit Card

Now you understand which card is best for your needs, it’s time to talk about how to use them efficiently and smartly.

Below are 6 smart ways to can use a credit card to ensure you don’t get yourself into a difficult situation you can’t get out of.

1. Use The Interest-Free Period Wisely

When you spend money on your credit card and pay the balance in full by the due date, you won’t be charged any interest.

If you make sure to pay your balance in full by the end of each month, you’re essentially borrowing free money and paying it back at 0% interest. If however, you don’t pay your balance in full, then you’ll be subject to interest.

Interest-Free Sign

2. Set The Right Credit Card Limit

When you get a new credit card, it’s going to have a certain credit limit. A credit limit is the amount of money you are entitled to borrow.

We recommend sticking with an amount you can pay back in full, otherwise, you could end up getting in too much debt, and not be able to get out of it.

It is also worth mentioning that you can always decrease your credit limit, as long as the amount you want to decrease it by has been paid off in full.

Limit Sign

3. Pay More Than The Minimum

At the end of the month, you’ll have the option to either pay your minimum balance, full balance, or a boosted payment. We advise paying either your full balance or a boosted payment as it will increase your credit score, allowing you to get better credit.

4. Automate Your Payments

Taking into account how busy everybody is nowadays, it can be easy to forget about your monthly payment, especially if your credit card is new.

Luckily, a lot of credit cards allow you to set up a monthly direct debit payment, making sure you’re never behind when it’s time to pay.

If you do miss a payment, you can sometimes be charged a late payment fee, so it’s important to stay on top of things.

5. Make The Most Of Balance Transfers

Some cards come with the added option of a balance transfer. A balance transfer is when you move all your existing debt from one credit card company to another.

The benefit of this is that the new company will allow you to pay 0% interest for an agreed length of time.

This is great for people who are struggling to pay their credit cards off and looking to switch over to a provider with a 0% interest rate.

6. Let Your Credit Card Protect You

Under section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act, it is required that your credit card provider holds responsibility for any purchases between £100 – £30,000.

This means that if a transaction was to go wrong, it’s down to the credit card provider to refund you the money.


Getting a credit card is a great way to borrow money and pay it back over a certain amount of time. If you follow the steps outlined in this article, you shouldn’t have any problems paying back what you owe.

HSBC Infographic - Smart Ways to use a Credit Card

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