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When it comes to buying something online, there are now more payment options than ever before. Online payment services are advertised as faster and easier to use than credit cards. However, credit cards are still a better option for most online purchases.
Credit card companies can charge a high interest rate and make substantial profits. However, this allows them to offer various perks not found on other payment methods.
If you’re not sure how to pay for your next online purchase, here are a few reasons why you should choose a credit card.
1. Advanced Payment Protection
Online payment services like PayPal offer different levels of payment protection. Some offer none at all. Others require you to open a dispute and then wait for the payment service provider to investigate. Since fraud can be committed by both buyers and sellers, opening a dispute does not always result in a refund.
Credit cards offer excellent payment protection. Victims of fraud often receive a refund immediately after contacting their provider. Credit card issuers are known for siding with their customers rather than retailers. Many credit card issuers also have automated systems in place to detect fraud before you are aware of it.
2. Buyer Protection
Credit card providers often offer protection for the items you purchase. If you purchase a physical product and it is damaged shortly after purchase, some credit card issuers will offer a full refund.
Some credit cards also offer price protection. This means if you buy something and find that the price is reduced at a later date, your credit card provider will refund the difference. It’s important to note that purchase protection offers vary by provider.
3. Additional Guarantees
When you buy a physical product online, it’s sometimes possible to get an extended warranty by paying with a credit card.
Credit card guarantees usually apply to goods with manufacturer guarantees. After paying with an eligible credit card, you will receive the standard manufacturer’s guarantee and then an additional extended guarantee from the credit card provider.
Extended warranties are often available for electronics, household goods, and furniture. They are especially useful for large purchases that are expensive to repair.
4. Fraud does not affect your bank account
Debit cards are widely used online, and if you don’t have a credit card, there’s nothing wrong with that. However, if you have the option of using a credit card instead, it is highly recommended.
If your debit card number is stolen, a thief can quickly drain your bank account. If your credit card number is stolen, the only thing a thief can access is your line of credit.
Your card details can be stolen if you visit a malicious website or have a keylogger installed on your computer. Online shoppers should be careful about which websites they order from and ideally use antivirus software.
5. Grace Periods
When purchasing a monthly service online, paying by credit card offers an important benefit. While debit cards and online wallets only work if you have funds in your account, credit card payments are processed independently.
Many credit card issuers also offer a grace period of 30 days during which you don’t pay interest. This allows you to pay for your online services every month without interruptions when you switch bank accounts or something goes wrong. Provided you pay for it within 30 days, there are no fees.
Therefore, if you sign up for a service that you don’t want to be cut off from if you have problems with your bank account, it makes sense to always use a credit card.
6. Cashback Offers
The credit card industry is highly competitive and most providers offer some level of cashback. This can be a percentage on all purchases, or you may be offered higher prices for purchases from certain companies.
The cashback rate is often pretty low, but over longer periods it all adds up. With a large online purchase, cashback can also bring a noticeable discount on the purchase price.
7. Other Awards and Benefits
Credit cards are available with a wide range of different rewards programs. The most obvious example is frequent flyer miles, where every time you use your card you earn points that you can redeem when booking a flight.
However, credit cards also have programs that allow you to earn points toward other purchases. This includes restaurants, groceries and gas.
Provided you choose a card with a rewards program that offers discounts on something you buy regularly, the savings make a credit card worth using as often as possible.
8. Credit cards, used properly, build your credit score
Your credit score plays an important role in your ability to rent an apartment and sign up for many important services. Therefore, any activity that gives you an opportunity to improve your credit score is worthwhile, and credit cards are a possible example.
Whenever you use a credit card and pay it off promptly, you’re proving your ability to receive and pay off credit. Because of this, using a credit card properly is an effective way to boost your credit score.
It’s important to note that credit cards only improve credit if payment is made on time. It is very possible to use a credit card and damage your credit score. If you’re looking to use a credit card to improve your score, it’s important to learn about the process.
Credit cards are ideal for online purchases
Credit cards are often seen only as a means of obtaining quick credit. While credit is of course their main selling point, they are also the ideal payment method for online purchases. Unlike debit cards, a credit card is not linked to your bank account. This makes online use much safer as fraudulent payments will not affect your bank balance.
Credit cards offer online wallets superior payment protection, making them ideal for large purchases. They also offer cashback, bonuses and extended guarantees not found with any other payment method. Alternatively, other digital payment methods are also available to you.
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