The Ultimate Guide to Credit Cards
Wednesday, July 17, 2024
Header Background

Credit Card Guides

Follow our team of experts for the best credit card guides on the web, featuring tips on getting the best rates and rewards, applying securely, and using credit responsibly.

What is a Credit Card Signup Bonus? How the Popular Incentive Works

What is a Signup Bonus? How the Credit Card Incentive Works

When I received my first signup bonus, I was over the moon. It proved addictive — all... read more »

Eric Bank 7/11/2024
What is a Credit Card Promotional Period? How to Manage and Maximize Introductory Offers

What is a Credit Card Promotional Period?

My heart wanted this nifty new camera with a retro design, but my budget was... read more »

Eric Bank 7/10/2024
How Travel Reward Blackout Dates Work & How to Avoid Them  

How Travel Reward Blackout Dates Work

Credit card travel blackout dates are certain times when you can’t use your credit... read more »

Eric Bank 6/25/2024
What is the Credit Card Competition Act of 2023?

What is the Credit Card Competition Act of 2023?

The Credit Card Competition Act (CCCA) is a proposed federal law that would change... read more »

Marcie Geffner 6/24/2024
What is Credit Card Purchase Protection? Covered Items & Strategic Ways to Use the Benefit

A Guide to Purchase Protection Benefits

Credit card purchase protection safeguards you if a product you buy with your credit... read more »

Eric Bank 6/20/2024
10 Most Innovative Finance Apps in 2024

10 Most Innovative Finance Apps in 2024

It’s just as accurate in finance as anywhere else that digital transformation reduces... read more »

Mike Senecal 6/19/2024
What is Credit Card Delinquency? When Late Payments Lead to Credit Damage

What Is Credit Card Delinquency?

Credit card delinquency happens when you don’t pay your credit card bill on time... read more »

Eric Bank 6/19/2024
What is Fair Credit? A Guide to its Impact on Lending Decisions & How to Improve Your Score

What is a Fair Credit Score?

When your credit score is considered fair, it means you’re right in the middle of the... read more »

Eric Bank 6/18/2024
What is a Charge-Off? When Lenders Deem Debt Uncollectable, Borrowers Are Still on the Hook

What is a Charge-Off? When Debt is Deemed Uncollectable

When businesses or lenders consider a debt uncollectible, usually due to missed or... read more »

Erica Sandberg 6/17/2024
What is a FICO Score? How it Impacts Lending Terms and Credit Decisions

What is a FICO Score? How it Impacts Lending and Credit

A FICO score is any score designed and developed by the company, Fair Isaac. When you... read more »

John Ulzheimer 6/13/2024
What is an Authorized User? A Guide to the Pros, Cons & Legal Responsibilities

What is an Authorized User on a Credit Card?

An authorized user on a credit card is someone the primary cardholder adds to their... read more »

Eric Bank 6/6/2024
10 Best Savvy Shopping Bloggers for 2024

10 Best Savvy Shopping Bloggers for 2024

People’s opinions on shopping are as diverse as the types of goods for sale in a... read more »

Andrew Allen 6/6/2024
What is a Security Deposit? How Secured Cards Work and Can Help You Build Credit

How Credit Card Security Deposits Works

Consumers with bad or no credit may have a difficult time qualifying for an unsecured... read more »

Eric Bank 6/4/2024
What is a Foreign Transaction Fee? How They Work & How to Avoid Them

Why Credit Cards Charge Foreign Transaction Fees

What do a Swiss cuckoo clock, a box of Belgian chocolates, and a bottle of French... read more »

Eric Bank 6/3/2024
What is an ATM Fee? A Guide to Using Debit & Credit Cards at ATMs

Understanding How ATM Fees Affect Your Transactions

Automated teller machines (ATMs) allow customers to withdraw cash and perform other... read more »

Mike Senecal 5/30/2024
What Is a Credit Card Annual Fee? Why Issuers Charge Them & Cost-to-Benefit Analysis

Credit Card Annual Fees & Whether They’re Worth It

An annual fee is a charge you pay once a year to use a credit card. It’s like a... read more »

Eric Bank 5/28/2024
What is a Credit Utilization Ratio?

What is a Credit Utilization Ratio?

Your credit utilization ratio (CUR) represents how much of your total credit limit... read more »

Eric Bank 5/16/2024
What Is a Credit Card Interest Rate? Types of Rates & Debt Impacts

What to Know About Credit Card Interest Rates

A credit card interest rate is the price you pay to borrow money from a credit card... read more »

Eric Bank 5/15/2024
What is an Average Daily Balance?

How Average Daily Balance Impacts the Interest You Pay

The average daily balance on a credit card is how much you owe daily, on average... read more »

Eric Bank 5/7/2024
What is a Statement Credit?

How Card Statement Credits Work

A statement credit is money applied to your credit card account that can lower your... read more »

Erica Sandberg 5/3/2024
What Are Cash Back Rewards?

An In-Depth Guide to Cash Back Rewards

Cash back rewards are a small refund when you buy something with a credit card. Card... read more »

Eric Bank 5/2/2024
What is the Prime Rate?

How the Prime Rate Affects Card Interest Rates

The prime rate is the best interest rate banks provide to their customers. Credit... read more »

Eric Bank 5/1/2024
Do Credit Card Issuers Use FICO or VantageScore Credit Scores?

Do Issuers Use FICO or VantageScore Credit Scores?

The credit card is the default preferred method of payment for almost 200 million... read more »

John Ulzheimer 4/17/2024
What Is a Credit Score?

Everything You Need to Know About Credit Scores

A credit score is a number, most commonly ranging from 300 to 850, that represents... read more »

Eric Bank 4/16/2024
Show More Advice

Need Advice? Ask CardRates!

Looking for more finance and credit card advice? Search our ever-growing database chock full of 1,000+ how-to guides and credit card reviews, all authored by the web's leading finance experts.

Search 1,000+ how-to guides or these popular topics:

Get Advice

Reviews from Our Experts

Our team of finance experts have reviewed and ranked the best credit card offers in the US based on interest rates, rewards deals and approval rate. See our expert reviews and browse the best credit cards by feautures, credit level and issuer.

Share the Knowledge!

Toby Sembower