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unique 02-05-2007 09:37 AM

How many credit cards do I need?
A person can never have too many when it comes to credit card. How many credit cards do you have? Would you prefer a Visa or Mastercard?

taiarain 02-06-2007 03:47 PM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
A person can never have too many when it comes to credit card.

I'm afraid that's misleading at best and patently false at worst. Even with zero balances, it is more than possible to have too many credit cards and having too many can affect your credit rating and the amount you pay for insurance.

brian 02-12-2007 06:56 AM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
I think the idea of requiring multiple credit cards is suggestive of a debt problem already. :)

I have a single credit card, but I don't use it for credit - I use it because in the UK it gives me some really great consumer protections not available with a debit card.

The only time I think I would genuinely need multiple credit cards is for multiple bank accounts - but if required for multiple sources of credit, then I have a problem.

taiarain 02-15-2007 11:23 AM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
That's terrible, Brian. I had been under the impression that the EMV standard in the UK was much more even about applying protections to credit and debit cards than the set up we have in the US. Of course, that may be what 'they' want us to think so we'll sign onto EMV.

brian 02-16-2007 04:39 AM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
UK consumer protections via credit cards are actually pretty good - buy with a debit card, and you're screwed if there's a problem.

However, if you pay for goods on a credit card and something goes wrong - product/services aren't delivered, are broken, or not what was ordered - then the credit card company will chase it up for you, because at the end of the day it's their money.

I had real problems with Comet about two years ago - a big UK electrical goods supplier:
Brian’s Business Blog Don’t buy from Comet

Since then, I only buy groceries with a debit card - everything else on the credit card.

Now that my girlfriend has started using the internet and shopping online, I'm pushing her to get a credit card for the same reason - any internet sale goes wrong, the credit card company will ensure she doesn't lose out.

2c. :)

taiarain 02-16-2007 10:47 AM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
Thanks for clarifying that. I've had to do a lot of research on smart cards and everything we have in the US implies that cc/dc offer identical protections anywhere on EMV. I'll make sure my next batch of smart card articles differentiates.

kelkat 02-18-2007 12:08 AM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
Credit cards are much safer when purchasing on line.

We have a card for personal purchases (it gets reward points per dollar spent)

And one for each of our businesses.

This helps us keep up with the financial info for the tax man each year.

If it's just for personal use, I can't see any reason a person would need more than one.

nangel78 02-18-2007 01:33 PM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
I want to have just one eventually. I have paid off a couple so far.

financeguy 03-13-2007 10:09 PM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
I have an American Express and a Visa. Both have rewards programs that I take full advantage of.

shaye 03-16-2007 11:12 PM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
I think 3 is the recommended amount...I'm sure that's what I saw from an article on Msn...I can't find the link was either 3 or 4 credit cards...make sure you repay the balance though!!!

jrf 09-02-2007 08:07 AM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
The more you have the more debt you are going to float.

Debt Elimination Nation 09-06-2007 09:31 PM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
Well I have been searching for a rule on this for sometime. After many years asking many people and professionals I have come to the conclusion that there is no rule.

I have heard that 3 is optimal but then again I know a guy who has almost 100 cards and he has a score over 800! go figure right!

He uses some interesting tricks of the trade and I would not recommend having to many.

Why? Well if you have many cards you pose as a larger risk to creditors because you have the availability to so much money that your debt to income ratio can get so big that you would kill yourself.

Anyway... this is a much tougher question than just saying a number of cards... I hope I helped

Dru 09-07-2007 01:50 PM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
It's not about how many you have, it is all about how you use your credit. If you manage it well, they will trust you with more, and the rate and terms continue to improve. One time I had a $25,000 credit card mailed to me that I didn't even apply for. I moved everything else onto it as a consolidation.

Today I have no credit cards and choose to be that way. When offers show up in the mail, I read the terms to see what goodies they are offering this week, then I tear them up and toss them in the trash.

Hermes 09-18-2007 06:31 AM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
If it is just for personal use you probably won't need more then one.


Depends on preference.

People have multiple cards but most likely use the same card over and over which eliminates the need for more. You're more likely to increase your debt level with multiple cards.

Many people with multiple cards rend to max out one and then move to another one which is the ideal recipe for a financial problem.

It's all about how you use the card(s). I would recommend that the balance should be repaid at the end of each month and to purchase goods which you can afford (i.e. have the cash to purchase them).

Remember that CC carry an annual fee and although not much if you have too many cards you won't use you're just waisting money.

Dgrocho 10-22-2007 06:40 PM

Re: How many credit cards do I need?
I know I am "digging up" a fairly old thread here, but for you people that say that having too many credit cards can be detrimental because of the exposure, would you say that you should have a high or a low credit line on your one card?
It is my understanding that part of the FICO is [how much debt you have] vs [how much available credit you have] which leads me to believe that having one card with a high line of credit or having multiple cards would be good as long as you don't use them (or pay them off monthly)

Edit: Sorry, for some reason the newest posts are up first...I'm going to have to change that in my profile

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