Getting hit with extra costs is the pits, especially when it comes to your credit card. Thankfully, there are several great credit card offers on the market that will help you dodge common, plastic-related expenses.
Here are the Nerds’ top picks for:
Avoiding finance charges: Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer
If you can believe it, all of these great benefits come at an annual fee of $0. In short, with the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer there’s nothing not to love.
Avoiding annual fees: Chase Freedom®no annual fee. One of the best is the Chase Freedom® because of its rich rewards. With it, you’ll earn 5% cash back in rotating quarterly bonus categories throughout the year, up to $1,500 spent per quarter. You’ll also earn 1% cash back on all other purchases. Here are the current categories:
|Chase Freedom® bonus rewards categories for 2018|
|Q1 2018 (Jan. 1 - March 31)||• Gas stations
• Internet, cable and phone service
• Purchases via Chase Pay, Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay
|Q2 2018 (April 1 - June 30)||• Grocery stores
• PayPal, for online, mobile or in-app purchases
• Chase Pay, for online, mobile or in-app purchases
|Q3 2018 (July 1 – Sept. 30)||• Gas stations
|Q4 2017 (Oct. 1 – Dec. 31)||To be announced (in 2017: Walmart and department stores)|
Historically, featured 5% categories have included things like gas stations, restaurants, select grocery stores, wholesale clubs and more. This means there’s an opportunity for nearly every type of shopper to cash in big with the Chase Freedom® throughout the year.
Unlike many other cash-back cards, the Chase Freedom® comes with a signup bonus: Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. And don’t forget, the annual fee is $0, so you won’t have to worry about shelling out any extra cash as you score your 5% rewards.
Avoiding balance transfer fees: Chase Slate®
Refinancing your credit card debt with a balance transfer deal is a smart move, but paying a balance transfer fee can really take the wind out of your sails. But if you choose the Chase Slate® and transfer your balance within 60 days of opening your account, this fee will be waived. For folks coping with a lot of debt, this could represent a huge savings.
In terms of a 0% introductory period, the Chase Slate® offers: 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months, and then the ongoing APR of 16.49% - 25.24% Variable APR.
And don’t forget about some of the fringe benefits that come with this card; for one thing, it’s chip-enabled for more secure transactions. Also, cardholders have monthly access to their FICO scores. This will help you track your credit as you pay down your debt.
Finally, since the Chase Slate® charges an annual fee of $0, you’ll actually dodge two common costs with one great card.
Avoiding late fees: Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever
The Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever also comes with a great introductory 0% APR offer: 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 15.74% - 25.74% Variable APR. In short, this card comes with multiple opportunities to save on everyday credit card costs.
Nerd note: We think this card is a great option if you’re planning to finance a large purchase and pay it off over time. However, it’s not ideal for balance transfers because of its 5% balance transfer fee.
Image via iStock.