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It’s not a secret: the credit card industry is known for its unfair practices and rules, as well as unreasonable interest rates and penalties. The good news is the new trend in creating credit cards that are more consumer-friendly. Here’s a run-down of the top consumer friendly credit cards out there right now.
The Discover card has long been the top choice for consumers that want to avoid credit cards that try to find ways around the federally mandated rules. Discover makes the top of the list because it gives customers a reasonable amount of time to pay their credit card bills. Discover doesn’t charge customers that wish to pay their bill by phone, either: a rare thing to find indeed. Discover also lets its customers decide on a convenient time for their monthly payment due date.
Discover makes the list for its payment friendly approach to credit cards.
CitiBank’s new credit card, called the Citi Forward Card, is a completely revolutionary credit card, offering rewards to customers that pay their bills on time and don’t go over their credit limit. Customers that keep their account in good standing receive reward points and even a lower interest rate as a reward, a system that’s unheard of in the credit card industry.
The Forward card is great for anyone, especially those getting credit for the first time or individuals that need to repair their credit history. The Citi Forward card takes an interesting and promising stance on credit use and spending.
Wells Fargo is another card issuer that doesn’t bring shame to the industry.
Wells Fargo doesn’t practice interest rate hikes at the last minute for its customers; instead you’re given a 45-day notice before any changes. This is a full month over what the law currently mandates.
Wells Fargo credit cards are also one of the few cards that don’t fall under what’s known as “universal default.” This means that making a late payment on your Wells Fargo credit card won’t result in an instant interest rate increase.
What’s more, having a bank account at Wells Fargo will qualify you for great, low interest rates.
Wells Fargo is one of the best consumer-friendly credit cards because it makes its own rules and doesn’t straddle the federal laws on the industry.
Capital One makes the list because of its consumer-friendly approach to balance transfers and interest rates.
Capital One cards offer 0% interest on balance transfers for a full year; this is very hard to find these days with the economy worsening and people desperate to transfer their debt to a better card. Capital One also mails out all statements 25 days before your monthly payment is due, giving you ample time to make your payment.
They accept payments up to 5:00 PM on the due date and won’t raise your interest rate because you paid late to another issuer.
In addition, Capital One has the popular Capital One CardLab which lets you design your own credit card. You can decide your own interest rate, rewards and terms by entering information about your credit history. You tell the CardLab what your history is and you’ll get a card completely tailored to your history, often giving you the best terms for your credit score.
Other Consumer Friendly Cards
There are a few other cards that are definitely consumer-friendly. Make sure you look for a credit card that doesn’t have a universal default clause when choosing a credit card and don’t sign up for any card that uses two-cycle billing, which will end up charging you twice. Here are a few more credit cards that are high on the consumer-friendly list by Consumer Reports:
The Target Visa, issued by Target National. Cards issued by department stores have a bad reputation but the Target Visa has a fixed interest rate of 9.90%, no universal default clause and doesn’t use the two-cycle billing system. It has rewards and is a great choice for consumers. What’s best is the no annual fee you’ll have to pay with your Target Visa.
Visa Platinum Rewards
The Visa Platinum Rewards, issued by Simmons First National. This credit card has a fixed interest rate of 8.95% and doesn’t use unfair credit practices, making it a trasparent and easy-to-use card.
The Visa Gold
The Visa Gold, issued by Pulaski. This card has no cash advance fee and an introductory APR of 0%. The Visa Gold also comes with a variable 8.50% interest rate. You can also rest assured that the Visa Gold comes with no annual fee.
The Visa Platinum
The Visa Platinum, issued by First Tennessee, has an introductory rate of 3.90% and goes to a variable 8.40% after the introductory period with no annual fee. This card has no unfair business practices and is a reliable choice for consumers.
Lastly, the Platinum Mastercard, issued by Town North, has a variable interest rate of 7.99% and charges only 2% for cash advances. There’s no annual fee and you get a full 25 day grace period.
These are the top consumer-friendly credit cards available, each with its own approach to consumer relations. These companies give evidence that there’s hope yet for the credit card industry and consumer relations isn’t a dying practice. Try taking a look into these credit card issuers and find a credit card that’s ideal for your situation.