Credit card. Necessity or status symbol?
Ever since I knew what a credit card is, I promised myself not to get one. Around 2009, when BPI offered me a pre-approved credit card, I declined it. They even tried to deliver the card at home, but I told the messenger that I did not apply for it.
Then a little more then a year later, another credit card offer came; still from BPI. I broke my promise and accepted the card. It was the start of due diligence and discipline in planning my expenses and making sure I pay on time... and in full.
I can attest to the convenience a credit card brings - purchasing appliances, gadgets, online deals/bookings, etc. No ATM or bank queuing required.
I also got some free meal by using the CC on a promo offer.
But on the first anniversary when I was being charged the annual fee, I cancelled the card.
Few months after (around late 2012), BPI offered me a new one. I accepted on the condition that the annual fee would be waived. I now have another "free" credit card.
But since acquiring this new CC last December, I had only three transactions. I really don't use it. I also don't brag I have a credit card.
My current CC is a gold version. I suppose some gold CC users tend to flash them like a badge of honor. But for me, I am not really comfortable using my gold CC. Before this was given to me, I asked my relationship manager from BPI Family if she can give me a card with lower credit limit, not a gold one. She told me that gold CC is the minimum for a preferred client. Sad. And really, I am afraid for my security whenever I use my gold CC.
Is it a necessity? I don't think so. I can still pay bills, go shopping, and pay online bookings without a credit card. Though it is more convenient to have a credit card in these instances, I don't think the convenience can justify the annual fee. (This is of course my opinion. I know some people are ready to pay annual fee for the convenience that a credit card brings to them.)
Is it a status symbol? Maybe yes. I believe majority of Filipinos "admire" someone whose wallet is like a rainbow due to numerous credit cards from various banks.
For me, I do not admire him/her. I can and will admire him/her if s/he knows why s/he has so many credit cards. Business purposes? If it is merely for status symbol, then I pity him/her.
Credit cards are not badges of honor. These "plastic wallets" are good test-drives of one's debt management skills and financial discipline. But if used recklessly like considering it as a bottomless pit of money, then ... doomsday might just be around the corner.
please like my page on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pisomatters-piso-piso-to-financial-freedom/340228682759760