5 questions you should ask before signing up with a new credit card provider

By UK CreditCards.com

Is your credit card provider any good?

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Whilst fees, interest rates and rewards might be high on your agenda when selecting a new credit card, the quality of the card provider should also be a factor that you take into consideration. Before you apply for your next UK credit card, make sure you look closely at the card company.

Questions that you should ask before signing up for a new card include:

1. What are the card provider's fees?
When looking for the best credit card, don't just look at the headline interest rate. Look at what fees the card provider charges for late payments, ATM withdrawals and for conducting other transactions. Some of these fees could surprise you. Ask yourself, does the card provider offer all around value for the money?

2. Do they offer the best credit card rewards?
If your plan is to repay your credit card in full every month, then you will want to find a provider that offers the best credit card rewards plan. Shop around and find out how many points you earn per pound spent and which rewards schemes offer you the best benefits.

3. Do they make your life easy?
There are lots of UK credit cards available, but the standard of service to back them up can vary significantly. So, it is vital you find a provider that offers the convenience you need. Do they have a local branch where you can resolve problems? Do they offer round the clock online banking so that you can manage your account whenever you like?

4. Are they a reputable company?
You might automatically be drawn toward a big name card issuer that you have heard of. However, just because they may offer the best credit card rewards, it doesn't mean they are the best choice. Some smaller card providers offer a much more personal service and treat you like an individual.

5. What other benefits does the card provider offer?
Does the card provider offer any additional perks on their credit cards? For example, do they offer additional card security, purchase protection or discounts on other goods and services? Take these additional benefits into account when choosing the best card for your needs.

See related: 3 secrets to getting a better deal on your next credit card; Credit card interest rates climb higher

Published: 11 March 2011