Why you are better off managing your credit cards yourself

By UK CreditCards.com

What's the service like from your bank?


If recent figures are to be believed, the answer is probably ‘not very good.'  Recent data from the Financial Services Authority (FSA) found that almost a million complaints were lodged against Britain's banks in the second half of 2010 -- equivalent to five thousand grievances every day. Amongst the chief complaints from consumers was ‘substandard service.' 

Most of you will have experienced poor customer service from your bank or credit card provider at some point. So, why not bypass your card company altogether? A growing number of companies now offer online credit card account management -- allowing you to look after your credit card yourself.

Thousands of complaints lodged about bank service
As banks strive to make savings, branch service has recently suffered. Credit card companies have cut retail staff in order to cut costs and so it's not unusual to wait in a long queue to deal with your credit card at a High Street branch.

Many of you will identify with the sentiments of American comedian Rita Rudner when she said, "They usually have two tellers in my local bank, except when it's very busy, when they have one."

Waiting in an enormous queue to discuss your credit card account or to pay a bill can be extremely frustrating. So, it may be time to head online if you're looking for a better way to manage your cards.

Pick credit card offers that come with superb service
When you compare credit card offers, always take into account the online and telephone services offered by that card.

Online credit card account management can save you a huge amount of time and hassle. Most services will allow you to check your recent credit card transactions, make payments to your credit card account, transfer a balance to your card and print out statements. Some will also let you request a change to your credit limit.

A growing number of banks are now offering state of the art online banking services -- which is good news for consumers. If you have a credit card that you use regularly, access to a good online banking service can save you a huge amount of effort. 

Online credit card account management can save you time -- and money
Rather than queuing in your local branch, managing credit cards online can be done at any time of day or night. Most banks offer 24 hour access to internet-based services, allowing you to manage your credit card at a time that is convenient to you, rather than convenient to the bank.

Heading online also helps you to compare credit card offers. If you're looking for a new card, you are often able to manage the process online from start to finish. You can research the best credit card offers, apply for your card and then manage your credit card online without ever having to step into a local branch.

So, if you're looking for a better credit card, why not choose one that not only offers a great deal, but also a better standard of service?

See related: Why you should never reuse credit card PINs; Credit bureaus to offer easy online access to credit reports

Published: 16 May 2011