How many credit cards should you have? Experts weigh

The majority of Americans own either two (29.3%) or one (28.6%) credit card (s), a recent survey by GOBankingRates found – but how many credit cards is the ideal number?

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Learn: Top Purchases You Should Always Make with a Credit Card

According to experts, there is no single answer, but there are some general rules.

If you’re building your credit, stick to one

Lyle David Solomon, Bankruptcy Lawyer at Oak View Law Group, recommends clients cut back on their credit card use when recovering from a bad credit blow, such as filing for bankruptcy .

Find out: 5 reasons you need a credit card
See: Why It’s Always Better To Use Your Credit Card Over Debit Card

“In general, when people are just coming out of bankruptcy, I recommend that people only have one card and use it sparingly,” he said. “Make small purchases here and there, under $ 100, and pay them off in full right away to build up a credit history. “

However, if the reason you filed for bankruptcy was due to credit card debt and you don’t trust yourself to spend responsibly, it might be best to forgo a credit card altogether.

Check Out: 90 seconds to increase your credit score by 200 points

“Some people can’t even have one and have to stick with a debit card,” Solomon said.

Usually three to four cards is a good number

“For most people, I feel three to four [credit cards] is appropriate, ”Solomon said. “It’s good to have a daily use card with a good rewards program. If you travel frequently, an airline miles card or hotel rewards card is also beneficial. In addition, there are still places that only accept one type of card. It is good to have a mixture of Visa, Mastercard and American Express for different situations. When making a large electronics purchase, it’s nice to have AMEX warranties, along with other benefits.

Read more: This simple trick will improve your credit score and avoid late payments

Also, different rewards cards have different benefits, so it is better to have a mix for different types of purchases.

Read more: The Fastest Ways To Pay Off Your Credit Card Debt

“Having multiple cards in your wallet and using those cards on the types of purchases that earn you the most rewards can be a great way to maximize the value you’re getting from your credit cards,” said Justin Zeidman, Head of Credit Cards. credit card products at Navy. Federal Credit Union. “Responsible use of credit is paramount, but if you are in a financial center where you can manage more than one card, it can be very beneficial to have multiple cards in your wallet. “

You can have more than four if you’re a credit card pro

If you’re in good financial shape and want to reap as many credit card rewards as possible, you might want to have more than four cards still.

Options: 10 credit cards to consider for travel rewards

“The ideal number of cards is unique to the individual,” Solomon said. “I know someone with 27 credit cards, but they also have a credit score of over 800, have a seven-figure income, and travel constantly. She uses her cards to save over $ 10,000 a year.

Credit expert John Ulzheimer agrees that there is no maximum number of credit cards for a person with good spending habits.

See: What happens when you are denied a credit card and what to do next

“For someone who is responsible for the use of their cards and never has a balance, there is no such thing as too many cards,” he told CNBC Select.

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Last updated: October 22, 2021

This article originally appeared on How Many Credit Cards Should You Have? Experts weigh

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